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My Journey as a Paper Flower Artist - Part One

My table in 2011 at the CBC Broadcasting Center downtown Toronto

Hey Lovelies, nice to see you here!
A few weeks ago I was looking at old photos from blog posts I wrote all the way back in 2010! Seeing those pics made me realized how much I grew as an artist and as a person...My techniques changed a bit as I was coming up with new flower designs but throughout the years I kept my signature style...I stayed true to myself, the way I work and the way I like to see things done.

One of my first Handmade Card

When I first opened my Etsy shop in 2010, I was selling handmade cards. I was new to the "online" business world and I quickly realized how much the market was overly saturated with handmade cards -  I had no chance to stand out. While I kept my shop open and hoping for a sale,  I started making mini flowers to use as little embellishments on my cards then the brilliant idea to sell those mini blooms as scrapbooking supplies occured to me and I gave it a try...Well, I started listing my mini flowers in the supplies section of Etsy and my little packs of 5 mini blooms were selling all over the world like hotcakes! Really!!! 

Mini paper blooms - set of 5 (measures 3/4")

I kept this up for a while and with time came up with the  box set idea 
- my flowers grew in size too! 
I went from 3/4in to 3in - always with a low profile  flowers to fit
 the "scrapbooking supply" category.

Box Set of low profile scrapbook flowers

My Rosettas & Marigolds Gift Embellishments

Then, the 3D flowers came to live - I was listing them as "Wedding Gift Favor Embellishment" - A new world opened to me: The Wedding Industry - Oh! So much to learn...but I'm a fast learner and I didn't let this giant  scaring me off! I remember the day when a bride-to-be asked if I could make "Escort Cards" -- I had no clue what those were...before I sent her a reply, I googled "Escort Cards" and found most interesting articles...During those year it was popular to greet your guests at the wedding venue by being original - So my Escort Cards were born and man did they kept me busy. They were my best seller! I made hundreds of those flowers! They were a hit...Guests loved so much taking home their personalized flowers!!! I would include at the bottom of the each flowers a little seal with the bride and groom initials and their wedding date! Perfect keepsake!

Place Cards / Table Number Cards / Escort Cards

Soon after I designed a slightly larger flowers as "Place Card Holder" and I included in the collection the Table Number Card. During that time my husband kept telling me that I should put my flowers on stems and make bouquets - and I thought no way a bride would buy my bouquet for her very special day...well...He was right and I was wrong - The second I started listing bridal bouquets in my shop I started booking weddings...not just the bride bouquet but for the whole wedding party! 

Collection of Table Number Cards, Place Card Holders & Escort Cards
(You can find tutorial in my new book: Bold & beautiful Paper Flowers)

My first Bridal Package Order in Summer 2012

Those were the days...The business grew so much so fast, I barely had time to keep up with the image: you know, logo, branding... all that stuff.  From 2010 until mid 2014 my shop was under the name: Dragonfly Expression - I so wanted a beautiful logo - after our big move across the country, I finally took the time and I hired a super talented local branding expert to give my business an image. You know what I'm talking about? I wanted people to know my brand by recognizing the logo.  The expert told me that "Dragonfly Expression" is pretty yes but doesn't say anything about the business -I had to agree and fearfully follow her advise and change the name...That was the scariest thing I ever  did...Everybody knew Dragonfly Expression!  But since I was ready to step up - to work on larger projects, the process of  rebranding  made my business stand out and look well established rather than just a crafter selling homemade goods.  Paper & Peony was born! (you can read the rebranding story here). The transition went extremely well, so well that my business actually quadruple in the first year. I was approached by Advertising and Marketing Agencies to create custom flowers for their clients like Champagne Perrier-Jouët, Malibu Rum  and the events were usually hosted by celebrities! To this day I'm still the paper flower supplier to those big agencies! I also have fantastic wedding/event managing companies that I started working with years ago and keeps coming back to me for making custom creations for their clients! Building a good relationship with good clients like is very important for a small, home-based business like mine. They guaranty a steady income.


 
 Champagne Perrier-Jouët event in NYC hosted by Ali Larter 

2014 The fabulous Lauren Conrad standing in front of my paper flowers  
for Malibu Island Spiced Rum at the Mondrain Hotel- Miami Beach


Looking back to where I started and to see how far I've come, feelings of immense gratitude overflows. Yes I worked very hard to be where I am right now but all of this was only possible because of the support of my wonderful husband!...Hey! Not once he complained about the fact I had taking over the dinning room table and we were eating off TV trays for years!
(actually it's still current! I have a studio but the dinning room is still been use for the business...lol)

I also benefit the support of great and generous women like Kara Ross, Carla McDonald,  Cristina Re, Tiffany Pratt and Emma Arendoski the lady behind the world famous DIY wedding site Emmaline Bride. I also enjoyed many features in major magazines in the US, UK and Australia.
(more coming this Spring...Stay tune!)

Instagram had a huge impact also in putting my business on the map! I love taking pictures of my flowers and putting together lovely settings and colorful flatlays!
 I'm so grateful for the love and support YOU my wonderful followers show me everyday on my IG and FB posts!

My creative Flatlays on Instagram

On my next blog post I will share with you my journey when I was offered the book deal and the process of writing the book

Thank you my lovelies for sticking around!
Sharing my journey with you took me back to memory lane!
To this day I'm in awe to see how far my little packs of mini blooms has taking me!
Below are two of my creative flatlays you can use on your social platforms!


Hugs, 


Comments

  1. I have really enjoyed reading your flower creating journey! You are an inspiration! I love your book!

    ReplyDelete

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