on why you started.

I get a couple messages a day from women who have businesses, or dream of one day having one. I also get a couple messages a day asking about headbands, hair braids, and what kind of dog Maple is. (Note: wherever I can get them, thanks for the comments, and she's a Bernese Mountain Dog.) 

Most of these messages ask me for advice, for which I am flattered. Because I'm a girl who knew absolutely nothing about owning a business and started one. We had to SAVE UP the $800 we put into a business checking account to start Stems & Sprigs. It's really easy to get swept up in the hustle and bustle of it all during wedding season. 

I feel like May - September I am on autopilot. One wedding to the next, onto the next, the next one. Our house is littered with lists and notes reminding me of simple things that October - April I can actually remember, "pay energy bill" "get 1/2 and 1/2" "close gate tonight." I still have a birthday gift to send someone. Their birthday was in early July. 

But on Sunday, by myself in the studio. I remembered why I started. 

If you attend Hygge with me this winter, you'll get the whole story. It involves this weird dream about Christmas morning and breaking news and being sad a lot and all that jazz. And thats all true. But at its most simple level, this all started because I freaking love flowers. 

But you see, in Mid July, I don't think of this. I cannot. We are operating at such an intense level that I cannot stop and smell the roses, literally. 

So on Sunday, I shuffled out to the studio and brought Maple with me and she laid on the cold cement floor and I started to make a bridal bouquet. 

And there were no rules. The bouquet was for a styled shoot. Given total creative freedom is like someone saying to me- here's a hunk of cheddar cheese, a bowl of buttery popcorn, a really nice ass glass of red wine & a blankie. It's bliss. 

Wedding work is fun, but there's a ton of pressure. Have you talked to her enough about what 'blush' really is? Will she be mad if the ivory is a bit more white? She doesn't enjoy a lot of greenery, it needs to be wild, she would love something small.... it's a LOT to remember. 

But when there are no rules, no guidelines, no requests- just buckets of flowers and lukewarm coffee and time.... I remember why I started. 

So I made some weird shaped dahlia heavy creation. With dried ragweed and dogwood and a vine I cut off the side of the barn. And as I stood in the studio designing in the silence I was taken back to designing on a ping pong table in a (nearly) windowless basement in an old ranch house in Cadillac, Michigan with no one, in particular, to design for, just a flower order to 'practice' on. And I remember telling my wholesale account manager that the order couldn't be more than $60. And I cut ivy off the backside of that house that day and tucked it in a bouquet and it was weird and I liked it. And I put that bouquet in a vase and set it on our kitchen counter. And my alarm went off for work the next day at midnight and I flipped on the kitchen light and saw that bouquet and smiles and I went to work and couldn't wait to get home and work on it some more, change the shape, practice some new weird idea I had. And I was so excited just to get to create with flowers.

And that's why I started. 





Kalin SheickComment