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Meet Paisley and Jesse Laguna of Artifacts and Artichokes in Near Mission Trails

Today we’d like to introduce you to Paisley and Jesse Laguna.

Paisley and Jesse, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
People ask us how we came up with the name Artifacts and Artichokes. We wanted the name to reflect that we carry Home and Garden items. We have been hunter-gatherers at flea markets, estate sales and junk shops. Vintage and antiques have a secret story and a past that has always drew us. We were repurposing and upcycling found objects long before it was trendy. We also have an of love modern and midcentury design. By incorporating vintage props with our new product, it gives our shop personality and reflects our eclectic taste. We try to choose quality products that are unique and not massed produced. Not everything can be an heirloom but interesting or inspiring or obscure goods will have longevity.

But we didn’t just want to be retail shop. We are passionate about building community and supporting local designers and artists. We showcase local artists at our Pop Up Shop events and on our walls. San Diego is rich with creative talent and emerging artists. We are excited to be able to support the art community! In order to host our art classes and workshops, we built an oversized communal table. Gathering together fosters a sense of community and connection. We host a variety of events, including art shows, yoga and special parties.

Another unique aspect of our shop is that we are the first retail store in San Diego that specializes in Rare tropical plants. Being plant lovers, we found there was a niche that needed to be filled. There is a whole community of houseplant enthusiasts and rare plant collectors that have to travel outside of San Diego to get their wish plant. We are designing a greenhouse and tropical plant room to acclimate and grow rare plants.

We hope we have built an environment that is lush, welcoming, promotes good energy. At the end of a visit, we hope people leave inspired.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Being a small family business is both rewarding and challenging. It is wonderful to be able to share the journey with someone close. At the same time, it is hard to separate business and personal time. Building a new business requires time and commitment. But biggest challenge building brand awareness. Because we are in a location that does not have foot traffic, we have to be a destination store.

Nothing in business is ever a straight line. It is important to be flexible and evolve. Especially when it comes to retail, trends can be fickle and people are always looking for the next new thing.

Please tell us about Artifacts and Artichokes.
Artifacts & Artichokes is a home, garden, gift shop and event venue. We hope to build a community through art and special events. We host art classes, yoga and workshops and throughout the month. We are building a following for our rare plant collection, art classes and our Pop Up Art Shows. We try to put a twist on our all of Pop Up Shows. For instance, our Valentine Can’t Buy Me Love event, we choose vendors that gave a proceed of their sales to a charity. So purchases were giving love to a good cause.

Our upcoming Plant Prom Pop Up Show is a twist on the plant swap. We will have an 80s Prom theme, give out succulent corsages, There will be a contest/crowning for best 80s dressed and most awkward retro Prom photo. There will be backdrop for photos and rare plant auction food drinks and raffles. We are known for being the first Home and Gift shop that specializes in rare plants and hosting workshops. We have met many amazing artists and are humbled at the positive support everyone has shown.

Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
Our landscape design and construction business was started 15 years ago. Our shop has only been open seven months but the same ethos applies: be authentic, build trust and be open to new ideas. It is important to build your brand and stay true to your roots. You have to be passionate and love what you do. It is important to think outside the box and be creative if it hasn’t been done before we want to do it!

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