MINEOLA, TX (KLTV) - Melissa Brown and her mother Sophie Crowson opened Dragonfly Art in downtown Mineola twelve years ago.
Leaving the corporate world and moving to East Texas are decisions that neither has ever regretted.
"Mineola is a great, great place to be," they say.
Ironically, neither mother or daughter had a background in art, although Sophie always had puzzles spread out on tables when her children were growing up.
"Just putting everything together is like a puzzle, you know everything's going to fit in the long run, kind of like with life, every piece has a place for it," Sophie says.
It was life and its twists and turns that were more catalyst for Dragonfly Art than the urge to create.
In 1991, Sophie was misdiagnosed with lung cancer. When the diagnosis was corrected, their celebration of life began with the pairs Kindred Spirit figurines.
"They're mosaic, wooden base, glass frames, and then it's grouted," explains Sophie.
Hallelujah Ladies followed the Kindred Spirits and both have struck chords with customers.
"Each of the ladies has their own story, whether it's our story, something we're going through, or something the customer's going through, everyone has a different meaning," says Sophie.
Melissa and Sophie custom-make many of their creations to fit the persons receiving the art.
"Someone will buy it for themselves and take it home and go, you know what, I've got a girlfriend who's going through cancer or I've got a friend that just lost their mother or their brother or their spouse," says Sophie.
There's a wide range of art in the Dragonfly Art studio to fit just about everybody's taste and situation: Dragonfly mobiles, figurines, windows, wind chimes, and pet portraits, just to name a few items.
Even thought Melissa and Sophie get a great deal of joy from their customers reactions to their art, they insist that the very best part of their lives is working together.
"We have the benefit of being mother and daughter and the beauty of being best friends, they say. "There's not anything in the world that we can't conquer together."