Posts Tagged “#mayeshtakeover”

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!










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!


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



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



Mayesh Instagram Takeover Summer Robbins Interview



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



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



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



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.




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.





Interview with Plenty of Petals

Mayesh Takeover Plenty of Petals



This week we had the pleasure of having Kasia Mikulska of Plenty of Petals take over our Instagram feed, and she filled it with beautiful images of her favorite bouquets. Not only is Kasia a super talented designer, she is also the sweetest soul and I always enjoy working with her. So let’s get to know a little bit about the designer behind all of those bouquets…





Hey lady! So thrilled that we finally found time for you to do a takeover with us! Let’s dive right in… can you tell us a little about yourself and how you found yourself in the flower industry?

Thanks for having me! Let’s see.. it really happened organically because I was searching for it, trying to decide what to do with my life. You know, trying to find that “one thing” you’re supposed to be doing. I usually say that I did “art things” in college. Meaning, I dipped my toe in interior design and graphic design and I just really didn’t love either one of them. I really wanted to do something creative, but I just didn’t know what it was. The idea of graphic design, or interior design sounded fun (and I still love designing my house and making it a beautiful space!) but I just don’t think I would have enjoyed doing it for a living. The very first time I did flowers was for a friend’s birthday party. I just remember that it was fun and that people really enjoyed and raved about the flowers. That sparked a business idea and Plenty of Petals was born. The first year or so I really didn’t know what I was doing, but I was doing it! I worked at a family friend’s flower shop for a couple of months, and worked on starting my own business. I took every job I could and started doing friend’s weddings. I definitely had humble beginnings – doing flowers our of my kitchen sink, and making a big mess. All the knowledge I had when I was starting Plenty of Petals came from my mama. When I was little, she would take me on walks and point out flowers and tell me their names (she would also make me flower crowns by tying clovers or dandy lions together – because she’s pretty much the cutest!). Everything I learned I learned the hard way, which now, I’m really thankful for. I didn’t use any short cuts. Quickly Plenty of Petals because what it is today – a small boutique floral studio that focuses on weddings and events. I wanted to create a life-enriching business. I didn’t want my business to take over my life.


Mayesh Takeover Plenty of Petals


You’re kind of known for your beautiful lush bridal bouquets… why are they your favorite things to design (if they still are)?

I think I’ve always been perfecting my bouquet game because our studio focuses on weddings, and the bridal is most important floral piece for a wedding. It’s not an easy piece to create, because you’re making it in hand, flowers move, and don’t always do what you want them to or stay where you want them to. I always knew I wanted my bouquets to feel and look light and airy, and have a lot of depth and volume. I’ve changed my technique over the years, and feel like I’ll always be tweaking it and finding new ways of arranging.


Mayesh Takeover Plenty of Petals

Photo by @_mikeradford

Mayesh Takeover Plenty of PetalsPhoto by @spostophoto


How would you describe your design style or philosophy? 

If I were to use one adjective to describe the style and aesthetic – it would be feminine. I can’t help it – I’m a girly girl and I think that’s always shown in my designs. I try to have a very effortless and natural look to everything that I do. I never want it to feel forced, heavy or tight.


Mayesh Takeover Plenty of Petals

Photo by @spostophoto


Besides the obvious “romantic garden style” style (which I don’t think is going away anytime soon, phew!) what other wedding and floral trends are you noticing?

A lot of arrangements that are very floral and color heavy, with minimal or very little foliage, or “greenery” that’s colorful and that plays a big part of the color palette. Arrangements and bouquets with lots of super fun textures, and interesting elements, like dried grasses, aged ferns, and other unique elements. I’m also seeing arrangements, hanging and floor installations that are so wildly fun in shape and scale – it’s so exciting and inspiring to see!


Mayesh Takeover Plenty of Petals

Photo by @josevilla

Photo by @spostophoto


The Carlsbad/San Diego floral community seems like such a positive and collaborative group of young female designers! Can you expand on that a little, and how you all work together to support each other and lift up the design community?

I’m so grateful for the little flower community we have created. It’s so nice to be able to bounce ideas off of each other, share information/tips, and support each other. I always want to come from a place of abundance – there’s enough projects to go around, and I’m happy to see my friends do amazing things. That’s the kind of energy and community I want to be a part of. I want to be their supporter and cheerleader. I don’t see us as competing against each other – we all have our own different talents, and unique styles. It’s funny because I can usually look at a photo of a bouquet or centerpieces and I can tell who’s work it is – I’m like, “that’s my friend. I’m so proud!” These flowers babes are my real life friends and I feel so lucky to know them.


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

I’m gonna heave to pick a few – lilac, lily of the valley, and sweet peas. Basically, spring flowers that smell really really good! I grew up in Poland, where big lilac trees grew everywhere. My grandma had a huge yard with so much lily of the valley she didn’t know what to do with it. All of those flowers remind me of a childhood when I spend all day playing outside, climbing trees, and digging in the dirt. That’s what makes me the most excited – is seeing flowers growing naturally! Also, I don’t really ever have flowers at my house, but when I do it’s usually just a simple bunch of tulips, or a bundle of one thing that I stick in a glass jar or vase!


Mayesh Takeover Plenty of Petals


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

Just to relax and be a little kinder to myself! I’m definitely a perfectionist and tend to be critical of my work. When I relax and allow everything to flow, it all seems to come into place. Most answers reveal themselves through doing, not thinking – and I wish in the beginning stages I just got my hands on more flowers and gave myself permission to explore – to play and have fun. The creative process is not always the easiest. I’ve always been so interested and curious about the creative process of others – I just find it so fascinating. I’ve met designers that are very confident in their work, and some that are very hard on themselves, so when I’m in a funk I just try to take a deep breath, let go and remember how thankful I am to have this beautiful job!


Mayesh Takeover Plenty of Petals


If you love Kasia as much as we do, be sure to follow Plenty of Petals Instagram for all the floral goodness!


Interview: Sarah Pappas of Fresh Cut Detroit

Fresh Cut Detroit Mayesh Instagram Takeover


This week, we had our first ever farm Instagram takeover with the lovely Sarah Pappas of Fresh Cut Detroit. Sarah took us on a two-day flower adventure, telling the story of her Detroit based farm, introducing us to her crew, and sharing her philosophy on sustainable farming practices. Sometimes it can be easy to forget all of the blood, sweat, tears and love that go into each beautiful flower you see in our buckets, so we can’t thank Sarah enough for using our platform to share her knowledge and spread some flower love (and during American Flowers month, nonetheless!)


Though we learned a ton during the takeover, we still had more questions, so continue reading to get to know even more about Sarah & Fresh Cut Detroit!



Hi Sarah! Thanks for taking the time to answer a few questions so our followers can get to know a little more about your farm after this week’s takeover! To start off, can you tell us a little bit about yourself, and how Fresh Cut Detroit came to be?

Hi Mayesh, thanks for letting me take over your IG feed! I’m Sarah Pappas, the farmer & founder of Fresh Cut Detroit, a flower farm in the city of Detroit. I’ve been doing farming & gardening work in some shape or form for over ten years. I’m a hardworking, fun loving, compassionate, ambitious farmer. I value a give-and-take relationship with my land, my crops, and my crew.

I’ve had a lucky, interesting life that’s given me a world of experiences in farming & gardening, education & empowerment, community living & loving. Fresh Cut Detroit Flower Farm is the product of these experiences plus the vibrant, pulsing moment of time & space that is the city of Detroit’s urban agriculture movement. I wouldn’t trade this space & time for any other in the world.


Tell us a little bit about your operation – where are you located and how big is your farm? A little virtual tour!

Fresh Cut is ¼ acre on a corner at the edge of the historic residential neighborhood of Woodbridge. We’re a couple miles northwest of downtown Detroit, a short walk from the campus of Wayne State University. You can see our hoophouse from a block away, and as you approach you start to see the bright colors of the annuals in the west beds. Our farm dog Ruti will bark at you as you walk along the fence, under the big elm tree that keeps our house cool, and to the east beds where our earliest self-seeded annuals & biennials are planted. The east beds cozy up to a wild woodlot area where we forage crops like motherwort, dame’s rocket, and wild sweet peas.


Fresh Cut Detroit Mayesh Instagram Takeover


Do you have a team helping you out at Fresh Cut Detroit?

I have a lot of people helping at the farm, thank goddess. This year, on our crew we have an assistant manager, a design/delivery person, 2 farm crew members, and 2 youth crew members. Detroit has a historic, thriving Urban Agriculture community and my skilled labor is hired from this pool of local people. My crew members have completed agricultural training programs through Earthworks Urban Farm, Detroit Black Community Food Security Farm, and Keep Growing Detroit, and volunteered at the Student Organic Farm at MSU.


Fresh Cut Detroit Mayesh Instagram Takeover


While growing flowers and owning a small farm sounds like a fairy tale job to many, I’m sure not everyday is as glamorous as it appears! It’s hard work, but probably very rewarding as well. What gets you out of bed every morning and inspires you to keep going everyday?

You’re right, it’s absolutely not glamorous every minute, but a cute apron and big earrings can do a lot for this farmer’s outlook on the world.

Early in the morning, I love the special feeling of reviewing the field before a harvest. I feel proud of the beautiful array in front of me that I’ve helped bring into the world. What inspires me to keep going is my crew and my community. I’ve created something that other people care about, and that gets them paid and builds on their skills & interests. It’s a demanding, but such a compelling and rewarding life to be a flower farmer & small business owner.


Fresh Cut Detroit Mayesh Instagram Takeover


How many flower varieties are you growing at any given moment?

About 200 varieties are growing at any given moment on the farm… we like to keep it diverse! We’re playing more and more each season with complimentary co-plantings to maximize our bed space – millet & sunflower, peony & centaurea, motherwort & monarda.


Fresh Cut Detroit Mayesh Instagram Takeover


Here’s a toughie, but you knew it was coming! What is your favorite flower to grow? How about to design with, if different?

I’ve been a true blue #1 fan of snapdragons since I was a little kid. I remember my grandma showing me how they open their mouths to ROAR when you pinch the blossoms… plus, they’re great for planting multiple successions to keep them blooming all season long. They’re my favorite to grow, in that they’re totally indispensable.

As for my favorite flower for designing, since I make so many bouquets in-hand, having a good branchy base to start with is paramount. These days, having a nice strong Salvia ‘Cardonna’ to start with helps a bouquet come together quickly.


Fresh Cut Detroit Mayesh Instagram Takeover


Tell us a little bit about your weekly bouquet service… it seems like a great way for you to get to flex your creative design muscles and get to play with all of your gorgeous blooms!

The weekly customers are the heart & soul of the business. Their support through 20 weeks of bouquet subscriptions gave us the foundation to establish a weekly harvest, design, & sales cycle even when we were starting out. Some have been with me for years, and their flower knowledge & design eye is off the charts. From each week’s harvest, we play, and each bouquet gets a flavor of its own – hot mamas, big sprawling clouds of grasses, cool delicate posies… It’s so fun!


Fresh Cut Detroit Mayesh Instagram Takeover

Fresh Cut Detroit Mayesh Instagram Takeover


When we interviewed Michael over at Summer Dreams Farm, he told us a little bit about the flower farming scene in Michigan. It really seems to be a great community with lots of local growers popping up! Can you tell us a little more about what’s going on in the world of flowers in Michigan?

Absolutely. The Michigan Cut Flower Growers Coop has just begun, and it’s already cooking. The market runs every Wednesday morning out of Passionflower Sue’s studio in Ann Arbor. Cut flowers are a powerful, lucrative agricultural product and I’d love to see them continue to grow in prominence in the state of Michigan’s agricultural profile. In the near future, I see even more growth in partnerships between rural & urban growers.


Supporting local growers and educating people about what you have to offer is so important, and these days it seems like awareness is really spreading! Tell us a little bit about your experience and/or involvement with the American flower farming community.

My path to the American flower farming community ran its way through diverse organic vegetable production farms.  These farms are run out of passion, love, and a commitment to cultivating beauty & diversity that serves the innate strength & interdependent web of which we are a part.


Mayesh Instagram Takeover Fresh Cut Detroit


Thanks so much for taking the time to answer some questions about your farm! One final question – is there any advice you would go back and tell yourself when you first started Fresh Cut Detroit, or that you would give to farmers just starting out?

Always value your time! Pay yourself. If you’re in  a business or farming arrangement where you’re being paid less than ideal, identify how you’re building equity & savings for your future self to cash in on when you’re ready to move forward. Invest in yourself through professional development, and take care of your body with good health, sleep, nutrition, and relaxation.


Professional photos by Emily Berger





To see the rest of the takeover images, head on over to our Instagram, and be sure to follow @freshcutdetroit as well to keep up with Sarah and the farm!

Interview: Bloom Babes



Last week, the two Southern California best friends that make up Bloom Babes took over our Instagram feed! They filled it with bright, tropical blooms and beachy, laid back vibes. It was pretty awesome, and if you didn’t catch any of it you can check it out here.

Now that we’ve seen their gorgeous work, let’s get to know the dynamic duo a little bit better! Emily took some time to answer a few questions about their business and what the Bloom Babes are all about. (above photo: @reamazonas)


So to start out, why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourselves, and how you found yourselves in the flower business! 

I was going to college and Angie was working as a waitress, both of us not super stoked on our paths that were being laid out, I think we both knew there would be a better option for us. I grew up in a family with strong floral and artistic ties, so being a florist was always in the back of my mind; Angie grew up spending most of her free time in nature and also had an innately keen eye for design. With both of us having a main goal of surfing every morning, a conventional job was kind of out of the picture. So to piece these details together, we both ended up getting jobs at flower shops, from there we had several friends ask us to do their wedding flowers (free of cost), we happily agreed and we LOVED the work. Bloom Babes was born when we left the flower shops in 2014 and has just continued to grow from there!


Working with your best friend sounds totally awesome, but must come with its own set of challenges. What is your favorite part about working with your bestie, and what things do you have to work on to keep a good balance between being friends & business partners?

Working together is exactly like what I imagine a marriage to be like. We love each other enough to work through our differences; we have had to learn how each of us communicate so to create a better working environment. We are able to share our highest highs and our lowest lows, something that truly we are only able to understand together. I love having a support in difficult situations, I love having someone take over a bouquet that I am struggling with, I really can’t imagine doing this job alone– as we all know it is MUCH more difficult than anyone would give a florist credit for. Props to the ladies who are doing it by themselves!! We make sure to spend time as friends too to keep the work balance flow : we surf together and travel together often 🙂


How would you describe The Bloom Babe’s style?

Ever evolving!! We like to be perfectly balanced in an unbalanced way, and we love playing with different styles!! We have been known to do the more modern tropical look, the bright fiesta look and lots of fun florals. But in our hearts we actually love plants as decor, and we love the old European garden style!! 


Top photo: @meganwelker  | Bottom photo: @heatherkincaidphoto


You seem to be inspired a lot by the ocean and nature – how do you think those elements show up in your work?

Maybe more in an abstract way; Angie and I have been personally affected by the combination of our two great loves (surfing and florals), in that the lessons we learn from both play off each other and have allowed us to grow in our skills. Failure is mandatory for growth in surfing and failure is mandatory for growth in floral design. Learning how to cope with our mistakes, and keep progressing despite the seemingly slow improvements is something that we have to learn in both realms, so the two skills don’t seem so different when compared on this level. In terms of combining the two passions on a more physical level, we can say that our floral design vibe is much more relaxed and free flowing– probably due to all of the salt water in our system 🙂


Photos: @kara.donovan


What trends do you see happening in flowers right now?

I know that the bigger the better has been on a high as of recently, however I think the trends will begin to taper down in size and style. I think we are going to be seeing a lot more minimalistic florals with smaller bouquets. Lot’s of white and very muted colors!


Photo: @elysewhall


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

Favorite tool? Well how can I mention anything other than my trusty clippers? I don’t leave my house without them, I carry them in my purse and keep a pair in my car, because you never know what you might come across while driving down the street!! Our favorite business organization has been Honeybook; they keep everything organized and without them we would have no idea what to do!! We use Instagram as our main outreach to our community, I can’t believe how instrumental it has been for a “blooming” business.


What is your favorite or most memorable event or shoot you have been apart of?

Neither of us really expected Bloom Babes to be the business that it is today. The opportunities that have been presented to us have been crazy in very unexpected ways and we are so grateful and so stoked to have this life. I feel like we are in the right place at the right time with our business, and I couldn’t feel more empowered by it. Specifically partnering with Billabong last year has been the highlight of our awesome surprises, probably because we got to experience a direct connection between our two passions.



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

Honestly, I can’t imagine having it any other way than it was! I think we learned everything so organically and made all the mistakes when we needed to (and are continuing in this growth pattern) and thats how and why we have grown into the business that we are today! I don’t think I would tell ourselves anything, I am more than happy to have had to figure this out on our own.

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