last november i decided on a whim to quit my job. i had been in visual merchandising for four years. i worked for several retailers such as ann taylor, banana republic, and forever 21 to name a few. it was such a fun job. i came into work everyday and got to use my creative skills to figure out how to best sell clothes to my customers. of course there were other things like paperwork, schedule writing, operations, etc; but my main job was to visually see colors, textiles, styles, aesthetics…and then to execute that vision perfectly.

in 2015 i noticed that the retail world was changing. people weren’t going to the mall and shopping like they used to. clothing retail companies were struggling and to cut costs one of the first things to go was resources and hours for the visual merchandising teams. my job soon became a constant struggle as i was expected to provide the same results with less than half of my hours and resources. i started dreading going into work. it was no longer a creative outlet for me. just a constant stress.

a career change was in order, but…what? i had been in fashion for so long i wasn’t sure what else i would want to do. i knew that whatever it was, it had to allow me to use creative freedom and to work with my hands.

I had taken several floral design classes over the years and had really enjoyed it. i had several friends who were in the industry and had occasionally helped them with weddings or watched them process their flowers. but at the time i never really thought i would actually be a florist for a living.

for christmas my sweet husband bought me a one on one workshop with one of my floral idols, soil and stem. i had admired her work for sometime and thought her designs were so impactful. workshops are not cheap my friends, and i was surprised that my husband would get me such an expensive gift. i happily took it though because, hey, it was a chance to work with nicole from soil and stem. the workshop not only help lay out what it would take to run a floral business, but it gave me the creative drive to have the courage to start. starting a business is not easy. in fact, it is incredibly terrifying and hard. and i might have cried multiple times. but looking back at this past year, i wouldn’t change it for the world. i think we can have more than one calling in life, and i finally feel like i have found another one of mine.

photographer: brush fire photo. dress: alexandrea grecco. model: katie craig. ribbon: silk and willow. studio: miesh studio. florists: soil and stem and roots floral design (me!)

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March 3, 2016

KayteeStice

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