Tag: Tulipina Floral Deisgn  |  View all recent posts
Wednesday, July, 16, 2014  |  Floral & Event Designers
Hi Guys and Happy Wednesday.....so....I'm doing my "happy dance" today, the beautiful and talented Kiana Underwood of Tulipina Floral Design is stopping by the cafe today...literally!!....Kiana and her beautiful family will be coming to my home today....I'm so excited!!!....so, in honor of her visit, I'm sharing her interview from a few months ago....xoxoxo

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I'm so happy and truly excited to have the oh-so talented and beautiful, Kiana Underwood of Tulipina Floral Design stopping by today....for those of you who aren't following Kiana's blog, you must do so....every Monday/Wednesday/Friday, Kiana shares a gorgeous DIY floral design with us....her floral designs are GORGEOUS and the pages are filled with tons of inspiration....trust me, you'll love it!!  Kiana is based in San Francisco and she typically works locally....she shared with me that she is open to designing for destination events....and now let's check out Kiana's cafe interview...Enjoy!!




Kiana Underwood of Tulipina Floral Design

TBC:  What’s a typical day like for you?

KU:  Depending upon my workload, I go to the San Francisco Flower Mart 1-3 times per week. Between my events and my floral DIY blog, I find myself at the flower mart quite often. I am usually there at 5:30 a.m. and out around 7 a.m. After returning from the flower mart, I drop my three kids off at school and then begin to work.

TBC:  What wedding trend would you like to see disappear?

KU:  I am very much an “outside the box” designer. Once it becomes a “trend”, then it is no longer unique and I try to stay away from it!

Tulipina Centerpiece

TBC:  Describe your client?

KU:  My client is someone who appreciates my work as an art lover appreciates art, and one who feels confident enough in my work and style to let me do what I do best.

TBC:  Where do you find inspiration?

KU:  I find inspiration everywhere - from my garden, a walk in my neighborhood, the San Francisco Flower

Mart, or an art museum filled with Van Gogh, Renoir, or Cezanne’s floral paintings.

Tulipina Garden Rose Bouquet

Tulipina Floral Design

TBC:  Name one of your favorite “vendor” sources that you just can’t do without.

KU: I have two. I love Brannan Street and Torchio Nursery at the SF Flower Mart. These folks are amazing

(and are there at 3 a.m. every day), and they never fail me. They always have the most beautiful flowers.


TBC:  Describe your design style.

KU: I would say that my style is lush, organic (and somewhat eclectic) garden style, with unexpected

elements wherever I can use them.


Tulipina Fall Centerpiece

TBC:  To date, what has been the highlight of your career?

KU: I have had many special moments, so it is a bit hard to pick just one. A few of my most recent ones were when a bride wrote me after her wedding to tell me that she had told everyone who would listen (and even some who wouldn’t) that I had done the flowers for her wedding, and, when my lovely photographer friend told me that I had ruined everyday flowers from a florist for her forever!

TBC:  What was your “big break”?

KU:  I have only been doing this for two years, and so I feel that there is a lot more that I want to accomplish, so I hesitate to call anything my “big break” yet. However, the growth of my business in a relatively short time period has been amazing. I have received so much positive feedback on my work and my blog and am so grateful to all of my regular readers, followers, and clients for that.

Tulipina Bridal Bouquet

TBC:  What advice would you give to upcoming floral designers?

KU: Follow your passion and never give up! This was not my intended path. I was accepted into several law schools after college, but decided to pursue a Master’s degree in International Relations and Economics from Johns Hopkins University. I had dreams of being a diplomat, but for practical purposes (and practicality can be a dream killer) ended up at a think tank doing research, which I quite disliked.
 
Once I had children, I
stopped working, and it took me a long time to awaken to and embrace the path that I am on today. I’ve always loved flowers and putting arrangements together for my home and friends, but becoming a floral stylist as a career was never something that occurred to me. Once it did, and once I really put myself into it, I couldn’t imagine it any other way.

Tulipina Bridal Bouquet

TBC:  When I’m designing, I love to light my candles and play “old school” music. Do you have a ritual that you like to do when designing?

KU:  When I am designing I tend to like to be alone in my workspace with my favorite classical music stations on Pandora and a cup of coffee or tea. I cannot function well in a messy space, so I try to keep my workspace as neat as a floral designer possibly can.

TBC:  What’s your favorite part about weddings when it comes to the florals?

KU:  Naturally, I like to see my work presented at its absolute best, which is why I am meticulous about placing my designs at the venue myself, or at least overseeing and approving every single table and/or space for perfection before leaving. My most favorite part though has to be seeing the bride with her bouquet.

Tulipina Centerpiece

Tulipina Centerpiece

TBC:  Describe a “wedding weekend and how many additional staff do you hire?

KU:  I typically like to design alone, as I am very particular about how I want things to look, and generally the easiest way to control that is by doing it myself. That said, I do have one very wonderful assistant who helps me with all of my events. However, as the business continues to grow, I recognize that I will have to cede some control to maintain sanity (and scalability), and bring more people on board.

TBC: If you had to make a career change, what would you do?

KU:  As I mentioned above, I earned a Master’s degree from John Hopkins University in International Relations and Economics. I also speak 4 languages, love to travel, and have played the piano nearly all of my life. So, diplomat would still be a top choice, concert pianist a close second.

Tulipina Garden Rose Centerpiece

TBC:  Finish this statement: A bride’s bouquet should reflect......

KU:  The essence of who she is!

Tulipina Bridal Bouquet

TBC:  Describe your personal style...what are your favorite stores to shop at?

KU:  I don’t describe myself as someone who has one particular style. Depending upon my mood, I’m anything from casual preppy to a slightly dressy bohemian. My favorite stores in the U.S. are Anthropologie and JCrew. I adore shopping in Tokyo, Japan, and Florence, Italy. I am in heaven if they drop me off somewhere near a Takashimaya department store in Tokyo.

Tulipina Floral Crown

TBC:  Just for fun:

Do you prefer tea or coffee?

KU:  Coffee in the morning, tea in the afternoon or with sweets.

TBC:  Do you prefer blogs or magazines?

KU:  I like a little bit of both, although with three 3 kids, my own business and my own DIY floral blog, I don’t get nearly as much time to read as I would like.

TBC:  Chocolate or Vanilla?

KU:  Chocolate!

TBC:  And, I have to ask...what’s your favorite flower?

KU:  I love many flowers, but if I had to pick just one it would be gardenia.

Tulipina Dahlia Centerpiece

I'm excited to share with you that Kiana is partnering with caligrapher, Maybelle Imasa-Stukuls for the "Petals and Penmanship" workshop on February 8th....check out all the details and sign up here...you don't want to miss out!!.....Kiana, thank you SO much for stopping by the cafe and sharing a little glimpse of your world with us today...we ADORE you and your work and we look forward to your next visit at the cafe....xoxoxo

Photography Credits:

Kiana's image and images, 2, 5, 7, 8, 9, 10 courtesy of N. Underwood


Images 3, 12, 13 courtesy of Christina McNeil

Image 4 courtesy of Angie Cao

Image 6 courtesy of Feather & Stone

Image 11 courtesy of Nirav Patel


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