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Meet Marisa Bosquez-White of Flores de Bosquez in South Pasadena

Today we’d like to introduce you to Marisa Bosquez-White.

Marisa, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I grew up in a very small town in South Texas-Robstown, Texas. It is about 20 minutes from Corpus Christi. I always wanted to be an artist of some sort. My Dad studied art and my Mom was very crafty, so I always saw my parents creating – whether that was planting a garden, decorating a room or making clothes. I spent a lot of time outdoors playing and observing nature. I always loved flowers. My grandmother had a yard full of unruly overgrown rose bushes and I would imagine the bushes as a maze even though it was a small yard. I was very fascinated by the growth and decay of plants at a very early age.

Growing up in a very small town, I did not have the opportunity to travel and always dreamed of other places. I dreamed of city life and was determined to move to New York City. I went to high school in a rural area and then to community college for a year until transferring to The University of Texas at Austin. I stayed there for a year and then transferred to The Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, where I studied Fashion Design and I graduated from in 2003. After graduating from F.I,T., I worked for a series of small fashion companies in New York and Texas. I did everything from design to working trade shows. I eventually ended up at a large corporation designing jewelry. After over a decade in the fashion industry, I became very disillusioned and was looking for a way out. After a lot of soul searching, I came to back to my earliest love of art and flowers. I decided to take a weekend job at a flower shop while at my corporate job. A month into it, I decided to go full time into flowers and quit my corporate job of six years. Shortly after, I began managing that flower shop in Dallas and quickly learned the business. A year later in 2016, my husband and I decided to move to Los Angeles – specifically South Pasadena. Soon after we moved, I landed a couple of freelance jobs with two flower shops in South Pasadena. In July 2017, I decided to go on my own and started my own floral studio- Flores de Bosquez.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
I would definitely say it has not been a smooth road. I thought I would have a very different life than the one I have now. I was obsessed with fashion for as long as I can remember and thought I would always work in that industry. I loved fashion school and I love designing and creating, but the reality of that working in that world was very different than what I imagined. I found myself feeling unsettled about my contribution to the world and felt that my talents were not being fully utilized. I felt like a cog in a large machine making things that were gonna end up in a landfill. I know thats not everyones experience in fashion, but it was ultimately not my path. After a little over a decade working in the fashion industry, I started to re-evalutate my career. I narrowed down my interests and defined the kind of lifestyle I wanted to live. I ultimately came to flowers. I wanted to own my time and spend my days doing something I felt good about. Changing careers at 35 is terrifying and it took years to mentally prepare myself to take that leap. I took a substantial pay cut to work at a flower shop and had to pare down quite a bit. Working in a flower shop can be grueling- processing hundreds of flowers, washing countless buckets and acquiring numerous injuries to your hands. A lot goes into creating something beautiful. I have never regretted my decision to leave my corporate job, but working for yourself does not always provide a steady paycheck. I worry about the future, as most people do and have student loans hanging over my head. I try to take it one day at a time. You have to have faith that your hard work will pay off. I feel limitless with what I can do with flowers and that is what I hold on to when I feel doubtful.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Flores de Bosquez story. Tell us more about the business.
My floral studio is Flores de Bosquez, which translates to Flowers of Bosquez. My last name means forest in Spanish and I want to reflect my Mexican lineage in my business. I live and work in South Pasadena. I specialize in weddings, special events and event styling. I am known for my unique floral style – I think of each floral design as a living temporary sculpture. I love combining uncommon botanical elements with classic floral elements to create a style all my own. I gravitate towards the subversive and the romantic.

I am most proud of achieving a distinct look to my floral designs and business. I have managed to attract amazing clients who come to me for my look, allowing me to constantly be creative rather than just churning out the standard wedding flowers. I dive head first into every project. I love the research phase any project and take my inspiration from art, fashion and film. With my background in fashion design, I create mood boards and very detailed proposals for my clients, working closely with them to achieve their ultimate floral vision. I desire to create magic with every arrangement I create.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
I don’t necessarily believe in luck, I think planning and hard work is what has gotten me anywhere. I grew up in a town where it was not a given that I would graduate from high school much less go to college. I have worked hard to get to every step of my life/business. I try to take responsibility for my life, I have always had intense goals and had to figure out how to achieve them on my own. I carved out a very different path than my family and it has at times been daunting to not have a “road map”. If anything, I am “lucky” to be healthy and have a supportive family and husband.

As far “bad luck” goes, I think everyone has set backs and you just have to acknowledge them and move forward – I am always thinking ahead.

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