06.18.2014 / Crash! Seed to Stem

I’m so excited to be announcing this new series!  Every month I’ll be ‘crashing’ a home, shop, or studio and sharing the awesomeness with you.

This first Crash! I happened upon by accident.  Hubby and I were pooped from trying to move a couch into Frankie (and movers we are NOT) and were ravenous for a late lunch.  After parking and making a beeline for a Diner, we passed a shop that made my head turn.  Food?  Who needs food, I see pretty things.

Seed to Stem, Worcester, MA via Year of Serendipity

Seed to Stem is hard to describe (even by the owners Virginia and Candace).  Here’s my assessment- if a posh botanical shop fell in love with a quirky antique shop, had an affair with a taxidermist and then a love child was born out of this little love triangle, you’d get Seed to Stem.  Confused yet?  It’ll all make sense when you check this place out!

Seed to Stem, Worcester, MA via Year of Serendipity

Seed to Stem, Worcester, MA  Shop Tour via Year of Serendipity

It was so nice of these lovely ladies to let my camera and me invade their shop and ask them a few questions!

Seed to Stem, Worcester, MA via Year of Serendipity

When did you first open the shop?

“We started Seed to Stem about 3 years ago, and were just setting up booths at craft shows, selling terrariums or other nature-inspired art we had put together. Soon after, we decided we wanted to have some type of a brick and mortar store, and rented a small room in an antique mall, The cider mill, in Sterling Mass. We stayed there about 6 months, quickly outgrew the space, and found our new home on Shrewsbury Street in Worcester.”

Seed to Stem, Worcester, MA via Year of Serendipity

What inspired you to start your own business?

“We were inspired to start our own business because we truly love nature, design, art, creativity, style….. and we really like working for ourselves. We wanted to open a unique shop that can be an inspiration to people, and connect them with nature. We also love visual merchandising, and have a blast re-arranging the shop to present our products in a unique way.”

Seed to Stem, Worcester, MA via Year of Serendipity

How would you describe your shop’s style?

“We sometimes have trouble describing our shop’s style. We often call it a gift, curiosity, and botanical shop. Our clients have called the shop “like walking into Narnia”, “a perfect juxtaposition between life and death”, a “natural wonder shop” etc. etc.  Our shops style is a mix of old and new, of times gone past…antiques, skulls etc., mixed with living plants, modern hand blown glass, and more stylish home accents, with a nod to the Victorian era.  We also do fresh floral design and staging for weddings and events. Most couples that choose us love our style and want it reflected in the design.”

Seed to Stem, Worcester, MA via Year of Serendipity

What has been your biggest challenge in regards to the business?
“Our biggest challenge in regards to the business is keeping up with non-creative tasks…. bookkeeping, banking, e-mails, cleaning etc. ….all while creating the botanical pieces in the shop, re-doing displays, and doing large scale weddings and events. We feel like for most creative people, the more structured parts of running a business can be quite challenging.”

On behalf of other creatives- I agree!  It’s so tough to focus on boring numbers when you have shiny and pretty things to distract!

Seed to Stem, Worcester, MA via Year of Serendipity

Rufus the bear @ Seed to Stem, Worcester, MA via Year of Serendipity

His name is Rufus and he is not for sale.  Came you blame them- look at that face!  Bear hug anyone?

Seed to Stem, Worcester, MA via Year of Serendipity

And speaking of adorable faces- meet their shop puppy, Poe.  The little sweetheart has the most piercing blue eyes and almost converted this crazy cat lady into a dog person.

Seed to Stem, Worcester, MA via Year of Serendipity

Even if you look away from the curated vignettes and look down to the floor, you won’t be lacking for eye candy- those rugs!

Seed to Stem, Worcester, MA via Year of Serendipity

Seed to Stem, Worcester, MA via Year of Serendipity

Thanks Seed to Stem and Virginia and Candace for letting me share your shop’s story!

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04.28.2014 / Musical Chairs (again)

Remember when I said that the dining room was done?

current dining room

I lied.  Well, not lied, just reevaluated.

Turns out that Hubby wasn’t the biggest fan of the wide array of chair styles I had collected for this look.  He liked the more traditional one on the left, but that was about it.  I can convince him into a lot of things design-wise (like a 2-tone kitchen), but apparently my powers were weak with the chairs.

mismatched dining chairs set 1

Good thing that I had replacement chairs just hanging around the house… right?  Now that I’m attempting to purge my basement furniture hoard collection, I brought up the entire old chair collection and started to play around.  I made a valiant last attempt to plead my case for keeping the above 4, but Hubby strongly voted for 4 more traditional styles.

latest set dining chairs

Since it’s his house too, and I don’t hate these chairs by any means (I did buy them after all…. AND they may have actually been the original 4 chosen chairs way back), it looks like I have some more chairs to refinish! (AND maybe one of these days I’ll figure out how to photograph the dining room without it looking dark and washed out at the same time.  maybe.)

Only one chair remains from the refinished 4 above, one was refinished for our previous dining room iteration, one is primed but was never painted, and one hasn’t been touched at all yet.  They look like kind of a mess today, but once I unify them with paint and fabric like I’ve done before, they’ll all be one big happy family.

2014 dining chairs before

There hasn’t been a day nice enough to finish them yet (paint spraying is reserved for outside only), so until then, the chairs in my dining room may or may not be actually sittable.

chairless chair

Now all that’s left to decide is color.  Do I stick with the yellow/green that actually grew on me?  Do I go for a mid-tone gray?  Or should I be crazy and go for a different green?  I know which way I’m leaning today, but that could change by the time I get to painting.  What do you think?

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03.26.2014 / Presenting….

Well, it took me long enough to get my act together… I’ve only been talking about this for literally years… but, I’m finally getting my interior design business off the ground! (and checking off #6 on my “30 before 30″)

I present to you: Copper Dot Interiors


I’m offering a wide variety of design services both locally and online.  Come check out my Design Services page!

Although I’ll be customizing design packages for each client, here’s just a snippet of what I’m offering:

-E-design packages (anywhere)

-Design consultations to start you off on your own redesign (anywhere)

-Full service design from inception to completion (local)

-Staging consultations (anywhere)

-Shopping assistance… because who doesn’t want a bit of help getting the perfect sofa (local)

The possibilities are endless!

If you have a space that you’re looking to spruce up, don’t hesitate to drop me an e-mail @ [email protected].

Next step: refining my logo and getting business cards!!  I heart typography almost as much as I heart vintage furniture.


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