how my business began | part 2 | the name

by | Aug 6, 2015 | Running a Business | 28 comments

If you missed part 1, read that first HERE.

…so, I had made the decision to join the ranks of the “mom-prenuers.”  My mind was fixed on it and I felt a strong pull in that direction.

(Jeff said that he will write a post sharing his perspective of things, but for now, I’ll say that he was supportive of me, but he didn’t think it would work at all.  Of course, he didn’t say that at the time.  He gave me the go-get-em-hon attitude and let me pursue it.)

The first thing I needed was a name.

I wanted a name that was meaningful, memorable, unique and not restrictive.  Some of the names that were kicked around among my friends and family…

MVP Designs (for my initials, but I thought it sounded like a sports-themed business)

Seldom Scene Creations (my dad’s idea, mainly for murals)

Widow’s Mite Designs (Another biblical reference.  I loved the idea of “giving everything you have”, but the reference was obscure and probably confusing and it doesn’t quite have a “ring” to it.)

Nothing was sitting right.  None of it felt like “me”.  I stayed up late, looking for inspiration in dictionaries, magazines, memories, songs…anything that might spark a name.

After several days, I was getting discouraged.  How can I get this business off the ground if I can’t even think of a name?

One late night, when the house was quiet, I was sitting at our desk in the home office with a blank notebook page in front of me.  It just hit me…Mustard Seed.  Mustard Seed Creations.  I wrote it down on the blank piece of paper and circled it.

missmustardseed-172 (534x800)

(A reader gave me this necklace and it’s one of my favorites.  It’s a small corked bottle filled with mustard seeds and German glass glitter.)

I crept into the bedroom to grab the Bible out of my nightstand to see if I could find the verse that referenced having faith the size of a mustard seed.  Those of you who believe in Providence won’t be surprised at all that the book fell open to the verse in Luke (there’s another one in Matthew).  I was so excited, I was shaking.  You know when you know?  I just knew.  That was the name.


(The art was designed for me by Dee of Red Letter Words)

I remember nudging Jeff and sharing my epiphany with him.  He wasn’t as sold on the name as I was, but I was confident.  This is a huge step of faith and I want to always remember that.  This name is a constant reminder.  Little is much when God is in it.

I did have one problem, though.  The domain wasn’t available.  It belonged to someone in Texas who painted tiles.  So, I started thinking of combinations I could create from the name that would work for a domain…, and so on.  I was pretty sold on, because it was an abbreviation of the name and it meant my creations were a “must see”.

I called my brother to talk about domains.  He was going to house my website on his server and he’s been through the domain-buying process when he created the website for his recording studio, among other things.  He’s just tech savvy.  So, I reviewed the ones I was considering.  As I was running through the list, I heard him typing.  He interrupted me.  “What about  That’s available.”

Crickets.  I didn’t get it.  Who is Miss Mustard Seed?  Would that be ME?  I immediately and vividly imagined Miss Mustard Seed as a squat cartoon gardener in a straw hat holding a sunflower.  “I don’t really like that.”

“No, it’s great.  It makes your business personal.  It tells your customers this is a one woman show.”

Okay, I could see his point.  I didn’t love it, but I felt like it was the best option, so I went onto GoDaddy and bought the domain

I made it official when I registered the fictitious name, Mustard Seed Creations, with the commonwealth of PA.


How I came to be known as Miss Mustard Seed…that’s another story.


  1. Karen

    Loved reading about the beginning… awesome!

    • Brenda Stewart

      Hi Marian,

      I just read your post on how you started your business. It was so inspiring! Please keep up the great work, and I will surely include you, your business, and your family in my prayers.

      Kind regards,

  2. Robyn

    I love this! Your story is so inspiring. I wholeheartedly believe in divine providence, and had a similar experience. With God, nothing is impossible. Thank you for sharing yourself and your talents with us, and giving me the motivation I need to pursue my art.

  3. Sweet

    Hi Marion,
    I was one of the commenters who voiced a few criticisms about the direction your blog had been heading. Now, let me say that since you made that post and asked for suggestions you have been absolutely rocking it! Every post has been fresh and interesting. Thanks for listening and for the extra effort you put in to make this a special place.

    • marian

      Well, thank you! 🙂

  4. Cassie

    I love hearing about your story. As someone who is just starting out, it’s so inspiring to hear that you – someone who I see as a pinnacle of success – once felt the same way I do at times about this enourmous leap of faith. Thank you so much for sharing it with us!

  5. Marie Claire

    The story of how you got started is very interesting. You need to give your brother a big hug for the brilliant Miss Mustard Seed suggestion. 🙂

    What do you mean by saying that your brother’s server would host your site? What’s that all about?

  6. Karen K

    As a loyal follower of Miss Mustard Seed and Mustard Seed Creations I have always thought you were amazing…..the story part 1 and 2 on how your business evolved just clinches that feeling for me. Your perseverance is inspirational and you affirm that with God nothing is impossible with your example and your carefully chosen business name !

  7. Wendy @ Zoey's

    LOL…isn’t funny how we dream up our business names !? Part of my business name was inspired by our adorable ‘squished in face’ little Boston Terrier dog…. ZOEY 😉 …the Uber-Chic Loft came as an afterthought based on our products & style..

    As a fellow “woman entrepreneur” , I can identify with everything you write about and truly stay inspired to keep forging ahead with trying to make a successful business as you have done 😉 Thanks!

  8. Hannah Rose

    What a beautiful and thoughtful necklace. I can see why it’s one of your favorites!

  9. Tanya

    Isn’t it funny how much effort it takes to come up with THE perfect name? I love yours, and I love how you got yours.

  10. Krista

    Love hearing these stories! I’m just so happy I happened upon your blog a few years ago. It’s so inspiring, interesting and encouraging! I’m sure you and your husband just stand back and are amazed at how much has happened since you took that leap of faith! Awesome!

  11. Lily

    Great post. I heartily identify with the Bible falling open to your quest for confirmation of message. It’s happened to me: I will be thinking of an often obscure verse while trying to make a decision: I open my Bible and there is the verse. As you said “you just know…” in the very best way. : )

  12. Jessica

    Thank you so much for sharing your story. I started my own antique business as I was separating from my husband. I knew I had to do it. I paint antiques that have “seen their better days” as well as European Architectural pieces. Your story gives me faith to continue to pursue my dream and see where God takes it.

    • Alicia from California

      I agree with your last comment “faith to continue to pursue my dream and see where God takes it.”

  13. MaryLisa Noyes

    The “name” would definitely be the hardest choice because that is your trademark. I can’t wait for part 3!

  14. Julie

    Love it! So enjoyed your story!

  15. Cindy

    I love your story, and I’m so glad you shared this. About three years ago, I stumbled onto your blog and I can’t for the life of me remember why I was there. That was the first time I have ever seen a blog! Then of course your blog led me onto the next, and so on.
    Amazing things happen when you pull out all the stops:) Congrats on your blessings!

  16. Leslie C

    Thanks so much for sharing your journey, I’m so enjoying these mini chapters of your life. Along with all the decorating inspirations and designing touches.

  17. Patricia

    A few years ago you came to Monument, CO. to teach a milk paint class – it must have been soon after your book came out. What I remember the most was the sweet, long note you wrote in the book I was buying for my daughter. I don’t think you’ve changed that personal and unassuming touch at all.
    It’s fun to hear of the beginnings.

  18. Jane Allen

    I always love how God works, he is so amazing. Your blog post tonight is just another confirmation from him on a decision I made today about my art. Thanks so much for being an inspiration to us each day. Blessing to you!

  19. vera

    Nice story! Ive been trough the same process the last 12, 24 months so its nice to read all this.
    Thanks and all the luck.: )

  20. Carol S

    Your story captures my heart and inspires me to move forward to do what I want to do. Thank you for sharing every detail, and especially thank you for acknowledging the God part in all this. He rocks our worlds in the best ways if we just be still and let Him in. Keep going and doing!

    • Alicia from California


  21. Amy Anderson

    I love the name! It’s so “you.” When you know, you know . . . you know? 😀

  22. Lauren Baxter

    I love this series! What a great way to read how one of your favorite bloggers came to be

    Cant wait to read more!

    Lauren Baxter | Lovely Decor

  23. Natalie

    Hi Marian.
    I had never read, or knew anything about blogs ~ but I was lucky one day last month when I stumbled upon “Miss Mustard Seed.” I read your blog that day, and the next day, and became hooked for the long run. I’m a young disabled woman who is mostly bedridden, but I still enjoy home updates and changes, and love seeing and learning about home decor.
    I love the country/farmhouse/shabby chic look. I want to add a few vintage pieces of decor to my home, and I need your advice/help how to clean them when they arrive dirty. I bought a beautiful old aqua (original paint) kitchen scale off eBay, and I’m still looking for a small wooden milking stool or child’s chair.
    Would you please teach me how to clean decades worth of caked-on dirt and dust off a rusty metal scale (or any other rusty metal item)?
    And please also educate me on the best way to clean decades worth of caked-on dirt and dust off a painted wooden chair, stool, or any other painted wooden piece.
    I’d appreciate any advice you can give me.
    Thank you.
    A new friend from Ohio ~ Natalie

  24. Cindy

    That totally gave me goosebumps. It was completely divine guidance… completely perfect. So glad you were listening so you could “hear” it… … and everything you have done since has involved some version of a leap of faith. Just wow….



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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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