Me & Mrs Jones

Marian ParsonsMiss Mustard Seed's Milk Paint, Running a Business38 Comments

I left early (for me) Thursday morning to fly to Memphis, Tennessee to spend the weekend with Shaunna of Perfectly Imperfect and Stephanie Jones of Me & Mrs Jones.  Trips like these always feel like a bit of an interruption to daily routine (I guess trips technically are), but they always end up being a huge boost for me.  They pull me away from the computer screen and the studio and give me the opportunity to meet with kindred spirits.  I’ve come to expect that from these trips and this one didn’t disappoint.

First of all Stephanie Jones, if you have never, ever heard of her, you should check her out.  She is not only so creative and an inspiring entrepreneur, but she is one of the loveliest people I’ve ever met.  Seeing her in action and spending time with her in her creative spaces was a delight.

Enough gushing.  Here are some shots of her South Cooper, Memphis location




I mean…that dresser?!?  Shaunna actually bought it.

I’ll tell you, Stephanie knows how to rock a stencil.  She used them everywhere, but in subtle and perfectly appropriate ways.

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And the plates in the bathroom were totally speaking my language.  I love how they were pleasingly clumped on the dark gray/purple wall.


And there was literal inspiration everywhere…on cork boards and other displays.

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And there was a whole buffet of tools of the trade, just inviting you to start a project.

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Shaunna and I started the day with live “remote” segments for the local ABC morning news show.  I’ve done several TV segments, but never one remotely, so that was a new experience!  I felt like I was smiling and nodding and looking generally awkward a lot, since I was basically talking to the anchor on the phone while looking into a camera, pretending like I could see her.  I felt better when I saw Shaunna’s live segment and her smiling and nodding looked completely okay.  I hope mine did, too!

We taught two MMS Milk Paint workshops – the first was painting step stools and the second was painting hearts made out of reclaimed wood.


The stool workshop was supposed to be a beginning class, but we dove into the deep end of the pool anyway, and did some layering and resists.


It was so fun to see how different each stool was, even though the same techniques were used.


That green and white stool (belonging to Paige, our “star student”) was particularly chippy, so we sealed it in Tough Coat and it turned out looking really cool!  I wish I took more pictures of the stools and hearts, but I put the camera away and was too distracted to get it back out again!

Stephanie did take a picture of the heart workshop, so you can see what they looked like…

I was borrowing a smock from her stash and I loved it so much that I set one aside to buy.  Even though she had plenty, I was certain there would be a run on apron smocks!  I plan to wear mine whenever I’m painting, “arting”, etc.

While the entire day was a highlight, a special moment was getting to meet Heidi, my “virtual assistant”.  She has worked for me for about five years and we’ve never met!  Of course, we have Skyped and we text and e-mail all the time, but we were never able to give each other a hug and hang out.

Heidi & Marian

I didn’t know she would be taller than me!  Ha!

I am so happy to introduce you officially to her.  I call her my “ninja”, because she makes things happen quickly and quietly behind the scenes, making me look so much better than I actually am.  I have said to her at least 20 times that she can never grow up and get a “real job.”

Anyway, we hugged and laughed and she spent the day lending a hand at the workshop.  I was bossing her around in no time.  No e-mail needed.

We got together for a dinner at Stephanie’s Germantown store that evening for some Memphis barbecue.  I had to have the natives teach me about the sauces, which was a good thing, so I didn’t inadvertently douse my sandwich with the spicy sauce.

Shaunna and I crashed in our hotel room, but not before laughing so hard I was in tears.  I actually had to curl up in a ball a few times, to keep my stomach from cramping up.  It was the perfect cap on a great day.

I’ll share more about my trip to Memphis, including the Fancy Little Flea and its vendors and what I purchased…

Me & Mrs Jones

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38 Comments on “Me & Mrs Jones”

  1. How cool that work shop would have been! And I keep meaning to say how much I like your hair! Looks cute on you!

  2. Oh, I wish you would do a workshop somewhere near me (100 mile radius) so I can attend. I love, love that dresser. Is it done with stencils? I must have one like it. I like your longer hair, too. Jean

    1. thank you, jeanmarie – the dresser is done with the ‘willow pattern’ stencil from the stencil library in the UK. i appreciate the sweet comment!

  3. I had the privilege of being in this Memphis class taught by Marian and Shaunna. It was fabulous. ❤️❤️❤️ Marian and Shaunna are as wonderful as you would think they would be. They were kind, helpful, always patient with us, and imparted such great wisdom. Learned so much. Love, love the milk paints. The class was also FUN!! Also, if you live in the Memphis and Germantown area, Me and Mrs Jones is a store like no other. As Marian says, full of inspiration. I highly recommend you check it out. I had the good fortune to be the one that purchased the chest Marian and Shaunna painted while here. ❤️❤️ it.

  4. I’ll but your workshop group was thrilled to meet Miss Mustard Seed and receive her excellent tutelage. I know I would be. Love, love, love the MMS display at the store.

  5. Looks like fun! And I really like your hair long too! You look cute with it no matter how you have it, but I think it makes you look younger with it long. It’s always fun to be able to change up our hair when we’re ready for a change.

  6. So, the dresser. Is it painted, wallpapered, stenciled???? Or what???
    It’s gorgeous.
    Glad to know about these girls and their locations. They’re a daytrip from me. Wahoo!!
    Thanks Marion❤

  7. With the busy-ness of the weekend, I didn’t get to visit Stephanie’s South Cooper location! Thanks for taking us there through your lovely photos. I will definitely have to plan a trip back just to visit with new friends and shop! I’ve already tried calling the Germantown location to get one of the paint smocks that were so cute!

  8. I don’t usually comment, but I will have to say your hair looks the best I’ve ever seen. You looked really pretty. I vote for keeping it long.

  9. Oh that lamp is adorable! I am so surprised how long your hair is!! You look beautiful with short or long hair. Just wear it like you like it!!

  10. Took a personal day from my day job…and enjoyed the sheer presence of MMS. The greatest thing to hit Memphis since Elvis! Thank you, also, for being down to earth and exactly the humble person we see on your blog. Your true colors shine through your blog, your products, and in person. XO!

  11. Looks like a great time! Y’all are so talented.
    Wow, I had no idea your hair had grown out so much. Looks great.

  12. Hi- I love your blog and that stool looks great! Just wondering what was used between layers to get the chippy look? I am going to try my first project on a raw stool so not sure what to use – thanks!

    1. We used beeswax from the Miss Mustard Seed line, after painting the base coat the color we wanted to show through the chippiness, just brush the beeswax on the areas that would naturally chip. I wish I could share a picture of mine I love the way it turned out. Good luck with yours ?

  13. Oh my, that blue willow dresser is amazing! I have a big collection of blue willow – and I’d love to have that dresser too! Is the stencil available in the US?

  14. That’s Heidi!!?? I can’t believe you’ve never met her! I know *I’ve* never met her – and I email with her often – but I didn’t know *you’d* never met her!
    That super chippy stool looks a LOT like the effect just figured out. Assembling the “how-to” post tomorrow and sending it off to HEIDI!

  15. I love the long hair too ! It gives you a very long, lean, slender look…..very nice indeed !!! This Friday, I finally have a free day and will be starting on the final phase of a piece. I want that chippy look, as in the green/white step stool in this post you said was done by Paige. Can you say a few quick steps in achieving that look ? Sounds like a great trip Marion. Thanks.

  16. We are so lucky to have you both in Memphis! Thank you for sharing your talents (and tips and advice) with us!

    1. we would be happy to ship you an apron/smock! just email me or call one of the shops via (the aprons – our design – are made by a local seamstress out of fabulous linen she sources for us, and we can only get 6 or so per month.) xo

  17. What a fun shop, and a fun Time! And those plates, sigh. EVeryone is mentioning it, but how did your hair get so Long? It looks quite nice.

  18. I enjoyed ‘spending the day with you’. Seriously… I’m grinning from ear-to-ear right now. 🙂

    Do you ever, personally, do workshops in So Cal? 😉

  19. Looks like a great time! Checked out the “Me & Mrs. Jones” site, wonderful site. I must say that I looked at the “wood carving” and immediately thought of the things I used to do with Dap and DecoArt products. It wasn’t called “wood icing”, but it was the same technique with a “paste”. Funny how stuff always comes around again. Now, I know what my mom felt like…

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