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"Sassafrassity Furnish & Flora" settles in Sellwood

RITA A. LEONARD - Sheressa Dolph, co-owner of the new Sassafrassity Furnish & Flora, at 8326 S.E. 17th Avenue, explains that her new homewares store features unique furniture, gifts, and houseplants. “Sassafrassity Furnish & Flora” has set up shop at 8326 S.E. 17th Avenue, adjacent to Sellwood Pet Supply. Owners Sheressa Dolph and Sally Bodle opened the homewares store in February, for people looking for “an eclectic mix of new and re-purposed furniture, gifts and houseplants”. With the steady increase of visitors and homeowners arriving in the area, Sassafrassity offers a ray of sunshine.

Sheressa Dolph has a degree in landscape design, and operated several small businesses of her own before starting this venture. “I spent fifteen years in the furniture business, and most recently worked in visual merchandising,” she reports. “Whenever my friend and I picked up a fascinating piece of vintage furniture to re-purpose, she’d say, ‘Now that’s a nice little piece of sassafrass,’ and that’s where the store name comes from. We want our customers to be able to find a little piece of fun here.”

Dolph and Bodle tell THE BEE they enjoy adding special touches to found furniture, such as a vintage chair with its seat now highlighted in strips of wooden yardsticks. “People like finding locally-handmade items here,” comments Dolph, pointing to accent pillows, handmade soy wax candles, soaps, and pictures. “A lot of visitors pop in here for gifts and souvenirs with a Portland flair.”

“Sassafrassity” currently offers a variety of locally-grown, certified organic herbs and vegetable starts for summer planting, as well. “We also have a small plant annex in the back of our store – with many succulents, ferns and houseplants,” says Dolph cheerily. “Later on we hope to have a small potting area, and perhaps offer a class on house plant care.

“I chose the plants out in front of the store for their drought resistance and ability to attract pollinators,” she adds. A bulletin board near the entrance has several bee-related fliers. “I love honeybees,” she exclaims, pointing to a hanging mobile featuring several of the little creatures. “We’re excited to be here on the south end of 17th Avenue. There’s a lot going on down here, and people have been very welcoming.” Phone for more information: 503/327-8321 – or visit the shop during the hours it’s open – Tuesdays through Saturdays, 10 am-6 pm, and Sundays from noon until 5 pm.