I love connecting with creative people, being inspired and sharing that inspiration with others. Because of this I am beginning a Local Love project in which I will be highlighting Asheville based companies that offer a service or product that can benefit a photography experience. I have personally met, chatted with and photographed some seriously amazing women who have built substantial companies from the ground up. Get ready to be inspired.
I’m kicking off my Local Love project with flora, a gorgeous and dreamy floral design studio and boutique flower shop located in the heart of West Asheville. I love, love, love flowers, always have them in our home and adore incorporating them into photo shoots. So when founder and owner, Melissa Thomas, agreed to chat with me about her business I was psyched. Melissa is an amazingly creative, design savvy, funny and super sweet young woman and mother of two equally sweet children. I’ll be honest here, when I first walked into flora, I had to pause…the space is undoubtedly swoon worthy. From the fresh white walls and pops of color to the way Melissa has intricately and lovingly designed each corner and crevice of the space, it is truly breathtaking. If I could re-do my wedding day, I’d want it to look like this space. Seriously.
Melissa’s love for plants began at a very young age when she and her Mother turned their sandbox into a raised garden. Her first job was in a traditional flower shop while her Summers were spent working in a greenhouse. Flora was born after a fellow art student and manager at Windows on the Park asked her to style an event, after which she began receiving similar requests. It was then that she knew that floral design was her calling. She ran her business out of her home until adorable baby number two arrived and it all started feeling quite “cramped and layered”. She needed space and found it in her new airy, modern meets eclectic studio.
The thing I love most about Melissa is that she thinks outside of the box. This is not your typical flower shop, folks. Melissa strives to “provide innovative floral design for all demographics while keeping the environment in mind”. Her floral options, designs and arrangements are incredibly creative and she continuously encourages recycling whenever possible (think cans and jars for vessels). Not only does she recycle containers, but she builds new flower arrangements out of those left behind by her wedding clients and donates them to Meals on Wheels. Wow, right?
Flora is currently open Monday – Saturday from 10-6. In the future Melissa will be opening the space to the public for a host of urban gardening classes including chickening, canning & preserving, pallet gardening, bee keeping, terrarium building and, of course, floral design. And please note that flora is a family run business, her children are typically in the studio and your children are always welcome too.
428-B Haywood Rd
Asheville Nc 28806
Life happens. Things change. Make The Time For a Portrait Session.