Exclusive preview: Verra Studios and Botanica, holding grand openings August 3 on 3rd Avenue North in Birmingham

Chrissie Larkin (Verra Studios) and Caitlin Hastings (Botanica) in Birmingham, AL
Chrissie Larkin (Verra Studios) and Caitlyn Hastings (Botanica) will be sharing space at the Burger-Phillips building and open Aug 3, 2019 (Photo by Jon Eastwood for Bham Now)

Two new small businesses are getting ready to open their doors at 11AM on Saturday, August 3 in a space they’ll be sharing at Birmingham’s historic Burger-Phillips Department Store building (1914 3rd Avenue North). Verra Studios offers unique handcrafted jewelry and Botanica specializes in pot plants.

Window display of Botanica and Verra Studios in Birmingham, AL
Both businesses will share a grand opening Aug 3 at 11AM (Photo by Jon Eastwood for Bham Now)

The new businesses are getting ready for their grand opening and will be coordinating giveaways and special offers over their inaugural weekend. Bham Now was given a sneak peek and here’s what we found.

Verra Studios – custom jewelry pieces

Unique handmade pieces of jewelry (Photo by Jon Eastwood for Bham Now)

Verra offers one of a kind pieces made right here in Birmingham.

Owner, Chrissie Larkin, told me she has been creating jewelry for more than 15 years, previously selling her unique and versatile designs at pop-up events.

Handmade jewelry
Verra Studios designs (Photo via Verra Studios)

Chrissie showed me some of the unique pieces made from materials such as amethyst, mixed metals and diamonds, pearls, jade, pyrite, and more

Jewelry on table display
Jewlery is made from a variety of different materials (Photo by Jon Eastwood for Bham Now)

The designs are versatile so you can wear many of the pieces in different styles (long bracelet/short bracelet/bracelet/anklet) and some of the designs offer interchangeable pieces.

Chrissie said, “This is our first store and I’m so excited about opening! We have put so much effort and so much heart and soul into getting this place ready for Saturday. It’s been a family effort – with my kids even helping to sweep and mop to make sure everything looks great!”

Jewelry and pot plants on display
Jewelry pieces and pot plants are displayed side-by-side (Photo by Jon Eastwood for Bham Now)
Jewelry close up
Vibrant designs (Photo via Verra Studios)

Botanica – a houseplant shop

Window display of Botanica and Verra Studios in Birmingham, AL
Botanica House Plant Shop (Photo by Jon Eastwood for Bham Now)

Caitlyn Hastings is a full-time physician assistant and plant enthusiast ‘with a passion for people and houseplants’.

“I started by doing home consultations for friends who couldn’t keep plants alive, and then it turned into consultations for people I didn’t know. I then did pop-ups downtown selling plants. But this was the dream (having a store) and I’m so excited about Saturday!”

Various pot plants on display
Perfect for your indoor space (Photo by Jon Eastwood for Bham Now)

If you’re looking to make your space greener, there’s a treasure trove of pot plants at Botanica.

Pot plants on shelf
Lots of variety for inspiration (Photo by Jon Eastwood for Bham Now)

Caitlyn said Botanica will help pick the right plants for your space and provide detailed tips on how to take care of them.

Lots of pot plants
Botanica has plenty of plants and will help you select what will work for your space (Photo by Jon Eastwood for Bham Now)

So what did Caitlyn recommend as good starter plants that are easy to take care of?

“I like to recommend a snake plant or a zee zee plant. Succulents are also really easy to take care of. My goal is to help people wherever they are in their plant journey.”

Pot plants and jewelry
Perfect gifts for somebody else or just for you (Photo by Jon Eastwood for Bham Now)

Botanica offers plant consultations for home and office, rentals and staging for events, and Interior plantscaping assistance for designers.

Cacti and houseplants
Variety of plant sizes (Photo by Jon Eastwood for Bham Now)

Need to know

Outside Verra Studios and Botanica in Birmingham, AL
Verra Studios and Botanica at 1914 3rd Ave North (Photo by Jon Eastwood for Bham Now)

Verra Studios and Botanica will be co-sharing at: 1914 3rd Avenue North, Birmingham, AL 35203

Grand opening: 11AM, Saturday, August 3

Opening hours: Tues-Fri: 11-2PM, Sat-Sun: 11-6PM

Sofa and colorful wallpaper. Plants and jewelry
Relax while you conemplate your jewelry or pot plant purchase (Photo by Jon Eastwood for Bham Now)

Instagram: @verrastudios         @botanica_bhm  

Web: www.verrastudios.com       www.botanicabhm.com 

Jon Eastwood
Jon Eastwood

Originally from Wales (UK) and a fluent Welsh speaker. Longtime sustainability and recycling champion. Former county recycling manager in the UK. Career highlights include introducing innovative recycling systems and achieving a point where households throw out trash just once a month. Competed in international coastal rowing championships and followed Wales throughout Europe in their Rugby and Soccer endeavours.

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