Posts Tagged “instagram”
This week, we had our first ever farm Instagram takeover with the lovely Sarah Pappas of Fresh Cut Detroit. Sarah took us on a two-day flower adventure, telling the story of her Detroit based farm, introducing us to her crew, and sharing her philosophy on sustainable farming practices. Sometimes it can be easy to forget all of the blood, sweat, tears and love that go into each beautiful flower you see in our buckets, so we can’t thank Sarah enough for using our platform to share her knowledge and spread some flower love (and during American Flowers month, nonetheless!)
Though we learned a ton during the takeover, we still had more questions, so continue reading to get to know even more about Sarah & Fresh Cut Detroit!
Hi Sarah! Thanks for taking the time to answer a few questions so our followers can get to know a little more about your farm after this week’s takeover! To start off, can you tell us a little bit about yourself, and how Fresh Cut Detroit came to be?
Hi Mayesh, thanks for letting me take over your IG feed! I’m Sarah Pappas, the farmer & founder of Fresh Cut Detroit, a flower farm in the city of Detroit. I’ve been doing farming & gardening work in some shape or form for over ten years. I’m a hardworking, fun loving, compassionate, ambitious farmer. I value a give-and-take relationship with my land, my crops, and my crew.
I’ve had a lucky, interesting life that’s given me a world of experiences in farming & gardening, education & empowerment, community living & loving. Fresh Cut Detroit Flower Farm is the product of these experiences plus the vibrant, pulsing moment of time & space that is the city of Detroit’s urban agriculture movement. I wouldn’t trade this space & time for any other in the world.
Tell us a little bit about your operation – where are you located and how big is your farm? A little virtual tour!
Fresh Cut is ¼ acre on a corner at the edge of the historic residential neighborhood of Woodbridge. We’re a couple miles northwest of downtown Detroit, a short walk from the campus of Wayne State University. You can see our hoophouse from a block away, and as you approach you start to see the bright colors of the annuals in the west beds. Our farm dog Ruti will bark at you as you walk along the fence, under the big elm tree that keeps our house cool, and to the east beds where our earliest self-seeded annuals & biennials are planted. The east beds cozy up to a wild woodlot area where we forage crops like motherwort, dame’s rocket, and wild sweet peas.
Do you have a team helping you out at Fresh Cut Detroit?
I have a lot of people helping at the farm, thank goddess. This year, on our crew we have an assistant manager, a design/delivery person, 2 farm crew members, and 2 youth crew members. Detroit has a historic, thriving Urban Agriculture community and my skilled labor is hired from this pool of local people. My crew members have completed agricultural training programs through Earthworks Urban Farm, Detroit Black Community Food Security Farm, and Keep Growing Detroit, and volunteered at the Student Organic Farm at MSU.
While growing flowers and owning a small farm sounds like a fairy tale job to many, I’m sure not everyday is as glamorous as it appears! It’s hard work, but probably very rewarding as well. What gets you out of bed every morning and inspires you to keep going everyday?
You’re right, it’s absolutely not glamorous every minute, but a cute apron and big earrings can do a lot for this farmer’s outlook on the world.
Early in the morning, I love the special feeling of reviewing the field before a harvest. I feel proud of the beautiful array in front of me that I’ve helped bring into the world. What inspires me to keep going is my crew and my community. I’ve created something that other people care about, and that gets them paid and builds on their skills & interests. It’s a demanding, but such a compelling and rewarding life to be a flower farmer & small business owner.
How many flower varieties are you growing at any given moment?
About 200 varieties are growing at any given moment on the farm… we like to keep it diverse! We’re playing more and more each season with complimentary co-plantings to maximize our bed space – millet & sunflower, peony & centaurea, motherwort & monarda.
Here’s a toughie, but you knew it was coming! What is your favorite flower to grow? How about to design with, if different?
I’ve been a true blue #1 fan of snapdragons since I was a little kid. I remember my grandma showing me how they open their mouths to ROAR when you pinch the blossoms… plus, they’re great for planting multiple successions to keep them blooming all season long. They’re my favorite to grow, in that they’re totally indispensable.
As for my favorite flower for designing, since I make so many bouquets in-hand, having a good branchy base to start with is paramount. These days, having a nice strong Salvia ‘Cardonna’ to start with helps a bouquet come together quickly.
Tell us a little bit about your weekly bouquet service… it seems like a great way for you to get to flex your creative design muscles and get to play with all of your gorgeous blooms!
The weekly customers are the heart & soul of the business. Their support through 20 weeks of bouquet subscriptions gave us the foundation to establish a weekly harvest, design, & sales cycle even when we were starting out. Some have been with me for years, and their flower knowledge & design eye is off the charts. From each week’s harvest, we play, and each bouquet gets a flavor of its own – hot mamas, big sprawling clouds of grasses, cool delicate posies… It’s so fun!
When we interviewed Michael over at Summer Dreams Farm, he told us a little bit about the flower farming scene in Michigan. It really seems to be a great community with lots of local growers popping up! Can you tell us a little more about what’s going on in the world of flowers in Michigan?
Absolutely. The Michigan Cut Flower Growers Coop has just begun, and it’s already cooking. The market runs every Wednesday morning out of Passionflower Sue’s studio in Ann Arbor. Cut flowers are a powerful, lucrative agricultural product and I’d love to see them continue to grow in prominence in the state of Michigan’s agricultural profile. In the near future, I see even more growth in partnerships between rural & urban growers.
Supporting local growers and educating people about what you have to offer is so important, and these days it seems like awareness is really spreading! Tell us a little bit about your experience and/or involvement with the American flower farming community.
My path to the American flower farming community ran its way through diverse organic vegetable production farms. These farms are run out of passion, love, and a commitment to cultivating beauty & diversity that serves the innate strength & interdependent web of which we are a part.
Thanks so much for taking the time to answer some questions about your farm! One final question – is there any advice you would go back and tell yourself when you first started Fresh Cut Detroit, or that you would give to farmers just starting out?
Always value your time! Pay yourself. If you’re in a business or farming arrangement where you’re being paid less than ideal, identify how you’re building equity & savings for your future self to cash in on when you’re ready to move forward. Invest in yourself through professional development, and take care of your body with good health, sleep, nutrition, and relaxation.
Professional photos by Emily Berger
You may have noticed that our Instagram feed was on POINT over the past two days, and it’s all thanks to Ashley & Liz who filled it with stunning images from their recent Sentient workshop! They were sweet enough to answer a few questions for us about their working relationship, love of flowers, and the workshop itself! So let’s get to know Ashley (@parkfloraldesign) and Liz (@silohfloral) a bit better, shall we?
First of all, congratulations on what looked like a successful (and gorgeous) workshop! Can you first tell us a bit about each of yourselves, and how this all came to be?
Liz: I have been designing flowers for the past 6 years, working under and learning from two different designers and then I finally took the plunge and started my own company in November 2015. I have always known that I need to work and create with my hands. Flowers make me imagine and wonder, which is something I never want to lose. I spend my time (and money, let’s be honest) exploring the world and eating and cooking good meals. I’m a wine and whiskey lover and a sucker for a good old-fashioned.
Ashley: I have been working in the wedding industry for nearly 10 years but have spent the last 4 focusing on floral design and have found my calling there! I am a mom of two, wifey of one and a mama to four chickens and one pup. We recently moved to a new (old!) little bungalow in Denver and now I just dream of running an urban farm and garden.
We met a few years back when we were working together at another florist’s studio. After that we have each continued to build our own businesses, but honestly, we are floral soulmates and are constantly working together and bouncing ideas back and forth.
Have the two of you collaborated in the past, or was this your first experience doing something like this together?
Oh yes! We joke that this is “the family biz” – we get to work together constantly. When we were first working together a few summers ago we bonded over our love of 90’s hip hop and R&B and it was instant fireworks! Working together is so seamless for us and we have a very similar aesthetic and approach to floral design. It is so natural and easy not only to design together, but also to teach side by side. This was our first group floral workshop that we have hosted and we’re already scheming up round two!
We’re a huge fan of floral workshops and the invaluable education that comes with hands-on learning in an intimate setting. I love that you designed this workshop around four art principles & concepts; can you explain what those are and why you chose them?
Floral design is truly an art form to us. We work with a medium that is constantly changing and evolving, but that is exactly the reason that we love it. Florals are different than so many art forms, such as painting, photography, or sculpture, because we are working with things that are alive and also temporary. That is part of the magic though – it is this fleeting beauty that you get to create and behold just for a period of time.
Since we have such a similar approach to design, we found it was helpful to teach in a way that other creative minds could understand. Color, shape, movement and contrast were the four principles we focused on during Sentient. These principles dictate how we create conceptualize and design each floral arrangement. The palette is the foundation for our designs and where we love to spend the most time becuase it completely sets the tone for the entire creation. Shape is all about establishing a mood and giving an arrangement character and personality, while movement is about evoking a feeling in the design and letting the eye travel through the floral piece. We love to use some contrast as we work with flowers to help make things “pop” and add more visual interest.
What was your favorite part or moment of the weekend?
The second night of the workshop, we hosted a private dinner catered by The Fond Life (@thefondlife) at Ashley’s home. It was such an intimate and special time to get to know each of the attendees and bond over incredible food! We would also say watching the group come together for the installation design was so exciting and rewarding.
Let’s get to the good stuff – the flowers! It must be a dream to get to choose all the flowers for something like this, when you have no limits or restrictions from a client! Tell us a bit about your thought process behind your floral recipes for the different pieces you created.
THE FLOWERS – cue lots of squeals! We had such amazing product to work with for the workshop! Spring is one of our favorite seasons for flowers and we wanted to honor the season in each of our designs. We really believe that each design should be an artistic and dynamic expression, which means incorporating both light and dark tones, large focal blooms and soft, small spring blossoms, and lots of textural elements. We had a beautiful range of purple, mauve, sandy brown, peach, cream and white. We always want someone that is viewing an arrangement to be able to enjoy the visual journey so we are thoughtful about the way color moves across an arrangement.
Do you have any plans to host more workshops in the future?
We do! We had such a blast hosting and teaching the Sentient workshop that we are planning to do another in the fall. Fall florals offer a completely different palette and mood and we can’t wait to have another opportunity to teach other designers. Stay tuned!
And lastly, what would you say to designers that are interested in taking a workshop but are trying to decide if it’s worth the investment?
Workshops are a big investment and one to be taken seriously. We believe that becuase floral design is truly an art form, that as designers, we need to constantly be inspired, moved, and learning more about this medium of art. The goal is that each attendee walks away not only with some beautiful images for their portfolio, but also with a renewed sense of energy, inspiration, and confidence in their work. And, of course, the sense of community and support that is built between all the designers cannot be beat!
For more workshop goodness, head on over to our Instagram to see the rest of the images!
I have to admit, I think this was one of my favorite Instagram Challenges! It’s always so hard to throwaway the leftover blooms that didn’t make it into the bouquet, so what better way to repurpose those flowers and have a little fun! We loved all of the posts, but these were our favorites throughout the two week challenge. Congrats to the winners, and stay tuned for the next! If you have any fun ideas for Instagram challenges, let us know!
Winners – if you haven’t already, please use our Contact Us page to send us your full name & mailing address so we can send you your Mayesh apron!
This week the dynamic duo of Everything Beautiful OKC hijacked our Instagram feed & filled it with two days of floral goodness! Owner & founder Heather Hayes took some time to answer a few questions so we could get to know a little bit more about this Oklahoma City based floral design company. Enjoy!
I know you talked a little bit about how Everything Beautiful came to be during the takeover, but can you elaborate on your story a bit for us?
For sure! I’ve always treasured the notion of owning a floral shop, but bypassed it as being unviable. In college that reverie grew when I discovered Birdie Blooms. Katie, owner of Birdie Blooms, had a shop on campus corner in Norman, Oklahoma and it was kind of like my safe haven. Something inside me would come alive every time I stopped by on my way to class. In the fall of 2014 I was fervently looking forward to graduation (with a BA in English-Writing of all things) when my sweet friend Koby asked if I would be willing to do the flowers for her wedding and I agreed before I could talk myself out of it! It was single handedly the best yet most terrifying experience. I had the honor of working with Koby + Eric’s photographer, Magnolia Adam’s who had established a reputable brand and from there it was really an ambition advancing. I always jest that Everything Beautiful found me, not the other way around.
Tell us a bit about working with Jodi, and how the two of you collaborate & work together when it comes to vision & aesthetic?
I’m ecstatic about Jodi being a part of Everything Beautiful! Jodi has contributed to Everything Beautiful for over a year but formally became the first assistant designer to our growing team in March. In part, I think we’re still figuring out our dynamic, but she is keenly intuitive with the personality // style of Everything Beautiful. Jodi is the archetype of integrity and diligence. Usually, we will meet over coffee the week of an event and review aesthetic // vision // schedule // etc. From there, I trust that she will execute each project delegated to her with excellence.
I know this is such a cliché question, but I always LOVE the different words & phrases people come up with when they answer it! So get your creative juices flowing 😉 how would you describe Everything Beautiful’s style?
Haha // No, I love it! The word whimsical appears a lot in our style. I arbitrarily started identifying arrangements by Dr. Seuss characters one afternoon. Ultimately, we aim to fulfill the style of our bride, but have a pretty candid awareness whether or not we will be a good fit for a bride. We gravitate toward style that tells a story, utilizes movement, and sparks that feeling of magic.
I’m always so fascinated by learning about the floral industry and creative community in general in different regions & cities. What is it like for you as a floral designer & small business owner in OKC?
Honestly, competitive + supportive. I think people hear the word competitive and think it’s a negative quality, but I think it can be inspiring. I feel like Everything Beautiful was set up for success from the very beginning and I am tremendously grateful. Let me clarify, it has been a process of acquiring knowledge, trying innovative concepts, and asking countless questions along the way. I was fortunate to work with and learn from brilliant designers // photographers from the beginning and I understand the significance of having those opportunities. Overall, the local community in OKC is ridiculously talented and supportive of one another. As a floral designer, living in a land locked state can be challenging, but that’s where Mayesh has been valuable- allowing us the opportunity to order blooms we wouldn’t be able to grow locally. There are definitely objectives to learn and progress to be made, but I think that is universal. We are progressively cultivating a community that is collaborative and growing takes time.
We know the natural, garden style is here to stay (thank goodness!) but are there any other specific trends you see happening now or in the near future for flowers?
Oh wow, that’s a tough call. My equivocal answer would be I think we will see a lot more designers thinking outside of the box when it comes to floral and utilizing it in innovative ways. For instance, elaborate wall installations, storefront designs, and fellas rockin’ floral pieces. Why not?
Let’s talk tools – favorite florist tool, and favorite app you use in your business, but it social media or business organization? Instagram counts, but if there’s anything else you’re using we’d love to hear about it!
I have shears stashed just about everywhere, but for design I really love the structure chicken wire creates. Business wise, I am old school. I still do everything by Xero and Google Drive // I know, I know… // I might be slightly crazy. Adaptive Creative does all of our branding and I’m really proud of how well they represent our character!
What is your favorite or most memorable event or shoot you’ve been a part of?
I recently drove to California for a 1:1 session with Siren Floral Co. I mentioned it in a few of the Insta posts but it really was a game changer! I learned several techniques regarding composition, depth, color theory, and movement. Being a land locked state, it’s easy to envy coastal wholesale markets, ranunculus the size of your face, and the ability to tangibly lay everything out and see it before taking it. The whole trip was a dream!
What is one piece of advice you’d like to go back and tell yourselves during your first year as a floral designer?
Looking back, I would tell myself to extend my vision. To think beyond what I thought was possible. To push boundaries and ask hard questions that are not necessarily hard just courageous because you’re asking for what you want. And sometimes it will not work and that is okay. Don’t overthink it. Follow your instinct. // For the love, stop comparing. // Work hard. Stay humble. You’ve got this!
Whether you have some leftover flowers laying around after last week’s wedding, or you just love flower styling as much as we do, it’s time to take a break from whatever you’re designing and have some fun!
April 1 through April 14, 2017, you can share your floral flatlay designs by tagging us, @MayeshWholesale, and using the hashtag #MayeshFloralFlatlay for a chance to win. We’ll choose weekly winners to receive a Mayesh apron and be featured on our Instagram page! Have fun, be creative, and good luck!
P.S. Be sure to review the rules below. A few details to point out: you can submit up to 10 pictures per entry period; if selected as a winner you have 24 hours to get us your address to receive your apron.
Void outside the 50 United States, District of Columbia and where prohibited. Do not proceed to enter if you are not at least 18 years of age, a legal resident of, and located within, one of the 50 United States, or the District of Columbia and have a web-enabled mobile device, wireless service plan and the Instagram application at the time of entry. By participating, you agree to be bound by these Official Rules and the decisions of the Sponsor, which are binding and final in all matters relating to this contest. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Instagram. By entering this contest, you understand that you are providing your information to sponsor and not to Instagram.
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. A PURCHASE WILL NOT INCREASE YOUR ABILITY TO WIN.
CONTEST PERIOD: The Mayesh Wholesale Floral Flatlay Challenge (“Contest”) begins at 12:01 a.m. Central Time (“ET”) on 4/1/17 and ends at 11:59 p.m. ET on 4/14/17 (“Contest Period”). The Contest Period will be divided two (2) weekly entry periods (each, an “Entry Period”), as detailed below:
Entry Period 1: Begins 12:01 a.m. ET on 4/1/2017 and ends 11:59 p.m. ET on 4/7/2017.
Entry Period 2: Begins 12:01 a.m. ET on 4/8/2017 and ends 11:59 p.m. ET on 4/14/2017.
SPONSOR: Mayesh Wholesale Florist, 5401 W 104th Street, Los Angeles, CA (“Sponsor”).
HOW TO ENTER: During the Contest Period, using your web-enabled mobile device, launch the Instagram Application and follow Mayesh Wholesale Florist on Instagram. You can search “mayeshwholesale” in the Instagram application or visithttps://instagram.com/mayeshwholesale/ in an internet browser to locate and follow@mayeshwholesale. Then, using your mobile device, capture and upload to Instagram one (1) photo that shows off your flowers in a flatlay design, and include the hashtag #MayeshFloralFlatlay, along with tagging @MayeshWholesale to receive one (1) entry (“Entry”) into the applicable Entry Period. There is no cost to enter. Entries generated by script, macro or other automated means or practices, or by any means which subvert the entry process will be void. All Entries must be received by the end dates and times above to be eligible for the applicable Entry Period. An Instagram account is required to enter this Contest and is available for free at https://instagram.com/.
Note: You must have a wireless service plan for your web-enabled mobile device with your wireless service provider and a device that supports the Instagram application to enter this Contest. Data rates may apply. See your wireless service provider for pricing plan details and capabilities.
ENTRY REQUIREMENTS: Entries may not contain, as determined by the Sponsor, in its sole discretion, any content that:
• is sexually explicit or suggestive; unnecessarily violent or derogatory of any ethnic, racial, gender, religious, professional or age group; profane or pornographic; contains nudity;
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• contains trademarks, logos, or trade dress (such as distinctive packaging or building exteriors/interiors) owned by others, except for Mayesh Wholesale Florist elements which may only be used for this Contest in accordance with these Official Rules);
• contains any personal identification, such as personal names or e-mail addresses;
• contains copyrighted materials owned by others (including photographs,sculptures, paintings, and other works of art or images published on or in websites, television, movies or other media), except for Mayesh Wholesale Florist elements which may only be used for this Contest in accordance with these Official Rules);
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• contains any individual other than the entrant, without permission;
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• violates any law.
Entry must be the original work of the entrant, may not have been previously published, may not have won previous awards, and must not infringe upon the copyrights, trademarks, rights of privacy, publicity or other intellectual property or other rights of any person or entity. If the Entry contains any material or elements that are not owned by the entrant, and/or which are subject to the rights of third parties, the entrant is responsible for obtaining, prior to submission of the Entry, any and all releases and consents necessary to permit the use and exhibition of the Entry by Sponsor in the manner set forth in these Official Rules, including, without limitation, name and likeness permissions from any person who appears in or is identifiable in the Entry. Sponsor reserves the right to request proof of these permissions in a form acceptable to Sponsor from any entrant at any time. Failure to provide such proof may, if requested, render Entry null and void. By submitting an Entry, entrant warrants and represents that he/she and any persons appearing or who are identifiable in the Entry consent to the submission and use of the Entry in the Contest and to its use as otherwise set forth herein.
By submitting an Entry, entrant acknowledges and agrees that Sponsor may obtain many Entries in connection with this Contest and/or other promotions staged and/or promoted by the Sponsor, and that such Entries may be similar or identical in theme, idea, format or other respects to other Entries submitted in connection with this Contest and/or other promotions sponsored by the Sponsor or submitted for other reasons or other materials developed by the Sponsor. Entrant waives any and all claims entrant may have had, may have, and/or may have in the future, that any Entry and/or other works accepted, reviewed and/or used by the entrant may be similar to his/her Entry, or that any compensation is due to entrant in connection with such Entry or other works used by Sponsor.
By submitting an Entry, entrant hereby grants permission for the Entry to be posted on Mayesh Wholesale Florist’s Instagram (https://instagram.com/mayeshwholesale/OR @mayeshwholesale) or other Sponsor websites or social media pages. Entrant agrees that Released Parties (as defined below) are not responsible for any unauthorized use of Entries by third parties. Released Parties do not guarantee the posting of any Entry and reserve the right to remove any posted Entry for any reason and at any time.
By submitting your Entry, you agree that your Entry conforms to these Official Rules and that Sponsor, in its sole discretion, may disqualify your Entry for any reason, including if it determines, in its sole discretion, that your Entry fails to conform to these Official Rules in any way or otherwise contains unacceptable content as determined by Sponsor, in its sole discretion.
LIMIT: Ten (10) Entries per person and per Instagram username per Entry Period. Entries received from any person, Instagram username in excess of the stated limitation will be void. You may only use one (1) Instagram username to enter this Contest.
ELIGIBILITY: This Contest is open to legal residents of the 50 United States and the District of Columbia, 18 years of age or older, who have a web-enabled mobile device, wireless service plan and the Instagram application at time of entry. Employees of Sponsor and any other organizations affiliated with the sponsorship, fulfillment, administration, prize support, advertisement or promotion of the Contest and each of their respective parents, agents, affiliates, subsidiaries, and advertising and promotion agencies, and their immediate family members (regardless of where they reside) or household members, whether or not related, are not eligible to enter or win. “Immediate family members” shall mean spouses, parents, step-parents, children, step-children, siblings, step-siblings, and their respective spouses. “Household members” shall mean people who share the same residence at least three months a year.
WINNER DETERMINATION: Weekly Winners: Within three (3) business days of the end of each Entry Period, all eligible Entries received by Sponsor for the applicable Entry Period will be judged by a panel of Mayesh judges.
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PRIZES (2): WEEKLY WINNER PRIZES (2 total, 1 per Entry Period): A Mayesh apron; Approximate Retail Value (“ARV”): $5.00.
Prizes are awarded “as is” with no warranty or guarantee, either express or implied by Sponsor. Winners may not substitute, assign or transfer a prize or redeem prize for cash, but Sponsor reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to substitute a prize (or portion thereof) with one of comparable or greater value. Winners are responsible for all applicable federal, state and local taxes, if any, as well as any other costs and expenses associated with prize acceptance and use not specified herein as being provided. The awarding of the prize is contingent upon full compliance with these Official Rules. All prize details are at Sponsor’s sole discretion.
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RELEASES: By participating in this Contest, entrants agree to release Sponsor, Instagram and any other organizations affiliated with the sponsorship, fulfillment, administration, prize support, advertisement or promotion of the Contest and each of their respective parents, agents, affiliates, subsidiaries, advertising and promotion agencies, and prize suppliers, and each of their respective officers, directors, agents, representatives and employees, as well as each of their respective successors, representatives and assigns (collectively, the “Released Parties”) from any and all actions, claims, injury, loss or damage arising in any manner, in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, from participation in this Contest and/or acceptance, use or misuse of any prizes (or portion thereof).
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Except where prohibited by law, entry constitutes permission to use each entrant’s name, hometown (city and state), voice, biographical information, likeness, photograph and any statements regarding this Contest in all media now known or hereafter discovered, for any purpose, including without limitation, in connection with, and to promote, market or advertise, the Contest, in whole or in part, without review, approval, credit or attribution, notification or payment from or to entrant or any person or entity, worldwide, in perpetuity, or on a winner’s list, if applicable. Contest is subject to all applicable U. S. federal, state and local laws and regulations. Winners may be issued an IRS 1099 tax form in the amount of the prize retail value as stated herein.
Ahh, Instagram. It’s the fun app to share silly photos with friends turned Social Media Marketing powerhouse. Instagram has now become arguably the most important app for creatives to showcase their work and help drive business in today’s online driven world. For a bride, it’s not only a quick way to see a photographer or floral designer’s portfolio, but it may be your first and only chance to woo her with your perfectly curated Instagram feed, a glance into what her perfectly curated wedding day could look like.
Though Instagram and other social media apps come second nature to some, for others, it can be totally overwhelming and a huge cause of stress. But guess what? It doesn’t have to be.
Kelly Perry, founder of both Team Flower & Philosophy Flowers, has a unique perspective on Instagram and how to go about using it to your benefit. In a few short weeks we’ll be sitting down with her for a Live Chat, and before we do, we want to hear from you!
So tell us, what are your biggest struggles with Instagram?
Kelly is also great at the visual aspect, so if you struggle with your feed, feel free to take a screen shot, send it to us, and you just might see your feed pop up during the chat, during which Kelly will openly discuss and give constructive criticism on ways to improve it.
You can use the comment box below, or send any screenshots, questions or concerns you’d love to hear during our chat to email@example.com.
Wednesday April 12th @ 4PM EST
You may have noticed that over the past two days we handed our Instagram feed over to the lovely Sarah Watts of Sarah’s Garden in Arizona (and if you didn’t see that, get yourself on Instagram and follow us!) It was a burst of warmth & color, which was much appreciated for those of us living in freezing winter temperatures! And now, a little bit more about the lovely Sarah:
To start, why don’t you tell us a bit about yourself, and how you found yourself in the flower industry.
I am a Nordic gal (Minnesotan Norwegian) living in the Arizona desert with my sweet husband, teenage stepson and 2 little dog fur babies. I was recruited into the flower industry by my best friend’s mom in 1996 (20 years ago) to help manage in her newly purchased flower shop in Minnesota. Her cousin was our lead designer, a 30 year maverick designer and taught us the ropes. My bestie and I then acquired the business and ran it for almost 2 years. What a ride!
I saw that you have studied both art & interior design – I, too, have a background in interior design! Can you elaborate on that, and how it all comes into play as a floral & event designer?
Nice! One of the first useful things I learned in interior design was to use a “keyoff” – an inspiration piece to draw your palette and materials from. It can be anything really. I like to look to the Arizona desert for inspiration to bring the outside environment in the design. When taking art classes, I learned to pay attention to the negative space also and to start light and then layer in if need be. Also, that critique can be very evolutionary and eye opening if you get your ego out of the way.
You have quite a bit of experience with many aspects of planning a wedding. What do you most enjoy about doing weddings (flowers & full event planning) & working with brides?
My heart is fullest when I know that our creations added to the beauty and meaningful experience of a wedding day. We ask LOTS of questions, including what their hobbies are, where they’ve traveled, how they decorate. We want their wedding to feel very personal and comfortable. I love that my couples trust that we “get” what they want and we always aim to exceed their expectations.
How would you describe your design style?
Deconstructed English Garden. LOL! I think I just made that up! My husband is first generation American from English immigrants and I am so inspired by their customs and decorum. But I’m a bit of a rebel, so I design with deconstruction and like to break the rules a bit. I don’t like to create completely round and structured designs.
What trends do you see happening in flowers right now?
Airy, light, free form. Natural, not too manipulated. Focus on foliage. Each bloom shows it’s beautiful face.
Let’s talk tools. Favorite florist tool, and favorite social media app you use in your business? Instagram is obviously a industry favorite, but we’d love to know if you’re using anything else!
My ARS pocket shears are totally amazing, they are crazy sharp! For social media, Instagram all the way!!! I love the community and the format. I also use Lobiloo, Honeybook, and Quickbooks to stay organized with orders, client management, and the always fun, bookkeeping, lol!
What is your favorite or most memorable event or shoot you have been apart of?
My friends Brushfire Photography, KDP Events and I did a shoot on top of Mount Lemmon in Tucson on a stormy day and the images came back so ethereal and amazing. I styled the whole shoot, but kept floral minimal by only creating a bridal bouquet. It was inspired by the desert mountain cliffs and was very unique.
What is one piece of advice you’d like to go back and tell yourself during your first year of designing?
To not say “yes” to everything. Building my business, I thought I had to take every inquiry that came my way. No regrets now though, because I feel like I learned so much from key mistakes I made. I didn’t even think about developing a solid style and brand until about 2 years in. Now, I attract clients that want my specific style and I make sure that they are just as good as a fit for us than we are for them. After executing over 300 weddings in 5 years, I follow my intuition and if my gut says they may not be our ideal client, I pass graciously. I fully understand we can’t make everyone happy and I want all of my energy to go into blowing the minds of our ideal clients.
See more beautiful designs on Sarah’s Instagram!
If you didn’t catch last week’s Instagram takeover with Team Flower, you’re gonna want to head over to check it out! But first, continue reading to find out more about the woman behind the flowers. She’s oh so adorable and brings a fresh perspective to the table with her passion for education and beautiful designs.
So to start out, why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself, and how you found yourself in the flower industry!
I live in the Blue Ridge Mountains with my techie husband Jesse and our little golden-doodle Buster. Here is a little iPhone snap of where we live!
I’ve always loved design, but thought I would apply the principles through home interiors. I started my secondary education in Interior Design + Business. When the housing market crashed in 2008, my dad suggested I diversify. I moved credits around to make room for education classes and graduated a licensed teacher. Flowers were not on the radar at the time, but thankfully, both the design and education skills transferred beautifully when I discovered flowers. My first meeting with flowers changed my life, as I know they have for so many of you.
How would you describe your design aesthetic?
Classic. The principles that guide my arrangements are as old as the dirt flowers grow in! Balance, movement, rest and love. This arrangement shot by Mark Andrews is one of my favorites.
You seem to be very passionate about education, hence the creation of Team Flower. Can you tell us a bit more about that, and why you separated Philosophy Flowers & Team Flower?
I love education, but what I’m really passionate about is bringing people who love flowers together. Magic happens there! Education is one way to do that, and with my skill set, a natural fit. Will I always teach? Surely, in some way, but this is just the beginning! As I catch glimpses of the dream and what it will become I can’t help but think it will take on many shapes and sizes throughout my life and look different when I’m a grandma. But I do know I’ll always find myself in the company of “the flower people.”
As to why I split @philosophyflowers and @teamflower on instagram — Each company serves a different group of people, so I develop content to meet each where they are and encourage them. Philosophy Flowers is peaceful and Team Flower packs a playful punch.
What is your favorite part about teaching workshops & educating fellow designers?
I just love being with people. The cotton candy is fun too, haha! I love this snap of Janny, Michelle and I from last year’s workshop. Thanks Jake + Heather!
Let’s talk tools. Favorite florist tool, and favorite social media app you use in your business? Instagram is obviously everyone’s fave, but we’d love to know if you’re using anything else!
My favorite florist-y tool — Joyce Chen Clips. Marcie Meredith snapped the picture of them above. I must have 40 pairs floating around. Some people put keys on the entry tables by their doors, but I’ve got clippers there. My keys might be missing, but I’ll always have clips!
Favorite social media app — The best app on my phone, even better than Instagram, is called “Breathing Zone.” Learning to breath has saved my body and in turn, my business. Lots of flower folks run on adrenaline…and I used to be one of them…but my body gave way and I was close to quitting because of it. If you’re in a similar position I highly recommend it.
What trends do you see happening in flowers right now, or in the near future?
I just returned from the Association of Specialty Cut Flower Grower’s conference in Grand Rapids. I loved meeting America’s growers, and believe we’ll see more and more American grown product stocking the wholesale coolers next year. Wait until you see all the great things they are bringing to the table!
What is one piece of advice you’d like to go back and tell yourself during your first year of designing?
“Kelly, wear your hair in a fancy ballerina bun on top of your head. It’s simple and it suits you.” I know, silly example, but really, each thing that came to mind was linked by these three beautiful words — keep it simple. Simplicity is like a kiss of kindness. Wishing you a life filled with ballerina bun kind of moments. Thanks for reading!
Photos: Almond Leaf and Jake and Heather
We’re halfway through our #MayeshFrighteningFlorals Instagram contest, and loving all your spooky designs! From incorporating skulls to dark & haunting arrangements, you guys are KILLING it! (see what I did there?)
Keep on posting your frightening designs as we have one more week left in the contest!