In this day and age, it is common for people to want access to multiple things in one location. On Travelocity you can book your flight, car and hotel. Bookstores double as coffee shops regularly. And in the heart of downtown Wilmington, North Carolina, Pineapple Studios doubles as a yoga and pottery studio.
Owner Jess Reedy was working on her ceramics degree while doubling as private yoga instructor. She spent her days running back and forth between the two artistic outlets and finally decided they deserved a space together.
“Yoga and pottery are very similar — they are both really therapeutic and a great way of expressing yourself,” said Reedy. “It is easier to get that therapeutic side of things when you can bounce back and forth in one space. Once my day became the mixture of the two things, I knew they needed to be under the same roof.”
Finding the perfect combination of time slots for the two offerings has been trial and error for Reedy. Yoga was first offered in the mornings and evenings at Pineapple Studios, until it became apparent that switching back and forth between the two was causing more strife than they needed.
“So we made the switch to just offering yoga in the morning and once pottery starts, we don’t really shut it down until around 8 p.m. because it is too much to go back and forth between the two things,” said Reedy. “You also can’t really only do pottery for an hour or so — we usually have people coming in for longer chunks.”
Having these two offerings in one location helps Reedy and staff break many newcomers out of their shell. Not many students are skilled in both yoga and pottery, so having both in a place for people to see helps them encourage students to try out a beginner’s class for both.
“It is great because we get a lot of beginners from both sides and I think that helps people get over their fears of being new to something,” said Reedy. “I feel like by them getting over their fear within our space they are more comfortable to try lots of new things. I have watched more hesitant personalities try new things in our space because they feel comfortable there.”
Pineapple Studios offers their morning yoga classes as a donation-based, pay what you can style. A majority of that money is then given back to offer discounts to local organizations Reedy has partnered with.
“It is kind of an immediate in-house give back program,” said Reedy. “You are making a yoga donation and we are using a lot of that to offer discounted or free pottery classes for rehab centers, rape crisis centers and other programs in the area. There are a lot of really great organizations in our community, so any way that we can help them relieve stress of people they work with is great for everyone.”
Reedy is always open to feedback at Pineapple Studios. She is consistently listening to her clients to know what they feel does and doesn’t work within the schedule. If they need more time for yoga, she is open to adding a class in the morning, and vice versa, with taking more time on for pottery.
“People will let you know what they do and don’t like or need,” said Reedy. “Which is good, because sometimes you are so committed to making something work that when you hear these suggestions from other people you realize you need to see outside of your original vision and shift with what works.”