Today we’d like to introduce you to Michael Simon.
Michael, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
My leap into the floral world came as a complete surprise to me. I had a little extra time on my hands and started messing around with succulents. I became a little obsessed with the species and their habits and started making arrangements and creating original designs very quickly. People started buying my pieces and my friends pushed me towards other elements like vertical garden walls and patios.
I booked several large projects which lead to a crash course in The Flower Mart and how the whole floral system works. I have a background in producing independent films, so my organizational and logistical skills were as big a help as the design element. I embarked on large-scale events, installed several vertical garden walls and tackled whole properties within my first few months of picking up a bag of soil!
I had been friends with David Stanley for many years and watched as he created his business, The Orchid Wrangler. It was quite impressive observing as he carved his niche into the high-end gifting world of orchid arrangements in Los Angeles. I visited him at the shop for many years and became an orchid enthusiast myself.
I called him several times in states of crisis as my jobs got bigger. We even went to The Flower Mart together only to find I had already established existing relationships with his vendors. Within short order, we were both embarking on change and our paths crossed in the best way possible.
I trained under his strict to tutelage for many months as I learned all the ins and outs of the business. My two years of floral design and large-scale installation proved to be invaluable as I studied the construction and design of the orchid arrangements, which only piqued my interest evermore. Quality control was in the highest regard as I first started to make the orchid arrangements that were actually going out the door!
Our orchids are of the most premium in Southern California and all our materials meet the standard of the high-end gifting business in Los Angeles 🙂 We primarily use white Phalaenopsis, but the purples coming out of our farm has been spectacular and flying into the beautiful arrangements!
Acquiring the company has been a gift, and I am completely confident that the quality of the brand and the efficiency of the operation have remained true to his watchful eye 🙂 Our studio and agency accounts have remained solid, the clients have been ecstatic and the business continues to grow. I couldn’t be more grateful.
I look forward to being The Orchid Wrangler for a long time.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
I was very fortunate to get into the massage business way back in the early 90’s. I had always been drawn towards bodywork, so I took the courses and became certified. I found a skill that came from my heart and as I’ve always said, “Massage has been very, very good to me.” I found work that came easy to me, and thanks to my father’s proper British raising of me, I knew how to act in the finest establishments. lol
After a long and highly enjoyable career in hotels and spas, I needed to be on my own, and walked away with no small amount of uncertainty. My mind wasn’t focused on my green thumb in the least, as I basically didn’t even know I had one. What followed was a truly organic experience into the floral world. It began with an unexpected interest and knowledge in succulents and ended with me having a second career as a floral designer and merchant.
None of us have an easy path, but I am happy to have always done what I loved.
Please tell us about The Orchid Wrangler.
The Orchid Wrangler is a florist that specializes in gift arrangements using premium quality orchids. Our gift cards are handmade and we arrange for delivery.
We have multiple accounts with studios and agencies and also handle many residential and corporate clients.
The quality of our product and design are paramount to our success. Our clientele is accustomed to a very high standard and nothing goes out the door until those standards are met! 🙂
We also do succulent arrangements upon request.
If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
Not buy real estate in 2007.
- Our Gift Arrangements range from $100 – $350
- Local Delivery is $20
- Website: www.orchidwrangler.com
- Phone: 1-323-655-0855
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Yelp: https://www.yelp.com/biz/the-orchid-wrangler-los-angeles
Personal Photo by Sonia Keshishian