Winning as an entrepreneur means THINKING DIFFERENTLY.
Who is Kerry - Ann Flowers?
Rejuvenating the art of handmade crafts and paper design, Kerry -Ann Flowers is producing beautiful handcrafted items for life's special moments. Through her design firm, K. Flowers Designs, LLC, this working mom and wife is leaving her unique touch on this industry through her custom designs and couture stationery. With a talent for event branding and a passion for producing one of a kind pieces, Mrs. Flowers is setting the event planning world on fire.
Finding inspiration has never been hard for Kerry-Ann as her visual medium is encompassed by nature's simplest beauties which inspires her to create unforgettable noteworthy designs that are not only custom to her client's personalities but memorable for their guests in attendance.
Specializing in handmade event stationery, couture accessories and event branding, K. Flowers Designs, LLC offers a boutique experience with one of a kind designs. With services to fulfill any event needs. Kerry-Ann's chic designs are not only for weddings, as she also specializes in custom party supplies for themed children events through her kiddie division called Parties Bloom.
One things for certain Kerry-Ann's work is remarkable as she designs from the heart. The prides she takes in every piece is exhibited throughout her craftsmanship as no two designs are ever the same. The hardwork and dedication she puts into her work is impeccable and is showcased in every project she touches.
What made you get started in your industry?
I have always loved entertaining and hosting guests in my home. I had no thought of ever turning the things that came so natural to me, into a business. After having my first child, I became fascinated with parties. I had all types of ideas to host and decorate over the top, just right our ridiculous parties. I wrote all my ideas down. The book is still in my craft room. I discovered my gift in 2010. I had the gift of creativity and I didn't even know it. I was buried within me and I couldn't stop thinking about it. I practice a lot and one day on trip to North Carolina, I met a woman named Khrystal in the craft store. As she and I were shopping i felt a strong urge to speak to her. She was looking to replace her die cutting machine which turned out to be the same machine I had recently purchased. After much conversation, she encouraged me to open an Etsy shop. I took that as a sign from God. A total stranger was telling me take a step that I had been thinking about for months. That night I opened my online store. I listed party invitations and decorations. Parties Bloom was my start. I wanted to give children something special for their birthday. Beautiful party decorations made just for them. You can't buy that at the party supply store. Birthdays are special and I wanted each child I created things for to feel special on their birthday.
Walk us through the step-by-step process that you went through to get to where you are today. what was the first thing you did?
I have been thinking about parties and events since 2009. Initially these were ideas in my book of dreams. I had everything written down. The type of events I wanted to create, the details that went into them, the theme. Researching was a big part of the process. I found websites to order certain materials from, I needed to know what things cost, so that I could develop my prices. There were two female event business owners who I came across and I studied their websites. I would look on, and dream and plan. Eventually, I started a blog so that people could see what my ideas were and hopefully take me serious enough to hire me. After going back and forth with ideas and thoughts, I decided to create a website for myself. The domain was purchased, I registered my business and just went for it. It took a lot of trial and error. I lost money, invested time in people I thought would be clients and I had hurts. At the end of 2011 I opened my online store with the goal of creating beautiful party invitations, decorations and favors for kids. I've always loved working with children so that's where i started. Over the years, my interests have shifted and expanded. I use to be terrified of weddings, but I've added that to the services I offer. Today I have two websites, Parties Bloom is the line for kids and moms who love personalized and well crafted party supplies. K Flowers Designs is for the bride looking for keepsake worthy stationery and accessories, a luxury wedding bouquet and who loves details. I am interested in a lot of things but i do my best to make sure it's all connected to customization. My Clients can have anything they want because I am more bold now in accepting challenges. I am more confident in my skills because I've had enough practice and have been intentional about improving. This allows me to be smarting in making decisions for which clients I will work with and i will invest my time in.
What do you consider are your specialty?
I love to create custom statement pieces. Whether it be wedding stationery to set the tone for a couple’s big day or our couture keepsake bouquets, my specialty would have to be custom and detailed work. I enjoy putting small pieces together for an elaborate end result.
Do you see yourself making this full-time?
My goal is always to improve on my skills and expand my clientele. My ideal situation is to be a full time event designer and stylist. There are moments when I feel like i need more hours in my day to get through all my orders, so I certainly see “full-time” in the near future.
What can we always expect from your company/brand?
Most importantly, my clients will receive a personal experience. Each item is customized for them. Originality is something I pride myself on providing. I do not replicate designs, especially for a wedding. All my work is handmade and so there is a little piece of my heart left with each client.
What was the best advice you every received and why?
The best advice I have ever received was to increase my prices. That might sound strange, but I initially was so hungry to ‘make’ that I would sometimes sell my self short. Over the years, I have come to understand and embrace my worth as a designer. I know that my products and services are not for everyone. It’s a luxury and specialty and I have to market accordingly.
What tips can you recommend that you’d would most likely only share with a close friend or comrade on success?
"Be true to yourself" is an important philosophy to live by, in life and business. Your products and services are a reflection of you. You are your brand, so participate in things and accept work that is true to your beliefs and passion. As eager as you may be to ‘make the sale’ or get the contract, some clients are not the right fit--be okay with that! Secondly, Don’t say you can’t (unless you truly are incapable of delivering) What I mean by that is, when you first start your business, there are things that you will not be sure about. There are skills you may still be developing. It takes time, but don’t miss out on business opportunities because you are doubting yourself and skills. Google searches have been very helpful to me, YouTube as well. I’ve had so many firsts because I was bold in accepting business opportunities and sometimes I would tell my clients (after) that they were my first and they would be shocked! Lastly, Trust yourself. You have been given the gift and the passion needed to be successful. Trust that your talent is worth it. Trust that you are good. Trust that with hard work, your skills will take you to where you want to be. Trust that God and the universe will create opportunities of growth and success for you.
Do you have favorite online resources such as Evernote, Dropbox or app that you use for your business?
Online resource: PayPal is huge For me. It allows me to accept secure payments as well as customize invoices for my clients. I use one note as well. It helps me to jot notes on the go. I use it on my phone and it's linked to my email address so it transfers to my computer.
Can you recommend one or two books that have been influential in your life?
My first book is called Trust by Iyanla Vanzant. There is a book called Hustle by a local ex news anchor. She's an African American entrepreneur. She recently transitioned from being a well know and successful anchor on ABC and now she's a motivational speaker and writer. Her name is Darieth Chisholm
What can we expect from you and your company/brand in the next 5 years?
Well I am involved in a little bit of everything that has to do with events but starting this year, a lot more weddings. More couture accessories. More luxury, for sure. K. Flowers Designs will be a household name—a luxury brand for events Within 5 years, I WILL have an event space. We will be hosting glamorous events in this space including two signature annual events.
What do you think will be the next big change or shift in your industry?
That’s a great question! I would like to think that events will continue to be more glamorous and detailed. About 5-10 years ago a baby shower was just friends and family at your home, church or something very simple and informal. You ate, looked at gifts as everyday would “ooh" and “aah" over cute onesies and booties. Today, we have professional photographers, a full dessert bar with couture 3D cake pops, chandelier cakes, and invitations are printed with gold foil ink and mailed in a boxes. The evolution is amazing and the more detailed things get, the more I fall in love. Whatever is to come I welcome it.
If a young entrepreneur walked up to you asking for your advice and you only had a few minutes to give ‘em your best tip, what would it be?
Practice your skills is what I would say”, it will show in the end. Secondly, know your industry, you have to know what’s hot, what is trending and what is not! Finally, "Keep moving". Your passion should be your driving force. For each failed attempt at your business venture, take away a lesson. Nobody else will be as passionate about your business idea as you will, so don’t expect them to be so encourage yourself and keep a positive mindset.
We are honored to share her story with you. If you are looking for a unique custom experience for your next event or are looking for Kerry-Ann to customize something beautiful for you, please contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit her website http://www.kflowersdesigns.com/ and her Etsy page https://www.etsy.com/shop/partiesbloom. Also be sure to check out her Instagram page http://instagram.com/kflowersdesigns. we hope you enjoyed reading this blog, until next time. Happy Reading!!