Dandelion dreams: New shop fulfills mother’s long-held wish

November 2019 Posted in Community, People

Sarah Sampson with husband, Derek, and daughters, Ginger and Piper. Courtesy of Annie Smith photography

By Nancy Jennings

Sarah Sampson, owner of The Wild Dandelion in Silverton, welcomes customers with a sassy “Open” sign on her door saying: “Come in. We’re awesome!” (Her “Closed” sign reads: “Closed. But still awesome!”)

Opened since June this year, Sampson, 38, refers to her merchandise as “Boho modern” home goods and gifts. She affectionately credits her husband, Derek, 37, a manager at Northwest Natural in Portland, with making her business a reality.

“Derek did all the work in here. He did all the shiplap walls, built the fireplace (which was a closet), and the Dutch door – something I’ve always wanted. We thought it would be super welcoming – and in the summer we could open the top half and let the breeze come through. Everything I’d dreamed of, he made it happen.”

However, to back up a bit, Sampson had to wait until the timing was just right. Motherhood took priority.

“We had babies (Ginger, now ten, and Piper, 6) and found out that they had cystic fibrosis, so I just dedicated my whole life to them. I was a stay-at-home mom, did their treatments, and home-schooled them,” she said.

Encouraging health news for the sisters came earlier this year.

“Ginger got on a medical trial and she’s doing amazing. This new medicine just got okayed by the FDA. It’s helping her immensely, so they both were able to start public school. Then I started to decide what I was going to do with myself. So, I decided I was going to jump on this dream and just see what happens,” she said.

Picking out the store’s name was destiny.

“We named the store after our girls – the wild dandelions – they’re our little ‘wild’ children. We always use the dandelion in our cystic fibrosis fundraising because you’ll always see them growing between the cracks in the sidewalk, or other hard conditions. Dandelions continue to grow and they’re full of wishes,” she explained.

Family time includes traveling to root on Ginger at weekend gymnastics competitions, and admire what Piper creates as “the little artist” whose passion is drawing and painting.

Couple time will often find them visiting other small towns in Oregon.

“There’s something about architecture that Derek and I just love. We’ll get a cup of coffee and take these long walks through towns and look at the old houses.”

Sourcing and selling locally made products are important to Sampson.

“We try to keep them a little spunky and fun.”

The Wild Dandelion is located at 108 S. Water St., Silverton. 503-874-1518.

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