CurTina Fields isn’t from here. The Orangeburg native moved here when her Mom went to work for the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office. She is a certified nursing assist and dental assistant, two jobs that help her show off her people-pleasing personality.
But she’s found a way to show off the many personalities of Blufftonians by reinvigorating a household item many of us give little thought to.
Fields took advantage of the COVID quarantine to focus on her crafting and decorating skills while caring for her three school-age boys (four if you count husband Morris).
“Hobby Lobby loves me, because I find a different décor for every mood,” said the budding small business owner. “We move the furniture around 10 to 15 times a year, I’m always redecorating, but we went into overdrive during COVID,” she said.
While cleaning off her front porch early in the pandemic, Fields noticed the house needed a new doormat. When she couldn’t find anything matched her energy, she decided to make one for herself.
“You go to the stores, it’s like the same four mats everywhere. I wanted something that showed off who I am, something fun, so I researched it and made a mat of my own,” Fields said. “Pretty soon, I had a lot of friends asking for one and then family – and we have a big family. So I realized I’m having fun with this, making people smile. This might actually be a business.”
In August 2020, Fields launched Sagi To Décor, a website that sells ecofriendly doormats with catchy sayings and custom messages. The name is a double entendre, meant to signify the type of business, but also to highlight her astrological sign.
“I’m a Sagittarius to the core, the name just popped into my head and stuck,” she said.
While the eco-conscious nature of her approach stands out, it’s the sayings on the doormats that have truly captivated folks online.
“I find many people saying, ‘It’s like you’re in my head.’ I say a lot of things on the mats that folks are a little too shy to say,” Fields said. “And now, the doormats say it for them, sets the tone before any visitors enter the house.”
Prepare for a PG-13 rated, laugh-inducing experience when you visit sagitodecor.com. The endless creativity on display had me cracking up and sending screenshots to my wife all afternoon.
Fields can do seasonal, like her “Hope you brought boos” or “The neighbors have better candy” designs. She can do poignant, like the “a cancer-beating survivor lives here” mat. She can do timely, like the best-selling “Welc-, wait, are you vaccinated?” eye-catcher.
“It’s all about what kind of personality you want to show off. I can and will put anything on a mat, and I have plenty of clients that want some cuss words,” she said. They are some of the funnier ones, too – a little too R-rated for a family newspaper.
She is constantly creating new stencil designs with her Cricut machine. All the work is done from her house – she sourced the coconut-based doormat material from overseas, taught herself website and graphic design for the layouts and for building her online presence.
“I’m always getting new phrases from folks on social media, wanting to see if it would make a good mat. I’m always jotting ideas in my notebook, so much that my hubby asks me to put it away,” she said. “If it’s trending, if there’s a new hot phraseology, it’s going on a mat.”
She is a pop-culture junkie and it shows in her creations, from her “Get Tah Steppin” tribute to the classic sitcom “Martin” to one of her current TV obsessions, “A ‘Manifest’ Fan Lives Here.”
“I didn’t start this as a business, but it’s just amazing the connections you can make with people just by tapping into one thing they love,” she said.
There’s “Hope You Like Casamigos,” a tribute to a favorite tequila – alcohol and food is a theme in many of the requests she receives.
Then there’s the catchy messages like “Check Ya Energy Before You Come in This House” and “Home: Where the Ho & Me Come Together.”
Bought a new home? How about “New Home, Who Dis?” Want to show off your pitbull as a cuddle bug? Fields can put color and pictures on any mat.
The possibilities are endless, and Fields has a tough time picking which ones she brings with her when selling the $30-$45 mats at the Bluffton Gullah Market or other local vendor events, like the upcoming Festival on Main in Hardeeville.
“It cracks me up when I get a 70-something eyeing the ‘Bless This Hizzle Fo Shizzle’ or the ‘Like a Good Neighbor, Stay Over There’ mats, like a teenager buying condoms at a pharmacy,” she said. “I just say, ‘Don’t be shy, it’s your house, say what you want to say.’”
Fields does simple as well – she has plenty of “Bluffton State of Mind” designs and counts her designs with the palmetto tree and crescent moon as her favorites.
The mats are hand-painted with an acrylic paint and sealed with a UV-resistant spray and a durable backing that stays put. She currently sells in three sizes, a standard 18×30, a small 16×24 and a 24×36 for double doors.
Since launching in August 2020, Fields has built a diehard local following. And, as tourists have seen her designs at pop-up markets, the Sagi movement has spread across the country.
“They’ll bring back the mat and all of a sudden, I have 20 orders from one neighborhood in Michigan. It’s awesome to see the fun spread,” she said. “We’re giving life to something we just stomp our dirty shoes all over, and people love that.”
Supplies is the only thing holding Fields back from growing more.
“I’d love to find a local company that can make these mats the way I want to present them. Everyone is having issues when you try to get things from overseas right now,” she said. “But the Amazon and the DHL guys, they love me. I keep them busy.”
Fields is getting ready for a big end of the year ahead, with plans for holiday sales and even more designs, like her multi-meaning, Christmas-themed “Come on in, we’re lit” mat. She is also expanding the empire, as she looks to add kitchen mats and possibly even wall signage to her collection.
“The next design is just waiting to happen. It’s just so exciting to know I had the courage to take this step, to put all of me out there,” she said. “And to see a brand building simply by showcasing every side of my life.”
Check out the full array of Fields’ designs on the web or on Instagram @sagi_to_decor.
Tim Wood is a veteran journalist based in Bluffton. firstname.lastname@example.org.