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April 20, 2015
We’re featuring another business woman, Kelly Johannesson from Thistle and Blooms. This creative and fun business is Kelly’s dream — creating flower designs for women on their wedding day! Working from home, Kelly juggles all parts of her business with help from her husband. She creates her flower designs, meets with clients at coffee shops, answers emails, writes proposals, and finds inspiration from Pinterest. The beginning stages of her business are an exciting and fun time! Read more about Kelly and her business in the following Q&A from Wonderfully Made.
Tell us about how you were inspired to start Thistle and Blooms.
I had been a wedding florist for 4 years prior with Stems of Dallas and Toast Santa Barbara, and when we moved to Austin 6 months ago I had a craving to see my longtime passion of starting my own flower business come to life. I was so fearful of failing. So my husband, the great man that he is, challenged me to not let fear hold me back from pursuing my passion. So after lots of prayer and nerves I jumped in head first with the mentality of “what’s the worst that could happen?”
What is your process to helping a bride decide what flowers would be perfect for her?
I have a three meeting process. The first one is just to get the overall vision flower quantity and style she likes with Pinterest pictures and venue pictures, etc. The second meeting is to propose to her my vision and pricing and see if we are on the same page by making her an inspiration board where I have pulled a collage of pictures to describe the look that I am thinking of. And the last meeting is a month out from her wedding to finalize all the details.
Besides weddings, what other events do you create bouquets and flower displays for?
I have just recently starting doing photo shoots with local photographers, bringing in my arrangements to local bridal shops. One of my favorites so far has been working with May Designs creating floral displays for there branding photo shoot at their adorable studio. My goal for 2015 is to see my company branch out into more corporate events and restaurants.
What are some of the motivators that influence your creative design process?
I am always challenging myself to think outside the box and tailor my flowers to each bride. I want them to feel like their flowers are original. It also helps when the bride trusts my creativity and gives me freedom in the design process to make it incredible. I also get inspired by going through other florist’s pictures on Instagram and seeing what beautiful creations they come up with.
Where are you located now, and do you anticipate working with brides outside of your location, for weddings other places?
I am designing out of my house in Austin right now, which is where most of my weddings are. However, I just got back from doing a wedding in Charleston, South Carolina and have another wedding in California later this year! I am always down to travel for weddings.
Do you have a favorite part of the flower and design process in helping brides? What is it?
I love getting to see how happy the bride is with her flowers on her wedding day. All that work is worth it when I get to see her dream come to life after months of collaboration.
How does your faith influence your business?
My faith comes into play daily at work, when I get overwhelmed or need more patience I can stop and reground myself in what really matters. I also love getting to meet the brides and hope that they walk away from our meetings feeling loved. I can only hope that they see that and know it isn’t from me.
On your website you mention your grandmother and mother influencing you as a child, which developed to starting this business after college. What words of wisdom would you give our readers who are girls in their late teens to mid twenties about parents, especially mothers, and finding support in family?
My grandma ingrained it in me at a young age that I can do whatever I could dream up- this being the same Grandma that managed to go to Stanford University while having dyslexia and four kids. Having that example of defeating all odds is a daily inspiration to me. I encourage you out there reading this to take this to heart and keep pressing into things you are passionate about. Don’t let your own self-doubt control you. If I did that I would never have started this business!
So girls, keep DREAMING and start positioning yourself around people who encourage that and fuel your passions. Whether that’s going to wedding expos (if you want to be a wedding planner) or interviewing people you really admire and respect in the field you are interested in. And I pray that your families come along side you in those dreams and encourage you. Our family has so much influence in our lives, so encourage your family members in their passions also!