Blooms by Bee
What inspired the creation of Blooms by Bee?
The creation of Blooms by Bee was inspired by my need to see beauty in the simplest things. A flower to me is nature’s beauty in raw form. A single flower can uplift the spirit, gifting/ receiving a flower creates an intimate connection and possibly a life long bond.
My love for flowers began as a child growing up in Jamaica surrounded by lush greenery and an abundance of flowers. I would pick Hibiscus flowers and put them in my hair, pluck the sticky stems and turn them into earrings. I would spend Sunday afternoons planting and picking flowers and making flower jewelry with my mom. After migrating to the states in the late 90's, I struggled with transitioning to the "concrete jungle" the lack of greenery and fresh flowers sent me in search of gardens and flower shops.
In my darkest times, I found solace and a peace of mind in the botanical gardens. During the winter months, I would search far and wide for flowers to boost my mood. There were no flower shops in my neighborhood. Adapting to the urban setting, I hardened myself to cope with being homesick and to make it through the harsh public school system. I lost touch with my softer side, lost touch with my creativity and overall self.
On a journey of self-discovery, I found that buying myself flowers really lifted my spirits. One day I brought some for my mom. She was so grateful. She said “Thanks for my flowers mum (yeah my mom calls me mom), better give them to me when I’m alive to smell them.” This was the beginning of a monthly routine. She would look forward to her monthly roses. I soon realized that most, if not all the women in my life rarely, if ever received a bouquet of flowers? Beautiful kind-hearted, hardworking women, never received fresh flower? Why not? Had they adapted to the urban setting as well? I believe that they deserved it and decided to let them know. I began gifting friends and family flowers for their birthdays, graduations, weddings... any reason I could think of. Soon I was creating bouquets and centerpieces for weddings and bridal showers. Blooms by Bee was inspired by my belief that everyone deserves flowers while they are alive to enjoy them.
What led you to pursue entrepreneurship?
I realized that I spent 40 hours a week nurturing someone else’s vision and finally decided to commit to nurturing my own. I searched for quite some time for my niche. Being a Jane of all trades makes it difficult to focus on just one thing. I really wanted to do something that not only gave me joy, but gave joy to others as well. Transforming my creativity to income hasn’t been easy but I’m driven by my need to change the social and financial future for myself and my loved ones. My goal is to end the horrible financial and social cycle that traps many until retirement. I realized that my niche was right under my nose the entire time, floral décor is not just art, it’s therapeutic. Creating something that I know will bring joy to others gives me purpose.
What excites you the most about this new and exciting chapter?
This entire process is exciting to me. Bringing Blooms by Bee, a simple idea to life has been the most thrilling adventure I’ve had in years, learning everything from how to care for each flower to building and submitting an invoice with a W-9 form is both humbling and and exhilarating. The process of having a vision, gathering the materials and putting in the time to make something beautiful, and finally seeing the smile on the recipient’s face gives me a high. Simply putting my gold logo on a vase excites me.
How would you describe your work ethic?
Up until Blooms by Bee my work ethic has been “blah” for lack of a better word. I didn’t love what I did, I had no passion or drive. However since February 13th, my official launch, my work ethic has been outstanding. I will work until the crack of dawn, go above and beyond and spend my last dime investing in my dream. I put every ounce of me in each arrangement. It literally will not leave my house, unless I am head over heels in love with it.
What keeps you going when juggling life and business presents various challenges?
I have a vision for my future. Blooms by Bee plays a critical role in the outcome of that vision. So even when I’ve made mistakes that cost me dearly or when I’m burned out and tired or simply in a bind, the vision I have for the future keeps me going. Also the fact that I have never dedicated and sacrificed so much of myself to anything in my life is a reminder that I have to keep going. I want to change the future for my family; I want us to have our own. I want to leave something behind that makes their life a little bit easier.
What advice would you offer to aspiring entrepreneurs?
I would say to other aspiring entrepreneurs, Follow your heart and do what you love. However although the title and idea sounds fun, please understand that this is probably the hardest thing you will ever do, whether your business succeeds or fail is all up to you and the choices you make. If you are not prepared to go above and beyond for your business, then no one else will. If you don’t believe in your business then no one else will.
Starting a business is the hardest thing I’ve ever done. My biggest obstacle has been myself. My fears, my self-doubt and my bad habits. Once I overcame those and believed in myself all the other obstacles are just a matter of strategy.
What is the best business advice you have ever received?
The best business advice I’ve received is “Faith it till you make it”. Faith is firm belief in something for which there is no proof. You have to believe in your vision before you can actually create it. Believe in you're ability to get it done, especially when it gets tough, believe in your vision! When you believe in yourself and your business, you will put your all into it. Work your butt off to make it happen!