Today we’d like to introduce you to Sarah Chung.
Hi Sarah, we’re thrilled to have a chance to learn your story today. So, before we get into specifics, maybe you can briefly walk us through how you got to where you are today?
I grew up following my aunt to the DTLA Flower Market, watching her make weekly flower arrangements for the church, and eventually being trusted to help her make the dozens of boutonnieres that would go out to the parents for Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. I think that nostalgia always stuck with me and aside from being a cranky five-year-old at the Flower Market at 6am, I remember a lot of the joy I felt from just being able to smell the flowers and watch her work her magic.
I spent my last 10 years or so working in marketing and advertising, and at a certain point, I think I found myself searching for that spark of joy I felt when I got my hand’s dirty processing and arranging flowers, and I was looking to find a way back to a creative routine. So, seven years ago, I found myself back at the Flower Market at 6am and making a weekly routine for myself to get reinspired. It didn’t take long before I realized I couldn’t actually keep any of the flowers myself with a cat in the house who insists on taking a bite out of everything, so I started giving them away to friends & family, and it eventually grew into a part-time side hustle.
I’m grateful that my work only continued to grow from there, but I think like everyone else who’s probably done some soul searching in the last couple of years, I made a decision to just throw myself into being a full-time small business owner this year, so that I can confidently say I’m fully invested in, not only doing something I love, but investing in myself, especially as a Korean-American woman.
Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It hasn’t, and still isn’t, always the smoothest road. From a technical standpoint, there isn’t necessarily a blueprint on how to become, let alone, grow, as a floral designer and entrepreneur. This can also mean it can feel a bit isolating at times, balancing a career that is both creative-driven, but in reality, transactional as well.
But, having had come from advertising, it’s been eye-opening to find ways to strategically marry my former career with my new path to push myself to understand how to navigate being an owner and principal designer, and really confront what spaces floral design can occupy beyond typical areas you see flowers like events or personal deliveries. This is where I think I’ve found myself really enjoying, beyond playing with flowers – being able to collaborate with people who crave finding unique opportunities to create unique experiences through floral design.
I’ve been lucky to have met some of the most incredible people along the way, like other local small business owners, florists, creatives, and clients – all who want nothing more than to be supportive, share the same appreciation, share learnings, or collaborate. I’ve been most grateful for this community I’ve been able to surround myself with.
As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
I design floral experiences from personal deliveries directly to clients to floral styling and set designing for brands.
At the core of it, there’s beauty that everyone can appreciate from flowers, but there’s so much you can do to storytell with plants and flowers and use it as a medium to enhance all sorts of narratives, whether as the leading or supporting character. I love to help play messenger in being able to pull this together in projects of all scales.
So, before we go, how can our readers or others connect or collaborate with you? How can they support you?
I’m always up for a fun project, so anyone can reach out to me to collaborate, whether it’s floral styling for a shoot, an event, a bouquet delivery, or any other creative projects in between!
Alice E. Pang