Local mom opens ‘working boutique’ in Lexington as DIY haven

A newly opened Lexington business not only sells one-of-a-kind home accents, but owner Sarah Cornett has the expertise and tools to help people create their own original pieces.

Rustic Chic Interiors is now open in Lexington with unique furniture and its own line of paint. (photo by Rachel Ham)

Rustic Chic Interiors is now open in Lexington with unique furniture and its own line of paint. (photo by Rachel Ham)

Cornett is a self-described “junker at heart” and spends her days turning unwanted and imperfect things into new works of art. The Springdale mom on Friday opened Rustic Chic Interiors on Dooley Road just off U.S. Highway 1, and people immediately began browsing for things to add to their homes.

“This is a unique business that makes our membership unique,” said Gregg Pinner, president and CEO of the Greater Cayce-West Columbia Chamber of Commerce.

Rustic Chic Interiors is the first venture into the small business world for Cornett, but she’s no novice when it comes to revamping items with creativity and a little elbow grease.

“I’ve been doing it out of my garage for two years,” she said.

The furniture filling nearly every nook and cranny of Rustic Chic Interiors is in various stages of completion. Cornett describes the space as a “working boutique” since she’ll be painting there and people also can purchase unpainted items to fix up for their own DIY project.

For those who want to incorporate the “Rustic Chic” look into their home, Cornett debuted her own line of paint. After using store-bought paint for years, the mom of three created a new blend in her kitchen.

“I played around with it for a very long time but perfected the recipe,” she said.

Cornett created the paint to be natural and safe and perfect for DIY projects. (photo by Rachel Ham)

Cornett created the paint to be natural and safe and for DIY projects. (photo by Rachel Ham)

Cornett had planned to sell an existing brand of the paint at Rustic Chic, but a friend encouraged her to make and market her own. Since she often paints indoors and has small children, Cornett agreed that being able to produce an all-natural, safe paint was the right way to go. She also makes her own finishing wax.

Rustic Chic’s Chalky Milk Paint combines aspects of both types of paint to give it the consistency of chalk paint but the ability to chip like milk paint, which gives furniture and accents an aged look. Cornett said it chips at different rates depending on the object and material.

Cornett plans to offer workshops to pass on her DIY knowledge about how to best use the paint and create the desired effect.

“It’s an artist’s paint and is unpredictable,” she said.

Cornett is always searching for furniture that needs a facelift but said she prefers never to refurbish something new. Instead, she picks up antique and vintage pieces for their quality of craftsmanship.

“I like knowing what I’m selling is solid,” she said.

People are invited to stop by Rustic Chic Interiors at 203 Dooley Road to talk to Cornett about a custom order, pick out furniture to paint themselves or check out newly finished pieces on display.

“I’m more than likely going to be in an apron and covered in paint every day,” Cornett said.

More about what’s in stock at Rustic Chic Interiors and information on upcoming workshops can be found here.

Categories: Business