Archive For The “Interview” Category

Valentine’s Day at Mayesh Portland

 

The week leading up to Valentine’s Day is always the busiest week of the year for both us, the wholesaler, and you, the florist! Local news station KGW stopped by our Mayesh Portland branch to get a behind the scenes look into this busy yet lovely holiday. Check out their interview with branch manager Amy Gebhardt to see just what goes on in order for us to get those bunches on bunches of red roses to you!

 


 

 


 

 

Mornings with Mayesh: Sarah Campbell

Mornings with Mayesh: Sarah Campbell

 

Yvonne sat down with Sarah Campbell, of Intrigue Teaches, to chat all about wedding sales and marketing strategies to increase budgets and expand your portfolio. Be sure to watch until the end for a special promo as well! This was a great episode that you don’t want to miss!

And just in case you do not know our guest, Sarah, she is known for her wedding business expertise having launched several successful wedding businesses in the Annapolis, Maryland region. Sarah loves sharing her knowledge and helping her fellow design community, and started Intrigue Teaches. You can catch her doing Lives on Facebook & Instagram sharing her passion and she also offers workshops and classes. So what I’m trying to say is that if you don’t know Sarah, then you should.

 

Here is the podcast replay, video, and show notes:

 


 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

GUEST: SARAH CAMPBELL

 

  • To get started why don’t you tell us a little bit about how you started in the wedding business and what it morphed into?
    • start: Intrigue is known for large scale designs and over the top weddings.  I didn’t start with this caliber of a wedding. The desire to produce high-end events pushed me to change my marketing strategies.

 

  • What are your thoughts about luxury weddings – do you think all designers have the opportunity to do these types of events no matter where they are in the country?
    • Marketing: I often hear designers say that there is no money in their market. Or they can’t find weddings like Intrigue books. I am here to tell you that there is money to be found in each market. The challenge is finding it and I have a strategy!

 

  • You recommend looking at your virtual footprint – can you explain that?
    • Virtual Footprint: first look at the visuals you are using. Do they speak to the couples you are looking to book? Suggestions for adjusting your footprint ro attract your ideal client.

 

  • What other marketing strategies do you suggest to attract the luxury wedding clients?
    • Strategy: mass market approach. All social presence.

 

Question sent in early:

  • Floral Designs Maui, IG: One question we do have is, how do we begin to evolve our company into a different design category? In other words, say we are known for doing a particular style, but we would also like to move more towards the bespoke gardeny style that is growing in floristry. What are some ways that we can begin to promote that to our clients and coordinators that we work with?

 

Questions we didn’t have time to answer during the live show:

  • Jaime: What is your favorite recipe/palette for weddings?
    • I tend to gravitate to big fluffy flowers like Peony, Garden Roses, and Ranunculus. My favorite colors personal are in the blue family, but, for Intrigue, I tend to gravitate to Coral, Peach, Pink, and Champagne.
  • Johanna: I’m starting my business, would advertising local venues be a good idea? If yes, what do you have any advice or suggestions on how to advertise?
    • I always recommend starting locally. Start by meeting the local catering directors and building those relationships. From there ask to be added to the preferred vendors list and if available buy ad space in their showcase flyer.
  • Robin: I like to bring my own personal photographer to the set up of our weddings, but sadly, I’m starting to get many photographers that explain that they are contracted to be the exclusive photographer. It has caused some friction and makes it difficult for my branding as I want particular looks that that photographer doesn’t necessarily do or focus on. Any suggestions???
    • This is a personal decision. I too will travel with my own photographer in some instances. This can create friction and when I do bring my photographer with me I make sure they are only shooting my designs when the contracted photographer is not present and I never have them photograph the bride or the family for any reason. My photographer’s priority is solely my flowers. I find that by building relationships with my photographers in advance and referring my photographer friends as often as possible my brides get a better experience and I get images easily without having to bring my own photographer.
  • Amanda:  I relocated from the PNW to the Deep South. I’m having a hard time breaking into the market. How long do I give myself before rebranding into more of what is popular here? (Only been here for a few months)
    • Forget about “What is Popular” and focus on being true to your brand and what you want to be known for. You will attract more business by being different than by looking like everyone else.
  • Jennifer: Do you have any advice for a wedding planner who’s in the process of adding floral design services.
    • Make a clear distinction in your business. Set the floral division up as a separate entity and bill it separately.  Be honest with your clients that you have launched a new division and educate them on what you can provide for them. Of course get training and make sure you can properly execute their requests. Be honest with your florists you are currently working with. If you bring a client to meet with a florist as part of your planning business be respectful of this relationship and do not offer your flowers to that same client.
  • Serena: Do you have any links for transforming Rose’s into peony?
    • https://www.instagram.com/p/Btg2pcfBHfW/
  • Roxanne: Can Sarah speak to her hot water processing?
    • I almost always process into hot water. I have been taught that the heat allows the cells to open up and absorb more hydration.

 

Items/Links mentioned:

 

Intrigued Experience

This conference SOLD OUT in a mind blowing 7 DAYS!  However, Mayesh has 2 seats reserved exclusively for our customers. To access these two seats, go to www.intriguedexeprience.com and use the CODE: mayesh

 

 

Our next show is scheduled for February 19th. On behalf of our Mayesh family, we wish you a very successful Valentine’s Day!

xo

 

TRANSCRIPT

 

– Hey everyone, it’s Yvonne here. I am the Marketing Director over at Mayesh Wholesale Florist. And welcome to our February 5th Mornings with Mayesh show. This is a super special show, guys, because I have a very special guest, Sarah Campbell. And she is here to chat about wedding sales and marketing strategies to increase your budgets and expand your portfolio. Very, very exciting stuff. So, if you want to increase your wedding and event business, then be sure to stick around. Awesome. I’m gonna give you guys a few minutes to come on in. I know there’s been a lot of emails that were sent out, and I just hopped on a bunch of lives trying to make sure everyone knows that we’re doing this this morning. It’s also an hour later than our normal scheduled show. So, thank you. I’m curious to see if you guys like it an hour later, don’t like it. Send me your feedback about this. Is it crazy that we do it at 10 a.m. Eastern Time because I know it’s super early for you West Coasters. So, yeah, just let me know. Good morning, Erica. Hi, Penny. Thank you for joining us again. Shelby, good morning. How is everyone doing? All right. I also wanted to make sure that you guys know if this is your first time watching on Facebook Live if you have any questions for Sarah, or for myself, go ahead and post them in the comments below and we, as long as we have enough time, will definitely get to those questions and answer them for you all. Sound good? All right, also this replay will be up on our blog in probably a day or two. So, it’ll be the video replay, my show notes that we used to create this show, so that way you have something to read if you’re a reader, and also our podcast replay. So, if you want to listen to this amazing show while you’re driving to work, you can do that. Or, if you’re walking and trying to get your steps in for the day, you can do that. So, very cool. Make sure you check out our podcast. And I also, thinking about feedback, how into podcasts are you guys? I love podcasts. I listen to a lot of different marketing and strategy type of podcasts, I know some of you guys are into this whole mystery murder type of podcast. I see those are very popular. But, let me know what you guys think about podcasts, just in general in the comments. I’d love to hear your guys’ thoughts on that. And then also, of course, this show is bought to you by our Mayesh Design Star Flower Workshop Tour. Guys, we have three more dates left with Shean Strong. So, super, super excited. I don’t know if you guys saw his January video. We just released it, I think, about a week or two ago and it’s doing amazing. So, if you don’t know who Shean is, be sure you check out that video. Be sure you go over to his Instagram ’cause he’s just amazing. We love our 2019 Design Star. And so, our Workshop Tours with Shean Strong are May, we’ll be heading to Nashville, August, we’ll be in Austin, and then, we are gonna shoot on over and end everything for the tour in Columbus in November. So, check it out. We will post a link for that in the comments. Very cool. I also have, I believe, Desi. She is my lady behind the scenes, helping post all of our links, and helping me with the comments, and questions, and things like that. So, hi, Desi. Thanks for your help, babe. All right, guys. Oh! And last, but not least, make sure you save the date for our next scheduled show, which is February 19th. It’s the Tuesday after Valentine’s Day. I know a lot of you guys are gonna be exhausted. So, come on in, just wear your jammies. Grab that coffee cup. Hopefully, maybe, you might have a Mornings with Mayesh mug. And just join us for a good long chat, ’cause we have amazing questions for the next show. It’s going to be amazing and so good. I love it. I feel like I say amazing a lot, yeah? All right. All right, for all of you guys that are just joining us, welcome, welcome, welcome. I am Yvonne Ashton and welcome to Mornings with Mayesh show. Today, I have Sarah Campbell here to help us learn about wedding sales and marketing strategies to increase budgets and expand your portfolio. Definitely something I think could all use and I am bring on Sarah now. There we go. Hey, Sarah, how are you?

– Hi. Good, I’m so excited to be here.

– I’m so excited to have you. It’s finally! And we’ve known each other for a few years now, and so, I don’t know why we haven’t done this earlier. But I’m glad that we’re finally here.

– I am, too.

– And so, how are you doing today?

– Oh, wonderful. We’ve been doing so much travel this year, well, last year, that this year, new year, it feels so nice to be here in Maryland and just having some quieter, calmer times. Really nice. Which is probably why we have time to do this.

– Yes, you have been one busy lady. And guys, just in case you don’t know about our guest, I’m sure, I’m hoping a lot of you guys already do, but just in case. Sarah’s really known for her wedding business expertise. She’s launched several successful wedding businesses in the Annapolis, Maryland region. She loves sharing her knowledge and her passion, helping her fellow designers, and she started a company called Intrigue Teaches, which is really cool. It’s just all about sharing that wealth. You can catch her doing lives on Facebook and Instagram all of the time, which I really admire you for that, Sarah. And you also offer workshops and classes. So, what I’m trying to say is if you don’t know Sarah, then you should. Is that a good intro, or what?

– That’s fabulous. You can’t put it any better than that. Thank you so much.

– You’re welcome.

– I’m amazing right?

– You are amazing and you truly just inspire me cause’ it does take a lot of guts just to kinda, put yourself out there, and you’re putting yourself out there almost on a daily basis. So, kudos to that, and I just feel like it’s something that you just get better and better at. I’m petrified of doing these kinds of things, and I do stutter. I was just doing a YouTube live just to promote this, and I totally botched it, but you know what? It’s okay, mistakes happen and you learn and you just move on. So, I think for people want to get in to just live video in general, just watching you would be a really great inspiration for them.

– Oh especially because I am the queen of mistakes. I make mistakes all the time. In fact, we were recording with, we have a professional videographer that records our classes for use online, and I kinda made a fumble and a mistake, she’s like, oh, I’ll edit that out. I’m like, no, you can leave that right there. You know, we do make mistakes. And to pretend to be perfect is no fun, right?

– Right.

– So laugh along with me.

– I love it, I love it, I love it. So we’re gonna hop on into the questions. And I think to get started, why don’t you tell us a little bit more about how you started in the wedding business, and what it morphed into?

– Sure, sure. So I actually started my career in the wedding industry as a wedding planner, which is something that not everyone really knows. I jumped into the wedding planning business because I love parties, and social events, and I love beautiful things. And there’s a whole, long story about being thrust from planning into floral, and it definitely was not the ideal way, so it’s not the way I encourage people to dive into flowers. But there came a time when I just like, I had to take on flowers, it just had to happen. And then once I got my hands in flowers and I realized that not only was it such a beautiful medium to play with on a design and artistic end, I also found that there was more revenue that I could build through flowers. So it was about 10, to 14, I’m always wrong on years. I don’t know how many years. It was a lot of years ago, that I went full scale with not just doing wedding planning, but adding floral into my business. And then of course as anyone knows if you’ve tried to run a planning firm and a floral firm at the same time, that is a really tough balance to make. So I did have to sell off my planning firm and focus exclusively on florals. And that’s when my business really started to blossom. Blossom.

– I love it.

– I didn’t say that on purpose, but it’s so fitting.

– That’s very cool. And so what are your thoughts about luxury weddings? Do you think all designers have the opportunity to do these types of events, no matter where they are in the country?

– Absolutely.

– What are some of your thoughts there?

– So to really answer that, let me take you back a little bit. So when I first started getting into the wedding world, even before I touched flowers, there came to a point where I realized when I jumped into weddings, I had these big, grand dreams, over-the-top designs, luxury events. Meanwhile, I’m working in like church basements and Bingo halls, and I’m folding squeaky, metal chairs at the end of parties. That was not my dream at all. So I had tried to find some marketing education at the time. This was probably 15 plus years ago. Pre-Pinterest, Pre-Instagram, and it might have been pre-Facebook. Oh, my gosh. So there wasn’t those avenues to learn that were so easy. So I went to the library, and I checked out books, right? A giant stack of every marketing, high-end advertising book I could find. I remember just loading them in the backseat of my car thinking I don’t even know how I’m gonna read through these. And I studied how big companies, how large businesses marketed how they attracted luxury clients, and how they presented a luxury brand, and I started to really create the strategy for myself that I could take what these big businesses were doing, and work that into my floral, or at that time, my planning business, so that I could get into the right groups, and start connecting with those right weddings that would allow , sorry, I forgot to turn that notification off. Jordan, I might need your help. But it would allow me to really create these dream weddings. And so that really helped me a lot when I morphed into floral design a few years later. Because it gave me a springboard. Now, I had already figured out how to locate that high-end client, and then from locating the high-end client, then how to speak to that high-end client. And when I was doing the Intrigue Across America Tour last year, we taught business classes all over the country, in almost all 50 states. And consistently I would hear designers say, oh, Sarah, I love the weddings you do, but we don’t have the kind of money in my state. Los Angeles even told me that.

– No way.

– No, here’s the deal. Some of my biggest clients to date have come from some of the smallest markets in the country. There is money to be found everywhere. It’s really a matter of streamlining your marketing and your advertising, and starting to attract that higher-end client. Even more than that, there’s different advertising avenues you can take. Facebook is amazing right now. I know this is not a Facebook section, but we have never had a time in our careers where we’ve been able to say, okay, ad, I only want this ad to be shown to exactly the type of individual I want to sell you. Back in the day, we would take an ad in a magazine, right, and then cross our fingers.

– Yep.

– But now, we have control over that. So kind of learning some of those marketing techniques is really what helps to connect with that high-end client in every single market. That was a long answer.

– No, I love it. Love it so much. And I know that you recommend looking at your virtual footprint. Can you explain that a little bit?

– Sure. That’s definitely part of marketing. So a lot of times people say, well, I don’t know if people are looking at Instagram, or they’re looking at Facebook, or they’re looking at Pinterest, so I’m just gonna put a little bit out there. But I will tell you, whatever you put out there, whether it be a little bit or a lot, it needs to create this, what I call the virtual footprint. Create this area that when individuals look at it, they know it’s you. They can track you, they can follow you. If all of your visuals you’re using are different on every, single platform, it gets a little confusing to the viewer, and it’s harder for them to follow you. So this footprint should be very clear. With that, you’ll see that I have the same style the same essence of my designs when I’m sharing on Facebook, and Pinterest, and on Instagram. Of course, Instagram is my favorite place to hang out. That is my favorite social media source.

– Me, too.

– Yeah. So also with that footprint is you want to continue to keep it active. So with the new algorithms that are always changing, we’ve done multiple studies, just within the flower world for Instagram to see what’s working and what’s not. And as fast as we do a study, things are changing. So one of the big changes that happened is you start seeing that if you are not sharing regularly, which is like, daily, multiple times a day, your feed’ll start to get less, and less, and less attraction. That is because Instagram kinda like puts you in a time out and says, well, you know what? You’re not active. Like, no one cares about you. This sounds terrible, right? So we’re not gonna show everyone what you’re doing. But if you’re able to maintain that momentum, Facebook will continue to push your message out there. And you can see that firsthand on my feed. Like, if you go to the Intrigue feed you will see that if I’m having a downtime, or maybe I’m not working as much, you will see my numbers will really decrease, and the exposure will decrease just because I am not as active. I think it takes a lot of work, but there’s so much great reward on a marketing standpoint that it’s worth that time and effort.

– Yeah, I obviously completely agree. That’s a huge focus for my team, and I do have a marketing team, so I’m very, very lucky. But we focus a lot on content, creating really great quality content, and just making sure that we’re always posting. If we’re gonna have a social media page, it needs to be active. And so I’m a huge proponent of that. And being consistent. So creating content that is either educational or entertaining, or just helping awareness is just so key and important. And while it does take some time, you can create things that then, this show is a great example of that. I create this show, which is a very big piece of content, but you can then break them down into little mini ones. And so you might be able to create something really grand and big, and kind of chop it up into smaller pieces that you can kind of use on your Instagram feed, or smaller, shorter videos that can be more engaging, ’cause honestly, for everyone to sit here for a whole, entire hour is a lot to ask. And I get that.

– It’s a lot. It’s a lot.

– And also, the part that you talked about, no matter where the user is, you need them to know that it’s you. And so branding is huge for us. It took a little bit, I feel like, for some people in our company to understand like, why using a certain font is so, so important. We don’t want any other fonts used except for these one or two, or these colors. It’s like little, nitty, gritty things, but it’s very, the eye picks up on that. It might not be like so in your face, but even those small details are really important. So that way, just putting together like a quick branding guide, like this is what I want things to look like, and if it doesn’t look like that, then you can like go and tweak it, so that way everyone is on the same page with those types of things I think is great.

– You have done such an incredible job. I think that’s why I’m so drawn to you is because I’ve watched your marketing. Even when I’m busy and we’re not talking, like, I’m still watching. And I can see the shifts, and I can see the amount of time you put into it. And beyond that, I don’t know if anyone else is as aware as I am, you have helped build this industry like nobody else. You have supported me from day one, and I appreciate that. Even when I don’t think, maybe you were the only one who knew my name. It has been so incredible to have that support, and to see the way you support the floral industry as a whole, like, kudos to Mayesh and you for being able to do that, because we notice. So thank you.

– Yeah, yeah, you’re welcome. I feel very fortunate to work with Mayesh. And education is a huge thing for them as well. I’m lucky to have some amazing designers on my team, too, because when I kind of started in this role, I’m not like an amazing designer. I feel like I have good taste, but to create something beautiful is difficult. It takes skill.

– Yeah.

– We’ve slowly added those people on, and it makes a huge difference. So it definitely takes a village to do what we do, and I’m just really thankful to have an amazing team, and a company, and yeah, I love supporting people that have huge names like you, now, Sarah, and smaller names, and everyone in between, as long as we can. We’re one company, so we can only do so much. But just doing things like this, I love it. So thank you. I appreciate it. All right, so what are some other marketing strategies do you suggest to attract the luxury wedding clients, Sarah?

– All right, well, this kinda goes back a little bit to your footprint. You want to show off the visuals that you wanna sell. So if you really wanna sell like, these big, Intrigue-style centerpieces that just drip with flowers like I wanna sell every week, if that’s what you wanna do, that’s what you need to show off. You need to be showing on your feed the real things that you wanna sell. So you cannot complain that, oh my gosh, I never get clients, I want this kind of stuff if you’re never showing it. Now, that doesn’t mean that’s the only thing that clients are gonna ask for, because if you follow my feed, you know I very rarely will show lots of greenery and lots of organic, earthy elements. Not that I don’t love them, it’s just not the vibe that I share. But, in 2018, every single one of the weddings that Intrigue did were loaded with greenery. So they were wonderful, they were luxury events, they were beautiful. But they were definitely a different look than what I show. So you can be showing what you wanna sell, but keep in mind that it’s really a vibe, it’s energy that you’re giving with these images. So it does not mean that that person’s gonna buy that exact thing, but it’s going to allow you, by showing those luxury, high-end elements, it’s going to allow you to attract that right client. I’ve also had a number of people say, well, I don’t wanna show too much luxury, high-end images, because then my clients will think they can’t afford me. Well, I got news for you. Pretty much everyone will think they can’t afford you anyway when you’re showing pretty things, so don’t even worry about that. And it is good to filter off. So even though I believe everyone thinks they can’t afford a wedding florist when they’re seeing the images on social, there is that weeding out that some people just aren’t going to call because they really are only gonna spend 400, 600, maybe $1,000 on wedding flowers, and we all know to create these high-end looks you do need more than that. So don’t be too stressed about people not calling you because you’re showing high-end. You will get more calls when you’re showing those beautiful, well-polished images. And if you don’t have those images in your portfolio, get yourself to a workshop, to a class that’s going to allow you to use those images. I’ve seen some amazing images coming out of the Mayesh Star workshops over the years. In fact, I was looking at your schedule, and I think I need to come to Nashville with you.

– That’d be awesome! Come on!

– Natalie, our Creative Director is in Nashville as well. I’m like, oh, field trip, I’ll go visit. There really some beautiful, beautiful images, and be able to build your portfolio is so important. And honestly, on an investment side, it’s usually more beneficial to attend a workshop where you have hundreds or even thousands of flowers that you can play with, and photograph, and interact with as opposed to trying to buy those and figuring how to do it at home.

– Yeah. And just talking about the workshops, I know you guys do it the same way, but we bring the best of the best to our workshops. And we have an amazing photographer that we work with. And you get a whole portfolio of your work. You’ll get whatever large installation is done. And I love that idea of being able, instead of like doing a kind of style type of shoot where you’re investing a lot in that, and it’s just for the pictures, really, investing in the education to do that. I think that’s a wonderful tip. I didn’t even really think about that, you know?

– I first noticed it when we were on this tour last year, and I started seeing people that were signing up for not one, or two, but three tour stops. I think one person came to like five different tour stops.

– Wow.

– And I had to ask. After the third time this designer came, I said, well, what is this bringing you back? I am teaching the same things in every single state, with just a different color palette. And she said to me, she’s like, Sarah, she said, it makes more sense for me to come here multiple times. You’re gonna show me how to do and make it look right. You have the photographers on hand, and I’m building my portfolio. She was a third-year florist I believe that she just didn’t have the portfolio she wanted yet, and this helped her build her portfolio. And I thought, that’s genius! Why didn’t I think of that when I was building?

– Yeah, it is genius. It’s amazing. And we do say, like, oh, you get these to add to your portfolio, but I don’t, I didn’t ever think back to be like yeah, this is how you can build your business, too.

– Right, absolutely.

– Just adding some pretty pictures. Yeah, very cool. What else? What else do you have? Anything else you wanted to talk about, marketing strategy-wise?

– All right, so some of the easiest things to do when it comes to marketing, is first, just figure out what the visual is you wanna share. And pull those images together. If you don’t have images, like I said, get out to a workshop to build that portfolio. But start just pulling your images. Reaching out to those photographers to get images, reaching out to your brides to get images. If you absolutely have zero in your portfolio, just pick up some flowers, make some things, and start photographing them. And then I have one simple tip that is going to change everybody’s world right now. Are you ready?

– I’m ready.

– So video right now is stronger than photo is when it comes to social media. So Mark Zuckerberg and his big world of everything Facebook, Instagram marketing, he has deemed, I don’t know if he personally deemed or his team deemed, but he has deemed that the videos will be shown more than the photos. So even on my own feed, I could put a beautiful photo out there and it would get 1,000 likes, or 2,000 likes. And I get zero following, and very little interaction. On that same avenue, I put a time-lapse video on, and if you don’t know time-lapse, it’s like that speedy video, right?

– Mm-hmm.

– I put a time-lapse video on, and I can see growth of 100, 200, 500 followers from a good time-lapse video. So here is what’s gonna change everyone’s lives. I want everyone to set up their phone. Do it today, in your design studios. Oh, it’s Monday, we’re gonna have flowers. All right, so I sometimes, in the wedding world, in the wedding world, oh, it’s Tuesday. I don’t even know what day of the week it is. Well, in the wedding world, we don’t have flowers every week. For those of you that have flowers, I want you to take out your cell phone. There is a time-lapse, or a hyper-lapse option on both iPhones and on Droid. And I want you, maybe for the next week, just record quick time-lapses of you doing your work as you’re doing it. So you’re going to be designing anyway.

– Yep.

– Do a video, and start putting those on your feed, and see how they’re working. And if for any reason you don’t see it working, or you don’t understand, I invite you to personally send me a DM. You can ask me and I will answer you. If for any reason I don’t answer within 24 hours, it’s ’cause I got a lot of DMs, feel free to send me another one to make sure I didn’t miss it. But I’m happy to help anyone to figure out that rhythm on the videos. It has been so powerful. And I don’t have any like, virtual content I can share. I don’t have any lessons on this that I can share with everyone. So I give you myself. Feel free to ask me whatever you wanna ask. And I will answer for the time-lapse videos.

– Yeah, I love it. Video’s so huge, and you are an inspiration. Like, when I was looking through your feeds and things like that, I feel like we gotta step up our video game. Like, I need more videos, more videos!

– What? Yvonne is saying that to me?

– Yeah. Video is huge. And I’ve been talking about video for a while. I think it’s so important. It is a little nerve-racking, I think, for the designers who might not wanna get in front of a camera and talk. But I like the time-lapse idea because you don’t really have to be talking. You can just put a cool song on it, and there you go.

– And if you don’t wanna show your face in the beginning, it’s okay. I recommend you show your face, but if you don’t want to, just cut it down.

– Yeah.

– So Yvonne, I just had this random memory, this is totally off-script, but do you know what the first video I ever made was? The first floral video I ever made? I bet you can guess.

– I have the worst memory in the world, especially when I’m on live video.

– All right, so the reason I’m saying I bet you could guess is because the first floral video I ever made was for a dish that I did for the Mayesh Design Star years ago. Isn’t that so funny?

– That is crazy, crazy.

– So that’s kind of what tapped me into the whole world of videos. Like, oh that was fun, let’s do it again, and again, and again, and then here I am.

– I love it. Right, full circle. That’s so cool.

– If everyone’s wondering, no, I did not win.

– And it’s hard, it’s so hard picking designers. You don’t even know. And then the different things that we go through. Yeah, it’s a little crazy. But–

– Well, I am grateful for that bit of inspiration, ’cause it launched me into something I didn’t even know I was gonna be good at. So thank you.

– Yeah, you’re welcome. And you are, you’re very good at it. So we have a lot of questions, I think. I’ve been trying to kind of keep up a little bit and still pay attention to what you’re saying. But we had one that got sent in early from Instagram. It’s Floral Designs Maui. And they said, they would love to watch live, but six a.m. is a little too early for us Hawaiian folks.

– I’m worth it.

– Yeah, so they’re gonna watch the replay. By the way, I saw someone asking about a replay and if it’s in the email or anything other than Facebook? And yes, let me answer that question really quick. The replay will always be on Facebook. We also upload it to YouTube. You just need to give me a little bit of time. And then I turn it into a podcast. And then you’ll be able to find all of that on our website, Mayesh.com on the blog, and if you’re subscribed to our email notifications, you’ll get an email of our blog post once it goes live. If you aren’t subscribed to our blog, you’re just in our email database, that’s okay, too, it’ll be included in our newsletter. But I try not to bombard everyone with a bazillion emails, but it will be up everywhere, and we will post about it on social media. So I hope that answers that question. So sorry, I need to go back to the question from Floral Designs Maui. So one question is, “How do we begin “to evolve our company into a different design category? “In other words, say we’re known “for doing a particular style, “we would also like to move towards “the bespoke gardeny style that is growing is floristry. “What are some ways that we can begin “to promote that to our clients and coordinators “that we work with?”

– Oh, I love this question. And I have the answer. First is, just start a rebrand for yourself. Look at everything. Look at your logo, look at your fonts, look at your website. Does that speak to that bespoke audience that you wanna talk to? And if the answer is no, you have some work to do. And I’m betting because you’re asking this question, that the answer is no. So what you’re gonna do is you’re going to create a look that you know is going to work. Do we ever know? That you believe and you feel strongly that you would be attracted to if you were looking for this bespoke gardening designer? And then, you wanna look at all of your ad spaces, even your free ad spaces, whether it be Wedding Wire, Knot, My Wedding, Perfect Wedding Guide, there’s so many of them out there. And you wanna make sure the imagery that you’re sharing, the part of your social footprint is on those ads, right? You wanna make sure those images are all connected to that bespoke garden essence that you want to attract. So everywhere that individuals are looking they’re going to see this. But then there’s one step further than you’re gonna need to take. Because you have already built your brand where you are, that is something different than you wanna build it into. So you need to do some networking. I’m talking old school, pounding the pavement, going and visit, make some arrangements. Make sure you photograph them and get your social media first, and then bring them to these venues, bring them to those bridal shops. These ones you already have these great relationships with, and say we’re starting to promote this new direction, these new designs, get them excited about what you are doing that is new.

– I love it. Perfect answer.

– Thank you.

– So Penny wanted to point our your turning a rose into a peony video. She says, “Wow.”

– Oh, thanks, Penny. I did not make that up. Someone taught me that. And I wish I could tell you who taught me those. I’ve been doing this for years, and years, and years, and I originally started doing it because now it’s pretty easy to get a garden rose that looks like a peony. But I don’t feel like we had as many options 10 years ago. So 10 years ago, I was learning all kinds of ways to MacGyver flowers. It’s funny I say MacGyver now, but I realize that half the audience doesn’t know who that is.

– I get it!

– Those of you who don’t know MacGyver, like he makes these cool things out of things that aren’t things. And he alwaysat the end. But that’s not flowery. So I will deconstruct and reconstruct flowers, and I feel like I’ve gotten to the point where I can make almost anything. There’s that one that everyone does is making the anemone out of the lisianthus. There is, gosh, I can’t even think of anything beyond that. But there’s so many different flowers that if you can’t get them, you can create them, or give those essence by pulling other elements of flowers together. And as a wedding designer, I never tell my clients no. The answer is always yes. You want peony off-season, the answer is always yes. You want anemone off-season, the answer is always yes. Now, I’m pretty good at finding them growing somewhere in the world, even if I have to buy a plane ticket to get that bunch of flowers on the plane and have it shipped. But if I can’t, or maybe Customs takes that bunch of flowers, then in most cases, I’m gonna have to MacGyver something, right? I’m gonna have to figure out a way. So that video, it was the first time I shared it in probably a couple years. But there’s a time-lapse video, and I can even give it to you if you wanna share it.

– Yeah, of course.

– But it’s a time-lapse video that just shows you, okay, I have this rose. I think we used a Sahara rose, and just turned it into what looked like a peony.

– I love it. Yeah, very, very cool. And that reminds me, we did like a blog post, I don’t even know if it’s still up on our blog, ’cause it’s old, but we called it Fr-anemone, ’cause the enemies and anemones and enemy and everyone loves it. So we called it Freemen, but it was flower hack on how to turn, I don’t know if it was like a lisi, or some other kind of flower into, and using like a eryngium, and making it look like an anemone.

– Right.

– A white anemone with a black center. So yeah, I love those kinds of things. That’s very fun.

– Now, anemones, I feel like this year, have changed. I don’t know what’s happening with the farms, or the shipping, but where I used to struggle so much with anemone, I don’t know if you’ve noticed that, anemone this year have been stunning. Like, great quality, opening beautifully, better than I’ve ever seen them before.

– Yeah, yeah, I don’t see too many people asking a ton of questions about them. That’s the only way that I can gauge it. ‘Cause unlike you, I don’t touch live flowers too often. But yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. I can see that, that’s very cool. Good to know. It’s amazing how products evolve and change over time. All right, so I have Terrie Hall here, and she wants to know the name of Sarah’s business. But you have businesses.

– Okay.

– You wanna explain that?

– Look up under the word Intrigue. Whenever Intrigue is attached to flowers, it’s probably me. We started with Intrigue Designs. Then we grew into Intrigue Teaches, where we started sharing and educating through classes. And that led us to the Intrigue Experience Conference, which is definitely the biggest, and most elaborate of any of the events that we produce. So those are really the three main things, was Intrigue Designs, Intrigue Teaches, and Intrigue Experience.

– Very cool.

– That being said, there are other Intrigue things floating around that I’m also attached to.

– I love it. Let’s, do, do, do, do, do. Okay, here, here’s a good one I think. Lori wants to know, do you use veronica? I love the beautiful blue, purple colors.

– I do use veronica. In fact, when we were on the tour this year, I believe we were in Kansas City. And maybe I’ll post to my story. Yeah, I’ll post to my Instagram story today, I had this big bunch of veronica that I have never seen veronica like this. It was thicker than usual, it was long, it was so healthy and so beautiful. Yes, I do use veronica. And my favorite palette to play with is actually the blue tones, but I very rarely do the blue tones, because I find blues don’t play as well in marketing as my peaches, and my pinks, and my ivories, and my creams, and my corals.

– Yes, I agree with you, honestly. Because even when we post pictures, I could post tons of peach and coraly, and blush-colored anything, and everyone’s gonna be like drooling over it, and going insane. And then you post a really cool something or another that’s any other color, including blue, and it’s like, wah, wah.

– Wah wah.

– We say the same thing.

– Yeah, wah, wah. It’s so funny to me. It’s so true, though. All right, here is, oh, you’ll like this one. Ann says, “Love your tips. “By the way, Sarah, your hair looks great!”

– Thanks! You know it’s straight today. I usually curl it. I think I might like the straight look, I don’t know. Thanks, guys, appreciate it.

– All right, and then I have Ranee here, and she says “How does one get an awesome photographer “to take pictures of one’s high-end floral design “without it costing an astronomical fee?” Do you have any tips there?

– Okay, so first, it’s totally okay to pay your photographers. If they want flowers from us, we’re gonna pay them, right? Or we’re gonna want them to pay us, rather, if we’re gonna design for them. So don’t stress about investing in your photographers. I do say that when you can do some trade that’s definitely helpful. I know personally, I do a lot of work with Styled Shoots Across America, which this year I’m not doing quite as much, not ’cause we’re fighting. I just want everyone to know, I love Heather at Styled Shoots Across America. Just ’cause I’m not traveling as much this year. So there are some amazing opportunities to get involved with Styled Shoots Across America, and Heather who runs that movement, she actually pulls right out of the Intrigue Teaches Facebook group, and she’ll announce when she’s got opportunities right in that group. The great thing about that is, when you design for these shoots that are done through Styled Shoots Across America, I’ve said that too many times, when you design for these, there are 10 photographers, 15 photographers, sometimes 20 photographers all capturing your images. Which means you have all those different eyes. And all those eyes are different artists, right? So they’re seeing your images differently. So that’s definitely a great way, is getting involved in these shoots and of multiple photographers. When it comes to getting images of your actual wedding work, this is a long answer again, Yvonne, so stop me if you need to.

– No, no, it’s a complicated question. It has a lot of different variables. I like it, keep on going, we got time.

– Awesome, awesome. So when you wanna get images from photographers of your live wedding work, which I know a lot of us do, you really need to start building that relationship before the wedding. So don’t just shoot an email off that day, and be like, hey, Bob Brian Photography, I’m gonna need images of my work, okay? ‘Cause that sounds aggressive, and like you’re telling me what you want. Like you should pay me, it just feels weird. But if instead, you start as soon as you figure out who the photographer is, and I ask my brides who their photographer is. As soon as you have that name and that information, start building that relationship. Reach out to them. Hey, Bob Brian, I’m really excited we’re gonna be working on Yvonne’s wedding on June 6th, and I’m excited to see the way you photograph my flowers. And then if you’re doing something interesting, maybe you’re doing an installation, or maybe you’re doing a beautiful, like, Intrigue-style bouquet, tell them about that. Oh, the bouquet is going to be just really unique and different for this bride. It’s gonna absolutely photograph beautifully. Start that conversation. Start talking to them so that they know you’re excited about their work. And the same thing on social. So here’s a little tip that I actually don’t share very often. I guess I’m about to share this. So I have a piece of paper. This is not the paper, but I have a piece of paper, and I will write a list of all the individuals I wanna interact with each week, so when I have weddings come up, I make sure that every week leading up to that wedding, I’m interacting on their social media. It means I’m liking, commenting their pictures, I’m becoming part of their social circle, right? So that when it comes time for the wedding, they’re excited to share those images with me. Now, if you’re thinking that’s a lot of work to get some free images, you’re right, it is. The other option is, pay the fee, and get your images for the cost. And honestly, sometimes, I don’t have time, and it’s just worth it to me to pay the fee. I don’t feel like most photographers charge an astronomical fee. Most of them do charge a pretty standard fee, and they want a couple hundred dollars and that’s it. The other thing you can do is, you can bring a photographer on staff with you, here at Intrigue we have Clear Sky Images, who just happens to also be my daughter. So we had her go and take classes and learn how to photograph. And then it took her about six months to a year to really start photographing flowers the way we wanted to see them. But that was really helpful, because now I’m able to travel with a photographer that can shoot images that are right away ready for me to share on social and share in my portfolio.

– Yeah, I love it. That all sounds amazing. Yeah, no, I think building those relationships with the photographers is super key. And also not have the expectation that you’re always going to get them free. And think of it not as an expense, but as an investment in your future events that you want to be attracting.

– Absolutely.

– So now that we have our photography from all of our different workshops and things, it’s like literally changed our lives. It’s one of the reasons why you’re able to like have branded everything, and have a cohesive look. And that has been key. So I can’t even say how much it’s changed our lives having all of those photographs. It’s very, very important. All right. I feel like there’s a lot of questions. I haven’t scrolled all the way through, so we’re working our way.

– Go ahead.

– All right.

– I am all yours.

– Okay, LeLe Floral says, all my brides, oh, here, let me bring it up, here we go. “All my brides want”–

– I love this.

– “Cafe au lait dahlias for summer weddings. “How can you keep them fresh?”

– Sorry. I was distracted looking at like the pictures pop up.

– Yeah.

– Can you read that again?

– Isn’t that fun? Okay.

– It is fun.

– Yeah, LeLe Floral says, “All my brides want “Cafe au lait dahlias for summer weddings. “How can we keep them fresh?”

– Okay, so I’m now talking the wholesaler, and I wanna make sure I answer this well. I’m gonna give you my honest answer, and I may get in trouble. Here’s the thing, guys. I can’t keep them fresh. I can’t keep them alive. I look at cafe au lait, and they’re beautiful for about four hours, and then they decide they do not wanna be designed by me. So I don’t have a great answer for you. Cafe au lait is my one struggle. The only time I’ve been able to get them to work well for me, I felt like was pure luck. So Yvonne, do you have a better answer for that?

– This is one I wish I had Dave and Shelley on the show with me, because this is their expertise. What I can tell you is that we have a flower care guide. I’m bringing it up just to double check on what is in here. I’ll share the link for it, of course. And I do have a dahlia section on here.

– How awesome.

– So let me just share that real quick, I have a bunch of windows open now. Just give me a second, so that way I don’t end the broadcast by accident like I’ve done before. So if you go to info.mayesh.com, and then it’s flower-care-guide. So go to there, it’s a little form that you fill out, and then you can download our guide. And let me just bring that back up so I can read to you what it says. So I do know enough from doing the shows with Dave and Shelley, that like, the taking care of your flowers and processing them properly is key and huge to pretty much everything. So in our flower guide it says, using a hydrating solution intended for bulb flowers from your favorite brand, whatever that is, is very, very important. Make sure that you pre-cool your floral solution and flowers to the same temperature. Make sure that you remove all foliage from under the water line, and then cut your stems at an angle with a sharp, clean knife. And then it says, cut the dahlia stems, bleed proteins, amino acids, sugars and minerals, which are a breeding ground for bacteria. I don’t really know what that means. Cut dahlia stems that bleed– Yeah, does that make sense to anyone? Not a flower person, I don’t know. I’ll have to ask Dave and Shelley.

– I have an idea. This is kinda from April’s phone, but when it is dahlia season again, why don’t we work together, Yvonne, and I can do some fun videos about how to keep it alive, and I will figure it out myself as we are doing this. Because, honestly, this is an area that I need some more education, too, because I can keep any flower alive for long periods of time, except for the cafe au laits that I love so much.

– Yeah. They also said here, the hydrating solution needs to be changed more often with this flower as well to prolong the vase life. So if you guys are using hydrating solution, which I have feeling a lot of the wedding and event people do not. Do you, Sarah?

– I do.

– Okay, good.

– I have my favorite brands, I like my cross brands, and I definitely use solutions for everything. But I don’t change it regularly. So that could be part of it.

– Yeah.

– And it also could be anything.

– Yeah, yeah, it needs to be changed often, and then to store the dahlias, you should be storing them at 40 to 44 degrees. So that is the other piece of it. Can’t be too cold, and it can’t be hot.

– Well, that also could be the challenge I run into, because I’m a cool bot user. And the cool bots, they’ll say that they hover around 40, 45-ish, but they really don’t. They’re more like a 50, 55 range. So that could also be part of it.

– Yeah, yeah.

– That’s as cold as we get.

– Yep, yep, so we’ll put the link in the comments as well, so that way you guys can check it out. And of course I’ll include it in our show notes. And that way, you guys will have it there as well. But it goes over a lot of the different problem flowers that we hear about on our show, pretty much every month. So we talk about anemones and clematis, callas, dahlias, and gardenias, gloriosa lilies, ’cause those are some finicky flowers sometimes.

– I love gloriosa.

– Hellabores. And literally every single month I get at least a couple questions about hydrangea. It’s crazy to me. We talk about hydrangea constantly. Lily of the valley, peonies, phalaenopsis, roses, and stephanotis. So those are all in this amazing guide. And then of course there’s a kind of a general care and tips for handling.

– Awesome.

– Check it out.

– Well I’m glad you guys asked me a question I had no idea to answer.

– Yeah, yeah. No, it’s okay. There are some troublesome flowers out there. And so I just feel like the theme to everyone’s answers, like Dave and Shelley’s is all about the care and handling at the beginning, using the right types of solutions. Different flowers need different types of solutions, and just kind of knowing those and how they’re supposed to be handled. Again, it’s a whole other learning process that, again, I’m not very familiar with either, myself. But it’s all good. We’re all here learning together. All right, next question is from Krisanna. She says, “How can I get the blue apron “on your site, Sarah? “The blue offered doesn’t seem like the same pattern “you are wearing, and I want that bright blue!”

– Well–

– Love it.

– The blue was the very first to go. It is no longer available. However, I do happen to have the blue apron that was used in those promo photos, so if you would like it, send me a message, and I will make sure you get that particular one, and I will even sign it for you.

– Aww, I love it.

– There’s only one, so if anyone else wants it, you’re out of luck.

– Very cool. Thanks, Sarah. And thank you, Krisanna. All right, next question is from Cecilia. She says, “Do you have a recommendation “for a tripod to hold your phone when you record videos?”

– Yes, can I step off camera for a minute and get it?

– Yeah, yeah, and I have mine, too, that I love, that I wanna show everyone, too.

– Awesome, I’ll be back in a hot second, ’cause it’s right here.

– Okay. Yeah, while Sarah is grabbing hers, I do, so when I did the quick Instagram today I did not use anything, ’cause literally I was on for 30 seconds. But I have this really cool one that clips onto my desk. And then it has a USB that can plug into my computer. And it has a little round light that will sit behind the phone. So it holds the phone, it has a little light, and it makes everything really bright. There’s also some other cool, like smaller tripods that you can just hold, and it helps just having your phone on anything. I have one that like kind of looks like a gun almost, that you can kind of clip the phone too as well. So if you need to walk around, it makes everything more smooth. Sarah, do you have your tripod?

– No, they were filming on Friday and it’s set up on stubble. So I don’t have it. I forgot it’s not with me.

– Do you wanna describe what kind it is, and I’m gonna go grab mine real quick. Just hold on, it’s right behind me.

– Yeah, so what I use is, I believe it’s called a Gorilla. I have to double check that. But it is a tripod that has little, bendy, like octopus arms that you can bend around, I bend it around tree limbs, I bend it around lamp posts, so that you can attach it pretty much anywhere. And for me, personally, I like the angle that shoots down, ’cause I look skinnier, so I like to angle mine up higher, and allow it to shoot down. I also use it when I’m doing selfies or when I’m doing, like those big bunch pictures that I take, I don’t know if you guys saw the ones I did on the farm last week. They were insane. I will actually attach that tripod with these little, bendy arms to anything I can attach it to, so that it’s just in close enough area that I can reach around with one arm and hit the button as I’m holding my big bunches.

– Yeah, that’s very cool.

– I can share a link with you. And they’re not expensive. They’re like $14. I can share a link with you exactly what I use.

– Yeah, that’s very cool. And so here’s the one, ’cause I do work in an office setting. I’m not like, walking around. So here’s the light that I was telling you about. And then it has a clip as well. And it bends kind of like what Sarah was talking about, and then it clips. I’m trying to get it right in front. And then it clips to the desk. So I clip it down on my desk, I have the little light, and then the phone, and then I have to adjust my chair basically. And there’s a USB that just plugs into the computer and the light works. So it’s pretty cool if you’re gonna use it in the office setting, or like in your shop, or things like that. But definitely what Sarah’s talking about seems like more versatile if you’re like walking around, or wanting to use it at events and things like that.

– Yeah, yours is way different than mine. I will say that mine is also super, super hardy. Because like I’ve dropped it in a bucket and take it out and shaken it off. I’ve attached it to like fun flowers.

– Yeah.

– It’s definitely like, yours is definitely more for an office. The one I have is definitely more for like wherever you are in the world.

– Yeah. No, but I like those ones that have like the bendy arms. And so I remember being at one of my first conferences and I saw like a dude with his phone attached to like this tripod, and he had it bent so it was like over his shoulders, and he was just like walking around with it. So yeah, you can use it all different ways, and they’re just so versatile. And I do recommend using some sort of tripod whatever you’re doing. Whether it’s taking pictures and videos. It just really helps up your quality, and make it look more professional, honestly.

– Yeah, also there is another unit that I’ve tried using, but I need it to be less complicated. But it creates really beautiful video. Makes very smooth video. It’s called a Smooth-Q. The Smooth-Q, it’s like this apparatus you attach your phone to, and it gives you those really smooth, like cinematic movements. It is wonderful. I never use it, though, because it’s like an extra step, and clearly I need it to be super simple.

– Yeah, yeah, yeah. I’ve always wanted to get one of those, too. I just haven’t yet.

– Well, I’ll send you mine. It’s been used three times. It’s all yours.

– Very cool. So I’ve mentioned a few times that my daughter plays soccer. And I really wanna get this one camera, I’m trying to think of what it’s called. But you can clip something to you, and then you set up the video camera, and as you’re moving, which would be cool if you’re gonna maybe like speed it up and do like a time-lapse type of thing at an event, it will literally follow you. So you clip on this little clip thingy–

– Whoa.

– And the camera just follows you around without you having to move it.

– I need that.

– Which is really, really cool. Yeah, yeah, it’s pretty amazing. So one day.

– Look at that, we’re turning into techies.

– I know. I am a nerd!

– I am too, so we get along.

– Yeah. Big, big nerd. Well, I’ll try and take a couple more questions, and then we’re gonna have to wrap it up, ’cause it’s almost noon, I cannot believe it. Roxanne says, “Is the rose to peony video “an example of a time-lapse?”

– Yes, sort of. That was an actual video, it’s an actual video that you can download on our Intrigue Teaches site, that we just sped up. So it was a professional-grade video, that we just sped up. But yes, it is a demo of time-lapse. If you go back a few, I don’t know how far back, but you’ll see where it’s more basic. The lighting’s not perfect, and I’m just creating a design really, really fast. And in fact, I can share, I will share a basic time-lapse, a really easy time-lapse today on my feed, so you can see an updated version of what that is, and again, if you have any questions, feel free to ask on my feed.

– Very cool. I have a question from John Campbell. Might be in relation to Sarah Campbell, I’m not sure.

– I love all the Campbells. Hi, John!

– It says, “Hi, Sarah! “What was the moment that made you finally switch “from planning to floral designing? “As a planner who is quickly gaining a passion for florals, “this is something I’ve been weighing lately. “I’d love your insight.”

– Okay, so what made the switch? The story is actually long. It might need its own session just to tell the actual story. It’s also a very good story over a glass of wine or two. But really came down to knowing that, yes, I can do wedding planning. But the reality was I didn’t care if the bride made it to the church on time, if they had any food at the hall. I just wanted it to look beautiful. And when I realized that not only did I have the ability, that I could create these beautiful things, but also that’s where my priorities lied, you will always be more successful when you follow what is in your heart, when you follow your priorities. So because I always cared how beautiful everything was, and creating that environment, that’s something that you really can control as a florist, as an event designer. That isn’t something you have as much control over as a planner. A planner, some planners do design as well, but for the most part, most of the successful planners I see, they are primarily more on the logistics and the visual inspiration side, and not physically creating. So I also found that for me, I sold better when I was selling design than when I was selling planning. So opposed to seeling like a service, that, or selling a, music.

– Sorry.

– Now, I’m selling a physical creation. I’m selling something tangible. I found that the money was significantly better when I jumped into florals. And specifically into those large-scale wedding florals than it was when I was doing solely planning. And I say it over and over again, I’m a business person, a businesswoman first, business individual first, whatever you wanna call it. And I am a florist second. Because you first have to make sure you are running a sustainable, powerful business in order to do what you love. So look at the dollars. And I feel like sometimes in our industry it’s not popular to say that, it’s not popular to say I’m designing because I wanna make a profit. But at the end of the day, why are we working so hard, if not to build a profit? If we are a hobbyist, that’s totally fine, you can be a hobbyist. But that’s not my game. I’m in the floral business to build a life, and build income and revenue for my family. And there’s far more revenue in flowers than there was in planning for me.

– Love it, cheers to that. We are coming to the end. And so before everyone leaves, I thought we should talk about Intrigue Experience a little bit, and the special that you have for everyone. Hopefully you all have hung in there for this.

– So our Intrigue Experience Conference, and in fact, earlier when I was talking to Yvonne privately, I said I really feel like it was this conference that actually put me on the map when we first started hosting. It was four years ago when we first started hosting this conference. And the reason I launched the Intrigue Experience Conference was because I personally have this hunger for floral education. And I wanna learn from everyone. And I found that I couldn’t learn from everyone and still run my business at the same time. So I thought, wouldn’t it be amazing if we brought everyone together? For the first conference I looked at three, distinct design styles. I looked at the foraged gardeny style. I looked at the more modern, or what I call is that modern AAFD, very clean lines, streamlined style, and then of course a ballroom style, which is where I feel like I fit very well. And I pooled designers from these three, distinct areas, and really created this diverse gathering of florists, and planners, and designers all coming together. Not only that, I wanted an event that I could create that was curated around every corner. So I found that when I went to a conference, or an event with wedding planners everything was beautiful, and every piece was in its place, and you always knew what you were supposed to do, and then I would go to a floral workshop, ’cause I really wanted to learn florals, but flowers can be chaotic, and florists aren’t planners at the same time. So sometimes there’s a lot of chaos when it comes to workshops. And I wanted to create this event that was bigger than myself, and brought everyone together in both floral hands-on workshops and curated style design, and photography. So that’s what launched Intrigue Experience. And we just launched our 2019 Intrigue Experience a couple weeks ago, and it sold out in seven days. Which, isn’t that amazing? I’m so nervous–

– That’s amazing.

– Last year I was on tour all year. Normally we launch this conference a year out. I really didn’t have the time to put into the launch until January, once the tour ended, so we launched a conference two and a half, three months out, and I was shocked at the response we received. But I have something. I actually saved two of the seats.

– I’m so excited.

– So, I saved two of the seats just for us today, just for you and your customers at Mayesh. So only for your customers. We’re not do this anywhere else. I have two seats. They’re available for the first two individuals. The site will very much still say sold out. I’m not changing the site. You enter code Mayesh. And you will be able to have access to those seats. Not only that, you have access to it at the presale rate. So it is, I believe $1,000 below what is on there right now. So we only have two of those. So the first two of you to get to the Intrigue Experience site and put your order in, using that code, Mayesh, will have those two seats.

– Awesome. Thank you so much, Sarah.

– You’re welcome. It was kind of exciting. I can’t wait to see who the two people are.

– I know. If you guys are the two people, make sure you let us know. ‘Cause we wanna maybe follow you guys around. I wanna hear about everything. You guys can be our insiders, our Mayesh insiders.

– Yvonne right now, she’s like, wait a minute, I’m getting that seat before anyone else.

– Yeah, hold on real quick. Awesome. Well, Sarah, this has been amazing. I have a whole bunch of other questions, so I think we’ll be able to work together and get those answered, and I can add them to the blog, I’m sure.

– Absolutely.

– So if you all, yeah, I know. You’re amazing like that. So if you guys give me, us just a little bit of time, we’ll get those up on the blog show notes as well for you all. Anyone that’s also sent in questions that we didn’t have time to get to. So Sarah, you’ve been an amazing guest. Thank you so much for sharing everything, all your tips and marketing strategies. It was great. And as always, I love seeing your smiling face. So thank you so much.

– Thank you. Bye, guys!

– All right, have a great day. Bye, Sarah. All right, guys. I hope you enjoyed that as much as I did. That was awesome. Sarah is amazing. So much passion, and so much joy in what she does, right? You can just feel it from her. And that’s probably one of the most things that I love about her. And so that’s a wrap. A wrap on February 5th Mornings with Mayesh. I hope to see you guys. If you guys have more questions for Sarah, go ahead and put those in the comments now. In a couple of hours I’m gonna go through those and get those off to her and her team, that way we can answer them for you, and add them to our show notes on the blog post for this show. That’ll be up in a day or two. Give us a little bit of time. Our next show, as I mentioned in the beginning, is scheduled for February 19th, after Valentine’s Day. So on behalf of our Mayesh family, we wish you a very successful Valentine’s Day. And we hope that it is full of love, and full of successful business. Thank you for joining us, and I will see you soon. Have a rocking day. Bye guys!

Interview: Willa Rose Floral

Willa Rose Floral Interview

 

This week’s Instagram takeover was a dear customer of our Detroit branch, and was first introduced to me after Detroit’s buyer, Andy Arthur, enlisted Julia Griffin of Willa Rose Floral to create his floral beard after winning our No-Shave November contest. She totally rocked the beard and set up the coolest urban photoshoot with Andy, so I knew we had to see more from her!

You learned a bit about Julia’s journey as a farmer florist through her takeover this past week, but let’s dive in a bit more!

 


 

So tell us a little bit about yourself!

I am a flower enthusiast – my life completely revolves around flowers! My cut flower farm and design studio are in Detroit, MI, a couple miles from downtown. I couldn’t imagine a better place to start a farm or business, as I am surrounded by tons of creative energy and encouragement. I have an amazing partner and 2 really sweet cats that love to eat flowers (the cats eat my flowers, not my partner).

 

Willa Rose Floral Interview

 

You’re both a flower farmer & floral designer — which did you start out doing first, and how did it lead to the other?

I started out as a farmer, growing vegetables actually! I was getting my degree in nutrition and food science and I realized I had no idea how to actually grow food, so I contacted a local vegetable CSA farm and started volunteering there. After a season of volunteering once a week in exchange for a box full of vegetables (which was an amazing deal), they offered me a full-time job for the following season when I graduated. The couple who owned the farm, Tom and Nancy, were transitioning to flower farming the following season after winning a community development grant for non-edible crops. This worked out perfectly because Nancy and I were already in the midst of falling head over heels for flowers. They took me under their wing and taught me everything I know about farming which I am unbelievably thankful for. Growing the flowers naturally led to the idea of wanting to create with them. I have always been creative but I don’t think I ever had the perfect outlet, until flowers. About two years into farming I started to become really interested in the design aspect of flowers and I took on wedding and event design.

 

Willa Rose Floral Interview

 

Tell us more about your farm!

Ahh my happy place! My farm is located in the Core City neighborhood of Detroit, which is about 2 miles northwest of downtown. The farm is small – about ½ an acre – and I’m focusing on growing unique and interesting varieties that I know I can’t get elsewhere. Everything I grow will be directly used in my design work. I’ve spent months planning, clearing, shoveling, and ordering, and seed starting begins in a few weeks!

I found the land when a friend introduced me to Philip Kafka, a developer who owns most of a few square blocks in the neighborhood. A few years ago, Philip built a village of Quonset live/work huts on a collection of vacant lots, and on top of building out my studio, is in the middle of building a bakery, restaurant, park and a handful of other projects. I am really excited to be a part of this community!

 

Willa Rose Floral Interview

 

What are your favorite flowers to grow?

Wow that is a hard question… Anything out of the ordinary! Ranunculus are one of my all-time favorites. They are fairly easy if Mother Nature is kind to you. They produce a TON and the blooms last a solid two weeks or more. And the colors available to grow are phenomenal. I just put in a massive order for some Italian varieties for the 2020 season that I am beyond excited for. I also love perennials because they are fairly easy, they produce more and more every year and they add interest to design work. Some of my favorites are garden roses, bears breech, Japanese anemone and clematis. I’m also really into plants that attract pollinators — I’ll have hives on the farm starting in the spring, and am turning a whole nook of my farm into a pollinator garden.

 

Willa Rose Floral Interview

 

I think it’s so interesting that Michigan has such a vibrant flower scene. From Detroit Flower House to all the small farms I’ve learned about, there are some really cool things happening there. Can you talk a bit about the floral community there?

I have been so blown away by the flower community here. Everyone is so supportive, encouraging, and kind. I swear I am like a kid in a candy store when you put me in a room with fellow flower lovers. We are so lucky because there are so many amazing growers and designers in Michigan who are so giving with their information and time. We also have Michigan Flower Co-op!! It’s the best. Local growers bring their product weekly and other designers/growers can shop. It gives growers an outlet for their flowers and it gives designers access to amazing, unique locally grown flowers! And Detroit Flower House… walking through that was truly one of the best experiences of my life.

 

Jumping to the design side of things… how would you describe your design style or philosophy?

I would say my design style is natural, romantic and whimsical with a touch of weird. I like to think my style is a bit unconventional. I really really strive to make things that I haven’t seen before.  I try to do things as sustainably as possible by growing my own flowers, not using flower foam, composting everything after events and I even use the cardboard I get from wholesale boxed flowers as a base to build my flower beds! It’s called the lasagna method but I won’t bore you with more details.

 

Willa Rose Floral Interview

Willa Rose Floral Interview

 

What trends do you see emerging in the world of floral design & weddings?

I think floral design is becoming this insane art form and designers are really pushing the boundaries of an industry that seemed kind of stagnant for a while. Whether this is through crazy installations, massive headpieces, or really unique arrangements, people are thinking outside the box and seeking out more obscure flowers. And color! The use of color in the industry right now is stunning to me. I think this is slowly seeping into design for weddings too. Of course some brides still only want what they see on Pinterest. But I think they are becoming more aware of the fact that is okay to do something different! And designers appreciate doing something different.

 

Willa Rose Floral Interview

Willa Rose Floral Interview

Willa Rose Floral Interview

 

Do you see yourself really diving more into one of these businesses in the future, or do your farm and design studio have a symbiotic relationship that will continue to grow and work together?

I don’t know if I could ever give up either. I do think I am already going deeper into the design aspect of the business and backing off a little from the farming. Instead of growing tons of flowers, I am really focusing on only growing rare and unique varieties, and focusing on things that I want to use in my own work that can’t be shipped or bought elsewhere. It would definitely be easier and probably more profitable for me to buy all my flowers and just focus on design, but I also don’t think I would feel satisfied. There’s something so special about using a flower you nurtured from seed to stem in your designs. And brides love being able to visit the farm months before their wedding and see their bridal bouquet blooms as seedlings!

 

We can’t end this interview without discussing that EPIC floral beard you created for our very own Andy Arthur!!! When we finished our Mayesh No-Shave November challenge, we honestly thought everyone would shave and that would be the end of it. But, since Andy is a rockstar, not only did he raise the most money, but he kept his scruff & enlisted you to design that awesome floral beard. Not to mention the photo shoot that followed! Tell us a bit about that process and how you came up with the design for that?

That was seriously so fun!! I was so happy Andy asked me and we have become good friends since. And by good friends I mean I bug him daily about flower availability and ask him about 10 questions a day. He asked me to do it and about 5 days later I built it. Luckily he is an amazing flower sourcer and got me everything I needed really quickly, with the addition of some plant bits from a local greenhouse. I went to his office and measured his face for the pleather base. Then I glued the flowers and plants directly onto that. To be honest, I didn’t really have a clear design plan for it. Like most of my design work, I had a vague idea of what I wanted to do, and then just started gluing. I did know that I wanted it to be super wild and have little curly pieces sticking out everywhere, which I accomplished with goanna claw. One of my best friends, Catherine Holden, is an amazing photographer and is always down to shoot my crazy ideas. So she and Andy came over and we had a little photo shoot of the beard!

 

Willa Rose Floral Interview

Willa Rose Floral Interview

 

Any advice for new farmer florists?

It is hard work! And it never gets easy. You will probably fail at a few crops. But you will definitely learn from those failures! And there is nothing more rewarding than when you finally succeed! Don’t be afraid to ask local growers or designers questions. Learn everything you can from everyone! And once you do that you will still probably only know a tiny portion – but that’s the best part! There are endless things to learn about flowers.

 


 

We hope you enjoyed learning a bit more about Julia & Willa Rose Floral! Make sure to give her a follow to keep up with farm & flower happenings!

 


 

Images:

@holdenphotographs

@kerbylouphotography

@amanda_dumouchelle

@pointesofview

 

 

Interview: Brier + Ivy

Brier + Ivy Instagram Takeover

 

I’m super excited to share our interview with the designer of yesterday’s takeover, Amy Atkinson-Barnes of Brier + Ivy. Now, I’m not exactly sure what’s going on in Oregon, but we’ve had a surge of Portland & Oregon based designers taking over our feed! I think Amy is the third consecutive Oregon designer to do a takeover for us, and I’m loving it! Although, I may be a bit biased as I graduated from the U of O and spent ten years in the PNW (Go Ducks!)

Anyhow, Portland is such a wonderful city that really supports the creative community and is just blossoming with young artists, so it probably does make sense after all!

I hope you enjoyed Amy’s takeover as much as I did, so let’s get to know the designer behind the flowers a bit better, shall we?

 

 


 

 

So tell us a little bit about yourself, and how you found yourself in the industry!

I studied psychology in college + was unsure of my career path. I was considering school counseling, but knew I wanted to work with people. I decided to take some time between undergrad and a masters program. In the interim, I got an office admin job and quickly learned the office life wasn’t for me. I started to pursue floral design as a side project and creative outlet but it quickly grew from that and I am so glad it did! Floral design comes so naturally to me, I couldn’t imagine doing anything else!

 

Brier + Ivy Instagram Takeover

 

We’ve had a few other takeovers from Portland floral designers, and I always love hearing their thoughts about the Portland flower community! (I went to to school at U of O and have spent a lot of time in Portland, so the city is near & dear to my heart!) What is your take on the industry in Portland?

As a Portland native, I have always loved this city. It has gone through so much growth and change over the last decade and as a local that can be hard to grasp at all times. That said, I think the wedding industry in Portland has gained so much from this growth. The Portland wedding industry is so vibrant + different than anywhere else I’ve witnessed. Though at times it feels over saturated, the overall sense of community in this industry is unparalleled and very encouraging. This unique community has become a model for vendors all over the world striving to make weddings more unique + artistic.

 

 

You own Brier + Ivy with your husband – what is his role in the company and how is it working so closely with your significant other?

Brier + Ivy has been a total dream for me. Pursuing this little flower business has been my main passion for the last few years + I am so grateful to have such a supportive partner! Brian has been getting more + more involved recently + it’s been awesome! Being able to travel together has been a game changer for us – we spent a month in Europe last fall flowering in Iceland, Switzerland + Italy! Brian has a background in production and management so he runs more of our day to day and behind the scenes operations. I work with clients and do all the designing. He is also our expert “installer” for larger floral pieces needing to be hung etc. Perhaps, most of all, he keeps me organized! When designing florals I tend to be very messy 🙂

 

Brier + Ivy Instagram takeover

 

How would you describe your design style or philosophy?

My designs are very much driven by the flowers I use. (Shoutout to Jocelyn for always helping me get incredible orders!) I am inspired by crooked stems or a random colored petal. I love texture + detail. While I’ll always love garden roses + peonies, those larger blooms tend to take a back seat in my designs. Focusing more on the detail + creating as much texture + depth as possible. I truly believe that makes each individual flower shine so much more!

 

Brier + Ivy Instagram Takeover

 

We all know being in the wedding industry isn’t easy, but there’s always that something for each of us that keeps us in. What keeps you going and motived to live that flower hustlin’ life every day?

The flower hustlin’ life is definitely exhausting but there’s two things that keep me motivated. First, our clients! I know vendors like to brag about their clients, but I truly am so very grateful for the people we work with – they’re kind, inspiring + generous making the hard work + long hours so worth it. Secondly, simply being able to pursue something I love + am passionate about as a career is so incredible. Building a business that is so close to our heats + watching it support our family has been one of the greatest joys of our marriage thus far!

 

Brier + Ivy Instagram Takeover

 

Let’s talk tools – favorite florist tool, and favorite app you use in your business, be it social media or business organization? Instagram counts (ha!) but if there’s anything else you’re using we’d love to hear about it!

Honestly, I am terrible with tools. I lose them all the time, or forget they’re in my purse + they get taken at TSA, haha! So my favorite tool is the one that I find in my pocket at any given time. My other favorite are the newer rose strippers – the bigger ones that are a larger plastic cylinder that surrounds the stem – so much better than the old metal ones!

My favorite app is Instagram, it feels cliche to say that, but it truly is such a unique way to be able to share your portfolio + your business with a broad audience. It is also such an incredible way to connect with other vendors + fellow florists. I do also love WordSwag + Unfold for make insta stories etc.

 

Besides the obvious “romantic garden style” style, what other wedding and floral trends are you noticing?

While I love oversized + lush bouquets + installs, lately I have been so inspired by the more modern minimalism approach to design. Things like a hand made ceramic bowl with an exposed pin frog sitting in it + just a few lovely stems coming out. Or an organic feeling ceremony backdrop made of just one or two types of florals. I also love to monochromatic trend – we made an all blush bouquet this fall that was too cool! (Yes, it did involve spray paint!)

 

Brier + Ivy instagram takeover

 

Can you answer the age-old question… all-time favorite flower? I’ll allow a couple because even I can’t choose just one 😉

Oh boy, I am never good at this question but I’ll do my best!

Sentimentally my fav flower is a dahlia. Brian’s grandma grew them when he was a child + he has fond memories of her dahlia fields out on the Olympic Peninsula. They were a main part of my own wedding bouquet I designed.

Currently, my fav flower is a butterfly ranunculus. they’re just too darn cute + delicate!

Texturally I love Icelandic poppies (particularly the ones that are just barely blush colored) + I am obsessed with the tiny white rambling roses. They are so delicate + the season is so short but they are just too cool!

 

Brier + Ivy Instagram Takeover

 

What would you go back and tell yourself as you were just starting out?

You can’t do it all by yourself, so stop trying!! I am not someone that really likes to ask for help and I love to be self-sufficient. Thus, starting this business I was so motivated to do everything myself. Now my motto is, “know your strengths.” I am a lot happier (and probably more successful) now that Brian has taken on a lot of the aspects of the business that I’m not great at. Hiring an accountant was probably the best thing we could have done as well! Being a little more freed up to focus on design + vision has been life changing!

 

Brier + Ivy Instagram Takeover

Brier + Ivy Instagram Takeover

 

Photo Credits, in order:

1. Olivia Strohm
2. Nicole Mason
3. Olivia Strohm
4. Dawn Jarvie
5. Dawn Jarvie
6. Jess Hunter
7. Olivia Strohm
8. Olivia Strohm
9. Malorie Kerouac
10. Olivia Strohm

 


 

Thanks so much for reading, and to see what Amy’s up to in the studio, make sure to follow @brierandivy on Instagram!

 

Beyond the ‘Gram: Interview with Blush Botanicals

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

 

This month I am excited to share an interview I did over the summer with Alex Wise of Blush Botanicals. We have worked with this talented businesswoman and floralpreneur for several years and are always blown away by her stunning wedding and event work. She is gracious with her time and talents, always willing to mentor and share her knowledge with not only her staff but with up and coming new talent in the floral design industry. Respect is the word I hear most about her. “She is kind, thoughtful and generous and most of all she treats people with respect,” says Sara Eaton of Black Lotus Designs. In an industry that can be overrun with divas (especially for this caliber of upper echelon event companies) that is truly an indication of this lady’s character. Her work ethic and integrity are long admired and she is a pleasure to have as a client.

 

We had a passionate conversation about life, flowers, running a floral business in this current social media-driven flower climate and the challenges of being a new mom while working as a high-end wedding and event florist. Trying to find the perfect life/work balance is key and Alex is proving that you can do both and succeed in this hectic industry.

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

 

 

SHELLEY: Hi Alex, first of all, congratulations to you and your husband on your new baby! I know this is a very exciting new chapter in your life.

 

ALEX: THANK YOU!  We are so over the moon about this little gremlin but it’s A TON OF WORK (as you know!)!!!

 

S: I definitely do! I don’t think anyone can ever prepare you for it. We are so happy for you by the way. So to start, I would like to start our conversation by asking you a few questions about yourself and your background.

 

Alex, tell us, what were your favorite subjects in school?  Did you see yourself as the artistic type or a future entrepreneur?

 

A: I loved any courses having to do with art such as drawing or sculpture and also loved finance/economics and accounting.  I know this is a weird mixture, but that is the way my mind works. I always envisioned myself running my own business, it is in my blood.  Both of my grandfathers were and my father is an entrepreneur and it is the mindset I was raised with. I couldn’t imagine working a corporate job or having a 9 to 5.

 

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

Photo: @the_grovers 

 

 

S: Same, I think when art is your calling it’s impossible to work an office job!

 

Are you a native Californian? What other places have you lived?

 

A: No, I was born and raised in New York and honestly, always thought I’d move back.  I moved to San Diego with my family when I was about 15 years old. I also lived in Los Angeles while I attended USC.

 

S: What led you into the floral design industry? Were you always a wedding and event florist?

 

A: I got into the floral design industry very randomly and with no background.  I was working at Merrill Lynch out of college and really disliked it so I began searching for other things I could enjoy doing.  After helping a friend’s mother create florals for a party I was hooked! It was always important to me to be able to be financially independent and after creating a business plan and working out the finances, it became clear to me that it could be a really lucrative and fun path so I went for it!

 

S: From finances to flowers – love it! I think it’s wonderful that you had that strong financial background going in. I know it has probably been beneficial to you as a floral business owner. For many florists, this is not their strong suit.

 

A: I had always known I would start my own business in some capacity but would have never guessed it would be in floral design.  Every time I am creating a beautiful event I think… pinch me, I can’t believe I [get to] do this for a living! I studied finance with a minor in real estate investment so I really thought I’d be doing something in that arena, but the world works in mysterious ways!

 

S: It definitely sounds like you got bit by the flower bug! What year was Blush Botanicals founded?

 

A:  2009

 

S: I saw a recent Instagram post where you gave tips on entering the luxury wedding industry. You seemed to have cracked the code on this very exclusive and finite amount of high-end wedding business. Can you give our readers some pointers?

 

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

Photo: @the_grovers 

 

 

A: I’m happy to give pointers!  I also have plans to launch an in-depth online course on this in the next year so look out for that as I’ll go into major detail on this process!  See below for a few pointers 🙂 :

 

KNOW YOURSELF. This entails doing major research on who you are and/or how you want to be portrayed.  What makes you unique and your brand different? What look do you want to put out there in the world and be known for? What venues would you like to work with?  What vendors would you like to work with? What colors and textures are you drawn to? Don’t be afraid to be different and not do exactly what everyone else is doing (if everyone else is doing a calligraphy logo, stay away from it so that you can be unique and can stand out and become known for something NEW!).

 

KNOW YOUR TARGET CLIENT. Research your target client and design your brand around her/him.  Give your client a name and a house and a look. How would he/she dress?  What type of car would he or she be driving? Get specific here and then be sure your brand is consistent with the client you are going after.

 

BRANDING is so important!  Invest in a logo and a website that fits your brand and your target client.  Be cognizant of colors and type fonts and never stray from what is true to your brand.

 

SPEND MONEY TO MAKE MONEY. You’ll need to invest in yourself and your brand if you are going to play in the luxury market.  Your website is the first thing your client will see, so invest in a beautiful website. Be sure your verbiage is completely consistent with your brand and must speak to the needs of your target client.  Invest in photoshoots that are true to the client that you want to attract and SPEND on them. You’ll have to spend enough to create something dramatic if you are hoping to attract a bride that wants drama for her big day.

 

ALIGN YOURSELF WITH THE RIGHT VENDORS. Find vendors you love and admire and align yourself with those vendors.  This can only be done once you know exactly who you are and have an established brand.  It only takes one perfect referral to take it to the next level!

 

PHOTOS PHOTOS PHOTOS!  If you are creating a wedding that you feel is perfect for your brand and your website and can’t wait to show it off, make sure you know and like the photographers work!  If you don’t get good photos then you may as well never have done the wedding. If you plan to do a spectacular job (obviously you do) and are worried about the photos, HIRE YOUR OWN PHOTOGRAPHER!  Don’t be afraid to spend a little bit of money here to get the perfect photos, it is worth it! Another important side note is to ONLY use professional imagery. Don’t showcase iPhone photos on your website!

 

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

Photo: @bryanmillerphoto 

 

 

S: All excellent advice, thank you Alex. So what is your take away working with this level of brides and wedding planners?

 

A: Stay humble and create a flower family.  You can’t create this type of magic on your own, you will come to find that you rely heavily on your team and on the amazing vendors you align yourself with and it is important to remember that.  Your team should be your family and you should treat them accordingly. When it comes to wedding planners, find the ones that are the best fit for you and your personality. Don’t try to work with coordinators who make you feel bad or don’t treat you with respect or who take advantage of you, work with people who fan your flame and support you!

 

S: What’s the weirdest or most unusual request you have gotten from a client so far? How did you execute it?

 

A: Hmm… this is tough… I was a bit caught off guard a few years back when a client that we have never met (booked after a short phone call and lived in Arkansas) let me know that she wanted me to design her daughter’s wedding from the ground up and trusted me to make all of the design choices from start to finish (including color scheme) without needing to run anything past them or even meeting them in person.  I was nervous to get their vision right and to respect their budget wishes without having any sort of direction. This turned out to be one of my favorite weddings to date and one of the kindest, most gracious clients I have ever worked with. It really helped boost my confidence level as well in terms of making decisions for the client when they’d like me to.

 

S: Sounds like a dream client, we love those!

 

So what’s your favorite flower? Any you’re not a fan of? Any you refuse to work with? Favorite color palette?

 

A: My favorite flower changes from month to month!  If I had to name one right now it would be white clematis.  I love how dainty the stem is, the foliage and how it naturally drapes.  I am not a fan of birds of paradise. I refuse to work with poorly dyed flowers such as a blue orchid or something that is extremely artificial looking.  My favorite color palette is a neutral palette of creams, whites, and greens. I LOVE throwing in a hint of black when I can.

 

S: Well no surprise there, elegant neutral palettes seems to be your calling card. Would you say your design style has changed over the years?

 

A: My design style has changed immensely over the years.  I think as a designer, it takes years to fully find yourself and it edits slightly through the years.  I think initially, my style was literally to cater to whatever style walked in my doors. I don’t think my brand truly had an identity until I became more confident in my designs and in who I am.  I was initially very attracted to all things glamorous and now I am more attracted to studying nature and movement and introducing natural elements.

 

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

Photo: @elysehallphotography 

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

Photo: @the_grovers 

 

 

S: What trends do you see bride’s asking for in the coming next two years?

 

A: This is a tough question and we try not to get TOO trendy with our work and stay pretty timeless with a current spin, but I have come to find that fashion trends take about 2-3 years to translate into event trends.  If textures and patterns are being showcased along the fashion runways, chances are that in a few years, you’ll see those as major event trends.

 

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

Photo: @bryanmillerphoto 

 

 

S: I understand Blush has a minimum for events? I know you have a sister company Parker & Posies that started as a way to handle some of the brides that wanted to work with your team but maybe weren’t quite in Blush’s minimum range. I think it’s a brilliant idea by the way. How has that decision worked for your brand?

 

A: Yes, Blush does have a minimum and we limit the number of events we take on per year. Starting Parker and Posies has truly been one of the best and most rewarding decisions I’ve made in business!  The decision was originally made because I was beginning to think about starting a family and needed to limit my involvement to a few events per year and also didn’t want to lose my amazing team with not having enough work to keep them busy, not to mention we were turning away a lot of beautiful events that we would have loved to be a part of at Blush but were already booked up with larger events and couldn’t take on more work.  The dream would not have been able to be a reality without the extremely hard work of my business partner, Brittany, who had no background in flowers when I met her. Over the years, she learned every aspect of our world through working for Blush and when I approached her about starting Parker and Posies she was as excited as I was! Together, we’ve worked to create a relatable brand that is truly “blooming” (see what I did there?).  It has been so rewarding to watch it grow and build a team out that is so incredible, thoughtful and hard working!

 

S: Do you have a Floral Crush right now. Any favs?  Or who inspired you early on?

 

A: Oh ya, I’ve got a ton!  Every time I go on Instagram I find a new one!  Mindy Rice is always impressing me with the way she takes the classic, garden look to a new level and my mind is always blown by White Lilac.

 

S: Both so good!

 

What’s your biggest floral pet peeve?  Things you don’t enjoy designing or trends you’re not a fan of.

 

A: My biggest BIGGEST pet peeve in floral is when a designer is attempting to make a piece look naturally dripping or cascading with blooms such as tulips or foliage and instead of naturally clustering them to drape on their own throughout the piece, they place them only in a single area, facing completely downward.  I am not sure if I am expressing this correctly but it always bothers my eyes. I know I’ve mentioned previously, but I try to stay away from being too trendy or to somehow blend trendy with classic. I may have a case of baby-brain right now but I can’t think of a single trend that I’m not a fan of (sorry!).

 

S: Do you enjoy destination weddings?  Any tips you would like to share? Any horror stories?

 

A: I have enjoyed destination events in the past!  I am sure I will enjoy them again, but for now, we are staying local in Southern California (LA, OC, SD) because I have a newborn baby. In terms of tips, I’d say organization is key and plan for travel time to be longer than anticipated so you’re not late. I’d also say PUT EVERYTHING IN WRITING. We had a large corporate event in Santa Barbara and the client said they’d be paying for our rooms and I forgot to enter this into my contract. When we arrived I called to see where our rooms were and she told me that they ran out of a budget and that we had to get our own rooms. This wasn’t the end of the world, but it was an unexpected expense and also put a bad taste in my mouth for the event setup.

 

S: Favorite location so far?

 

A: Locally, Cal a Vie – STUNNING!

 

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

Venue: @calaviespa | Photo: @bryanmillerphoto 

 

 

S: How do you feel about hosting workshops? Do you enjoy collaborating with other florists?

 

A: I would love to host a workshop, I have taught many of the girls at our studio.  Collaborating with other florists gives me LIFE. I LOVE collaborating and I LOVE a team environment.  I’m all about empowering others.

 

S: If you weren’t doing this what other career do you see yourself having?

 

A: When I first started, I actually did wedding cakes and desserts as well as florals.  I quickly learned I couldn’t do both but if I had to do something else I’d probably want to do amazing wedding cakes.  I am obsessed with Ron Ben Israel, I got to meet him a few years back and nearly fainted.

 

S: I just learned how to make a homemade cake last year and this year attempted real french buttercream! I have a totally new appreciation for this art. I can see where it would be a superhuman feat to try and do both!

 

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

Photo: @theyoungrens 

 

 

What advice would you give a newcomer to the floral industry just starting out? What would you tell your younger self?

 

A: It takes a really strong work ethic to be successful in this industry but DON’T BURN OUT.  Being organized is KEY. Learn when to say no and never take on too much, it only takes messing up once to get a bad reputation.

 

S: How has social media affected or influenced your business?

 

A: Hugely.  I think that nowadays all of my brides check us out on social media prior to meeting us and potentially even before looking at our website.  It is a major way that we show off our portfolio. Many times, brides will fall in love with our work on instagram and know that we are a good fit prior to meeting us.

 

S: Knife or snips?

 

A: KNIFE is LIFE

 

S: YES girl, preach!  I love to teach the proper use of a knife in my workshops. Speaking of which, what’s in your toolbox?

 

A: So much sticky clay!!!!!  🙂

 

S: Ok silly question time:  Do you like pickles? I am a fan of the famous Dave’s Sweet and Spicy bread and butter myself haha!

 

A: Uh… ya!  Who doesn’t like pickles?!  But I’ll keep it real – if I had to choose between a pickle and a cornichon, I’m going cornichon all day long.

 

S: Fancy AND  French, me likey! Well thank you so much Alex! Any final thoughts, opinions comments on the state of the industry etc…?

 

A: Love me some Mayesh!  The only issue I have with the industry currently is the whole crediting the artist thing on social media… but other than that, happy as a clam 😉

 

S: We love you too!  And we couldn’t agree more on this topic.  It all comes down to integrity and respect of your peer’s work.  It is so important to properly tag and give shout-outs to the original designer/artist/photographer. I don’t think people understand how important this is and how it harms the original creator when proper credit is not given. Hoping we will see less of this in the future.

 

Alex, thank you for your time and for all your insight and wisdom. We look forward to seeing your work on Instagram every week!

 

 


 

 

Here are some fun BTS photos I took when I visited Alex in her studio… the team was working away on an event! Scroll down for the finished event photos… it turned out STUNNING!

 

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

 

 

 

And the finished event!

Gorgeous images by @the_grovers

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

 

Beyond the 'Gram with Shelley Anders: Interview Blush Botanicals

 

 

#beyondthegram , Beyond the 'Gram , Shelley Anders

Interiew: Summer Robbins Flowers

Mayesh Instagram Takeover Summer Robbins Interview

 

My favorite part of every Instagram takeover we do is the follow-up interview. The photos we see on our feed are always gorgeous, but getting to know the designer behind those beautiful images is it what makes each takeover so unique. Every interview I’ve done has been fun and insightful, but I’m not gonna lie, this lil lady has been one of my faves! Her energy and passion for this industry shines through, and I can’t guarantee you won’t want to be best friends with her by the end!

 

So without further ado, let’s learn a bit more about Summer Robbins of Summer Robbins Flowers!

 

 


 

 

So tell us a little bit about yourself, and how you found yourself in the flower industry!  

Well this answer could get incredibly long-winded but I’ll try to keep it short.  😉 I’m Summer, and I own an event floral design studio in Bend, Oregon.  I’m Rich’s wife and Cedar & River’s mama.  Our family is rounded out by our fur puddle, the ultimate lap kitty TT, our 10 chickens, and 2 beta fish.  Black coffee & red wine are my drinks of choice and I could literally eat tacos every day.  I’m obsessed with music and business podcasts.  Book stores are my happy place.  Running is how I meditate.  And in an effort to be a true Bendite and to keep up with my family, I just learned how to ski this year, so wish me luck on the slopes.

Floral design is my second career and it took me over a decade in fashion design, DIYing my own wedding, a whole lot of vision boarding, a supportive husband, and eventually taking floral design classes to discover that flowers was truly where I was meant to be.

 

I love how much overlap there is between different creative fields. How did your background in fashion influence you as a floral designer?

My fashion background has influenced my floral business in every way.  Without all of those years in fashion honing my taste level, my eye for detail and design, developing my work ethic, learning to manage a team and to maximize workflow, as well as how to present and talk through ideas, my ability to best serve my clients confidently would probably have taken a whole lot longer to develop.  But given that I had a whole career beforehand, my floral business has grown steadily and organically since I went out on my own 3 1/2 years ago.

 

Mayesh Instagram Takeover Summer Robbins Interview

@paulbarnettphotography 

 

Tell us a bit about your experience at the FlowerSchool New York!

Where do I begin here?  A good friend of mine who is an event floral designer in Virginia recommended I take classes at FlowerSchool New York when I was starting to think that floral design might be a career option for me.  The school is right down the street from my old office, so it couldn’t have been more convenient.  The very first class I took there was a master class with Ariella Chezar, the queen of flowers, and I was totally hooked from that point on.  After a couple of months of floral classes, I signed up for their professional program and quit my job to pursue floral design full time with the goal of one day starting my own business.  I figured that I had spent 4 years at Parsons to study fashion design, so I owed myself at least 1 year to study floral design if this was to be my new career.  During that year I took every class that FlowerSchool New York offered.  I studied under Ariella, Lewis Miller, Emily Thompson, Christian Tortu, Shane Connelly, Oscar Mora, Remco Van Vliet, and Sullivan Owen, among others.  Then I apprenticed with Belle Fleur, Ariella, Polux Fleuriste, and Sullivan Owen.  I couldn’t have been more fortunate and I have so much appreciation for FlowerSchool NY and their amazing staff, alumni, and master florists.  I highly recommend the school to anyone serious about developing and honing their craft.

 

I absolutely adore Bend, OR, but it’s obviously a huge change from living in New York City for so long! Can you talk about how your surroundings have inspired your style – from the architecture of New York to the beautiful landscapes of Oregon?

Bend is the Wild West.  It couldn’t be more different than New York City, which is why we chose to live here.  Everything about our high desert landscape is endlessly inspiring to me with its dusty neutral color palette, dried grasses, juniper, desert sage, and tumbleweed on the East side of town and the ponderosa, lodgepoll pines, and manzanita on the West side.  I LOVE incorporating our native elements into my work so that I can honor this magical place.  If I was doing a wedding in Portland where it’s always raining and mossy, and ferny, and perma-green, I can guarantee that my work would look much different because the landscape is vastly different.

 

Mayesh Instagram Takeover Summer Robbins Interview

@gallivanphoto

 

Mayesh Instagram Takeover Summer Robbins Interview

@victoriacarlsonphoto

 

Even though Bend is experiencing a lot of growth at the moment, it still has that small town feel. What is the floral community like out there?

Yeah, Bend is big, but it feels small because we are kind of an island in the center of Oregon with Portland 3 1/2 hours Northwest over the Cascade Mountain Range and the next most populated town East is 2 hours away, so we are surrounded by wilderness.  The floral community is AWESOME and super supportive both here and statewide.  In Bend most of us are friends and we refer each other and help each other out.  In my experience flower people are generally an exceptional bunch, so I feel like that’s no surprise.

 

Mayesh Instagram Takeover Summer Robbins Interview

@amandaphotographic

 

So your studio is on the farm you live on (sigh)… do you grow any of your own flowers on the farm?

Hahaha!  We are trying to grow flowers.  Meaning my husband is trying to grow flowers.  It’s pretty tough here.  We’re in zone 6, and our farm is located at 3500 feet above sea level.  We get freezing temperatures at night sometimes in June or July.  The sun is also super intense, it’s arid, and the soil is volcanic.  My husband is in charge of the farm and his focus over the last 3 summers has been to amend the soil and experiment with different floral varieties.  Greenhouses may be in our future.

 

Aside from the flowers, I get the feeling that one of your favorite parts about this industry is the relationships and connections you form with each client. Can you tell us a little bit about that, and how you look to your clients for inspiration in their unique event?

I would agree with that 100%.  Client relationships and the connections we forge are the thing that I value above everything else in this business.  My goal is to serve our clients wholeheartedly, without ego, and with respect.  Every bride deserves to be wowed on her wedding day and exceeding her expectations is what gets me excited and keeps me inspired.  I think if you approach it that way, you can’t lose.

I’m certain we all get the same 20 or so Pinterest pins depending on the season, but I would go totally insane with boredom if I had to make the same thing every week, and most couples really would prefer something personalized over a knock off.  So instead of deciding to create those Pinterest floral ideas verbatim, I use them as a starting point.  Then I take those ideas and create a design direction unique to my client based on their story, things they love, their venue, their color palette, the season they’re getting married in, their budget, what they’re wearing, and the vibe of their wedding.  I get so excited and inspired by it all.

 

Mayesh Instagram Takeover Summer Robbins Interview

@dawn.charles

 

Alright… you knew it was coming! Favorite flower? I’ll allow a couple, because even I can’t choose just one 😉 

Well thank you for not making me choose just one favorite, because that would be impossible.  Sorry I can’t even nail it down to a couple because every season is so different.  So, will you allow me to go seasonally?

In the Spring I love all forms of fritillaria, anemones, ranunculus, and hellebore.
I’m all about berries, peonies, and scabiosa in the Summer months.
For Autumn, bring on the dahlias, nandina, rudbeckia, seed pods, and decorative grasses.
And lastly in Winter, peonies from overseas.
But throughout every season I am a rose-a-holic.  So, I guess in all honesty you could say they are my true favorites.

 

Mayesh Instagram Takeover Summer Robbins Interview

@gallivanphoto

 

What is one piece of advice you’d like to go back and tell yourself during your first year of designing? 

I would tell myself that all of the money spent, hard work, sacrifice, and time away from my babies will all be worth it because I end up building something that’s becoming pretty great.

 

@gallivanphoto

 

Mayesh’s 40th Anniversary Interview with CEO

Mayesh's 40th Anniversary interview

As I’m sure you know we have been celebrating our 40th Anniversary this month (if not, check out these posts).  I had the pleasure of sitting down with our CEO, Patrick Dahlson, to ask him a few questions about how Mayesh came to be the company it is today. I hope you take a few moments to walk down memory lane with us and enjoy the interview.

Do you have any special Mayesh moments from the past 40 years? Be sure to share them in the comments below.

Podcast & video:

Interview with Good Seed Floral

Good Seed Floral Design Mayesh Takeover

 

This week Good Seed Floral took over our Instagram feed & flooded it with beautiful images, but what really stuck out was their passion that shone through, not only for flowers but also for inspiring others by keeping it real and sharing their experiences — the good & the bad! Keep reading to learn even more about these two friends turned business partners and how Good Seed Floral came to be!

 


 

So tell us the story of Good Seed Floral… when & how did you both end up in the floral industry?

We feel like our story is so typical in the wedding floral industry! Basically we fell into it very organically- a lot of our close friends were getting married in 2012 (the year we graduated from college) and none of us had money for gifts/floral design so we ended up arranging the flowers for them! At first it was fun, but by the end of the summer we were obsessed and when one of the weddings was featured in Eugene Wedding Magazine we knew we had to go for it. Both of us have a background in art and finding a way to express that felt very natural.

 

What are your individual design styles, and how have you meshed them together to create the Good Seed aesthetic?

We are both drawn towards a garden, textural, wild/romantic style of design. And although our styles have both grown a lot in the past 6 years, we have stayed consistent with what we love. I would say Taylor brings more of the wild, textural side of our brand and I (Joanna) bring the more airy, romantic side. Together this is the epitome of our creative style!

 

Good Seed Floral Design Mayesh Takeover

 

Tell us what it’s like to work together! What are some of the challenges you face having a business partner in a creative industry, as well as your favorite parts about it?

Taylor and I were friends before the business started and we have found it to be the biggest blessing to own a business together! It’s fun to celebrate victories with someone we truly care about- beyond the business and see how it’s impacting our families + futures together. It’s amazing to know that even if Good Seed went away, we would still have that. Being 100% honest and transparent is the biggest thing we have to remember. It’s easy to let little things build up and create bitterness, but as soon as we’re honest (over a bottle of tequila most of the time haha) everything is better. It’s honestly a lot like a marriage in that way! We also have to make sure we make time to just be “friends” because it’s so easy to let our business always come first.

 

Good Seed Floral Design Mayesh Takeover

 

Your Portland-based studio also takes weddings in Austin, TX. How did that come about, and what is it like offering your services in two different states?

So we started doing weddings in both Austin and Portland about two years ago- one half of Good Seed (Josie) moved down there after her husband got a job and started networking + marketing to brides. We don’t take as many weddings down there, but since the seasons are so different it’s great to be able to get more November- April weddings if we want! Basically Josie lives down there for half of the year, then she and her husband come up to Oregon for the summer wedding season here! We are thankful to have friends in Austin who let us use their studio. It’s been so fun to do weddings in both places and experience the different cultures of each area!

 

We all know being in the wedding industry isn’t easy, but there’s always that something for each of us that keeps us in. What keeps you going and motived to live that flower hustlin’ life every day?

Ah! So many things! I feel like we have to have these things at the front of our business in order to keep our love for what we do alive for sure. First, our couples! Investing in our couple’s stories and their love for each other + being able to be a part of that is so so amazing. We are both so passionate about marriage and the beautiful picture of commitment that it is. There’s nothing better than getting to reflect that in our designs. Second, collaborating with other creatives! This feeds our souls and is one of the best parts of the industry in our opinion. Community is super important to us! The third thing that keeps us going is the ability to pass on our love of floral design + the confidence to express oneself creatively. Teaching is a recent passion, but it’s amazing to see our students thrive and gain confidence.

 

Good Seed Floral Design Mayesh Takeover

Good Seed Floral Design Mayesh Takeover

 

Let’s talk tools – favorite florist tool, and favorite app you use in your business, be it social media or business organization? Instagram counts (ha!) but if there’s anything else you’re using we’d love to hear about it!

Our favorite florist tool that we discovered recently is a rose stripper that saves us SO much time!! Stripping roses is pretty much the worst so when we discovered this we were so excited. It’s called the Hinged Stem Stripper and I know you can get them online! Another favorite are these clippers we get on Amazon called Sakagen Hand Creation Flower Scissors. They are the cutest and soooooo sharp. For business organization, we literally could not do anything without Honeybook. It SAVED us this year!

 

You recently hosted the first Floral Gathering which we posted about, and I absolutely love the collaborative nature of the industry right now… it wasn’t always that way! Can you speak to the floral community in Portland, and why you decided to host that event?

Yes!! The Portland flower community is seriously the best. We are each other’s biggest cheerleaders. I know when we’re having a rough day + say something about it we will have so much advice/encouragement/love pouring in. And from people who get it, which means so much more. Having that from the people around us who are supposed to be our “competition” is incredible. We wanted to reflect that with a day of creativity and design (and good food!). Together with Brier and Ivy we got to bring together so many amazing florists and create just for ourselves. And then we got to relax and enjoy it. It was the most beautiful, refreshing day.

 

Good Seed Floral Design Mayesh Takeover

 

Alright, you knew it was coming! Favorite flowers?

HA! The hardest question. It’s always rotating depending on what’s inspiring us, but right now it’s spring flowers like Spirea, foxglove, iris and Japanese anemone. They are so lush and romantic, but also fun and textural which is our jam!

 

What trends are you seeing start to emerge in the world of floral design right now? And are you a fan of said trends?

Right now, we’re seeing a lot of color trends for next year- mainly rust reds and copper. Which we LOVE! We had a good amount of weddings in the last year or two with neutrals and burgundy and while we love those colors, it’s nice to push ourselves creatively with different palettes. Working with flowers is a lot like painting to us.

 

Good Seed Floral Design Mayesh Takeover

 

What is one piece of advice you’d go back and tell yourselves during your first year as floral designers?

“Take yourselves seriously!” I think we struggled with feeling confident and like we were “real” florists in the beginning because we were self-taught. We looked around and felt like everyone else had it together but us. And while we had a lot to learn, we’ve realized that no one has it all together! We are all on a journey and giving yourself credit, even in the beginning, for being an artist and honoring that is so important in the creative industry. You have something that no one else has! Be open and humble, but have confidence in yourself + know your worth.

 

Good Seed Floral Design Mayesh Takeover

Good Seed Floral Design Mayesh Takeover

Good Seed Floral Design Mayesh Takeover

 

Thank you so much for having us on your blog!! We are honored to have this opportunity.

 

www.goodseedfloral.co

 

@goodseedfloral

 

hello@goodseedfloral.co

 

 

Mornings with Mayesh: Florists to the Field

Mornings with Mayesh: Florists to the Field

Watch the replay of our LIVE show, Mornings with Mayesh, as we answering your flower questions with my flower friends, Dave Tagge, Ryan O’Neil from Curate – formerly Stemcounter, and Jodi Duncan from SocialJodi. We covered some of Dave’s favorite flowers that are available now, how to handle accounting for your floral business, easy wrist corsage techniques, paying for ads on social media, and reposting other people’s images on your social media pages.

Also, we interviewed our special guests, Greg Campbell and Erick New, co-owners of Garden District, about their brand new book, Florists To The Field.

 

Here is the podcast replay:

SHOW NOTES
PART I

 

FLOWER QUESTIONS

WHAT’S GOING ON IN THE WORLD OF FLOWERS?:

  • Latest flower 411
  • Dave showing some of his favorite flowers that are available right now

 

FLOWER DESIGN

  • From Claire: I am new at Floral arranging. I started a little more than two years ago. The most difficult for me has been making wrist corsages. It’s agony for me. Yet it looks so easy when I watch others do it. Do you have a simple way to make a wrist corsage? The most difficult of it is attaching the flowers to the wristband.

FLOWER BUSINESS

  • From Tarrah: What do successful shops do for accounting?  Being an artist, primarily, accounting is not my strong suit; and I’m sure that problem is common among shop owners.  Especially for smaller shops where the owner may be designing some or most of the time.
    • Ryan O’Neil from Curate gave advice on how to think about and handle accounting for florists.

MARKETING NEWS

  • From Jen: I would love to hear what social media platforms florists are paying to be on. Facebook boosting, ads, etc, Instagram, and google. What kind of monthly budget makes sense. What’s recommended? Do florists do their own social media or use a company?
  • From Jaclyn: What is best practice for reposting someone else’s images from Instagram? I noticed y’all do so on the company IG; do y’all comment and ask permission, etc?

 

Part II

SPECIAL GUEST – GREG CAMPBELL & ERICK NEW

Garden District co-owners Greg Campbell and Erick New

Garden District co-owners Greg Campbell and Erick New have a partnership of boundless creativity with an anything-can-be-done attitude, and they have navigated the vibrant labyrinth of floriculture together for 25 years.

The florists operate in tandem as architect and engineer, exchanging roles as needed. Greg is the architect—a persistent, alert perfectionist—while Erick is the engineer—a methodical strategist always prepping for the next step.

Be it a skyscraping installation or an unobtrusive centerpiece, they weave flowers and greenery into textural structures that bring people together for every imaginable occasion.

Their most recent project was publishing their new book, Florists to the Field, and I’m very excited to have them on chat all about it.

Welcome, Greg and Erick!

Before we dive into the excitement of the book, can you tell us a little bit about yourselves and how you both ended up in the flower industry?

  • We both fell into the industry as young men- I don’t think either of us would say “florist” as our profession if asked in High School. We were lucky enough to have been hired by a gentleman named John Hoover who revolutionized the floral market in our area

How did Garden District come to be? And how did you come up with that name? (I love it, by the way!)

  • Our original location was in an area of town called Central Gardens and we were close to another neighborhood named Chickasaw Gardens. Combine this with our affection for New Orleans and we came up with Garden District.

Last question before we get to the book because we can’t interview a florist without asking… favorite flowers?

  • Greg-muscari; Erick- lily of the valley

Okay so… why now? What inspired you two to take on creating and publishing Florists to the Fields?

  • it all started with us planning a photo shoot at a relatively new flower farmer we know in Mississippi. She was flush with flowers during the hot days of summer when the demand was low. We had a free weekend so we suggested a photo shoot to promote the farm’s bounty. While discussing how we would decorate the barn, our friend, the caterer Elizabeth Heiskell suggested having a dinner in the venue and turning this into an actual event. The ticket sales ended up benefiting the grower and we are proud to report that the farmer is in her third year of production. We were then approached by Southerly Media about the possibility of a book which would chronicle our visits to farms that provide products for our shop and create events at each facility using only their product. The farms determined how to use the party-one a fundraiser, another a surprise birthday party for the matriarch, another a “thank you” for clients. 18 months later, 12 farms in our area, across the country and afar, and we have the book!

Florists to the Field

Who is your intended audience, and what do you hope they gain from reading your book?

  • We are hoping the book appeals to a range of individuals. There is the person that gravitates to books with images of pretty flowers. There is also the customer that is interested in entertaining. Since each chapter tells the story of each farm- the history, their production, the owners- we feel the book would be of interest to others in our industry. Since these operations are a vital part of the 25-year history of Garden District, we hope the book could be helpful to other floral companies.

Tell us about the different people you collaborated with to write this book and your experience with them?

  • Our publisher, Southerly Media- we could not have done this without their guidance. Our writer, Christian Owen, whose words brought each chapter together.  We can’t say enough about our principal photographer, Sarah Bell. We did not have the luxury of shooting in a controlled environment like a studio. We were in fields, barns, sheds, in the rain, sun, cold and Sarah not only endured sometimes less than ideal situations but produced gorgeous images.

What was your favorite part of the whole process?

  • Connecting with the farms. In this day and age of emails, electronic billing, FedEx, et it is nice to interact with these people we have developed relationships with over the years.

Garden District co-owners Greg Campbell and Erick New - authors of Florists to the Field

I heard you have an exciting event that you are part of happening in September – do you want to tell us a little more about the event and what you guys have planned for it?

 

Where can everyone find out more about you and your book?

 You can grab your own copy of the book by following this link: http://bit.ly/FTTFOrder

 

 

If you think of new questions for our next show, you can post them in the comments here or use the contact form to send them to Yvonne.

Be sure to mark your calendar for June 12th at 10 am EST for the next Mornings with Mayesh – see you soon!

 

Mornings with Mayesh: Mood Boards & Debra Prinzing

Mornings with Mayesh

During Part I of this episode of Mornings with Mayesh, I demonstrated our custom Canva mood board templates that we created just for you. I review a very basic overview on how to update the templates with your business logo, inspiration text, images, and flower pictures. This easy to use app is great because you just need to upload your picture files or use the built-in stock photos. Another favorite tool that you can use to grab images, figure out color hex codes, and more, is SnagIt and I will give you a brief overview of how to use it.

To save a copy of the three inspiration boards to your own Canva account, click here.

For the second half of the show (Part II), our special guest, Debra Prinzing of SLOW Flowers, joined us. Watch or listen to learn more about Slow Flowers, American Flowers Week, the Slow Flower Summit and so much more. If you are interested in flower farming or just want to understand more about our the evolution of our industry, then you don’t want to miss this in-depth conversation.

 

Here is the podcast replay for Part II of the show. Part I is so visual that a podcast would not have made sense.

 

 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

PART I: MOOD BOARDS & INSPIRATION BOARDS

  • Demo Canva mood boards.https://www.canva.com/mayesh
    • NOTE: I realized after the live demo that you cannot use our design as a template directly from Canva, so I created live links for you to use and create a copy of the templates to your Canva account. Please visit the following link to get the links emailed to you: http://info.mayesh.com/mood-boards
  • We recently just published 3 mood board templates created specifically for you and your floral business.
  • These mood boards/inspiration boards/vision boards are perfect for planning flowers for weddings, corporate events, baby showers and everything else in between.
  • Another tool that my team loves, SnagIt

PART II: SPECIAL GUEST – DEBRA PRINZING

Today, we have a special and talented guest, Debra Prinzing. You may know Debra, as she is the creator of SlowFlowers.com, which is a free directory that helps consumers find florists, designers, studios and farms that supply American grown flowers. But did you know that she is also an award-winning author and speaker? Debra has written 10 books, contributes to many top publications, and is a wonderful speaker as you will soon see and someone that inspires me in my own floral career!

Here is her favorite quote is from Beverley Nichols, “…surely, if you are privileged to own a plot of earth, it is your duty, both to God and man, to make it beautiful.”

  1. Do you want me to start by telling everyone about what is SLOW FLOWERS?
  2. How did you become so obsessed about local, seasonal and sustainable flowers in the first place?
  3. What have you seen in terms of changing consumer attitudes about local and American grown flowers?
  4. What have you seen in terms in terms of changing focus on product sourcing among florists, retailers, wedding/event designers?
  5. What kind of metrics back up these conclusions?
  6. You’ve published an annual Slow Flowers forecast each January for the past four years. How do you track trends and/or predictions that influence the Slow Flowers community?
  7. Are you looking for suggestions? How can people share their ideas/predictions with you?
  8. You produce a lot of content — from your podcast and blog to print and digital stories for Florists’ Review. Tell us about your floral journalism? What gets you excited about writing or interviewing someone for a story?
  9. You have two big events coming up in late June. Tell us about American Flowers Week first — what is it and how can people get involved?
  10. What are you most excited about with this year’s American Flowers Week?
  11. Last year you started the Slow Flowers SUMMIT — tell us what that is?
  12. Who are some of your guests — and what’s got you excited about the event?
  13. How can people get involved in Slow Flowers? Where can they plug in?
  14.  Are you a floral designer yourself?
  15. Tell me something that you are obsessed with right now that is floral related?

Where can we go to find out more information about Slow Flowers and your other projects that you have going on? http://www.debraprinzing.com/

 

if you think of new questions for our next show, you can post them in the comments here or use the contact form to send them to Yvonne.

Be sure to mark your calendar for May 29th at 10 am EST for the next Mornings with Mayesh featuring special guests, Greg Campbell and Erick New, co-owners of Garden District who traveled to specialty farms throughout the U.S. and abroad to create, Florists to the Field, a stunning coffee table book that was recently published.

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