Il était une fleur is the family with whom I spent almost 10 years of my life. I went to school in floristry and I was lucky to work in this field during these years. They are also the most attentive people I have had the chance to meet and with the biggest hearts.
I created very strong ties with these colleagues, I made friends and acquired a good professional background, while having fun doing my job. Having the chance to work with beautiful flowers every day is not given to everyone, but I can say that it was the case for me!
For them, being florists is not only a vocation but also a passion, the best way to support people in the important moments of their lives. The power of flowers is strong and at Il etait une fleur, it is expressed in the best possible way by their floral creations. Words will never be enough to thank them for helping to forge the person I am today. They have always encouraged me in my personal projects, including the one you know very well; flambette.
They are among our very first customers, they sell our candles and also have an exclusive collection in their Trois-Rivières stores since our very beginnings. Thank you so much.
Claudia kindly accepted to answer a few questions in order to help you learn about Il était une fleur.
Roxane: First of, I read that you are a lawyer by trade; how it ties with the flower industry is not obvious to me! What changed your career path?
Claudia: Haha! This is a question that I am often asked. My role at Il était une fleur is in business development and marketing. I'm not creating flower arrangements...yet ! I am a lawyer by trade, but I also have my master's degree in business administration. I turned to business consulting in 2014 because it allows me to combine 1. My desire to meet new people and learn their history 2. My natural desire to counsel and accompany 3. My growing interest in entrepreneurship. 4. My passion for project management and 5. My creative vision and love for beauty. When I entered Il était une fleur for the first time, it was love at first sight. I had to meet the owners. After telling them about my background and my vision for the company, I started as a consultant. As the relationship between Isabelle, Mariève and I grew, we realized that we were a trio with great potential and we decided to join forces.
R: A true love story! What drives you at Il était une fleur?
C: Our values and our commitment! Not only does our story begin with a local family business, we are a unique concept in the area, we encourage local products, we are present in the community, we accompany people during important life events, we empower women in business, we celebrate entrepreneurship, we are innovative in our field and finally, we have a management model based on the strengths and interests of each of our team members (which we affectionately call our tribe!). I have always said that a company should have a greater mission than making money, Il était une fleur is a good example of this.
R: Is there a flower you would like to see displayed in more homes?
C: I love toffee roses. Its caramel color is unusual, but that’s what makes it special: it offers sweetness at the same time as depth and it gives an organic tone to the bouquet. It's surprising how elegantly it blends in a home decor. We have also just released our new latte bouquet, where you can find some toffee roses. This bouquet is inspired by a delicious Sunday morning coffee.
R: Gorgeous! It will definitely be my next bouquet! Do you have a green thumb? What is your favorite plant?
C: I’ll admit it, like the saying goes, the shoemaker always wears the worst shoes! I'm not the best with plants. That being said, I adore them and I am diligently learning how to take good care of them. At home, rest assured: it is possible to have plants even if you have experienced failures! haha! I really like the elk horn fern because it goes in all directions! And I love the peperomia hope with its small curved leaves and its falling effect!
R: What arrangement can we find at home? Your favorite combos?
C: I am 100% a “Southern Charm” girl. My favorite style is the one you can find in South Carolina like in Savannah and Charleston. Trees with Spanish moss, white picket fences filled with hydrangeas and bright, cozy and inviting rooms in the house. I often have eucalyptus in my shower and I have a huge vase on my wooden table in which I alternate seasonal tree branches (apple tree, lilac, hydrangea) or dried up baby's breath. I love having a fresh little bouquet on my living room table and on my bedside table. When I ask one of our florists to create an arrangement for my home, I ask for a bouquet between $40 and $60, at the florist's choice, with seasonal flowers in a minimalist, airy and asymmetrical style.
R: How do you stay on top of trends?
C: Like everyone else I follow inspirational accounts on social media. However, I also believe that inspiration and trends often hide in unexpected places. I try to stay curious about broader topics than just floristry or management. I also try to listen to the people around me. It's beautiful what you can learn when you take the time to listen!
R: Staying curious is soooo important! What can we expect for Il était une fleur in the next few years?
C: After the challenging years we just experienced, Isabelle, Mariève and I want to dream and have fun. We have a great team filled with exceptional people who have incredible talent and we are filled with ideas. We want to continue standing out with our unique approach. There will be plenty of novelties, keep following us!
R: We will continue following Il était une fleur for sure! And finally, what is your favorite flambette fragrance?
C: I couldn't live without the Lavender Santal fragrance! It's a luxurious yet relaxing scent that lets me put my hair down after a big day! It always has its place in my bathroom!
Thank you for generously answering my questions, Claudia!