Book Review :: Fresh From The Field Wedding Flowers

Fresh from the Field Wedding Flowers by Lynn Byczynski & Erin Benzakein

Flower farmers extraordinaire Lynn Byczynski and Erin Benzakein have come together to create a fantastic resource for the floral industry, Fresh from the Field Wedding Flowers. I knew the book was about using local and sustainable flowers for weddings, but wasn’t sure exactly what information the authors would be covering. The book was written with the purpose of educating a marrying couple on how to select and use locally grown flowers. However, I can honestly say that any aspiring flower farmer or floral designer will find this book a fantastic resource. First of all, the book is packed full of gorgeous images—shots from the USA, Canada and the UK of beautiful flowers and floral arrangements created using locally grown product. I found myself flipping through the pages a few times just to look at the pretty bouquets.

Floret Flower Farm - bronze compote flower arrangement of orange peach garden roses, tomatoes, cranberry viburnum, red ranunculus, nasturtium

The authors have included a very helpful guide about the “ingredients” used in the designs—they give both the Latin and common name of the flower, how to pronounce it, what zone it grows in and when it blooms. After the introduction to the flower they give a description of how to grow and when to harvest it. I found this particularly interesting as I’m preparing my own cutting garden! There is a nice section on Floral Design Basics where aesthetics and mechanics are explained, along with tools commonly used in floral designing. Yes, there is a section called For the DIY Wedding to assist a bride in creating her own designs, yet I found the information to be very comprehensive—much of it would be useful to the novice floral designer who is still learning.

Floret Flower Farm - Pink Bridal Bouquet of pink garden roses, ranunculus, dahlias, cranberry viburnum and honeysuckle

Erin has created 4 videos, which come on a DVD included with the book. The videos are well done and quite enjoyable to watch as she instructs the viewer on how to create a bridal bouquet, boutonnieres and two centerpieces. Overall I found the book to be very useful and informative. I would highly recommend it to those of you who are beginning flower farmers and floral designers; the care & handling and designing discussions are helpful.

Fresh From The Field Wedding Flowers Book - making a bridal bouquet

I’m am thrilled to share that I do have a copy of Fresh from the Field Wedding Flowers to share with one lucky reader!!!
To win the copy leave a comment on this post (this post, and not on our Facebook page or via Email) and tell us why you’d like to win this book (are you an aspiring floral designer, an aspiring floral farmer, furthering your education, you want to learn more about designing with local & seasonal flowers, etc?).

The rules — anyone can participate, however if you are outside of the contiguous 48 states you will have to pay for shipping. Comments will only be accepted on this immediate post, not on Facebook, etc.
Comments must be received by Thursday, June 19th & the winner will be announced on Friday, June 20th.

Lynn Byczynski

Lynn Byczynski

Erin Benzakein of Floret Flower Farm

Erin Benzakein

Floret Flower Farm -Blue and Purple Bouquets of purple anemones, blue hyacinth, white spray roses, sweet peas, seeded eucalyptus

Wedding Wednesday :: Lilacs!

Did you all see this photograph of Erin’s Lilac arrangement? I saw it on Facebook and have been inspired by it ever since. Hence, today’s post is dedicated to Lilacs!

Insight into a Small Growerʼs World by Andrea Gagnon

Last year we grew more flowers and reached out to more designers than ever with great success. Finding the right grower, or growers, that work with you, grow for you, anticipate your needs, and consistently meet or exceed your expectations can be as challenging as finding a designer who values your product, delights in the unusual and understands and is comfortable with the uncertainty of Mother Nature. Time to nurture,
trust, and clear communication are key to the incredible, fulfilling collaborations waiting to made. If youʼve never reached out it can be a little daunting. Whatever your reasons, an individual grower may choose to sell wholesale – they are not, however, wholesalers, in our opinion, and hereʼs why…

WHO are they?

Smaller growers are not that unlike designers in that they are, with few exceptions, flower addicts who are motivated to create, raise, and nurture beauty in this increasingly visually stimulating world.  They also have LAND and generally a desire to responsibly use and/or preserve it.
Flower farming is high-density farming, a single acre can grow a lot of flowers thus smaller growers often “grow where they live.”

Diane from JelloMold Farm

our dear friend and colleague Diane from JelloMold Farm in Washington is an expert grower of
flowers, teacher of growers and creator of cooperatives (SWGMC in Seattle, WA), photographed by
David Perry for ʻ50 Mile Bouquet,ʼ by Debra Prinzing

WHERE are they?

Smaller growers are everywhere, thriving as much in rural areas as they are in suburbs, even inner cities. Most sell independently while some, where the interest in supporting locally grown is strong, have formed thriving cooperatives such as Seattle Wholesale Growers Market Cooperative. LynnVale Farm has been farmed actively by our family for eight generations and is located only 30 miles west of downtown DC. What used to be rural countryside is now brimming with houses, people and big box development. Our local community often patronizes our
business specifically to support our efforts to keep our farmland open and productive. As we are so close to the city we occasionally have designers come and “cut their own” for special events, unfortunately, we (and they) also have to deal with DC traffic. Plan your designer visit for early in the week and plan to stay awhile – itʼs pretty typical for most designers to get lost in our fields for
at least an hour, or two, or….

LynnVale Farm

LynnVale Farm, nestled amidst 100 acres of family-owned land is a floral designers paradise at peak
season.

WHAT do they grow?

Smaller growers tend to start raising what grows well in their area. For us here in Virginia, heat and humidity-loving zinnias and celosia are easy to grow and market. As their businesses and markets grow so too their growing season. What they grow reflects the dominant markets they
sell to – retail to public? retail florists? wedding designers? wholesalers? Building a strong flower farm is like building a sound house, a strong foundation in long-term crops, for us, hydrangeas and peonies, balanced with perennials and annuals.
Every year this relationship gets evaluated on our farm. This past year we stopped forcing lilies to bloom all season long for our retail markets and instead focused on annuals that would add texture to any event designers palette. Our sales to designers skyrocketed and to our surprise we sold more lilies during their natural blooming season than ever, turned out our retail customers love the excitement of “whatʼs blooming next” as much as we do.

Salvia “Wendyʼs Wish,”

Delicate bracts of our Salvia “Wendyʼs Wish,” proved a favorite of designer Ellen Frost from Local Color
Flowers in Baltimore, Ellen sources all of her product from local farms so sheʼs especially interested in
anything new we have to offer, photo by Local Color Flowers

WHEN to contact them?
In the off-season, contact growers as early as possible, many ordering, growing and marketing decisions are made then. At LynnVale we order tulip bulbs in July, ranunculus in April, etc.
During the growing season, as much advance notice as possible and the earlier in the week the better. Our biggest challenge is breaking the “wholesaler habit,” i.e. designers call us at 7am, they need it on their doorstep by 1pm, and we are knee-deep in mud, literally. For some clients we created the LynnVale Designer CSA program where we work together to set a weekly budget,
listen attentively to our clients needs and style, and we arrive each week with a balanced assortment of “our seasonal best” from LynnVale Farm.

farm fresh flowers Virginia

an impromptu visit to Holly Chapple led to her lovely bouquet below featuring our oregano,
viburnum berries, lysmachia, and hydrangea. photo by Holly Chapple

textured bridal bouquet

design and photo by Holly Chapple

HOW to communicate?
For our clients, we send out a weekly availability list yet increasingly, social media is proving a powerful tool in helping us develop and sustain designer/grower relations. Pinterest tops our list.
Ellen Frost, from Local Color Flowers, created a board entitled “Growers wish list!” We check it regularly and we also pay attention to the individual boards designers are creating for their brides/clients. In turn we create boards for what weʼre planning to add to our gardens in any given year.

Scabiosa Pods

This photo is a great visual reminder to us to grow more Scabiosa, ʻPing Pongʼ pinned to the board
“Growerʼs Wish List” from Ellen Frost of Local Color Flowers in Baltimore. photograph by Jennie Love of
LoveʼnʼFresh Flowers

WHY buy local flowers?
VALUE –
I hear often from designers that our flowers can be expensive and the answer is a resounding “YES!.” Why? we offer unique hard-to-find or hard-to-ship varieties, our flowers are freshly harvested with superior vase life, we often custom grow for designers, our flowers arrive hydrated in water – ready to use, no labor, no unpacking, no shipping stress.
Sure, it appears on the surface that buying directly from a farm should be inexpensive right? after all, seedʼs cheap, right? Every so often I have to remind customers that the price they are paying for any specific flower is NOT just related to what it cost me to grow it that year, but rather the 10 years I spent learning how to grow it consistently, beautifully and sustainably.
Our favorite feedback “We always know which flowers are LynnVale flowers because when they (the weekly arrangements) come back to us they are the only flowers left looking gorgeous.”

Cafe Au Lait Dahlias

LynnVale, ʻCafe au Laitʼ, dahlias are often the most requested variety from designers and, for us, one of
the most difficult varieties to grow well in hot-humid Virginia growing conditions.

VARIETY –
Smaller growers are generally “niche growers,” they are not trying actively to compete with wholesalers but rather compliment them. This means growing varieties that either do not ship or store well, dahlias, fully blown lisianthus and delicate herbs and vines, for example. Growing is expensive business and field space is valuable, finding the right variety to grow, the proper way to grow it, the market to sell it to and customer acceptance is a true art. Nurturing a relationship with a grower is the best way to have a voice in what gets grown in your area.

Saipua floral design

Tablescapes by Saipua, featuring an assortment of local Virginia-grown flowers and LynnValeʼs
Love-in-puff vine and lemon basil

FRAGRANCE –
One year, as a thank you, we helped out one of my loyal designer clients for Valentineʼs Day.
After four wonderful days of hectic, barely-controlled chaos we would have given my eye-teeth for a sprig of basil or freshly harvested stock or sweet pea. There simply is no substitute with regard to natural, “fresh from the field” fragrance as so many flowers have either had it bred out of them or suffer serious fragrance loss due to cold storage/shipping.

Erin Benzakein Floret Flower Farm

Irresistible! freshly harvested blooms by sweet pea expert Erin Benzakein of Floret flower farm, photo by
Floret.

the BIGGER Picture –
Whether grower, designer or both, we are all increasingly supporting, subject to, at the whim of an industry that is out-of-balance. At present 80% of all cut flowers in the US are imported, the more that balance tips toward 100% the less say the design community will have in what is actually being grown and perhaps more importantly how itʼs being grown and by whom. If price drives the market the flowers that cost the least to produce, are easily grown, and suffer the least damage will prevail and variety and speculative growing will decline as local, American growers, regardless of size, struggle to compete.

The extreme opposite is happening in the food world, where local food and local sourcing is “where itʼs at.” Revered by chefs, demanded by customers, locally sourced ingredients are essential to any top chefʼs success, just as any artistʼs materials. For our own designs we
primarily source from our own gardens but like many designers we crave the unique and unusual touches that may be either out of season or not easy to grow in Virginia. Not wanting to put all our eggs in one basket we regularly turn to our neighboring farms and have cultivated strong relationships with American growers AND our local wholesaler. Maintaining balance in our own business, diversity amongst our crops and our customers, maintaining flexibility and being truly open to new opportunities has led to our continued success and we hope the tips weʼve shared
will help you to “KNOW YOUR FLOWER FARMER!”

cafe au lait dahlias

floral design by LynnVale Studios, featuring our ʻCafe au Laitʼ dahlias, ʻCopperheadʼ amaranthus,
trycirtis ʻSonomeʼ and dusty miller blended with imported garden roses, seeded euc, scabiosa
and brunia from Potomac Floral Wholesale, photography by Northern Virginia Wedding
Photography

Thank you, Andrea of LynnVale Farms, for this insightful article on understanding and supporting small farms.
We will be posting interviews with small farms in the coming weeks, stay tuned and get to know your Flower Farmers!

Expert Panel : The Creative Design Process

I would love to hear how other floral designers have been successful at encouraging their customers to embrace their creative design process rather than having to make a floral arrangement look like a picture.
Submitted by Brittany Flowers™

Erin of Floret Flower Farm:
The first few seasons working with flowers, I had a number of brides come to me with some really scary requests! Red roses with baby’s breath and badly done pave cubes were pretty common in their magazine tear outs.
My heart sank every time one of these gals came in but I was new, needed the money and went ahead with the events, no matter how badly our styles clashed.
Looking back, this was certainly not the way to build a business that I loved or to grow myself artistically!!!
After finally crashing into a giant heap of burn out, I shifted my approach and things have been fantastic ever since.
I started by making up a ton of gorgeous, seasonally inspired bouquets with material from own my garden. I focused on the kind of arrangements I wanted to be doing all of the time and photographed the heck out of them whenever there was a free moment. My portfolio grew rapidly with work that fed my soul and within a short time I began attracting a whole new type of client.
Now brides seek me out for this natural, romantic, slightly wild look.
It was by stepping out and demonstrating what I thought was beautiful, that transformed the entire thing!

Cori from Moss Fine Floral:
I am very visual in the planning process with my clients. However, I tell them from the first meeting that we will be pulling inspiration from places such as pinterest and wedding blogs but our goal is not to replicate images from a strangers wedding. I explain that we will be creating an inspiration board but telling a story unique to them. I also explain that there will be must have flower types and vessels that we’ve discussed but that I always leave room in the budget when pre-booking flowers so that I can incorporate little surprises that I find at market. This is more exciting for me as a designer and provides room for interesting elements to show face at the event. I find that when working with clients that are looking for locally grown product this is and easy sell. They tend to be more casual in their planning approach and understand that the crop varies from week to week with our unpredictable weather. I do think that building up your brand and your portfolio will bring you the clients that you want to work with and they are naturally more trusting when with a like minded creative.

Cathy from Sprout Flowers:
I think the biggest tool we use to get clients to accept a wider variety of flowers and appreciate innovative and creative design, is letting them watch us design.

My shop is set up so customers can watch us work, and it’s been set up that way since day one. They love seeing new and unusual blooms but are often intimidated by them. But once they see us working with them, or see a new or creative design in progress some of the fear goes away.

People instinctively want what’s safe, to go with the crowd. It’s the primitive response that has kept humans alive. But once they see that someone else is daring to venture out of their comfort zone, they are reassured that it’s safe for them too!

Brandon from Epic Flowers:
There is a famous saying, “build it and they will come” and I hate to sound cliche6, but at our shop this is what we’ve done. The floral gift giving industry has been so homogenized and blah. And a gift shouldn’t be this way. At our shop thinking outside the box and putting that extra zing allows our customers and others know exactly where that design came from. So we do nothing to encourage our customers to embrace our unique designs, they seek us out in a sea of boring shops because a gift should be unique and not a commodity.

Ariella Chezar:
Generally speaking, clients come in two categories; the ones with confidence, and the ones with less. The confident ones hire someone because they like what they’ve seen of their work, and they trust them. They don’t expect their designer to do something exactly like an inspiration picture. The less confident ones also, frequently seem to have less vision. This usually leads to micromanaging. Unfortunately, when a designer get’s micromanaged, it’s similar to clipping ones wings and it inhibits the designer’s freedom to really make something beautiful.

When dealing with the latter, I often will be very direct about it and tell them they just need to trust me. If they still can’t, I suggest we do a mockup (which they pay for!) of whichever item they are feeling anxious about. This is useful both for me and for the client.

Paula Pryke:
The internet has certainly provided the public with a lot more visual evidence and I agree that this in turn has made clients demand more specific designs. I have always had clients that would look through my portfolio and say that they did not see anything they liked! There have always been those who wanted to see something different and so I have had the opportunity to be creative. However I do agree that Bride’s now do often turn up with a picture or pin board of things they like. I think the trick is to look at all their visual evidence and then invite them to see something bespoke that you have made especially for them. Try to take the look that they like and move the design on so you make it your own. It is difficult when they want a Jam Jar of wild flowers or a dome of roses? Trends now are so world-wide that it is very difficult to present something original and different to people. I have always been surprised that despite the huge variety of options on offer in the wedding industry, Brides will often play safe. Presenting samples and ideas is the only way to talk them into a more adventurous design but this comes with added costs?

Robyn from Bare Root Flora:
This is a great question and an issue we face regularly. We work to communicate to our clients that we are in the business of creating original art and that we want to design something special and unique for their event rather than replicate someone else’s design. So we really try to steer our clients away from one particular picture and toward an overall design aesthetic. We use their photo(s) as a starting point for a discussion so that we know we’re achieving the look they want but then offer ways to take the design in a different direction or to the next level. That way the end result has our design stamp on it and, more importantly, truly reflects the client’s taste and story. In many ways, it boils down to establishing a real sense of trust with the client so they know we understand exactly the look they want and they have every confidence in us to achieve it.

pink peony bridal bouquet

Bouquet designed by Cori of Moss Fine Floral.

Introducing the new Expert Panel!

I have exciting news for you today! We are launching our new Expert Panel!!!!
Today we will start with introductions and bios of all the experts and tomorrow we will run the first question and answer. We will start posting a question and answer on the first of every month.
Thank you to all these amazing people who are on our panel!

Ariella Chezar

Floral goddess Ariella ChezarCOMBINING AUTHENTIC PASSION and creative flair, Ariella Chezar’s floral designs intertwine color, nature and style to a stunning effect.

Ariella began creating at a young age. She grew up in the Berkshires of Massachusetts where the outdoors played an integral part of her daily life. Her mother, an artist and avid gardener, inspired seasonal art projects that combined nature and creativity.

Today, her designs evoke nature with their seasonal relevance. Her lush blend of flowers and branches, fruits and vegetables as well as gorgeous silk textiles and ribbons combine for a final product which is both sensual and evocative.

Ariella began her career in the Berkshires working with Pamela Hardcastle and Barbara Bockbrader. These brilliant floral and garden designers inspired Ariella to combine her love of art and the dramatic with her passion for the natural world. “Pamela and Barbara showed me that art and life can be intertwined.” Ariella spent a season selling wreaths to New York flower shops and to shoppers along the streets of SOHO and Greenwich Village. Then she worked with Robert Isabell before moving to the West Coast in 1998.

In 2002, Chronicle Books published Flowers for the Table, a guide to choosing seasonal flowers and a lesson in designing with the bud’s natural form. The book revolves around several seasonal occasions, from a summer wedding in the country to hot colored poppies on a cold winter’s night. Beautiful photographs bring Ariella’s ideas to life. Her personal style and enthusiasm makes Flowers for the Table an inspiration for us all.

As of December, 2003, Ariella moved back to the East Coast.

Ariella’s work can be seen in issues of Oprah, In Style Weddings, Sunset Weddings, Garden Design, Elegant Bride, Town & Country, House and Garden, Victoria, Martha Stewart Weddings, San Francisco Bride, San Francisco Chronicle, Hanajikan, The Bel Aire Hotel Magazine and Sunset.
website: http://www.ariellaflowers.com/
blog: http://ariellaflowers.com/journal/
facebook: Ariella Chezar

Cathy Walsh

Sprout Mass floristCathy Walsh: Mild mannered wife and bookworm or flower ninja?
At her award winning bricks and mortar Worcester MA retail shop, Sprout, Cathy juggles the usual small biz balls – marketing, purchasing, inventory rotation, etc., but when the knives and scissors fly you know she is in battle mode and off to combat dull design with kick-ass flowers.
She dreams of a day when every home is filled with fresh and creative flowers and vows to bring flowers home more often. Cuz it’s kind of embarrassing to never have flowers at home when you’re a florist.
Unnamed sources claim to have seen Cathy guerrilla gardening and hiding flower filled eggs about the gritty metropolis.
She is a social media maven and can be found flitting between Facebook, her blog, and Twitter, though honestly Twitter is hard for someone who loves words as much as she does.
Cathy lives with her amazing husband on the top floor of a nice, book filled 3-decker with off street parking in Worcester. Where parking matters. Ask anyone.
website: http://www.sprout-flowers.com
facebook: Sprout Flowers
twitter: @SproutFlowers

Erin Benzakein

Floret Flower Farm WashingtonHello, I’m Erin Benzakein, the flower-obsessed founder of Floret. I am a self taught organic farmer, floral designer and writer. On our tiny plot of land, my family grows some of the most exquisite flowers on earth. I research and trial every variety we grow and share my findings in a monthly column in Growing for Market magazine. I adore old fashioned flowers and am constantly stretching the limits of what can be used in a bouquet – edibles and herbs are my latest craze. I wear aprons every day, everywhere and still believe in fairies. Sweet peas are my favorite flower and their scent reminds me of my great grandmother. I find my inspiration from the seasons and what is growing locally at any given moment. Working with what’s at hand is both humbling and deeply fulfilling. I strive to educate farmers, consumers, brides and grooms about sustainable, locally sourced ingredients and truly believe that flowers can change the world!
website: www.floretflowers.com
blog: www.floretflowers/blog
facebook: Floret Flower Farm
twitter @FloretFlwrFarm
instagram: floretflower

Paula Pryke

Paula Pryke Flowers LondonPaula Pryke was born in Suffolk in 1960 and began her distinguished flower business in 1987 after making a career change from teaching History.

Paula has now become one of the most famous and well respected florists in the world with a reputation for cutting edge, innovative floristry and an enviable ‘A’ list clientele. Her awards and accolades include ‘Most brilliant Florist’ (Evening Standard), ‘Best Florist in London’ (Tatler) and ‘Ambassador for the Florist Industry’ (NFU).

During the 24 years Paula’s business has been a mixture of retail floristry, contract work and events. In that period she has opened and closed 8 shops (6 in London, 1 in Birmingham and I in Seoul with the Samsung Corporation). Since 2008 Paula has decided to concentrate on her core business of contracts, events, bespoke gift floristry and consultancy.
Paula has written sixteen best-selling books on flowers, which have been translated into thirteen different languages including Japanese and Hebrew, (The New Floral Artist, Flower Innovations, Candles, Wreaths & Garlands, Flower Celebrations, Simple Flowers, Flower Innovations, Living Colour, Flower School, Table Flowers, Wedding Flowers, Classic Paula Pryke, Wreaths and Bouquets, Simply Pink, The Ultimate Floral Collection and her latest and most personal to date Everyday Flowers, a seasonal flower book about how to grow and arrange flowers). Paula is currently working on her seventeenth book due to published later this year.
Since 1994 Paula has also run her internationally renowned Flower School offering courses in every aspect of floral design for everyone from complete beginners through to professionals. Her prestigious internationally acclaimed Career Course has become something of a blueprint for flower courses around the country.
Paula’s philosophy has been embraced in Europe, America and the Far East where she is now in regular demand for lectures and floral demonstrations.
During the last few years Paula’s international client list has grown and her influence is spreading to the high seas. For three years she has been working with Crystal Cruises, the US Award-winning six star cruise line. Paula has been employed Paula as a floral consultant and she has thoroughly enjoyed working with a large scale hospitality team. She has also worked on their enrichment program and recently hosted her very own Floral Cruise in the Mediterranean with them in the summer of 2012. Two more floral cruises are planned for 2013.

Paula was also asked to demonstrate and work as a floral consultant to the only private residential ship to travel the globe. She decorated The World for its stay in London. She has also consulted on staff, design and the supply of flowers to other privately owned super yachts.

Amongst others, recent clients have included supplying the flowers for the new Coen Brothers film – a remake of Gambit – starring Colin Firth, Cameron Diaz, Alan Rickman and Tom Courtenay. Paula worked closely with the very talented set decorator Stephanie McMillan, who was also responsible for the wonderful Harry Potter sets.

Whilst Paula continues to concentrate on consultancy projects her varied workload has also included working with Waitrose, Britain’s most progressive supermarket, predicting flower trends and colours and working on their “How to..” videos for their popular website.

Paula continues to be invited to demonstrate in the US frequently. During 2012 she returned to Boston be the keynote speaker for the Museum of Fine Arts for their Art in Bloom, flew to Pasadena to be a judge for the world famous Rose Parade and spent a week in San Francisco running a Masterclass at the Inwater Flower School which is based in The Flower Market. A further course is planned for the Spring of 2014.

2012 saw the highly successful launch of The Paula Pryke Flower School in Seoul, South Korea and Paula will again make a return visit to teach during the first half of 2013.

Appointments during 2012 representing the flower industry include being the patron of Chichester Cathedral Festival of Flowers as well as joining the judging panel for The Wedding Industry Awards. For 2013 Paula has been appointed Designer for the Guildford Cathedral Flower Gala.

website: http://www.paulapryke.com/
facebook: Paula Pryke
twitter: @PaulaPryke

Robyn Rissman

Robyn Bare Root Floral DenverRobyn Rissman has loved all things wedding since she woke at three in the morning as a small child to watch Charles and Di in the wedding of the (20th) century! Since she couldn’t justify having more than one wedding of her own, she decided to be part of making beautiful weddings for others! She lives for flowers, chocolate, travel, summer days, a good book, and being outside.
website: www.barerootflora.com
facebook: Bare Root Flora
twitter: @BareRootFlora

Brandon Kirkland

Brandon Kirkland Epic Flowers Ashland OregonBrandon Kirkland has been in the floral industry for 15 years and owns, with his wife Enchanted Florist in Ashland Oregon. Brandon comes from a technology and marketing background and was fed up with the choices that florists had when it came to their eCommerce choices so he created www.epicflowers.com. Brandon believes a floral eCommerce site is a florist’s second business and should act as a second business model. Besides being a floral/tech geek he studies and offers tasting classes on fine chocolate of the world.
website: EpicFlowers www.epicflowers.com
website: Enchanted Florist www.chicfloral.com
twitter: @epicflowers

Cori Jansen

Moss Fine Floral ChicagoOwner and lead designer Cori Jansen opened Moss Fine Floral in 2010 with locations servicing Chicagoland and Eagle River, Wisconsin. Her grandparents were farmers and excellent backyard gardeners which led her to an early admiration and fascination with foliage and flowers. She went on to college earning a BS in Agri-Business with a Horticulture sequecne. She has now been working in the floral field for 22 years. Cori resides between Chicago and Wisconsin with her new husband and beloved Labrador Max. She is also involved in animal rescue which is featured on her website.
website: http://mossfinefloral.com
blog: http://www.mossfinefloralblog.com
facebook: Moss Fine Floral