A few years ago the talented New York art director, Kelli Galloway, attended a four day floristry class where she turned her design eye to floral arranging.  Three years on, she is the owner of the budding floral business, Hops Petunia, with an adorable brick-and-mortar store on Broadway, Kingston.

The name, Hops Petunia, stuck after a dream she previously had of opening up a floral shop that transformed into a bar at night with her husband.

“It didn’t occur to me that it could be more of an art form and less of an after school job…Girls without any place to do anything are working out of their kitchens, their basements, their garages and they’re just being artists, which I think is so much more exciting” Kelli tells And North.

Living a career as a florist for Kelli is deeply fulfilling, especially after finding herself sitting tied to a desk for hours and hours on end in her previous office job.

“You’re pulling nature inside and you can make anything you want out of it, which is also kind of wild. To have a few hours a day to make something beautiful has just been really nice…it’s exactly where I wanted to be.”

In between juggling installations, birthdays, weddings and the responsibilities of a shop owner, Kelli has joined the Detroit Flower House project, which turns derelict houses destined to be demolished into a floral installation.

“My style is very layered and organic, like the way some of houses in Detroit have become, I want to build into the house, as it would want me to, to add more layers and more shape, I plan on creating a floral room that engulfs you and hugs you, from the walls to your heart.”

Kelli’s passion for floristry and her risk to go out on a whim to pursue a career she loves is truly inspiring.  When asked what she loves about floristry, Kelli tells The Flower House, its colour and nature’s ability to surprise you.

“The way nature can shake you when you least expect it. I love finding those special gems in a bunch of roses or anemones that is just perfectly different, the petals have fallen just so or the colour isn’t quite the same, I love building drama with colour, makes me giddy.”

Hops Pertunia

The Flower House

Images borrowed from Hops Pertunia.