Goldie Wants You to Discover Sugarshak Designs

When you step into Sugarshak Designs in Dade City, Goldie — the store’s greeter and former farm dog — welcomes you with a wag of her tail and invites you to browse for that perfect gift or home decoration.

Sugarshak Designs specializes in home décor, upcycled and repurposed items, gifts, consignments, wedding and party decorations, flower arrangements, quirky signs and hats, one-of-a-kind jewelry, local honey and jelly, and handmade greeting cards.

Owner Denise Scopel creates many of the items in her store, including decorating bottles, tumblers, lampshades, mannequins and much more.

“I enjoy making and decorating things,” Scopel said.  “I look for things that I can either repurpose some way or upcycle, to make it different.  I do wreaths, flower arrangements, horseshoes. If you show me a picture, I can usually create something pretty close to what the item is.”

Scopel began exhibiting and selling her creations under a tent in the outdoor market scene, and then managed someone else’s store, before opening Sugarshak last spring. The store’s name is a tribute to Scopel’s five grandchildren, who call her “Sugar.”

“I wanted a store that wasn’t just antiques or purchased gifts.  I wanted to have local artists’ items, plus repurposed and recycled, so it’s an all-around kind of store,” said Scopel. “I keep my prices low, because I want people to find something they love and be able to afford it.”

Unique among stores specializing in home décor, Sugarshak has a Male Room, a space designed for items that interest and make appropriate gifts for men.

“We have something here for everyone,” Scopel said. “We created the Male Room because I wanted something for men to be able to look at and relate to while their wives are shopping.”

In addition to owning Sugarshak, Scopel also does planning for small weddings, and her store has a space devoted to wedding decorations.

“We have toasting glasses, cake knives, ring-bearer pillows and flower-girl baskets, fun things like socks for the bride’s fathers, tote bags for the wedding party and even little wedding signs with clever sayings,” said Scopel.

Scopel does as much or as little decorating and planning as a bride wants, and also helps with smaller events, such as baby showers and anniversary parties.

“Whatever the event, I’ll set it up and make it look pretty,” she said.

Because Scopel wants you to feel at home in her store, she provides a comfortable couch for weary shoppers and waiting spouses. The couch also gives people a handy place to lavish attention on Goldie, the store’s canine ambassador of goodwill.

“Goldie was my grandfather’s dog, and I brought her home with me about six years ago,” Scopel says. “Goldie was a farm dog who lived underneath the house, and she’s just the best dog ever — she doesn’t bark and is very friendly and laid back.”

Goldie may pass the day napping, but she loves her job at Sugarshak.

“She knows when it’s time to go to work, and lies by the back door waiting on me to leave,” Scopel said, “She’s become my mascot, and people always come in asking about Goldie.”

On your next visit to Dade City, be sure to visit Sugarshak, take a seat on the couch and be greeted by Goldie. And then take home something rustic, western, or just plain fun for that bare wall, baker’s rack or empty end table.

“There’s something here for everyone, and I’ll bet you’ll find something that you can’t leave without,” said Scopel.

(813) 526-6631. • 14247 7th St. • Dade City •

Published 10/3/18

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