Sep 9, 2021 - News
St. Pete's new Museum of the American Arts & Crafts Movement is a cozy home for history
Photo: Selene San Felice/Axios

The thought of a night at the museum used to make me think of animal and caveman exhibits coming to life, a la a certain Ben Stiller movie.

  • Now, the night at the museum I really want is a chance to grab a blanket, fill one of the century-old mugs with hot cocoa and curl up under the warm light of the stained glass lamps at the Museum of the American Arts & Crafts Movement.

What's happening: The MAACM opened in downtown St. Petersburg on Tuesday. I hightailed it over, expecting to see exquisite yarn and macaroni art. I was not disappointed to instead see ornate furniture, lighting and pottery works.

  • The collection includes a staircase from the Chicago Stock Exchange in 1893, colorfully tiled fireplaces, a bathroom-turned-secret-garden and tiled fairytale murals.

The expert's take: Museum employee Susan Francesconi's favorite part of the museum is the collection of Gustav Stickley furniture on the 5th floor. Stickley, she said, is the father of the American Arts and Crafts movement.

  • I was so tempted to curl up in the recreated master bedroom full of Stickley's work.

Pro tip: Don't forget to look up, especially in the lighting gallery.

Gustav Stickley's recreated bedroom at the Museum of the American Arts & Crafts Movement
Gustav Stickley furniture in MAACM's "master bedroom." Photo: Selene San Felice/Axios

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