by NICOLE MCPHEETERS
When Talia Halliday, owner of Gather, opened oak. in February 2020, the plant boutique was the culmination of a vision she had long held as a shop owner.
Halliday opened Gather in Fountain Square Mall in 2014, hoping to carry plants alongside the shop’s handmade products, but Gather’s location didn’t have windows.
“When Gather moved to the downtown Square and it had those big, wonderful, western-facing windows, I slowly started carrying more and more plants,” she says.
In 2019, Halliday realized that plants were her number one bestseller at Gather. Later that night, she dreamed that she opened a plant store called ‘oak.’. “And honestly,” she says, “that was that.”
From the beginning, oak. was designed to be aesthetically pleasing, Halliday says. “We’re a boutique. Which sounds so pretentious, but we are. We’re not a nursery.”
Not only is the shop covered from floor to ceiling in plants, but it also offers plant- themed items such as art, jewelry, stickers, and clothing. The shop also offers a selection of seeds, macrame, and—on the first Friday of each month—fresh flowers.
For those who are just embarking on their plant journey, oak. can help with that, too, Halliday says.
“Every one of our staff is able to help you find a house plant for your skill level and your home. And just geek out in general about plants,” she explains.
“It really is the best community,” Halliday says. “I cannot wait to start hosting events where we can all talk and plant swap.”
Halliday says she hopes to start collaborating with other local businesses, too.
“That’s my mojo,” she says. “That’s always what I’ve done with Gather and I’ve missed that opportunity with oak. because of the pandemic.”
Halliday also hopes that soon, she will be able to unveil the grand opening she had originally planned for oak.—safely. “It’s kind of super secret,” she says. “But also super cool.”
oak. is open noon to 6 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and noon to 4 p.m. on Sundays.