Like most floral designers, I've always had a knack for putting a couple of blooms together in a vase and making it look ooo la la. I did a great job of ignoring that talent as I got older, concentrating instead on business degrees and learning the ropes of financial analyses, even becoming a Systems Analyst specializing in installing Oracle financials for Fortune 500 companies. I drank the KoolAid and believed that if I worked hard enough and made enough money, that would lead to happiness. Well, it didn't, and the whole Y2K debacle was the last straw for me. I wanted out of the corporate world.
Long story short, I went back to school and learned all about design principles and elements, apprenticed myself to a wonderful AIFD designer, helped other designers open shops from scratch, and went to work for a florist that had been in business since just after The Mayflower landed. I earned some degrees and certifications along the way and even some ribbons at the county fair. A silver Tiffany Revere was earned for gathering enough points for my perfect garden product. (Boy, those garden club ladies didn't think I could do it!) Working my way up the ladder (again!) I learned tons about myself and what keeps me passionate and engaged. Turns out, it was always flowers. And flower gardens.
18 years later, I'm still in love. Madly, passionately, deeply. Flowers feed my soul.
Design In Bloom was born of my love for flowers, and specifically, for creating beautiful works of art using them as medium, my paint or clay, as it were. Having worked for other small business owners, I could see what and where the problems were with their business plans, and I thought I could do better. In 2003 in New York, Design In Bloom came to life. All those business classes and degrees came in handy when I decided to branch out and open up my own atelier.
Fast forward to 2008, when our New York studio became our Virginia studio. What a different market! What a challenge! What an opportunity! This was a completely fresh start, and a chance to build from scratch, without knowing a soul in the industry down here. I learned to say ya'll, and mean it. I learned how lovely Virginia is, especially in the Spring, but really year 'round. There is always something blooming in the garden, 24-7, 365. I love that.
Honesty. Fairness. Respect for each other and our clients. Pride in our work. Joy and laughter. These are the qualities I want instilled in my business, for every single person that works for me, and most of all, for myself as an example. These are the qualities we'd like to share with every single client.
Every contact with Design In Bloom is rooted in these principles - we're going to find you the best product, we're going to make this process easier for you, and we're going to give you the best dang service at the best price we can.
It is of such importance to keep moving forward, both personally and professionally. Toward that end, my designers and I are constantly taking classes and attending workshops to improve our game. This past May, I joined an elite group of some of the experts in the wedding and event floral industry - the Chapel Designers. Holly Heider Chapple, the incredibly talented and enthusiastic visionary, created this group to emphasize the need for this forward momentum and the help streamline the process of how and where artists grow in their art, and how their businesses follow. As her logo proclaims, we're a gathering of stylish wedding experts. I'm so delighted to be included.