New stores bring creative outlet to downtown Salida | business

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Heckin Yes, a new shop that opened two weeks ago in downtown Salida, offers creative painting and swallowing activities and henna tattoos for people of all ages.

Patrons have the opportunity to construct their own acrylic-on-canvas painting while enjoying their choice of a wide range of beverages. They can choose to paint freehand or use a stencil to guide their strokes.

Owner Emma Dallas said it offers a fantastic creative outlet for the everyday person. She found that while painting can be intimidating for beginners, most people are pleasantly surprised at how well they can do it.

The space is open daily and accepts walk-in customers. Parties and events can also be hosted here if booked in advance.

Dallas and her younger sister Mahala Dallas, 16, also offer henna tattoos. Originating in South Asia, Mehndi art is a temporary ink that stains the skin for a few weeks. The drawing is done in black ink from fruits. The designs available range from simple symbols to intricate drawings featuring the moon and other natural symbols.

The start of the company marked the end of a journey across the country for Emma Dallas. She was raised in Kentucky and has roots in New York, but moved to Colorado to attend school at Colorado State University. She completed a bachelor’s degree in fermentation and mechanical engineering. She also played on the CSU golf team.

Since moving to Salida from Fort Collins, she’s been able to switch off and enjoy the small-town lifestyle. Coming from a family of talented artists, she said starting this company was a much-needed return to her roots.

“I use it as therapy,” she said, citing her love of creativity and art. “I believe that art can heal people.”

As someone who has struggled with anxiety and depression, she said art has helped her find mindfulness and happiness. Now she gets the opportunity to pass it on to others. Noting that she’s excited to bring an arts outlet to downtown Salida, she said, “I love introducing people to the creative side of life.”

The Heckin Yes location is still a bit in flux. For the fall and winter months, Dallas plans to move to a permanent space on F Street. She also intends to offer art courses for people who want to learn and take their painting to the next level.

Meanwhile, Heckin Yes is taking advantage of the F Street closure. The store is currently located on F Street between First Street and Sackett Avenue. Its pink and yellow umbrellas make it hard to miss and provide shade for customers.

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