#RealLifeWonderWoman — Meet Ashley Green

Today’s #RealLifeWonderWoman had an itch…to create fabulous one-of-a-kind furniture pieces. And so she scratched that itch and made a sweet and quirky chair for her family home.

But her itch didn’t go away.

“Before I knew it, I found myself scouring dark alleys for abandoned chairs, rummaging through the fabric bins at the craft stores, and staying up late until my fingers ached. But I was living my dream and recreating old furniture.”

Ashley Green is now the Chair Extraordinaire at Green Thumb Etc. Studio in St. Cloud, Minnesota. She designs, creates and sells unique, whimsical, and off-the-wall furniture and accent chairs for her creative and courageous clientele.

Meet Ashley, a #RealLifeWonderWoman!

KR: Please tell us about what brings you joy and fulfillment.

AG: My joy and fulfillment comes from the moment. Not in a holistic hippie, love yourself and peace be unto thee kind of way, but in a flavor of the minute. When I’m out grabbing drinks with a friend, joy is in turning my cell on silent and being there with them. When I’m answering emails, joy is focusing on the purpose of my communication and the ticking of the keys. When I’m upholstering furniture or putting together a bridal bouquet, it’s watching the process play out better than it did in my head. I don’t get down on myself too hard for anything happening outside of my moment.

KR: We all have inner superpowers. What are some of yours?

AG: I connect with you on your level and make you feel like you can be yourself. I’m not your hype girl, but I’m your honest friend that will challenge you to be the best version of yourself. I want your idea to be the best idea; I want your business to be the best business and I want your relationships to be the best relationships. If that means challenging you to really look at your plan and work out the kinks, that’s what I’m here for. I’m your no-bullshit kind of friend.

KR: Can you tell us about an influential woman in your life and how she inspired you?

AG: I have had many influential women in my life. My first influential woman was my very best friend growing up and to this day. She is a fierce badass who rewrote her story and joined the sheet metal union because her life in middle management wasn’t serving her any longer. She inspires me to be as classy as she is, with unmitigated sass.

My 10 year-old daughter is the fiery and fearless young woman I wish I was at her age. She inspires me to continue walking my path and show her that girls are allowed to be rebels and can be passionate leaders. My grandmother has suffered incredible loss in her life and she inspires me to be resilient. And that is a small sample of the women that have inspired me. There hasn’t been a single woman that I have encountered, no matter how briefly, who hasn’t inspired me to be the best version of myself.

KR: If you could have one super-human power, what would it be?

AG: Restraint is the most super-human. I mean, I can’t say no to another piece of cake, another glass of wine, another story, another episode 😉 I am human in my inability to turn down my vices. Super-human restraint would make me the perfect person.

KR: What do you do for fun? What are your hobbies?

AG: My fun is my business. To the chagrin of my family, I’m sure, but I love ripping apart old furniture and completely reinventing it. I love designing wedding flowers. It’s all a version of art that is so hands-on that I love so much. Other than that, I am a geek for podcasts and people. I love getting to know people in my life and getting to know their story. That is my hobby, verbal communication and getting to know people.

KR: Knowing what you know at this stage of your life, what words of wisdom would you give to your 20-year-old self?

AG: Keep going and do whatever you want. All the decisions you make now will shape you and serve you, not set you back. I have talked to so many kids who are genuinely stressed and anxious of that next chapter in their lives. What do I want to do? How will I spend the next 60 years of my working life? What if I hate it?? Keep going. Do whatever you want to do now. If it doesn’t end up being the next 60 years, it will be a part of your life that you can learn from.

I originally went to school for elementary education. I hated it after three years. It wasn’t my calling. I then went on to go to school to be a florist and ended up with a one year diploma after 4 years of college. That means checking the box of “some college” on any job application or survey that measures demographic statistics for the rest of my life. My post-high school education was so much more than “some college”, how can you sum it up with such a flippant term? But it was what I wanted to do. Getting that one year diploma after three years of college and changing my mind cost me some money, but I found myself and created a future where I am my own boss. I had the confidence to upholster furniture because I had the background in floral arts, and now my business is a combination of wedding floral, which I love, and furniture, which I love.

You never know where your path will lead so just follow your instincts.

Learn more about Ashley at greenthumbetc.com

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