March 24, 2022

Magnolia & Steel |We are Growing

I'm Inspired

Scottsville’s Magnolia & Steel is growing ….. and growing some more. What I love is that our small town is still big enough for all of us, and we each have room to spread our wings, work together for community over competition, and chase our dreams until we are out of breath…..

And once in a while someone comes along with such talent and work ethic that you know it’s really gonna happen for them. That’s Seth Graves. It makes my heart happy to think about where he started with his small shop at the end of Perrytown Road to where he is now in Scottsville, and all in just few years. You can read that blog here.   From florals for every occasion you can think of, clothing styles, wedding style and coordination, he can do it all. (And I have to mention how big I SMILE when I find out he’s coordinating one of my upcoming weddings….  If you are on the fence – HIRE him.  He’s worth every penny, and more…. on the florals too.)

Through the last few years, I’ve watched Seth figure this business thing out – from taking chances to move his shop to town,  burning the midnight oil to get it done, and branching into different directions.  – He did it all with a deep breath, a slightly terrified heart, and a big smile. Word spread fast about this new kid in town, and before you know it, he could hardly stand under the load. He had to learn how to say there were no more hours in the day, to find and invest in those who could help him move his business forward, and it’s happening – here and now.  That’s my take on what I’ve watched with my neighbor and friend.  I’m blessed and encouraged to watch his business grow, and I can’t wait to see the next steps.  You’ll notice a lot of laughter in what we captured last week.  In fact, it seems to me that everything concerning Magnolia & Steel is stitched together with fun and laughter, that and a whole lot of work.




Thankfully Seth is as good at finding others’ talents as he is with style and florals.  He’s put together a group of folks to take his business to the next level.  And I promise you, they will be laughing the whole way.  This is the Magnolia and Steel team:  Seth Graves, Tracy Graves, Beth Dinwiddie, Alyssa Kidd, Teresa Woods,  Melinda Porter, and Houston Porter.   Stay with me as we switch to Seth’s perspective on the value each one brings to his business.

In Seth’s words…

Y’all, I’m beyond blessed with how much our little shop has grown.   I’m so excited to introduce our team!!

Me…Seth, I’m creative, an over achiever; I have a hard time saying no, and can feel overwhelmed at the drop of a hat.  Those never out-weigh the love I have for my family, job, and my community.  The growth the shop has had in just  a little over three years is unbelievable. I’m humbled at how blessed I am.  We’ve had lots of expansion and have new faces at the shop. They are an answer to many prayers I’ve prayed about how to move forward with my business in a way that allows us to grow, and still feel small town.  I would love to introduce them to you all! If you call the shop and I’m not there, I trust these people wholeheartedly to be able to take care of your needs.  So here we go!

My Mama.  She’s been with me since day one.  She’s my never-ending cheerleader, and also the voice of reason echoing in my head when I try to go a little overboard.  Over worked and under paid is the story of her life. She does whatever the shop needs and drops everything to make sure it happens with no pay.   Some day Mama I promise!  She keeps the books and makes sure I’m not spending to much money.   In case you didn’t know, I love to shop! She works a full-time job and then works the shop every free minute she has.  She and my dad have been married for 35 years. They gave us the love of Jesus, examples of what a Christian should be, to be thankful for everything even when it feels like you have nothing,  and to work hard and do everything with 100% of effort. I couldn’t do it without them.




I can’t move forward without remembering back….

We all remember my shop girl Hannah, and that she left to get her big girl job.  We miss her like crazy, but are so proud of her accomplishments. When she left, I really didn’t know what I was going to do. Hannah had been such an important part of those early days of Mag & Steel. The business had grown to the point I knew I couldn’t do it by myself. I had to have someone I could trust with the shop. I asked Mom, aka Tracy, “What am I going to do?”

Like always, Mama said, “We’ll make it work, we always do.”  …….We have made it work, but we always remember the “Hannah days” with a big smile.

Y’all, these folks are simply amazing.  I can’t really do them justice in a few words, but I know you’d quit reading if I said it all…. LOL

This is how awesome Jesus is, and how He always knows exactly what we need and when we need it.  Beth Dinwiddie had been an awesome customer since the beginning. She and Mom had always just hit it off.  Beth was in the store one day shopping when Mom asked Beth to pray that we find someone to help out at the shop. Beth was actually looking for a job to work a couple days a week. Two days later she was clocking in for her first day at Mag & Steel. Beth has the kindest heart and such a loving Spirit.  Customer service is definitely her strong suit!  Whether she’s taking your flower order,  helping you pick out a bereavement gift, or praying for you at the register, she will make sure you get whatever you need.  God’s timing is always perfect.  I’m extremely grateful to have her on our team.


Melinda Porter and I have been friends for years, and honestly I don’t even remember how we met.  I’m sure it had to be her mom.  Mine and Melinda’s personalities just click. I’m sure it probably drives my mama crazy, but we can’t help it. We’re both funny and we know it! Melinda has a full time job at a dentist office. One day after work, she stopped by the store. Kind of jokingly I asked if she wanted a job. She said, “Well I already have one, but could help out on Friday and Saturdays.” So we snagged her up, and she’s been with us ever since.  Melinda has jumped right in learning how  to make flower arrangements and is the queen of corsages. She brings lots of fun ideas to the table and makes me think outside my box.  For that I’m thankful.


Alyssa Kidd.  My sister, even though we have nothing in common, we’re just alike.  Y’all – I’m not lying when I say that she absolutely drives me crazy, and I think she tries to quit every shift.  I’m thankful she’s here.    She works full time at an oral surgeons office dealing with blood and guts.  Yuck!   She loves it.  She works at the shop on Wednesdays and occasionally on Saturdays. She works customer service when we need her to.  Most  of the time I have her working on projects, mostly just cleaning up my messes.  She can organize a back room like nobody’s business. Without her, the shop would be a lot more of a mess.  I think the other girls at the shop probably appreciate her more than I do.  She will never really understand how thankful I am to have her as my sister.


Aunt Teresa….
Teresa Woods works every Tuesday and any other day I need her.  She keeps the store clean, and I would like to see anyone try to stuff a pillow faster or better than she can. She jumps in and will do anything and everything that needs to be done. She calls or messages me most every day to see what I need. Whether it be a delivery made, something done at the shop or a blackberry sweet tea from Sonic.  There have been many times I’m just not sure what we would do without her.  We’re all blessed to have her.

Houston Porter is our newest and youngest member on the  Mag & Steel team.  He’s our social media content creator.  Houston comes in every other Saturday and well, basically just makes us feel old.  I’m grateful that he even puts up with us because I’m sure he has a million other things he could be doing.  He turns out some pretty amazing content, and no – you can’t steal him.


I also have to give a big shout out to my family.  My wife and kids – Erica, Isaiah, and Sybil.  They don’t always get the 100% of me they should.  Let’s face it,  I work in my brain even when I’m not working with my hands. I’m doing it all for them.  They have supported my dream since day one.  They celebrate with me when I’ve had a win, and cheer me on when I’m struggling.  I can honestly say that at this point in life, I’m the happiest I’ve ever been. My little family will never truly understand the amount of love I have for them.

All this to say that the Magnolia & Steel shop is busier than I ever thought in my wildest dreams.  It’s all because the people that support us; our community, our family, and the customers that now also feel like our family.  Without all the people I’ve talked about above, my little dream of having a little flower shop out in Perrytown wouldn’t be what it is today.  There are not enough words to express my gratitude.


So y’all keep coming out to see us.  You’ll find us working hard, and laughing even harder.  We appreciate the blessings we’ve been given, and a huge part of that is you – our customers, our friends.  You are supporting dreams and making our days full of more joy than we could have ever imagined.

  1. Crystal Spencer says:

    This made me cry!!! So thankful for y’all! What would I do without you Seth? You always help me match my clothes and earrings! 😂

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