WORTHINGTON — Two years and four months after starting her home-based floral design business, Lauren Weg has launched her brick and mortar store — a full-service flower shop in a century-old downtown Worthington building.
Weg quietly opened the shop Thursday morning, weeks ahead of one of the busiest holidays for florists — Valentine’s Day. Her dad, intent on being her first customer, called in an order for a bouquet, which she created for her grandmother.
The shop, named Seed & Stem 12:27, references the Bible verse Luke 12:27, "Consider how the wildflowers grow."
“Wildflowers just grow — they don’t worry about tomorrow,” Weg shared. “Flowers are some of the most beautiful things, and they don’t worry about what tomorrow brings.”
The shop is located in the building formerly occupied by Kay Prunty’s Dance Academy. Weg and her husband, Jacob, purchased the building from Deb Vander Kooi in early October, and spent recent months renovating the interior.
“We’ve done the majority of the renovation ourselves,” Weg said. “It was a family effort between my husband and I, both our parents and our siblings. Everyone pitched in. We spent a lot of good time together.
“When you do it yourself, you realize how much time it took to do it,” she added.
Today, the store boasts pale green painted walls surrounding the original terrazzo flooring, which was revealed under layers of adhesive that took many hours to scrape, buff, wash and seal. There’s also a walk-in cooler, private area for wedding and funeral planning, and work space. Cabinets and shelving were constructed by Jacob over a series of nights and weekends in their garage.
The space is just the right size for Weg as she makes her foray into all aspects of floral work.
“Up until this point, I’ve only done weddings and special events because I worked out of my home,” she said. “I will now be full service — I will always have flowers on hand.
“I have ready-made arrangements in a vase, or I can wrap up loose stems. I can take special orders if they have something specific.”
Weg said she can work with any budget to make something beautiful.
“I really want to differentiate myself as someone who does something different,” she added.
Her home-based business began after a friend asked if she would do the flowers for her wedding.
“I reluctantly said I would, not knowing where to start,” she recalled. “From there, word just started getting out and people started asking me. I’m also at that age where I know a lot of people getting married, so that’s kind of helped.”
In 2020, despite numerous weddings being rescheduled or scaled back due to COVID-19, Weg was the florist for 18 weddings — 12 of them from August to December.
With the store, Weg anticipates calling on her sister, Morgan, and mom, Patty, to help from time to time. If all goes well, she will hire some part-time help after Valentine’s Day.
Weg’s interest in flowers grew from her high school days, when she took floriculture classes led by teacher Deb Martin, and competed on the Worthington FFA Chapter’s floriculture team. Yet, she acknowledges the seed was planted years earlier.
“Even when I was little, I put together an arrangement of flowers in the backyard and took pictures of my sister modeling with them,” she said. “I think I always had an interest.”
While pursuing a marketing degree from Southwest Minnesota State University, Weg worked part-time for Hy-Vee Floral in Marshall. After college, she returned to Worthington and worked in various marketing positions through the end of October 2020, when she began renovations to her new store.
“It’s always been a dream,” she said of owning a business. “I didn’t expect it to come this soon in my life. With McCarthy’s closing, it just seemed like time.
“I love small business, I love working with people, being involved and working in the community,” she added.
Seed & Stem 12:27 is open from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays. A grand opening is planned Feb. 2 during normal business hours. People are invited to roam the shop, peek inside the walk-in cooler and treats will be available during the open house.
In addition to flowers and plants, the shop offers a selection of home décor and gift items, as well as silk and artificial stems. Abana bracelets and cards are also available for purchase, with proceeds going to the Abana Foundation.
Seed & Stem 12:27 offers floral delivery for a fee within a 30-mile radius of Worthington. To place an order, Weg may be reached at 360-2255.