Deborah De La Flor AIFD CFD PFCI is one of America’s premier floral artists, and enjoys world wide acclaim as one of the finest floral designers in the industry. She is constantly in demand, as she travels across the globe giving design demonstrations and educational seminars, sharing her talents and creating floral trends. Deborah is also the current president of the Florida State Florist Association. On August 27-29 FSFA is hosting there annual convention in celebration of 100 years of service to the floral industry. In this interview Deborah shares a little about her and the convention.
When did you first discover you loved flowers?
As a very young girl, saving seeds ,or what I thought were seeds, of any pretty flower I saw and trying my best to grow them. How did you and when did you get started in the floral industry? Started in 1980 After visiting a flower shop in Hialeah, fl to order flowers for the Grandfathers funeral. My mother insisted that “flowers were what I needed to do”. As she knew how much I loved growing little flowers and plants, and found beauty in all living things.
Tell us about your role as the current president of FSFA – what you do, and what goals you and your team have accomplished during your tenure.
So much … Our executive director Bob Tucker AIFD, FSMD, CFD, immediately, implemented the very First Virtual floral competition, the “Design Challenge International”. It was open to everyone in the world! We had 88 contestants, from 14 countries, 27 states, over 2,400 votes from 6 Continents! We also held our Mid Season Conference January 2021 via Zoom with 3 design presentations and our Designer of the year Competition done in that same format. Miraculously it all work fabulously !
With all the changes/challenges the world has been through these past 18+ months, how would you say it has affected the floral industry? FSFA?
As Florist we have all realized, that when people could not visit loved ones, the consumer sent their sentiments by way of flowers. This was a silver lining for a difficult time. We learned quickly to adapt to the events unfolding before us. Curbside picks, Masks, Gloves, using antiseptic on everything, to ensure our Customers safety. And we were proud to do it all, to have the ability to stay in business as many other industries did not. We are so proud the consumer chose flowers and plants to convey their emotions.
Tell us about the upcoming conference FSFA is hosting – the where, when, why and what people can expect?
The Florida State Florist Assoc. is proud to host our Centennial Celebration 100 years in floristry 1921-2021! We couldn’t be more excited! Just imagine 100 years ago a small group of florist got together and created an organization to assist each other in becoming, better florist, better designers, better business people. “Florist helping Florist”. We are in the business of helping each other to strive in our industry. We have an incredible line up of floral talents just for you! Dates August 27-29 2021, being held at the Bonaventure Resort & Spa in Weston, Fl Starting Friday evening with cocktails and a wonderful Design presentation showcasing Tropical Florals and Trade fair, Saturday and Sunday you will be inspired by the Magnificent design talents of floral artist, topics, merchandising, Elevating your everyday floral design, Artistic Bridal work, Bold the Power of Color! We also have a Marketing Power Couple, and a feel good motivational speaker! 3 Floral Competitions and a Hands on Design Class open to everyone!
Tell us about your business?
Opened De La Flor Florist & Gardens in 1986 in a 2,000 sq ft rental shopping center for 14yrs. saving to purchase a 3 acre property and build our on building in 2000 and relocating, to our new space, approx 3,500 sq ft indoor showroom and 3,500 sq ft outdoor garden patio. We are a retail florist, everyday design, funeral, events and usually have a wedding or two every week.
What is your idea of the perfect flower arrangement?
The perfect floral design, is one that conveys exactly what the sender had in mind and the feelings behind the sentiment.
For those considering a career in floral/event design, what advice would you offer? Do your home work, you must be business savvy, start small, you can always grow your store/building space, it’s harder to downsize . Passion and a strong work ethic go along way.
What’s next for you? Your business?
How can our readers learn more about you (website/social media) Deborah De La Flor (face book & Instagram ) www.delaflorgardens.com
How can our readers learn more about FSFA and register for the convention? please visit our website www.floridastatefloristsassociation.com We would love to see you!