BY CARMEN SIERING
It would be a mistake to enter Patricia’s Wellness Arts Cafe & Quilter’s Comfort Teas with any preconceived notion of what a café can be, says owner Patricia Coleman, an artist who studied printmaking, painting, and fiber arts at the University of Arizona. She is also a reiki master and prayer shaman who runs a successful herbal tea company. The Wellness Arts Cafe combines all of these interests under one roof.
“Why pick one thing? A business should connect with who we are in the world,” Coleman says. “I don’t separate any of it. I put love into all of it.”
The café at 725 W. Kirkwood features a collection of local artwork, along with eco-dyed and hand-painted clothing and accessories, much of it “upcycled,” a term Coleman prefers to recycled. “When I upcycle something,” she says, “I’m taking an object that has been cast away and transforming it into something beautiful, totally new, and of higher value.”
Also for sale are handmade meditation pillows and a line of loose-fitting, traditional Japanese work clothes made by the shop’s only other worker, Operations Director Yuko Okumura.
The café also serves as a storefront for Coleman’s Quilter’s Comfort Teas, a line of certified-organic herbal teas, tea jelly, herbs, and body-care products that she began selling online five years ago at quilterscomfort.com. Self-serve tea tastings are available at the café.
Coleman offers reiki sessions and other wellness practices, classes in arts and crafts, and workshops in what she calls “folk skills”—skills, Coleman says, that many people used to learn from family, in scouting, or as part of home-economics classes.
“We want to evolve into a community folk school, a place where people can learn everyday life skills that help them live in more self-sufficient ways,” Coleman says. To that end, she rents space in the café to those who want to teach small groups of students. Private rental space is also available for healing-arts practitioners.
A calendar of events will be posted on the café’s website (hartrock.net/cafe.htm). Café hours are Monday through Saturday 11 am to 5 pm, extended to 8 pm during Gallery Walk on the first Friday of each month. For more information, call 334-8155.