In this non-stop digital era, nothing can be more therapeutic than escaping technology and using our hands for something other than touching a keyboard or screen. Which may be why more and more people are turning to do-it-yourself crafts, such as sewing, wood working, beading and embroidery. In fact, nearly two-thirds of U.S. households participate in at least one crafting hobby.

Riviera resident Cristina McKinnon, a life-long crafter, knows how fulfilling it can be to create homemade works of art. So when she was looking for a post-retirement career after 27 years as a public servant, she jumped at the chance to open her own craft studio, AR Workshop Torrance. Located in the remodeled shopping plaza at Anza and Pacific Coast Highway, AR Workshop offers all the supplies and instruction needed to create homemade gifts and décor, including knit blankets, charcuterie boards, frames, wood signs, canvas pillows, wood trays, tote bags and more. Customers flock there for birthday parties, corporate team building events, bridal showers and date nights. They even offer summer camp programs for kids.

“We offer a fun and relaxing environment where customers can connect on a different level,” says Cristina. “The Workshop is an inviting, creative space filled with laughter and music, where friends can spend quality time together while creating a unique and personal piece of decor they can take home that day.”

Cristina and her husband, Milt, moved to the Riviera more than a decade ago, after falling in love with the first house they saw.

“Milt went to Richardson and South and knew this was where he wanted to raise a family,” said Cristina. “This is where we’ve put down roots to raise our kids.”

AR Workshop Torrance offers daily workshops that customers can sign up for, such as ‘Chunky Knit Blankets,’ ‘Wine-Down Wednesday Plank Workshops,’ and ‘Canvas Workshops.’ Customers are welcome to bring snacks, sips and sweets to enjoy while they create.

To sign up for a workshop, or to reserve a spot for a private event, go to www.arworkshop.com/torrance, or call 310-893-7553. Be sure to take $10 off your next project by registering with code: TORRANCEGO (does not include specialty classes). AR Workshop Torrance is located at 24046 Vista Montana, Torrance.