Where is your happy place?

Pretty White Trash products available at Sunflower Soul in downtown Lewisburg.
Pretty White Trash products available at Sunflower Soul in downtown Lewisburg.

pwt2By David Esteppe

For two best friends with artistic tendencies, business acumen, and a venue full of “Sunflower Soul,” you take some of life’s trials and tribulations and start a new line of clothing, upcycled and repurposed jewelry, journals, prints and accessories expressing the upside of overcoming, and laughing at life. Amanda Reed and Weslea Coles bring you “Pretty White Trash.’’

Coles says tongue-in-cheek, “The line was close to being ‘White Trash’, but the last thing we wanted was to be too off-putting, so `Pretty White Trash’ was the way to go.

Reed is an established photographer in the area with a studio in the rear of Coles’ Sunflower Soul artisan shop in downtown Lewisburg. Visiting the two ladies for an interview about what they were conspiring together with in regards to this new adventure left me full of joy and reasons to giggle aloud as I walked down Washington Street back to the paper.

The ladies are full of beauty and witty humor, and the store actually has a nickname in Lewisburg as “The Happy Store.” This came about over the last 10 years as people can’t help but take notice of all of the positivity not only inside, but as one walks down the sidewalk and looks at the window displays. Vintage children’s bicycles, smile-inducing decor, and a stunning colorful sofa, which Coles refuses to part with, are often there for you to peruse as you move along.

Reed says, “I would like everyone to know that we are West Virginia moms first. We are at every sporting event for our children, we are always participating in area fundraisers, and we are West Virginia in our hearts. You’ll see us working and designing and mothering all at the same time. The words we use to express ourselves and our love of our community are the words we put into the line.”

Coles adds, “Two of our favorite T-shirts, which we have produced locally, say it for us. One says, ‘Love, Moonshine and Mountains’ on the front, and then `Shine On’ on the back.” The other shirt has “Love, Music and Mountains’ on the front, and then has a little banjo on the back. The shirts are so popular with the locals that they are not being put on the website for sale just yet. The ladies want to give first dibs to the supporters they know now.

People are ordering from Pretty White Trash merchandise from all over the country after the Associated Press picked up their story and papers around the country ran it.

Some of the popular items called “Pretty Trashy Cards” are specialty note cards, out of reach of young’ns, which carry hilarious sentiments for your best friends who won’t take insult at hearing it like it is. I bought one, and I”m going back for more.

There is a website for online ordering of Pretty White Trash merchandise, www.PrettyWhiteTrash.com.

Sunflower Soul, with the Pretty White Trash line is located across from the Lewisburg Post Office at 203 E. Washington Street. The phone number is 304-645-7865.

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