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Ivy's Porch: So Much More Than a Retail Store

Women's workshops, retail, and doing good for humanity.

Ivy's Porch is like a secret garden sanctuary located right on Scotts Valley Drive. The unique space is more than just a retail store: it is run by a co-op of 15 local women, all with their own style and eye for detail. 

A rambling wonderland of rooms, and the oldest rose gardens in the county, the store has recently added succulent workshops to its repetoire, as well as bringing in Lynda Hall, whose project Lynda and Kidz Backpack Project is now using the space as a drop-off site. The rooms are brimming with antique treasures, garden trinkets, jewelry and refurbished home decor.

"We all just find our beautiful things that we love and we each have our own space," says Jessica Radcliff, who loves to sell vintage and "upcycle" items, shopping at the flea market and refurbishing her finds. 

"It gives us all a chance to be creative and an outlet for our individual personalities," Radcliff said.

Jewelry guru Rene Riccabona admits that being a part of Ivy's Porch satisfies her shopping urges, giving her an excuse to make purchases for her business.

"One of my rooms has kind of primarily turned into jewelry. I started there and just kind of built from there," Riccabona said. "I also have a thing for vintage entertaining so I have a lot of vintage entertaining pieces as well."

Succulent designer Tamara Cucchiara of Scotts Valley recently joined Ivy's Porch, bringing her green thumb with her. Cucchiara puts together elegant garden designs made from succulents and bromeliads, set in everything from simple pots to porcelein tea cups, to beautiful glass containers and lanterns.

"I had been shopping here for a couple years, and I was really impressed with the gardens and the fact that it's an all-women co-op, and that it's just all women trying to make it, they all have other jobs and families and kids and grandkids," Cucchiara said. 

Last Saturday, Ivy's Porch threw a garden party, and Cucchiara debuted her elegant glass tear drops which can be hung indoors or outside, each with a different arrangement of bright green "reindeer moss," air plants, and succulents inside.

"Just a little spritz every 10 days or so," Cucchiara said about the modestly priced ($20) tear drops to hang in your garden.

Cucchiara will be teaching succulent workshops at Ivy's Porch on Sunday, July 15 and Sunday, Aug. 12 from 1-3 p.m. Her workshops include beverages, snacks, soil, tools and gloves and cost $25. (Contact Cucchiara at tas8286@yahoo.com for more information.) 

Cynthia Sandberg of Love Apple Farms, dubbed "the Martha Stewart of the West Coast" by garden partygoers, is also getting involved at Ivy's Porch, utilizing a large backyard greenhouse for a farmers craft fair on Saturdays, as well as another space for soap making, jam making, and herb and vegetable gardening workshops.

On Saturday, July 21, Ivy's Porch will host the Lynda and Kidz Backpack Project's annual collection day—this year the project aims for at least 300 backpacks to give to less priveleged students in Santa Cruz County. The collection day is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and Laurie Roberts of KPIG radio will be broadcasting live from the site. 

Joni Holland July 04, 2012 at 01:08 AM
This place rocks!!!

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