Four Reasons to Love Florals in New York
In New York, it’s hard to have hobbies. Most outdoor activities require leaving the city and a commitment of time. Anything artistic usually requires inheriting an artist loft in Soho or joining a truly dire Color Me Mine class. I refuse to succumb to axe throwing. And while New York has most American cities beat in terms of museum, music, gallery, culture, I’m looking for an activity more than an observation, you know?
My friends. Let me whisper the words to you. Let me shout them to you from the rooftops. The greatest gift this city can offer you. Flowers. The greatest city on earth’s greatest hobby is flowers.
Hear me out.
- You can get bodega flowers and transform your studio in an instant. Nothing fancy, just a glass and some blooms and instant romance.
- Some of the greatest floral designers in the world are here and ready to deliver. Monthly subscriptions? Sign me up.
- The gardens! The classes! The NY Botanical Garden in the Bronx! Wave Hill! The Brooklyn Botanic Garden! The highline. You can literally forage for mushrooms with the NYBG or learn to climb trees. What a city.
- You have access to the most amazing floral market, and it is accessible by the F/M train.
I have stood in the flower markets of Shanghai, LA, Hong Kong, London, Bangkok, and Paris. I’ve been there early for events and installations. I’ve haggled for tulips, branches, and blooms I didn’t recognize in languages I didn’t speak in currency whose exchange I couldn’t fully calculate. New York is still my favorite. Cantankerous. Poorly Organized. Holding on by a thread. Different every day. Something out of a soap opera. The New York flower market is my favorite place to take out of town guests and the secret I hate sharing with people.
I’m a third generation floral designer. My earliest memories of my family always involve flowers. My grandfather got his start as a florist in the Philadelphia Flower Shop, delivering flowers to grand houses on the Main Line. Far removed from his life with as the youngest child of poor Italian immigrants, it was his earliest brush with wealth and became an early inspiration in his entrepreneurial journey. Even as successful as he was, for me, I always picture him in his greenhouse, surrounded by flowers and music.
My mother is also a florist. I would go with her to her job at the country flower shop or help her as she set up for events, happy with a hot glue gun or shears, whatever my little self could be entrusted with.
I’ve been a cut floral farmer, a floral designer, and a large-scale floral installation artist for most of my career. I’ve had the pleasure of working on intimate personal florals for friends and massive designs for T-Mall Brand Days. I now have the pleasure as a key part of Feste of offering bespoke florals and floral installations, so we can bring the best of New York’s floral culture and my unique history as a third-generation farmer/florist to you.
Why are we focused on florals?
The global floral business is incredibly dysfunctional.
Most of the cut flowers purchased for North America are grown in South American or African hothouses with intensive pesticide use, including substances banned in North America, such as DDT. The mostly low-wage workers who grow these flowers frequently show symptoms of toxic chemical poisoning.
As well, these low wage conditions have driven many North American flower farms out of business. The global floriculture industry takes a significant toll on local water supplies and local bird and animal populations, and the carbon footprint of shipping flowers overnight from these overseas locations is catastrophic.
There’s an appetite for local, sustainable, and organic florals
Just as in food and household goods, the consumer is looking to transition to something more local and environmentally friendly, even if it comes at a premium.
However, the current retail approach to flowers has not yet responded to this trend due to outdated national tools and marketing platforms that require consistency across seasons and regions.
Who we are?
Feste offers an innovative floral outpost. Offering flowers to go, local delivery, event designs and installations, we provide the assortment of a full retail space with the flexibility of a pop-up.
Dedicated to minimizing our environmental impact, we’re focused on considerate sourcing, composting, and following the seasons. Completely foam free, we prioritize buying local when the season allows and domestic when it doesn’t. Our goal is to bring the forest and the field back to floral work.
Both arrangements and hand-tied bouquets. Large and small.
Specialty ceramics, found objects, vintage and glassware.
THEMED DIY FLOWER BOX PARTNERSHIPS
No matter the occasion, we empower the hostess within.
FLOWERS BY THE STEM
Think outside the bodega box and bring home something unusual.
For both corporate and residential events/holidays/happenings.
Looking to do florals with us? Drop into store at 39 1/2 Crosby Street or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with inquiries.