Sunday, February 8, 2009

getting to know you #5

It's week 5, and it's also the week before Valentine's day. No better time than to introduce you to Natalie Bowen, fabulous floral designer extraordinaire. Working with flowers run in her blood as you'll see from the image below of her grandmother in 1941. She's standing in front of her shop here in San Francisco (Ulloa Street.) If you are in the bay area, order flowers from Natalie to be delivered to your loved one either Friday or Saturday. Her minimum is $45 and if you order before Wednesday, she'll deliver for free-take advantage of this amazing deal! The arrangement images are some of the many options you can order.

please tell us who you are, and a bit about your business/art.
I own and run Natalie Bowen Designs, a floral design company in San Francisco. We do flowers for weddings, events, deliveries, photo shoots and home interiors. I tend towards seasonal flowers designed in organic yet structured ways. I also make cards and love to include my handmade cards with my floral deliveries.

describe your creative/creating process.
When I have a new project or client I find that initially a vision pops into my mind. I either dig right in or sit with it and see what comes to me. I find that a lot of my best ideas have come to me in my sleep and when I am on a run and free-thinking. If I get stuck I find that I usually ask my boyfriend to brainstorm with me. He doesn’t know flowers as well as I do, he is an architect and can visualize form and shape.

what are your favorite places to shop?
I find that I window shop a lot to find inspiration. My favorite spots are:
- aria
- paper source
- nest
- bell jar
- the ribbonerie

how do you describe your personal style?

My personal style is gathered from a number of influences. I love vintage and vintage inspired designs in combination with modern looks. I am also very influenced by nature and natural textures and forms. I love to group wacky and pretty things together to tell a story. Most of all I always like a clean put together look.

what is your top piece of advice for someone trying to run their own business?
The most important piece of advice I would have for somebody is to have the energy to do what it takes to make your business happen. There is SO much more to running a business than just doing your craft. I find that I only work with flowers about twenty percent of the time I am actually working. It also means working long hours and learning how to stay centered when there is ALWAYS something to do. Most of a all if you get discouraged, keep at it.

name five things that are a constant in your daily routine.
I start my day with a cup of decaf English breakfast tea.
I go to the flower market every weekday morning and try to get there by 7am.
I take a yoga class or go for a run almost every day.
I cook at least one healthy and delicious meal every day.
I check my email a LOT.

what is your ideal day?
My ideal day is day three on a trip abroad either by myself or with a person I love. I have adjusted to the time change and figured out the City enough to have a feeling for the layout but still have it be a mystery. I am excited and ready for adventure, exploring, being inspired and eating a delicious meal. Oh, and I have a fabulous outfit on!

(at the flower market in Taiwan)

tell us something about yourself that we might find surprising.
I was a cheerleader in high school. Wait, is that surprising?

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