Archive For The “Events” Category

NeoFlora: What Does a Sushi Chef, Rock Star, and a Florist have in Common?

Blogger: Sabrina Mesa

 

Question: What do a sushi chef, Paul McCartney and my mom have in common? Let’s look at these people individually.

 

Sushi chefs spend years perfecting the art of combining and grading ingredients both raw and cooked in a multitude of combinations and variations. They use tools such as sharp knives to cut intricate designs for displays on plates or wooden sushi boats. Many sushi restaurants have the sushi chef right in plain view of a bar area where patrons can watch them create these delicious meals.

 

Paul McCartney is a musical icon whose many achievements began when we was part of the Fab Four (The Beatles of course!), then with his wife and band mates in the group Wings and continues today with an amazing solo career that spans over 30 years. He has released countless albums and hit singles. He sells out concerts on almost every continent.

 

Iris Mesa (also known as my mom) she has been designing flowers for a local flower shop here in Tucson, Arizona for over 12 years. She has designed countless weddings, large corporate and government events. I am pretty sure she can make a corsage in her sleep. Her arrangements sit in mansions, apartments, houses, hospitals, gravesides and offices all over town. She takes classes and reads trade magazines to keep up her craft.

So what is the common thread these 3 individuals share? They are artists and their art last only minutes, hours or days. I love sushi so I know that it does not take an hour to eat a great roll. I have been to a Paul McCartney concert so I know that they do not last forever (as much as I wanted it to), after a few hours the show ends and the music stops. I worked with my mom for 10 of the 12 years she has been designing so I know that her clients do not receive arrangements that last forever (even silks need to refreshed and refurbished eventually.) Making sushi, performing music and designing a floral arrangement takes talent and skill; those skills are harnessed after years of practice.

They are all rock stars in their own right and the public enjoys the fruits of their labor. Out of the three only two perform in front of a crowd. My mom, like most florists, spend most of her design time in the backroom of a shop. Everything is created away from the public and only viewed once it is complete. Not to say there has not been times where clients have asked to take a peek behind the scenes or she has come up to the front counter to ask a question or finish a vase with perhaps a bow. Other than that, she really does not spend a lot of time upfront.

 

 

This brings me to what I believe was Hitomi Gilliam’s vision during her one week only pop up store in Vancouver, Canada.Flower designers are artists and rock stars! Why should they be confined to the back room? The public needs to see how talented floral designers are and all the work that they do behind closed doors. Why their talent is valuable and why purchasing from a local flower shop should be always top of mind. Not everyone can put together a beautiful hand-tied bouquet that when placed in a vase falls in all the right places and stays perfectly round. You (designers) are MacGyver’s! You can take wire, tape, sticks, flowers and almost anything else and create art. That art conveys emotions for people who just cannot find the right words to express how they feel.

 

Over the course of a year, Hitomi assembled a group of rock stars who worked hours on end at this pop-up flower shop. It was a combination flower shop, art exhibit and fashion show stage. It was incredible. Every day the shop evolved. It was a collaborative effort all around. Hitomi had a vision and the rest she left up to women and men who live and breathe this industry. The excitement was palpable and very contagious. It did not take long for my friend and co-worker, Jenn McJunkins and me to be swept up in the excitement. We wanted to be a part of what was happening. We helped sweep, clean flowers, wrap orchid plants and even talk to customers. The environment was such a positive one that I do not think I heard a single negative thing come out of anyone (unless it had to do with the cold weather outside hahaha.) Even at the end of their long days the crew was still smiling and laughing and excited for what the new day would bring. The NeoFlora team took us in and made us feel like we were part of the amazing event unfolding before our very eyes. To say we were sad to leave after the shop was only open 1 day would be an understatement.

 

Over the course of the week that followed, Hitomi and her rock stars performed for people young and old. They adorned men and women in haute couture style designs and costumes, inspired other designers to think outside the backroom and informed people on what being a florist is all about. My favorite pictures from that week were the pictures of the children learning and designing. It is these young ones that will grow up to appreciate their florist and will turn to them when they need flowers.

NeoFlora may have only been open for 1 week but I am sure they left a huge impression on the city. People will remember the week when flowers took over 1200 Robson St Vancouver, BC Canada.

If you would like to learn more about NeoFlora check out our interview with Hitomi here and our video recap here.

 

 

Here is a list of the amazing designers who contributed to an amazing week:

Dawn Block CFD, Gloria Cheung (The Flower Factory), Bronia DePedrina, Aniko Kovacs CFD (Garlands Florists), Susanne Law AIFD, Diane Levings CFD (Full Blooms Flowers), Alexis MacLeod AIFD (Simply Perfect Flowers), Stephanie Lee (Balconi Flowers), Yukari Mitsui AIFD, Sharrai Morgan AIFD (Holly’s Fine Flowers), Ania Norwood AIFD, Lottie Nys AIFD, Kim Oldis AIFD, Poppy Parson CFD (Smart Flowers), Cindy Pham, Brenna Quan, Lisa Russo, Kyo Sada (Zwada Home), Arthur Williams CFD (Babylon Floral Designs), Demi Wu, Don Zwaryk (Zwada Home) and, of course,  Hitomi Gilliam AIFD.

 

 

 

NeoFlora Video: Hitomi Gilliam AIFD

Here’s our video of Hitomi Gilliam AIFD speaking to the first floral fashion show audience, which attendees were industry only, about NeoFlora and thanking all of the sponsors, members and designers that made NeoFlora’s inaugural event possible.

The new generation of floristry was truly reflected in this great event!

 

Save the Date: Wholesale Florist Open House & Design Contest

I know as soon as I say it out loud that something crazy is going to happen, but we seem to be on top of things for the beginning of next year!  We already have some great plans pulled together to put a lil’ twist on our 3rd Annual National Open House & Design Contest.  While we are pounding out the details, we still wanted to make sure that you mark your calendars.  Be sure to save the date, January 23, 2013, to come to this exciting event at your nearest Mayesh Wholesale Florist!  You won’t want to miss out!

 

Mayesh Las Vegas’ Art In Full Bloom – Flower & Art Show

Mayesh Las Vegas hosted its first “Art In Full Bloom” floral and art open house.  Artists displayed their works of art and participating florists were assigned a piece to interpret with flowers.  Jonahs Kneitly introduces the show in the beginning of the video and at about 1:20 you get to meet one of the artists and floral designer explaining their inspiration in creating each complimentary art piece.

 

Detroit’s Open House & Teleflora Show

Sabrina visited our Cleveland location a few days and then drove to our Detroit location to cover their Open House as well as a Teleflora class for our followers on Twitter and Facebook on October 12th. Below is a summary of her visit:

 

Driving from Cleveland, OH to Romulus, MI is no short trip but it sure was a beautiful one.

 

 

I have never been to the Midwest, so driving through vast farmlands and crossing one of the great lakes via a massive bridge was fun to say the least. My co-pilot Leslee from our Cleveland branch laughed at me and said “I guess you don’t cross a lot of bridges like this in Tucson, Arizona, huh?” Nope. Not like this one.

The area surrounding our Detroit wholesale floral location is vastly different from what I have envisioned. It is settled in a wooded area and not nearly as industrialized as the areas surrounding many of our other locations. It was beautiful! The location is massive and constructed with nearly every aspect of a cut floral facility thought out. It is a must visit if you are ever in the area.

 

 

Tom Metzger and his staff welcomed customers all morning during their Open House. When I arrived around 1:00 pm the place was packed with customers and the sales staff was busy preparing the whole building for the Teleflora class to be held that evening.

 

The Teleflora Michigan Unit held their last class of the year. The speaker was Joyce Manson-Monheim AIFD, CFD, PFCI, AzMF. According to her site:

“Joyce has been designing flowers since 1975. She graduated from Kirkwood Community College with a degree in Floriculture. After graduating she worked in a retail flower shop in Waterloo, Iowa and in 1984 moved to Tucson, AZ to manage a large retail shop operation. Since 1998 she has been a freelance floral designer and educator throughout the country, becoming an Arizona Master Florist, a member of the American Institute of Floral Designers, a Certified Floral Designer, a member of the Professional Floral Communicator International, a Teleflora Educational Specialist and designing for many events and industry vendors the country. Joyce is married with 2 children and resides in Tucson, AZ.”

I stayed for the beginning of her session, during which she had some great tips. I shared a lot of them via our Twitter page.

 

 

Joyce really focused on these 2 points of emotion and service. She acknowledges that flowers are an emotion driven purchase. Flowers have been scientifically proven to affect mood.I loved this tip. Often we forget that beautiful foliage is just as expensive as cut flowers. Why do we only use foliage to cover mechanics? Show it off, and don’t give it away. Freebies are profit killers. Make sure to charge for all of your foliage and accent flowers.

Tip: “It is time to upgrade the bud vase!”

Joyce used dried lotus pods that have been cut to create a grid. This allows for minimal stems to be used but the look is very high end and has a great perceived value. Many florists rely on foliage to create the grid system needed to keep flowers stable in a bud vase. We stuff small vases. Here is a cool way to use very little stems and foliage for a great upscale bud vase look.

Tip: “Cross-train designers and drivers”

How often do drivers become designers on the fly? Rocky roads and potholes cause arrangements to shift, this is where driver turn into designers. Joyce advises that drivers shadow a designer when they are designing and designers ride along during a delivery. This will allow both parts to work together to make sure the arrangement looks great when received by the end customer.

Tip: “Use those scrapes you have been saving for years.”

How many shops have that bucket of sticks and stems? We say, “one day I will use that.” Today is the day! Joyce created some fun display pieces that can be altered for any season. She even created a very upscale version of a dozen roses. She is a big fan of branches. It allows for prep work to be done very far in advance and ready to design and sell when orders come in.

 

 

Thank you to all the attendees who came out to learn and to Joyce and Teleflora, thank you for a great program.

If you are ever in the neighborhood, stop and say hi to our Mayesh Detroit folks.

 

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Las Vegas: Art In Full Bloom

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You’re invited to Mayesh Las Vegas’ first annual event – Art in Full Bloom – a floral art show and open house.

On October 19, 2012 from 4pm to 7:30pm, art will be on display from various artists with a floral design created to represent each piece.  Be a part of our contest by voting for your favorite floral design, be inspired by the art and mingle with other floral & art professionals all the while enjoying a nosh and libations.

You don’t want to miss this exciting event!

 

Design Contest Details:

  • Contest registration deadline is October 5, 2012.
  • Local artist will place a piece for display in our studio.
  • Floral designers will be assigned a specific work of art and then create a complimentary floral piece.
  • Designers will have access to their assigned art before the actual event and will have from 7am till 3:30pm on October 19, 2012 to install their piece for the show.
  • Any flowers used for contest design must be purchased from Mayesh Las Vegas and will be available at cost.
  • Vases and hard goods are the responsibility of the floral designer.
  • Floral design must be free-standing and self-supporting. Tables and stands will be provided for display.
  • Floral may not be attached to the art piece.

Prizes include:

  • Gift Certificates for product and other merchandise
  • One-on-One lessons with an AIFD certified florist
  • Featured on mayesh.com blog post

 

Winner will be determined by attendees via popular vote during the open house (1 vote per attendee).  Contact your Vegas branch representative if you are interested in registering for the contest!

September’s Upcoming Events

Ok, so I cannot believe that fall is right around the corner and boy do we have a bunch going on in September to kick off the new season!  Read below to make sure you don’t miss out on some of these exciting events!

Get the 411 on:

  • Rene Van Rems 5 Day Hands-On Master Class – September 10-14
  • Detroit’s Mayesh Open House & Teleflora Design Show – September 12
  • The Knot Cocktails & Connections in Pittsburgh – September 12
  • TeamFloral Webinar – September 19
  • SAF Annual Convention – September 19-22
  • MDS2013 – Dates Throughout September

Calif Flora 2012 “Legends”

Along with The Southern California Flower Growers, Inc. Mayesh Wholesale Florist is hosting the Cali Flora 2012 “Legends”!  This floral event is taking place October 13-14, 2012 at our LA Market location.  Our very own Richard Gourd is the CSFA President and here is what he had to say to our readers about the show:

 

As President of the California State Floral Association, I would like to personally invite you to attend Calif Flora 2012 “LEGENDS”,  hosted by Mayesh Wholesale Florist, Inc. and the Southern California Flower Growers, Inc.   Saturday’s schedule includes the California Certified Florist Exam (CCF) and hands-on design classes with brilliant instructors.  Our Top Ten and Student Design Competitions will be held on Sunday morning, and we are honored to present Phil Rulloda AAF, AIFD, PFCI as our featured designer on Sunday afternoon.  Don’t delay – register now!

 

Here are more details:
Program Information
Registration Form

Hope you can make it!

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