Lauren Smith, Staff Writer

Looking for a fun and unique way to spend Valentine’s Day with your loved one or friends? Look no further than Lakeland’s own art café, Picassoz! Located only ten minutes from campus, this one of a kind studio offers guests the ability to let their creativity run free in a fun and laid back environment. What makes this trendy studio even cooler? They have partnered with their next door neighbors, Tea Largo, to offer customers refreshing and unique coffees, teas, snacks and other refreshments while they create their projects.

“Our stores are truly one of a kind and really help to get those creative juices flowing,” says Picassoz owner, Kristin Miller. “Where else can you spend a relaxing evening painting your favorite quote on your own mug while sipping or slurping a Chocolate Ginger Bourban tea latte?”

Picassoz offers a wide variety of art activities in which guests can partake. You may choose a pre-made piece of pottery in the studio to paint yourself, and when your masterpiece is complete, Picassoz will glaze it for you and make sure it gets to you in perfect condition. If you’re more inclined for a creative project you can take home the same day, Breakables, Picassoz own mosaic studio, is perfect for you and your date! Bring your mosaics to life with a broad selection of colored glass, ceramic, sea shells and even driftwood. If you’re feeling really creative, you can even add ceramic words, letters or specialty baubles at a minimum extra charge.

If you’re planning a romantic candlelight dinner for you and your significant other, you can make your own candles at Picassoz as well. With your own choice of color and fragrance, couples, groups of friends or even artistic soloists can build pillar mold and glass jar candles. Nothing says romantic like candlelight from the very candle you made with your own hands. For something extra romantic that the two of you can create for each other, why not make fingerprint impressions into silver clay? The keepsake will be hardened and made into a necklace, so you will always have a piece of your loved one wherever you go.

“We’ve always been a very popular spot on Valentine’s Day,” says Miller. “It’s actually a perfect date spot because it’s casual, interactive, and creates a tangible, functional keepsake.”

Of course, a visit to Picassoz isn’t complete without a refreshment from Tea Largo. From unique hand-crafted drinks, healthy acai bowls and gourmet ice pops, the menu is just as wide as your creativity. Share a smoothie with your partner as you paint pottery together, try an interesting tea flavor such as Carrot Cake Rooibos or Caramel Sea Salt Molasses or give the fruity acai bowl a try while crafting a mosaic. The date ideas are nearly limitless.

The main studio and the upstairs party loft studio will be open on Valentine’s Day, so don’t miss your chance to wow your date or your friends with a fun and romantic activity. Also, be sure to check out their other seasonal activities such as painting something pumpkin while sipping a pumpkin spice latte in the fall or making your own Christmas ornament during the holiday season. It’s the perfect place to hang out all year round.