Show & Tell: Vivi Dot Designer Molly Gaines and Her Way Cute Workspace

From Patrick Swayze buttons to hairpins boasting psychedelic prints, designer Molly Gaines of Vivi Dot crafts her handmade goodies in a home studio as quirky as her retro-inspired line of accessories. This Seattle resident named her company after her grandmothers — Vivi and Dot — whom she credits for her creative moxie and sense of humor. Between crafting and creating, she invited us in for a virtual tour of her stylish space!

“My house and my line of accessories are all about pattern and color,” Molly says. “I love to brighten up a room with a vibrant table or bold wallpaper just like I love to add pops of color and pattern to an outfit with a bright, eye-catching necklace.”

“I love using color and statement pieces throughout my house, but I try to balance that out so no one place is overwhelmed with stuff. I allow myself to break that rule in my office. It’s filled with a combination of tools and items I need to run my business and items that inspire me to create — quirky, colorful things I’ve picked up over the years at vintage shops and craft fairs.”

“This work table is where most of the Vivi Dot production occurs. I’ve got all of the supplies I need at an arm’s length. I also have my collection of tiny, fashionable outfits from Japan on display.”

“When I lived in San Francisco I’d pick up these little fashion outfits at various stores that carried Japanese products. They come in a box that doesn’t say which outfit it is, so you just have to hope it’s one you don’t already own. The little light on the dresser even turns on!”

“SF really was the perfect place to start Vivi Dot and get my feet wet in the thriving local craft scene. Now, I live in Seattle in a neighborhood called Ballard. I love the combination of being able to walk to boutiques and restaurants while living on a quiet block with a chicken coop in my backyard. The seasons and all the change in color associated with them is my biggest source of inspiration these days.”

“I just hired my first employee, Lily, so I reworked this space to add in a desk for her. I organize my findings in that awesome, mustard yellow metal container that I bought at The Apartment in San Francisco.”

“These drawers are just perfect for storing all of my inventory and packaging needs.”

“These are all of the solid colors I use in my collection, usually as accents to patterns or to cover in lace.”

“The hand-painted 500 Club tin is from a friend. It’s where my husband and I met! Our whole bathroom is another remodeling project that we’ll take care of in the next few years. In the meantime, I covered up the floral tile pattern with some bright fabric dots. It’s much more ‘us.'”

Thanks for the tour, Molly!

Have any questions for Molly? Drop her a line, and she’ll answer back!

About Laura

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  1. Cherie 05/15/2012 at 11:40 am #

    What an inspiring workspace! Thank you for sharing this!

  2. Lisa Miller 05/15/2012 at 11:53 am #

    Great stuff, Molly! Congratulations on all you’ve accomplished with this fabulous business!

  3. pamela gaines 05/15/2012 at 12:59 pm #

    Wow! You make a mother proud!

    • Molly (Vivi Dot) 05/15/2012 at 1:06 pm #

      Aw thanks Mom! And I’m proud of you for commenting on a blog! 😉

  4. Shelley Moore 05/15/2012 at 1:16 pm #

    Molly, I just love all of the color. Congrats on your success!

  5. Aunt Diane 05/15/2012 at 3:45 pm #


  6. Lesley 05/15/2012 at 9:59 pm #

    Molly this is a great article!!! You are amazing, go Vivi Dot!

  7. Robin Wohlhueter 05/16/2012 at 6:42 am #

    Molly, this is fantastic! Well done.

  8. Jennifer 05/16/2012 at 9:29 am #

    This is fantastic Molly!!

  9. Suzanne 05/16/2012 at 9:58 pm #

    Cutest workspace ever! In the picture with drawer (third to last photo, if you count that one big collage as one pic) – are any of those buttons going to be made into jewelry and sold on Modcloth? I spot lots of neat prints in that photo!

    • Molly 05/17/2012 at 9:04 am #

      Thanks so much for your kind words and a great question Suzanne! The buttons in the drawer photo are actually necklaces just waiting for chains.

      I definitely hope you’ll be seeing a lot more from Vivi Dot on Modcloth in the future!

  10. Cheryl McLean 05/16/2012 at 10:15 pm #

    I am totally impressed with your VERY creative talents and products. Your mom, Pam, brought some of your work to book club, and I am now the proud owner of your magnet set of 6 which decorate my refrigerator. Many kudos Molly!!

  11. Alllyson Hayes 05/17/2012 at 8:09 am #

    Loves the tour, Molly. Your jewelry is as special as you are!!!


  12. maimes002 05/17/2012 at 9:45 am #

    you’re an inspiration!!

  13. Molly 05/17/2012 at 2:07 pm #

    This is so cool! I recommend making bottle cap necklaces. Always a favorite of mine but SO hard to find. I’ll be showing this to my marketing classmates!

    • Molly 05/18/2012 at 9:54 am #

      Thanks for the lovely comment Molly! I love seeing those bottle cap necklaces out and about. Everything that is 1-inch round always catches my eye! 🙂

  14. Julia 05/17/2012 at 2:25 pm #

    Uau!!! Me encantan tus creaciones. You are really talent!

  15. Mary Anne 05/17/2012 at 7:41 pm #

    I love the vintage toy refrigerator in the first photo!

  16. emoliay 05/17/2012 at 8:00 pm #

    love it all. please share where on earth you got the mini fridge……I love it! we had one, a life size one, at our family cottage growing up.

    • Molly 05/18/2012 at 9:56 am #

      I found the awesome toy fridge at a vintage store near my house in Seattle. The inside is even cuter with cartoon images of food lining the doors! I couldn’t pass is up.

  17. Melanie 05/18/2012 at 4:50 am #

    WOW….im soo impressed, you have inspired me to continue following my dreams. I love your everything that was shown! So creative thanks for sharing your style with US….

  18. lamakeupholic 05/18/2012 at 6:57 am #

    so creative and gorgeous!!

  19. Bunny 09/07/2012 at 11:06 pm #

    How on earth can I get my hands on those adorable miniature outfits? I’ve been searching for months! Can you give me a brand name, or anything more to go on? They’re so cute!

    • Molly 09/09/2012 at 9:37 am #

      None of the clothes have any branding on them. I thought I still had one of the boxes they came in, but I can’t find them anywhere. The dresser does say ‘re-ment’ so maybe start there? Good luck!

  20. Vivi 12/08/2012 at 4:57 pm #

    From a girl named Vivi, you totally have my style! Why did is the company named “VIVI Dot”?

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