When it comes to a love for flowers, Katie Smith couldn’t help but inherit the passion. She runs her Newtown business, Katie’s Blooms, side by side with Mary Walker, her mother. Mary's own mother, Betty, opened a flower shop in 1965. With three generations rooted in the floral arrangements trade, it’s no wonder their business is blossoming.
We asked Katie a few questions to see what Katie’s Blooms is all about.
- - -
Cincinnati Refined: Tell us about your business. How did you get started? How long have you been in business?
Katie Smith: We are a family business. In every sense. I am a third-generation floral designer. My mother, Mary, is my business partner. Her mother, Betty (my grandmother), owned a flower shop in Iowa when she was growing up. My husband and my dad are a huge help to our business, and my two children are always running around the shop. When you get married, it is SO much about family—two families coming together, one new little family being made. So I am very grateful to work in this industry of family with my own!
We are currently in our 4th wedding season together, but my mom has been a floral designer [for] forever (her words, not mine). She previously worked as a designer for Robin Wood Flowers before we started our business. My mom and I have always enjoyed creating together, whether we were sewing, painting, scrapbooking, crocheting, you name it. We have a lot of fun and she has taught me everything about floral design.
Our main focus has always been weddings and events, but recently we just opened our retail shop! It is full of beautiful flowers, plants, and gifts. Almost everything we carry is from a small business. A lot of our flowers are grown locally (when in season, because we live in Ohio). We really try to focus on supporting small businesses and we also try to operate our business with a zero-waste mentality to support our earth.
CR: What gets you excited about floral design?
KS: Flowers are for special occasions. They don’t last forever, which makes you slow down and cherish the moment and their beauty. They also make people really happy and have amazing mental health benefits.
CR: What makes you different from other florists?
KS: We make everything with love. Seriously. When I was little and I used to ask my dad for chocolate milk, he would say “made with love." I think we infuse love into all of our designs and it truly makes a difference.
CR: Do you have a favorite style?
KS: I struggled for a while feeling like I didn’t have a specific “style." Like some florists do one thing and they’re great at it, and if you’re looking for X style you need to see X florist. But when I stopped trying to put myself and our design style in a box, I found that I could really flourish and make unique designs for each of our wedding couples. Because really, it’s about them and their style, not me.
CR: Do you also offer retail/home flowers aside from weddings and events?
KS: We do! We have weekly and monthly subscription offerings for those looking for flowers regularly. We also have our Bloom Bar open during shop hours for you to come in and purchase flowers by the stem, [and] we always have grab and go bouquets as well if you’re looking for flowers for the weekend.
CR: What's it like to work with a professional florist for a wedding?
KS: I think there is a huge comfort in working with a professional florist. Everything will be taken care of.
CR: Are there any trends right now that you really love?
KS: I think I will always love the hanging greenery trend. It’s so unexpected and can really transform a space.
CR: What do you wish flower shoppers & brides knew?
KS: Flowers are expensive. We use a lot of premium blooms in our designs, and we know that not everyone can afford them. We have an a la carte option for those working with a lower budget to still have beautiful flowers.
CR: Where are you located, when are you open, how can we find you?
KS: We are located in Newtown, 20 minutes east of Downtown. We are open Wednesday through Friday from 11 AM to 6 PM and Saturday from 11 AM to 2 PM.
- - -