Valentine's Day has arrived, and what better way to commemorate the occasion than by recognizing our outstanding florists who are on the front lines during the holidays. We interviewed customers who operated a retail space and got the inside scoop of their operations during a busy floral holiday.
PeterJames Floral Couture, Ocean, New Jersey
PeterJames Floral Couture is located in Ocean, New Jersey, with Peter James Calafiore at the head of the operation. The team at PeterJames Floral Couture focuses on providing a luxury experience to all of its customers. Peter provided us a behind-the-scenes look at how they prepare for Valentine's Day, as well as some merchandising advice.
"The designers at PeterJames have 30 years combined experience to produce events ranging from grand weddings and parties for 500 to dinner for two. Each piece is meticulously arranged for home, corporate, and life events according to the client's wishes. Flowers are fresh from California, Japan, South America, and Europe. We specialize in orchids, hydrangeas, roses, with flora and fauna that is rarely seen in your local flower shop."
To start preparing for the Valentine's Day holiday, Peter looks at pasts holiday numbers and determine's what will be best sellers for the coming year. Once the budget is projected, the team starts hunting vessels and the best quality blooms for the arrangements. "We normally are not a dozen roses arranged kind of shop. Our clients come to us for the vividly wild mix flowers arrangement we create and are known for. Most of them call and say let PeterJames do his thing."
The team creates and delivers 200 arrangements on average for each major holiday. With the hard work and dedication from the staff during the busy holiday season, Peter always thanks them graciously. "I make sure my team is happy and fed well. This year I am treating them to a week away in Cape Cod this summer for all their past hard work. I have learned that if I give them cash bonuses, it more than likely gets spent on bills instead of themselves."
Celebrating three years in their new store building, merchandise for PeterJames focuses on the love and beauty of the floral design. The merchandise leads the styling of the show floor--the showroom is decorated with on-trend rentals and arrangements. Items to style the store are usually from favorite suppliers, but the best way to find unique, show-stopping pieces are at Estate Sales and Antique Stores. "The Fleur de Lis Arch (in Picture) came from an estate sale in Atlantic City where they were dismantling the garden."
"Finding your niche and what works best for you is a surefire approach to succeed in business." PeterJames Floral Couture has made a name for itself in the floral industry. From being featured in Grace Ormonde Wedding Style Magazine to Florists' Review Magazine, his work encompasses an elegance that customers keep coming back for more.
Make sure to follow along on their journey by following @peterjamesfloral on Instagram!
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