We opened the doors for our very first workshop in the Mustard Seed Studio on Friday.  It was so much fun getting ready for it and a great incentive to get things in the studio finished.

My goal for these workshops is to educate, but also to share this amazing creative space with others and make our guests feel pampered…in a DIY sort of way!  I know many of them are taking a vacation day or hiring a sitter or getting this for a birthday present, so I want to make it worth it!

Each space was set with a look book, a note card for taking notes, an apron and a hand painted linen name tag.


I found these adorable mini wood clothes pins in the office section at Wal-Mart and they were the perfect way to clip the tags onto the apron.  Attendees wrote their name on their tags with a Sharpie to claim their space.


 As Kriste and I were putting the finishing touches on the studio on Thursday, the UPS guy came to the door.  Usually I have things delivered at the house and I’m used to having to send people along to businesses further down our little road, so I assumed it was for someone else.  Well, it was a box of flowers and it was for ME!

One of my incredibly thoughtful readers, Jennifer of Beeutiful By Design sent peonies as a congrats and thank you.  Kriste and I were very girly over them.  It’s hard not to smile when a box of flowers and a sweet card come unexpectedly to the door.


We were in the process of making bouquets anyway, so we mixed those in and featured them in front of the register.  It was amazing how much fresh flowers brought life to the space.




We cleaned, decluttered and rearranged a bit, so there were clearly defined areas and the space was fully functional for the workshop.





Here’s the finished hand painted banner I made to greet guests as they entered the studio.  It’s a humble piece of drop cloth entirely painted in MMS milk paint.



Under the banner, we set out some snacks and a Keurig for coffee, tea and hot chocolate.  Sparkling and still water bottles were in an antique crock filled with ice.




In addition to the healthy snacks, I put out some Ghirardelli chocolates (part of the pampering.)



My dad cut down wide wood planks to use for the sample boards and we stored them on one of my rolling shoe carts until they were needed.


Several of our guests arrived early, so we were able to hang out and chat about photography, whole30, blogs, business, etc.

Kriste’s husband, David, came to take some video of the workshop, so we could share it with those who couldn’t attend.  He did a great job capturing “moments” and the overall feel of the event…

As you can see, it was a special group of ladies and we had a wonderful time.  Thanks so much to everyone who came and made this first workshop so memorable.


We were supposed to have a workshop on Saturday, but with snow and ice forecasted, we had to move it back to our snow date, which is Saturday, January 31.  There are still a few slots if you’re interested in attending.

I will be scheduling more workshops soon and look forward to meeting more of you!

On another exciting note, today is the official “on shelf” date for the MMSMP European Colour line.  Check with your local or online retailer to see if they are carrying the color you want.

European Color Collage


  1. Starla

    Congratulation on your first workshop! Everything looks amazing – the peonies were such a thoughtful addition.
    Blessings on your efforts!

  2. Naomi S.

    Bravo, Marian and Kristie! It looks like the workshop was a great success! Wish I’d been there. I really am determined to start doing some furniture painting and I could have learned a lot, I know. I will just have to be content learning online and keeping up with your blog. Anyway, congratulate yourselves on the success of this first workshop. I know there will be many more successful ones in the future.

    P. S. I loved the video, especially the music that went with it!

  3. Amanda

    Looks like so much fun! I’m loving the studio, it’s absolutely gorgeous!

  4. Gretchin

    Congrats on your first workshop! Seems funny to say to you, but then I’m thinking you have done tons of online trainings, demos, how-to’s…but I guess no personal workshops!! Don’t you love them!? I love connecting with customers that way and learning from them too! So much fun!

  5. Chrissy

    I’m glad your workshop went so well. I have started looking at my own furniture with a new eye since I “used to be” such a stalwart on not wanting to paint vintage wood. I have a dresser (needs repaired,too), a buffet and a walnut cabinet that’s already crackly. Now just for the time…

  6. Anne Boykin

    Dear MMS, What a beautiful setting for your class! How fun to see the video. I hope to attend one day. Also, I love the design ramblings with Kriste. Congratulations. Hugs, Anne Boykin

  7. Samantha

    Marian, you are such a great instructor!! I love your teaching technique and your calm, kind spirit.
    I really enjoyed this workshop and I am looking forward to the next one, on Saturday! So happy for you and all you have accomplished!!

  8. Wendy@OldLakeGeorge

    Congratulations to you for your first class in the new studio!
    Everything looked amazing.

  9. sandra

    Hi Marian, I wish I lived closer…all I can do is continue following your work from the blog!
    Thank you for sharing with us, you are adorable.
    Sandra from Italy

  10. Robyn

    GREAT video!! Congratulations on your first workshop! xo

  11. CaraRose

    Hi girls, looks like fun for all. Can you tell me the address of your business? Might be traveling there soon and would love to stop by. Thanks. Cara

  12. Jelena

    Looks like great time was had by all at the workshop. Too bad the second one had to be postponed. Hope you didn’t get snowed in.

  13. Gaylin

    What a sweet video!
    I love how your husbands are so helpful….and talented!

  14. Kathleen

    It really was tea-rific! I learned alot, enjoyed some great company and got to meet you and Kristie!
    I even went on a fun buying trip with Ali who sat across the table from me after the workshop!

  15. Lisa Green

    Congrats on your 1st workshop! Your studio looks absolutely beautiful and I am envious in the most wonderful way:) Maybe one day I can fly from the west coast and attend one (one can always dream)!


  16. Tammie Greenwell

    It was a lovely drive thru PA. The studio was lovely. The ladies at the class with me were lovely. Marian and kriste were welcoming and lovely. Yes I had a lovely day! Thank-you!

  17. Marie@The Interior Frugalista

    Congratulations on your first workshop in your new studio. Oh my I wish I lived nearby because I would definitely attend. I can only imagine how much fun it would be having that many creative souls at one table! Love how you go the extra mile for your participants Marian. Wishing you much success with your workshops!

  18. Allison D.

    What a beautiful event! Congratulations! It looked like your guests had the best time 🙂 Your studio looks incredible– totally “you”! I especially love that chalkboard wall– the lettering is incredible! How did you do it? Best of luck with future workshops, and with the new European line!

  19. laurie

    Love that banner! You could instruct in that too!

  20. Jennifer Hesse

    I’m just now sitting down to read a week plus of your blog posts and came back to this one. I’m glad you got the flowers I went with the local florist so I’m not ever really sure they’ll get there LOL congratulations again it looks like the workshop was a huge success as I knew it would be!

  21. Cindy

    Everything looks so charming. I love your handpainted sign, and the lettering you did on the chalkboard… The light in there is wonderful. It makes me so happy to see you in the fullness of who you are, creating, and sharing. It’s such and inspiration for me… and i’m kinda jealous, not in a mean way, but kind of like i’m missing something way. Makes me want to leave work, and erect a shed in my back yard, hang chandy’s in it and paint in it and talk to people about painting instead of sitting at this desk at work talking about insurance…



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Marian Parsons - Miss Mustard Seed

I’m Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, a wife, mother, paint enthusiast, lover of all things home and an entrepreneur, author, artist, designer, freelance writer & photographer.  READ MORE to learn more about me, my blog and my business…


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