Vendor Feature: Lacey Janette w/ Amborella Floral Studio
Florist + Jewellery Designer
I've known Lacey since middle-school, back when we were obsessing over scene-guys and blaring punk-rock and going to warp tour. Its hilarious really... it seems like a whole different life now and we have really blossomed (pun intended) in to really cool people (if I do say so myself.) Recently Lacey and I touched base to talk SHOP as she is now a beautiful floral designer here in Calgary and also makes incredible jewellery, 'by lacey janette'. We talked about the Wedding Industry, life, as well as collaborative projects we hope to do in the near future. (I wish I could tell you but... I can't.)
Lacey is so sparkly! She is truly unique and I wanted to take a few photos of her that really show-case her spirit. I decided to really play with the light and sense of colour for post production to really set her apart from the other work I have done.
Here is a quick little interview (see below) for all you brides-to-be! If you are considering a florist, she is an incredible designer to work with. She's not only an artist, she's someone you can really connect with and enjoy working with through the whole entire process! ALSO... custom jewellery design for your bridesmaids? Yep, I think so! Find her in the south at Amborella Floral Studio.
First off, what made you decide to leave the non-for-profit sector to really explore floral design and jewellery design?
Simply put - I kind of had to. After undergoing a whole bunch of really big life changes and experiencing some pretty horrific loss, I just woke up one morning and realized I didn't have a choice anymore. I HAD to start living a creative life full time. Suddenly the reality that a person can lose it all on the turn of a time was staring me right in the face and it just didn't make sense to live an "I hate Mondays" sort of a life anymore. So I took the leap into two creative worlds that I've always lusted after - flowers and jewelry! Floral design is such a beautiful medium - it's taking things from the earth that are already spectacular and making them more beautiful. It's also a totally sustainable, full-time, super creative career, so it was a perfect fit! The jewellery design part also developed organically. It's something I've always done for fun, and after attending ACAD to complete a certificate in jewellery and metals, it just sort of fell into place! It's something I love to do, and so when I took the leap to create a sustainable life for myself out of my passions, it just made sense to turn it into a business.
Where do you find inspiration for your bouquets and designs?
Pretty simply - our amazing planet. At the floral studio we take these beautiful blooms as the earth creates them and arrange them into pieces to celebrate life's biggest milestones...we make things to make people smile! What could possibly be more inspiring than that? I also seek inspiration from each individual I design for - it usually just takes a few moments talking to a floral client to get at least a surface understanding of their personal style or the style of the person they are gifting flowers to, and I try my best to channel that! In jewellery, I am definitely just as inspired by the beautiful things that come naturally from the earth. Every time I look at the mountains or the ocean or a field of canola I get inspired to create pieces! There is nothing more simple and beautiful to me than the clean lines of an Alberta sky, or the bluest horizon from the beach on Vancouver Island. The world around us is really incredible, and it definitely inspires every single thing I do.
How would you describe your ‘style?’
Definitely wild and boho in pretty much every part of my life. I tend to dress like a bit of a bag lady (a relatively chic bag lady, but a bag lady no less). I dig the drapey, laid back vibe and always, always have giant purple hair! At the flower shop I constantly gravitate to super linear "ditch flower" blooms and almost always end up making arrangements that look like they could have been scooped up from a sunny field...and I don't think I even do it on purpose. I think I love that style because it's such a reflection of the unpredictable way flowers pop up in nature, maybe? I love crazy, unbridled beauty. With jewellery I like to clean up the boho look - I love clean lines and subtle angles, but still always end up creating earthy stuff.
What is your favourite thing about working with brides/grooms?
I LOVE LOVE! Honestly. Not a day passes by that we don't squeal those words at the shop. We get to work with so many beautiful couples you would think it would be hard to keep track, but it's not. I fall so hard in love with every single love story we hear. When I start a consultation the first thing I do is ask the couple to tell me about their love - how did they meet? What do they love most about each other? Watching the light in a bride's eyes when she talks about marrying the love of her life is enough to turn me to mush! And then taking that energy and channeling it into creating florals for their day that reflect their love and their light! We are seriously so lucky.
What separates you from other florists?
Personally, I'm a relative super-newbie on the scene, so I'm sort of just learning how I fit in! I have seen a trend in my work and have been told time and time again that I'm a "wild" designer. Pieces I create tend to be more inspired by field flowers, be really textured, and have lots of depth of colour. I'm definitely on the looser, more natural end of the design scale! But that's just me, personally. Amborella (the shop I am so lucky to work at) has really made a mark on the floral and bridal scene as doing completely custom work for a range of clients. We certainly have an "Amborella look" that tends more toward soft colours, full and flowing blooms, and tons of interesting texture - definitely vintage and rustic inspired! But more than anything, we are a little flower community. Our clients - brides and otherwise - are some of the most important people in our lives! We have brides and clients that come by regularly just to chat about life and love and the things that are challenging and inspiring us! We are a flower shop, sure, but we are also a little sanctuary in the city where people come to surround themselves with beautiful blooms and happy hearts, and I think that is really special.
If you could offer any advice for brides looking at different florists, what would it be?
Definitely to find a florist (and all of your other vendors) that you like! They should be people that you could see yourself hanging out with! Chances are if you can find a florist or caterer or DJ that you are actually excited about spending time with during the process of planning your wedding, that person is the right person to help you execute your vision! When looking for a florist in particular, though, look for someone whose body of past work reflects not only the style you are going for for your wedding, but also your personal style! It sounds so simple, but floral design styles vary so much! It's really important to speak candidly with your designer about your vision but it is even more important to be open to ideas. If you bring your inspiration to us - Pinterest boards, colour palettes, vision boards - our brains will start working a mile a minute to come up with original ideas to turn that inspiration into your wedding. We also are loaded up with information about availability and pricing of blooms, so we sometimes might have some less-than-awesome news about getting that peony bouquet or hydrangea centrepiece you have always wanted. But we will also have a million ideas of beautiful things to do instead! So no matter which florist you choose make sure it's someone you dig and someone you trust, and you will definitely be happy with your flowers.
What is the typical price range for Amborellas services for a wedding?
This really varies! I would say an average wedding can range anywhere from $1000 - $5000, but it's really dependent on so many factors. The biggest spending areas are always attendant flowers (bridesmaid bouquets) and centrepieces. It takes a lot of flowers to cover 6 girls and 25 tables no matter how simple the designs, so definitely keep that in mind when writing your wedding budget. We do have some set base prices though, and brides can definitely call or email us to get a list!
What is your favourite part of your day at the floral studio?
Is it too cliché to say "all of it"? Because that would absolutely be the truth. It is actually the most incredible job in the whole world. But if I HAVE to give specifics, I would say the people and the stories. Everyone who comes to buy flowers is buying them for something or for someone, and talking about that is always so good for the heart. Sometimes it's as simple as "because my mom has had a really long week" and other times it's as big as "because I am going to ask my best friend to marry me today". But every story warms my heart, without fail. We keep a lot of tissues around the shop!
Do you plan to integrate your jewellery design in to your career with being a florist?
I think it's really cool that both of my creative passions are so closely linked with love. I would love it if one day I could integrate my floral design work with my work as a jeweller by designing engagement and wedding rings! Creating something so integral in a relationship would be the most incredible feeling! Right now I am really lucky to work in the most beautiful shop where we carry my slowly developing jewelry line - flowers and sparkly jewels really do go together nicely!
Who/What inspires you and keeps your fire lit in this creative endeavour?
I am really lucky to be surrounded by people that keep that fire lit, and I could definitely go on and on, but there is one person that I need to yell from the rooftops. Misha, the owner of Amborella has become my mentor, my inspiration, and one of my dearest friends. Since the moment she gave me the opportunity she has been pushing me to get everything I want out of this life. She'll probably read this and cry a bit (good, hi Mish!), but the girl is honestly the most selfless, driven, inspiring soul I have ever met. I wouldn't have made it so far so fast in this creative life if I hadn't met her. She is an incredible talent in floral design and in being a creative entrepreneur, but it's her knack for seeing the light in the people she loves and pushing them to reach for the proverbial stars that makes her truly the most incredible role model. In an unconventional life like the one I've chosen, I think it's really important to find a role model who understands and can help you navigate, and Mish has definitely been that person for me with flowers and with jewellery. And lord only knows she will keep pushing me (and we will keep pushing each other) until I achieve every single one of my starry-eyed goals.
Not to mention my incredibly supportive family, best friends and partner in crime who all seemed to always know that this was the right path for me. It's so important to be surrounded in people who understand your creative mind and will be there to catch you when things don't go so awesome when you have a crazy artist's heart, and I'm so lucky to have all of that.