Ash + Oak Floral

When did you start your business or career?
March 2015 was when HEX was officially a "business" and we opened our doors in November 2017.

Who inspired you or what inspires you? I will give all the credit to plants, plants inspire me to be a better person and to teach others about how to integrate them into their lives for a better well being. I'm always looking to nature to help me through this life, it give us all that we need to live simply and happily. They connect us, heal us and are the best subtle teachers out there, that's exactly what inspires me.

A struggle you face in your business? I constantly struggle with promoting myself as a person, using my face, my voice and my opinions. I can easily sell a product for another amazing company or person, but I really have a hard time putting my actual face on my business to make it more personal. I've been working really hard to actually "own" my business, not hiding behind others. I've put my mind, body, soul and my blood, sweat, tears into creating this business. Rejection and judgement still hurt and I avoid it at all cost. And not taking things so personally, I think it goes hand and hand. Whether we want to admit it, business is not always just business when it's your passion, sometimes it gets personal and I struggle with that boundary daily.

Ash + Oak Floral

Have you stayed true to your brand (career) or have you changed it throughout the years? I have changed my career quite a few times, I do believe each previous career choices were stepping stones to create the business I now have. I think evolving is one of the most important elements to keep your business current and fresh. However, I also believe in sticking to your roots and following what attracts you. I've always been drawn to plants in some way or another whether it was floral design, plant based beauty products, living plants or plant medicine. I had no idea they were all linked as I worked through these careers, but I think I was put there to learn each individual aspect to help create this much bigger picture. I have of course stepped out of line and off my path, I've gotten distracted and people pleased over my vision and intentions of my business...but I can tell ya, somehow your true purpose comes knocking on your door to force what you are here to do out of you.

Something that scares you? Politics, religion, war, money, competition, judgement anything that separates people and creates hatred in order to achieve power over one another.

The best part of your job? Helping others well being through plants. Whether it is advice to help create a sacred space with live plants, sharing how to care for plants, using plant base products and supplements for health and wellness, or searching for spiritual connection with the use of plant rituals, connecting with people and always learning new things. When I can help people, I feel fulfilled.

How did you come up with your business name? Ha! Oh man...well it's taken me a very long to admit to where our name actually originated from, because I was unaware of it for some time. I'll just say I always knew it would be HEX, it just came to me one day and I couldn't shake it. The name can truly be a blessing and a curse (no kidding) sometimes, because it can be misunderstood at times. The meaning is really behind the shape itself, the symbol is why I named my business HEX not the word itself. I deeply believe in the power of symbols and sacred geometry, and hexagons have been a reoccurring meaningful symbol in my life. It was a subconscious choice to name it that, but I'm so glad I ran with it because it fully encompasses so much of what HEX is all about. The hexagon has been associated with balance and harmony, the idea of pairing material aesthetics with deep meaningful purpose and that's exactly what I'm here for and why I created HEX.

Ash + Oak Floral

What type of music do you listen to? Just about anything, it entirely depends on my mood...and I'm moody, so you can only imagine! I'm currently obsessed with Allan Rayman, Two Feet, Dennis Lloyd, and Moglli. Love me some good bass Axel Thesleff and Diplo. Anything Folky/Americana and I'm also huge Jim Morrison fan. So yeah, just about anything goes!

What’s your morning or work week look like? My morning start with my alarm going off 3 times in 15 minute intervals, and at least one snooze, because I am NOT a morning person. Half the week I like to start my days with heated vinyasa yoga. The other half of the week I sleep in until I absolutely have to wake up, snuggling with my pups and kitty, maybe read a little if I'm into a book. Get ready. Then I head to work, my real routine starts there, because I'm pretty much a zombie until 10:30. Did I mention I am not a morning person? I heat my herbal mixture of goodness and wonderfulness, that keeps me balanced and sane throughout the day. Tend to some plants and relax for the rest of the morning. Mornings tend to be real low key, and that's how I like it.

What do you do to keep your sanity? Plant medicine, yoga, crystals, being creative, allowing for alone and self care time.

If you could change one thing about social media what would it be? I wish it felt more real, authentic, the depiction of perfection can be toxic and addictive.

Give one tip or advice to someone who maybe interested in your biz? Never allow money to overtake what you love to do. Money has a way of jading just about anything, keep a healthy relationship with your earnings. Always remember you are worthy of abundance, security and happiness, never accept any less of yourself and your business. And allow yourself time off, and learn how to enjoy it. If your passion is what you do for a living to make money, make sure to give yourself down time and time off to do the other things you love. You are not your business, you are so much more.

Ash + Oak Floral

Things you learned the hard way. You cannot fill another's cup without first filling yours, two halves don't make a whole. If you truly want to love, help, teach or inspire others, you need to be full and happy within yourself. Also, life is about the balance of polarities, and it all happens in cycles. The good cannot happen without the bad, we need the dark to balance out the light, negative and positive, masculine/feminine, etc. We cannot have one without the other.

What’s one reason you chose to work for yourself? Freedom to create, I cannot be held down with mundane or tedious work that is meaningless. Creativity doesn't work with me if it is forced either, I have to have freedom of expression to keep me sane and happy.

Do pay for accounting and other admin work? Nope, I pretty much do everything from scrubbing the toilets to taxes and everything in between (except what my amazing employee Ash does for me!;) I try to keep things simple and kinda old school.

Ash + Oak Floral

Do you think you will change careers again or is hex the end goal? 

Oh I hope not, although shit I'm a Gemini any change is possible and likely to happen! I want to say I know I will be constantly evolving and further educating myself to help grow this business. I will allow myself the freedom to choose whatever path comes my way. I wouldn't say a career change per-say...maybe some added side jobs or something I can already incorporate into my current business. I love multitasking and learning new things. I have a couple callings, but I'm not sure if I want to go there with a way of making money, maybe added services is safe to say;) 

What’s your favorite product/brand in the store?

SO HARD!!! Well, I'm going to cheat and give a couple because I can't just choose one. MENDER our topical CBD line is outstanding, I use their products daily. I suffer from headaches and MENDER's headache serum is a life saver. Also TONIC CBD tinctures have changed my life and saved my sanity too many times to count. Both MENDER and TONIC are ran by the best boss ladies around, I love them, I love their products and I love what they stand for. Lastly, Purpose jewelry because they support anti-human trafficking by rescuing women of sex trafficking, teach them the art of jewelry making, and give them healing holistic care and mental support. I can't think of a better company to support! 

Ash + Oak Floral



Dogwood is owned and operated by 2 long-time friends, Katie Pilgrim and Jamie Boling

Ash + Oak Floral women in business

When did you start your business or career?

We officially launched Dogwood Botanicals in January 2019 as a way to offer wellness through cannabis and hemp to folks in places that didn’t have abundant, legal access to clean cannabis, like we are blessed with in California. Although our brand is new to the market, we’ve have been working together in the cannabis and arts industries throughout our 10 year friendship. In addition to our backgrounds in cannabis cultivation, Katie was also the Assistant Director of an art gallery and involved with other art businesses in SF, while Jamie was working as a business consultant and business manager in SF and LA.

What do you do?

Our core mission is to support the earth as we support each other and our endocannabinoid systems. We want to empower others to utilize plants for healing and wellness, and share how we’ve found more well-being through cannabis and CBD. Our first offering is an alcohol-free tincture with 2 simple ingredients: MCT coconut oil + full-spectrum hemp extract.

Ash + Oak Women in Business

Who inspired you or what inspires you?

Wow so many things! Nature is one of our biggest inspirations. Our mission was inspired by our time working with the healing and creative powers of cannabis. It became obvious after traveling back and forth for years between TN and CA that our friends and family in TN were missing out on what was available to us in CA. This inspired us to begin looking for ways to help them gain access. Once momentum started gaining with the Farm Bill and hemp pilot program in 2014, our wheels were turning about hemp and the its healing benefits.

A struggle you face in your business?

Compared to 100+ years of hemp + cannabis prohibition that impacted everyone in our country and denied access to the benefits of this plant’s medicine to countless people, our struggles our minor. Compared to the communities of BIPOC who were negatively impacted by the prohibition years, our struggles are non-existent. Compared to the struggles of the countless people currently incarcerated across the country for non-violent cannabis offenses, our struggles are not really struggles at all. That doesn’t mean we haven’t had challenges that caused struggle. As longtime cannabis advocates who have experienced trauma associated with our advocacy of this plant, both first hand and through the experiences of many in our communities, we are more motivated than ever to to continue pushing forward and spreading love through cannabis and hemp.

Ash + Oak Floral

Have you stay true to your brand (career) or have you changed it throughout the years?

Our values are everything to us and we intend to stay true to our focus on the triple bottom line of people, planet and profit in order to give back and operate as consciously as possible and to set an example for others in our industry and beyond. This philosophy manifests in many ways from our emphasis earth-conscious farming practices to our high standards for any business we work with. All shipping materials and paper goods are sourced from 100% recycled materials and are biodegradable. We also reserve 1% of all sales for donation in an effort to give back to to grassroots organizations.

Something that scares you?

Cannabis laws in the South where we grew up.

Ash + Oak Floral

Who would you like to work with someday? Collaboration or Ideal Company

We are inspired by so many women-owned businesses! That being said, a collab with fellow Appalachian herbalist, Lauren Haynes of Wooden Spoon Herbs is at the top of our goals list right now.

How did you come up with your business name?

The dogwood is sacred tree that is abundant and celebrated in our hometown of Knoxville, TN. We chose the name after the idea came to us on a trip in our early planning stages. It was affirmed when we synchronistically saw a Dogwood tree in the PNW later that day. Then we read more about Dogwood’s use as a flower essence and its use in dealing with trauma, maintaining grace, finding balance, and knew it was so aligned with the benefits of hemp and connected us to our roots in the South.

What type of music do you listen to?

We talked about this at lunch with an old friend today. Our friendship and many of our key relationships exist because of a connection to live music. Long ago, our backgrounds were in music and event production in the TN. Music is constant companion through the good times and the bad. We have a broad appreciation for music, including Southern hip-hop and trap, Bluegrass, Psychedelic Rock, Electronic Music, Jazz, Reggae, and even Classical.

What’s your morning or work week look like?

Slow morning routines. Maximizing time during the week by focusing on certain departments / tasks each day. We both juggle roles outside of Dowood: Jamie is a mom and still sees business consulting clients, and Katie is on the the Board of Directors for a youth program in the city and she also runs her own art blog. So we are big on maximizing our time, meeting in-person at least once per week, and aim to take time on the weekends for maximum balance.

Ash + Oak Floral

What do you do to keep your sanity?

Laugh a lot. Especially when it would be easy to freak out.

Give one tip or advice to someone who maybe interested in your biz?

Get your hands dirty in the soil and build a connection with the cannabis plant.

What is your studio situation?

We are HQ’d in San Francisco and Sonoma County from our home offices. Katie lives right at the Ocean in SF and frequently breaks up her work day with visits to the wild dunes. Jamie lives in Santa Rosa where she works from her sunny south facing office where her 5-year old loves popping in to our meetings. We are both so grateful to be able to work close to home and maintain life balance while we dive into entrepreneurship.

Do pay for accounting and other admin work?

Not at this time because we are lucky to have an in-house pro. Jamie has a background in business administration and operations. She runs a consulting business helping small businesses create efficient systems and handles our accounting and admin.

Ash + Oak Floral

Dogwood team’s two questions….

1. If you were given $10,000 for your business, what would you do with it?

We would commission a beautiful mural in our hometown of Knoxville, TN that adds to the landscape around it and also sparks curiosity about our brand.

2. What was your worst job before Dogwood?

Each aspect and challenge of our careers and work experiences got us exactly here and prepared us to lead this company. We’ve both worked our share of dirty, laborious, or minimum wage jobs but we always try to make work fun, especially if we’re working together! In fact, several years ago we had the time of our lives karate kicking waste off of our farm truck into the county dump.

Ash + Oak Floral




Established 2014 in Oakland, California