Wascana Flower Shoppe

Not very many tasks intimidate me. I generally approach each day and the things-it-brings with a can-do attitude. I know my strengths as a designer and am usually up for any challenge.

Until Tanya called.

I want to create my DREAM flower shop. Can you help me?

Absolutely, I can (holy shit). Of all of the amazingly talented designers in YQR, Tanya and her family put their trust in ME to recreate the floors and walls that house their very successful family business – Wascana Flower Shoppe.

Gulp.

I was super intimidated– but also very, very excited. The shop is the first stop for so many Reginans when they want floral arrangements, house plants, and unique gifts. The customer service provided by Tanya, Petra, Riley, and the girls is second to none. It’s no wonder their repeat customer rate is through the roof. I knew working with this crew was going to be so gratifying.

Did I mention we had the shortest construction timeline of life? AND I had to find someone that would accommodate working around their operating business? AND the busiest day of the year – Valentine’s Day – was fast approaching?

Gulp.

A quick call to Derek & Trevor at Collaborative Construction – who happen to have the same can-do attitude that I do – and we had the ball rolling. I got to work sketching out what I saw in my head during my meetings with the Wascana family.

  1.  We needed to simplify. As it was, the space held SO much that it was becoming overwhelming. Customers weren’t sure where to turn when they came in the door.

  2.  We needed paint. And filler. LOTS of filler. The walls were covered in craft paper as a temporary solution to cover up the old paint colour.

  3. We needed a noise solution. Anyone that knows Ry knows he isn’t exactly a quiet talker. Above the cooler was wide open, so noise could travel from the back of the house to the front retail area easily.

  4. The wedding consult room needed to be functional AND beautiful.

  5. We needed to be on-brand, on-trend, and on-budget….oh, and we were on strict orders not to touch the cooler doors.  

In order to keep relatively the same amount of retail items in the shop, but not overwhelm customers, we opted to allocate large portions of the wall space to built-in shelving (something that they never had). We went with deep drawers raised up on legs (for easy cleaning) and adjustable shelving above for displaying retail items.

We built-in the chocolate cooler with the same type of cabinets and created more-effective merchandising space for the rest of the sugary goodies.

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Touches of shiplap between the shelving units, and a nice warm white on the walls make for a lovely background to hang florals and artwork. We purposely cut down on the amount of wall space available for display in order to avoid the hodgepodge of clutter that tends to accumulate.

Out went the ¾ height display walls that were set up in the middle of the floor, blocking the customers view of the entire space. We sourced some amazing tables on castors that are home to seasonal vignettes and can be moved around the space as needed. This created so much openness in the space – it seems so much brighter now that those walls are gone.

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About those cooler doors – they are the original cooler doors that Petra purchased when she opened the shop – AND they are brushed gold. They weren’t going anywhere. I knew instantly that the cooler wall itself, and the new wall above needed to be BOLD. Black, perhaps. Nope. Benjamin Moore’s Hunter Green, which just so happens to be an exact match to the Wascana Flower Shoppe’s logo colours. We framed in the open space above the cooler to the ceiling and painted it the same deep shade of green. It serves as the perfect backdrop for the gold company sign fabricated and installed by Steady Metalworks. It’s the first thing you see when you walk into the shop. It’s eye-catchingly striking, yet very simple.

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And, about those floors. Coral. White. VCT. Ugh.  Brandon from Superior FD Coatings took my vision of a worn in “shop floor” and ran with it. You really have to see it in person to appreciate it.

The Wedding Room wasn’t about to be left out of the facelift party. Chris Murray built a beautiful cabinet wall that has the perfect balance of functional storage and open display. Some new furniture and lighting, and this space is a beautiful representation of the wedding experience WFS provides to so many brides.  

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Outside of the Wedding Room, the “corner that nobody went to” needed some attention. Nobody went to it because nobody could see it (thanks to those ¾ height walls I mentioned above). I sketched out some ideas for moveable, modular retail shelving and once again, Chris Murray made it happen. Just. Like. That. I love the shadow-box look and the shallow shelves. It’s such a cool way to display multiples of small items, and then use the boxes to highlight bigger pieces.

A new meeting room, new wall-sconces and ceiling fixtures, a spruced-up retail counter, and just like that, we were done. In record time. It really does amaze me how, when you assemble the right group of like-minded people, tight timelines can produce some amazing work. Hats off to Derek and Trevor and their crew at Collaborative for taking this and literally running with it. Evenings and weekends off weren’t really a thing during this project. The WFS family made it easy to want to work – they are the most appreciative and gracious group.

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I was so grateful, and humbled, that they put their complete trust in me to bring this together for them.

We just won’t talk about how many nail holes had to be filled…

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