Set to blossom in late May is Plant Work Shop, an Orleans brick and mortar showcasing the herbal skin and home care line of Milisa Moses. This working studio is where Moses will develop the skincare and home cleaning products she creates, and where she intends to host her own hands-on workshops, teaching us how to use more plants and natural materials in our everyday lives. Selected artisans and instructors will also be invited to use the venue for community engagement and education.
Moses met her longtime partner Thomas not long after moving to Boston as a merchandiser for Crate and Barrel. That job was followed by a two-year stint at Black Ink’s shops in Beacon Hill and Cambridge. It was then that Moses discovered her passion for plants while container gardening on the couple’s tiny city fire escape. Self-taught and with many mistakes under her belt, Moses says, “I’m a super duper micro-manager. I want to do things myself and know where they’re going.”
Herbs resurfaced when Thomas, a fine interior carpenter, made wooden serving planks as gifts for their friends. Intending to apply a wood finish to them, Moses took pause at discovering ingredients that were all petroleum based.
“I didn’t want to eat off of that, and so I learned to make herbal preservatives from ingredients like infused oils and beeswax. Not long after, I realized that I could use these very same products on my own skin.”
Vending her line for several years online as the Salt Cellar Shop, and selling at Cape farmers’ markets, Moses loves the feedback she has received, and appreciates customers who have purchased over and over. She tasted her dream last summer when she ran The Dooryard, a tiny shop on the property of Halcyon Farm in Brewster. Crediting family and friends with emboldening her to reach for her goal, her now-husband Thomas is renovating the interior of the shop to her aesthetic: spare, natural, and innovative.
Plant Work Shop will feature Moses’ herbal skin and home goods and Thomas’ handcrafted wooden boards, plus linens, kitchenwares and ceramics, all made in America. Moses is inspired to find small companies passionate about their craft that will resonate with buy-local devotees. Farm-tended native herbs and pollinator plants will soon arrive from friends; homegrown flowers and herbs will follow in summer. Vendors like Old Friend’s Farm in Amherst will help line the shelves with certified organics like ginger syrup, turmeric honey and other small batch pantry foods.
Located at Oracle Square in Orleans, Plant Work Shop is adjacent to Emack and Bolio’s, downstairs from Supple Apothecary and across Route 6A from Sunbird. The spot landed in Moses’ lap just a few months ago at a friend’s suggestion. Financing with Eastham’s Community Development Partnership to cover purchases, rent and advertising came together quickly. “Everything is on your shoulders, but it’s been a synchronous meshing, and Thomas is my rock,” she says. “I’ve wanted a store forever.”
Plant Work Shop
82 Route 6A #1, Orleans