Tucked on the northwest corner of the Prairie City downtown, Coffee and Carnations is a cute-as-a-button shop with treats to please anyone. The dream of mother-daughter duo Melody and Morgan Burtman, the new eatery and floral boutique at 100 E. Jefferson St. is already a hit in the community.
“We’ve received a lot of support locally. Saturdays, especially, we usually have a line clear to the door,” Melody said.
The idea to open her own shop came while Morgan was working in the Hy-Vee floral department. Always wanting to work outside the large chain store, Morgan got her chance in her grandfather’s former medical clinic building.
“My dad, Dr. Ingle, and my youngest son, along with many other people, were working on it everyday while we are at work. They were in here redoing the whole thing,” Melody said. “It has just been kind-of a menagerie of all of our ideas. It was completely gutted.”
The transformation has been remarkable. No longer does the building have the cold, sterile feel of a medical facility, the walls are warm with the original brick and comfy couches and even a table with swings fill the space.
“It has been weird, the whole process. Our mission is ‘God first’ and we found this saying when we were first getting the ideas. When we were starting, we found this little embroidered frame that said ‘God first.’ It has been weird that, with that theme … it is just little things that have worked out,” Melody said. “We think something is going to be a disaster then something else is put in our path.”
Special features such as a tiled wall from pieces found in the basement dating back to when Melody’s dad purchased the building 30 to 40 years ago make Coffee and Carnations a one-of-a-kind stop. Fresh flowers bring a fresh and bright feel to the space. Along with the floral selections, which range from wedding to funerals and everything in between, the shop features a much sought after morning, and sometimes afternoon, necessity — coffee.
“I’m not sure how we added the coffee, but we just like coffee,” Morgan said.
To go with the hot cup of Joe, in whatever variation is selected, the shop also serves a daily special along with baked goods.
“We have daily lunch specials, always homemade and if we run out of it, we have what my dad named a hen apple sandwich. A hen apple, or what a hen produces is an egg, so it is a fried egg sandwich and you can pick different meats, cheeses and vegetables and we make it like a grilled cheese,” Melody said. “All of the different coffee, baked goods, whatever we feel like making sometimes. We also have iced tea, lemonade and water. We are trying to keep it wholesome, natural and good for you.”
Always on the menu, angel biscuits are a family favorite that Melody and her daughter are sharing with the public.
“The angel biscuits are one of our signature things, a lot of people’s favorite. It is an old Ingle family recipe that I used to make with my grandma,” Melody.
The space also features an event room, which holds around 30 people, that is available for rent during the day or in the evening. Once the shop closes, the rental space can expand to encompass the entire building.
Whether it is enjoying a cup of coffee or picking up a bouquet of fresh flowers, Coffee and Carnations in a welcome addition to the Prairie City downtown.
“We’ve been overwhelmed by support,” Morgan said.
For more information about the shop, visit the Coffee and Carnations Facebook page.