Local Profile: Revel Craft Bar
Published on February 15th, 2018
By Jennifer Oppriecht
Revel is a place where you can create your own jewelry, decor items, gifts and more. It features a DIY Craft Bar, workshops and events. Read our interview with Sarah Van Dyke of Revel for more details.
Sarah Van Dyke of Revel
Tell us about Revel!
Revel is a modern DIY studio and event space located just off the Capitol Square (right around the corner from the Old Fashioned).
We opened in June of 2016 with the goal of creating an inspiring, beautiful space where there was always something fun going on. We wanted to create an oasis away from the stress of everyday life that people could enjoy while connecting with friends and trying something new.
Before opening Revel, I spent 11 years working in IT, so I also loved the idea of a place where you could get away from the computer screen, relax while being creative, and find the satisfaction that comes from working on a project from start to finish. Because let’s be honest – how often do you ever get to the bottom of your email inbox?!
What can people do at Revel?
Our main offering at Revel is the Craft Bar, which is open 5 days/week (typically Wed–Sun). It’s similar to a restaurant format in that guests can make a reservation in advance OR just drop in during our open hours to see if there is space.
When you come in to the Craft Bar you select a DIY project from our menu (current menu linked here). Each person in your group can choose something different – no need to do the same project! We provide all of the supplies and instructions and you work through your chosen project in a self-guided fashion…though of course our staff is there to assist if needed.
The best part? We clean up the mess afterwards! Oh…and did we mention that we have an actual bar in case you need a drink or snack to keep the creativity flowing?
In addition to the Craft Bar we curate a schedule of creative and lifestyle workshops – everything from watercolor painting and flower arranging to beer glass etching and iPhone photography. We also love hosting private events and see lots of bachelorette parties, sorority sisterhood events, and student organization gatherings in our space.
What are some of the things people love most about Revel?
One of the best parts about the Revel experience is the ease of it all – our guests love that they can drop in when it’s convenient for their schedule, rather than having to sign up for a specific time slot or class. They also love being able to choose a project that fits their budget and interests (our Craft Bar projects are very affordable, ranging from $15-$40 each).
We get a lot of comments about how pretty our space is. Lots of people say they feel like they’ve walked into Pinterest or Instagram, which is one of the highest compliments we could get!
What do you love about Madison – why is it a great fit for Revel?
I first came to Madison as a UW student….and almost 20 years later I’m still thrilled to be here!
To me, Madison really encompasses the best parts of a big and a small city. It’s large enough that there are lots of activities and plenty of energy/opportunity, but it’s small and friendly enough that you can really get involved, build a network, and try things (like starting a brick-and-mortar business!) with less risk than you would have in a bigger city.
Downtown Madison has so many great restaurants and boutiques/shops – and I saw an open niche there for a more experience-based business that would be appealing to adults.
Our guests love that they can easily go from State Street shopping to coffee to crafting…or crafting to dinner and drinks on the Square…or really any combination of fun downtown activities!