Mayesh Design Star: Abby Chick
With an abundance of exceptional designers gracing us this year, we are thrilled to unveil our FIFTH featured Mayesh Design Star. It brings us immense joy to present to you... Abby Chick of Blakemore Flowers!
Abby Chick has devoted her career to retail floristry, including her own shop, Blakemore's Flowers in Harrisonburg, VA. Through her innovative style, continued education, and business acumen, she has turned her brick and mortar into not only a successful shop for daily work and funerals, but also an impressive event studio. She has been published in Florists' Review and Floral Management magazines, and was a featured educator at the Fleursociety Summit. Her passion for the floral industry has led to collaborations with Holly Chapple Flowers and Flower Clique to bring educational resources to the floral market.
We asked Abby a couple more questions - be sure to keep on scrolling to read more and view examples of her stunning work!
What is your philosophy towards sustainability within our industry?
The term "sustainable" has so many meanings. When I think of that word and how I approach it, I think of the practices that I implement in my business day in and day out to serve my current customers in the most environmentally-friendly way. My methods are always filtered through the lens of functionality in a real world setting and keeping my profit margins intact. Sustainability is not a "one size fits all" approach, nor is it easy to find concrete solutions for every problem. Our industry has operated in a certain way for so long that the problems we face are complex issues with more to consider and research than most florists are able to tackle. Often, what appears to be the most sustainable solution on the surface may not actually be the most environmentally-friendly option when you consider the entire life cycle of the product.
In order to operate in an eco-conscious way in today's floral marketplace, we must focus on reduction first and foremost, and look to "better than" solutions to serve our clients needs. Sue McLeary has been a constant source of encouragement and help in my own sustainability journey, and introduced Tobey Nelson's idea of "better than" solutions to me. I found this terminology, along with the guiding principles of reusable or compostable to be the most economically viable and practical. It takes all kinds! While niche, artisanal methods put forth by innovators are essential to keep us moving forward, my aim is to highlight these practical "better than" ideas to bring smaller changes to the masses in an effort to create a larger, long-lasting impact!
Where do you hope to see the industry in the next 5 years?
In five years, I look to a reality where more consumers are aware of just how unfriendly the floral industry has historically been to our planet and have started to not only accept new standards but look for and request these changes be made in their purchases. We can transform our businesses, but transition takes time. Publicly sharing what we are doing in the background to foster positive growth and openly discussing what we want to see develop is the first step to creating the future we want. I always tell florists, it is not the time to impose your beliefs and oppositions when a grieving widow walks into your shop asking for something to celebrate their lost loved one. We must start to introduce these ideas before they're in need of your services.
Connect with Abby: