Business

Women in business combine cupcakes and flowers in Lacey

Elle's Floral Design and Miss Moffett's Mystical Cupcakes owners Michelle LaPraim (left) and Rachel Young have joined forces to open a shared business location in the Lacey Market Square complex.
Elle's Floral Design and Miss Moffett's Mystical Cupcakes owners Michelle LaPraim (left) and Rachel Young have joined forces to open a shared business location in the Lacey Market Square complex. Staff photographer

There’s a new storefront in Lacey that is home to cupcakes and flowers, and the two 30-something women behind the respective businesses have a greater goal in mind.

The two women are Rachel Young, the owner of Miss Moffett’s Mystical Cupcakes, and Michelle LaPraim of Elle’s Floral Design.

They didn’t know each other until they met at the United Way Women’s Leadership Council. Then Young, already established with a cupcake business that has locations in downtown Olympia and at Capital Mall, heard that Bonjour Cupcakes had closed its Lacey store.

Bonjour also has closed its Olympia store.

Curious about the Lacey site, Young checked into its availability, only to learn that LaPraim had signed a lease for her first storefront.

Now, they have decided to work together, selling cupcakes and flowers while also splitting the rent. They also hope to take their combined effort to the next level.

They envision the Lacey storefront as a potential “wedding central,” where brides and grooms can find both cupcakes and flowers for their wedding needs.

But it doesn’t stop there. The two also plan to work with other wedding-related vendors to hold a quarterly “bridal bash.” The first is set for Oct. 15 at Indian Summer Golf & Country Club.

LaPraim is a longtime florist, who first learned the business when she worked at Safeway. She continued to hone her craft on the side while she tackled other duties in the grocery world. She most recently worked at Ralph’s Thriftway in Olympia — some might recognize her from her days as a barista at the store’s Starbucks — but she finally decided to make her floral skills a full-time business.

“I’m doing exactly what I hoped to be doing,” she said.

Young made a cupcake name for herself when she appeared on the former Food Network show, “Cupcake Wars.” That since has led to launching Miss Moffett’s, which has grown to three locations, employing about 20.

Young named her business after her grandmother, whose last name was Moffett. She baked cupcakes with her grandmother, eventually turning a hobby into an obsession, Young said.

“She is the muse behind this,” Young said.

The two women also plan to make charitable giving a regular part of their joint storefront. They are helping to raise funds for Ethen Roller, a boy fighting cancer at Doernbecher Children’s Hospital in Portland.

Rolf Boone: 360-754-5403

rboone@theolympian.com

@rolf_boone

Miss Moffett’s Mystical Cupcakes and Elle’s Floral Design

Owners: Rachel Young and Michelle LaPraim.

Location: The storefront is at Lacey Market Square off Pacific Avenue, not far from Fred Meyer. It also is next to Koibito, a Japanese restaurant, and Howard’s Cleaners.

Years in business: Miss Moffett’s has been in business since 2011, while LaPraim of Elle’s Floral Design decided to pursue her business full time in July. The Lacey location is her first storefront.

Hours: Miss Moffett’s in Lacey is open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. Elle’s Floral Design is open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday. LaPraim leaves after 5 p.m., although flowers can be purchased until 7 p.m.

Online: Both businesses can be found on Facebook.

Advice to business owners: Both Young and LaPraim encouraged new business owners to follow their dream and go for it. “Follow your inspiration,” they said.

Did you know? The two 30-something women have both had help from their moms. Joanne Soares, LaPraim’s mother, helps make deliveries for Elle’s Floral Design, while Victoria Cunningham, Young’s mother, helped lay the groundwork and foundation for Miss Moffett’s Mystical Cupcakes.

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