On this week's Shop Small Saturday Showcase feature, I have a shop to feature that everyone will want to take note of... because it's perfect for Mother's Day! I first met the lovely Nora from Nora Floral Studio at Artisanal L.A. and fell in love with her ceramic, geometric designs. The shapes and colors that she uses are so interesting, and I absolutely love how both floral arrangements and succulents look like in her creations.
Definitely take note of any gifts that you would like to purchase for mom, yourself, or someone special because Nora is generously giving a 10% discount to all of my readers! Not only that, she is also giving one of my lucky readers a matte white Double Triangle planters in the giveaway! Enter to win at the end of the post and as always, enjoy all of the beautiful pictures and enjoy learning more about Nora Floral Studio!
Tell me a little bit about yourself!
I am originally from East Texas. I have a BFA from Sarah Lawrence College and an MFA from Art Center College of Design, I have been a practicing sculptor for over 10 years and have exhibited in the United States and Europe. I began Nora Floral Studio 2 years ago. My favorite colors are pink and grey, my favorite flowers are the ranunculus and anemone, my favorite succulent variety is the Echeveria.
Where did the name of your store come from?
When I started doing this all my friends told me that since my name rhymes with flora that the name of my business should be "Nora Flora" but that to me seemed to rhyme too much so I made it "Nora Floral Studio" the studio part reflects the studio practice that is involved with the slip cast ceramic production.
Why did you start making goods for Nora Floral Studio?
My studio practice was always very labor intensive, and after the downturn in the economy and the birth of my son I needed to find a way to enhance my income. It was a process to figure out how to combine my love and aptitude for making objects and something that the world needs. I had learned slip casting years ago in a sculpture class, slip casting is a process where you pour liquid porcelain into plaster molds to get your clay form. I started taking floral design classes and in the meantime cut up some of my old sculptures in progress and made molds of the pieces. It seemed obvious to use this process to make planters and vases for the succulent and floral designs I was into.
What is your favorite item?
That would be the Double Hex planter that I make for wedding and engagement gifts, the bride and groom each choose a color and each hexagon has their chosen color, plus a common color that runs through the entire piece, symbolizing their interdependence. I put an "Old Man" cactus in each planter, a cactus covered in white "hair", and that represents the couple growing old together. It is very romantic in a pragmatic way, just like me.
What is your most popular item?
That would be my hanging triangle planter, it is a ceramic pouch that holds either succulents or an air plant and hangs from a macrame cord adorned with wooden beads. Each ceramic pouch glazed with a pattern using a taping process, and each one is so distinctive people have a hard time deciding on which one to buy.
Where do you get the inspiration for your work?
Geometry, 70's science fiction film, the High Desert, Islamic architecture, Navajo patterns, Hopi Katsinas, Boli figures, color theory, Japanese pottery (especially Karatsu), The LA Flower Mart, Pinterest
What makes your store unique?
The combination of ceramics and florals I believe to be unique, when my clients get their arrangement they have a singular vase as a keepsake. Also I think my planters and vases are unique because the forms themselves are like small sculptures.
What is the toughest part about making your goods?
The toughest part is scheduling. I have a 4 year old and I work when he is at school or after he goes to bed. Luckily I have a home based studio which helps. I can run out and quickly pour a mold when I have a spare moment. The slip cast process is time sensitive, if the clay sits too long in the mold it will crack when I try to take it out. There are different stages of drying once the clay is out of the mold so making sure I am able to get do certain things to the pieces at a certain time is very important. I always have my portable macrame set up just in case there is any chance to get a little bit done in a waiting room or at a park.
Do you take custom orders?
YES! Custom orders take approximately 3 weeks, that allows for production and both the bisque and glaze firings. I specialize in floral arrangements delivered in unique vases, I also do events and will work with a host to design something really special. For example I just did an outdoor dinner party all in pink and white where each table had two floral centerpieces in my triangle vases and each place setting had a small double bubble vase for the guests to take home.
Where can I see more of your work and buy a gift?
My website is norafloralstudio.com, that is where I have images of a lot my pieces and where I take custom orders. I also have photos of the events I have done florals for. I also do a lot on Instagram.
Anything else to add?
I have been overwhelmed by the positive response to my stuff, and also how welcoming, supportive, and helpful the handmade community has been. It is so refreshing after years in the uber-competitive art world!!
So did you find something perfect for your mother? I know I did! So to receive the 10% off discount, use the promo code NFS at checkout. Now, to win the Double Triangle planter, enter using the widget below. The giveaway is open to U.S. residents over 18. Notice that this week, you get TEN entries for following Nora Floral Studios on Instagram, so make sure to do that! And as always...