Kelsie Hayes, owner of POPUP Florist
Fashion is blooming. Florals are popping up everywhere and seem to be making quite an impact on fashion lately. We chatted with Kelsie Hayes, owner of POPUP Florist, about Beyoncé, fashion, and flowers, of course.
Tell us about your career in fashion.
I went to college at Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising in L.A. and studied fashion design. During my last year of school I worked at a multi-brand boutique in West Hollywood called Beckley. When I graduated I moved to New York to intern, but quickly got called by my former boss to help her start a private label. We started Beckley Brand – a contemporary women’s collection that had equal parts west and east coast flair. It was so much fun and I attribute everything I know from that opportunity, because I was super hands on with every step.
What made you switch from fashion design to floral design?
I’ve always loved working with flowers. Even when designing, I would go to the corner bodega and arrange flowers for my studio. After working at Beckley for 7 years, I decided to start POPUP Florist as a side project in between my next gig. It quickly gained traction and after 5 months I was able to make it my full-time job!
Is the creative process different?
I actually think I approach floral design in the same way as fashion. I was always super inspired by color, pattern, and texture and I infuse all of that into our arrangements. Whether it is for an event or an arrangement sent as a gift, I try to make sure that each arrangement we send out combined these three elements to make it really different and memorable.
You’ve worked with some really cool people in the fashion community. Tell us about those collaborations.
POPUP Florist sort of organically happened but it happened in a way that makes me so happy and proud. I truly have dream clients. Brands I’ve always looked up to and admire so much I now have the pleasure to collaborate with. We work with a range of brands including Aerie, J. Crew, Barneys and Jimmy Choo.
Vogue's September issue has Beyoncé on the cover wearing a flower headpiece and Rihanna graces the cover of British Vogue donning a flower headpiece too. What are your thoughts on this wearable trend?
This probably seems dramatic, but I got chills when I saw and read the Beyoncé article. She’s incredible and I loved the use of florals in such an iconic cover. I’ve actually made these hair pieces before in silk flowers for shoots! I hope that this becomes a trend in some way.
Are there any floral trends that are hot right now?
I think florals are really having a moment right now both in fashion and art. I definitely see trends in the way flowers are arranged and the vessels used. Ichiban which is a Japanese approach to floral arranging is very popular right now. We do arrangements that have a nod to this trend, but I just really love color explosions and lush arrangements as do most of my clients!
Flowers are the ultimate giftable. But, in this age, is bringing flowers to a date an outdated thing or something that should be revived?
Some of our favorite customers are the ones coming in before a date! Usually they have a cute story about how they met, what they like about the person, or just spill everything about how nervous they are. Our shop is so cozy that sometimes we find customers spending 30 minutes just chatting! I would love to get more of these customers and see more of this happening. It’s so old fashion and sweet!
What flowers would you love to receive?
I love delphinium. They are tall flowers that have a vibrant blue color and continue to bloom. A bunch of these makes me the happiest!
Are there flowers to avoid bringing to a date?
Red roses! So unoriginal and not tasteful. I think getting creative is key to making an impression!