Greenwich mom opens The Big Picture craft shop in Riverside

Yoshiko Yap

GREENWICH — A mother of three and a former teacher, Kristen Addeo said she has always loved providing arts and crafts for young people.

Her mother operates an arts and crafts store in her native state of Texas. “I grew up with arts and crafts my whole life,” Addeo said.

So it made sense for her to open The Big Picture in Riverside, a new retail store that is in its first week of offering art projects, toys and gifts to the younger population in the community.

Addeo said she always had to drive out of town to take her kids to places where they could make do-it-yourself projects and obtain art supplies. Greenwich, it seemed to her, could use a new business catering to the artistic needs of young people, who are out of school for the summer.

“I decided it was something the community needed,” she said.

Addeo gave up her teaching job at a charter school in New York City six years ago to take time out for her own kids, and the desire to get back into the working world was another motivator for opening the store, she said.

“I was like — what’s next? I was ready to pursue the next part of my life, and I always knew I was going to evolve in this direction,” she recalled.

It doesn’t hurt that she lives a short distance from the new shop, which is located in a little commercial center off the Post Road in Riverside. The business is something of a family affair for her kids and husband, Dale, who was also very supportive of the concept of opening an arts store.

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