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Life & Work with Gabby LaRussa

Today we’d like to introduce you to Gabby LaRussa.

Gabby, we appreciate you taking the time to share your story with us today. Where does your story begin?
I launched Flower Gypsies as a passion project while working a full time marketing gig. By 2013, I quit the salary job and put all of my focus on flowers. We were small and started with arrangements and flower crown/ bouquet activations. We sold our flowers at the Venice Beach festivals and were also in a few stores on Abbot Kinney for our dried and silk flower crowns. From there, we were welcomed into Free People, Fred Segal and Anthropology to list a few. We kept growing and pushing our limits, always saying yes and then figuring it out. Our clientele grew and so did our team, capabilities and knowledge. We now build floral installations, arrangements of all sizes, permanent installs, etc. The sky’s the limit!

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?
Starting a business is never a smooth road. One day you think you have it and the next it feels like you’re starting from square one. A struggle I encountered was navigating a path I had never gone down. When you work for yourself, there’s never enough time in a day. When you work for someone else, you kind of watch the clock until it’s time to go home and are somewhat able to mentally check out. I burned myself out trying to do everything for years. Investing in the business in terms of letting some responsibilities go to others was a game changer for my mental and physical health.

Another challenge I experienced was realizing this job is far from a glamorous one. Although we produce beautiful pieces, the process can be tedious as well as exhausting hours, heavy lifting and physical labor. But to see a vision come to life is one of the most rewarding feelings and keeps us going. To add, the floral world is filled with some of the kindest, hardworking and creative people. I feel honored to be working alongside everyone from our suppliers in the downtown area to all of the designers throughout the city.

Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know about your work?
We do everything from helping the client curate their event from the floral design aspect to additions they may need built structurally, signage, added decor, etc. This includes renders of the designs and working with our contractors for custom structures.

What do you specialize in?
Custom floral designs including dripping floral ceilings, flower walls and permanent office interiors/ storefronts to name a few.

What are you known for?
I would say floral design for large-scale events including arrangements and installations.

What are you most proud of?
How far the business has grown and our high profile clientele who have been returning for years.

What sets you apart from others?
Quality, attention to detail, capacity and customer service!

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