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Meet My Lady Garden...

Meet My Lady Garden...

Sun, May 17, 20 - HANX Official

Navigating lockdown and running your own business? 🙃 We hear you!

For those that are new around here, we love to turn the spotlight on fellow female founders and in May's edition, we explore building a biz from the roots up, seeking inspiration from Aperol Spritz (haven't we all) and pivoting to work with the unexpected: *a global pandemic*. So, mix yourself a glass of something suitably fresh and let’s get it ne-on with the floral artist you *need* to be following on IG: swoon-worthy content creator, Kaiva of My Lady Garden!

 

MYLADYGARDEN... BEST NAME EVER! CAN YOU TELL US HOW IT ALL BEGAN?

It all began with a bottle of wine, and two pals on a Friday night. I needed a business name as I was just starting out, and wanted something botanical ​and ​very memorable - the ideas were flowing and we somehow got onto the idea of “Sir/Lady”. One of us blurted it out, and MLG was born!

 

 

FROM INITIAL IDEAS TO MAKING MY LADY GARDEN A REALITY: WHAT WERE THE MOST CHALLENGING AND REWARDING ASPECTS OF STARTING YOUR OWN BUSINESS?

I began operating out of my home in the early days, to keep my overhead cost down! This was super testing but kept me motivated to work towards a bigger space in the long run. To keep myself afloat, I still freelanced and worked part-time (at one point, I was working at Chick’n’Sours!) - so days would often start very early, and finish really late. We also moved to New York for 2 years in the middle of it all, which felt like having to uproot and start again...then again when I came back to London. I’ve been back for just over a year now, and WHAT a year it has been! Despite the challenges of starting up in multiple countries, it’s been incredibly rewarding with the people I've met, and the broad networks I now have! So it’s been equally challenging, and rewarding!

 

REAL TALK: YOUR PLAYLISTS ARE UNPARALLELED... WHAT ARE YOUR TOP THREE SONGS FOR GETTING US OUT OF A WFH SLUMP?

Estrelar - Marcus Valle (I genuinely think if MLG had a theme tune, it would be this)

 

 

Nomalizo - Letta Mbulu

Cola Bottle Baby - Edwin Birdsong

 

BLINK AND YOU’LL MISS IT! YOU’RE STILL BRINGING THE SUNSHINE VIA HOME DELIVERY EVERY THURSDAY - HOW EASY WAS IT TO PIVOT YOUR BUSINESS MODEL IN RESPONSE TO COVID-19?

It honestly happened overnight! When COVID-19 first started affecting businesses, it was right around Mother’s Day (UK). I decided that, due to all my events and weddings for the month being postponed/cancelled I would try out fresh flower deliveries - and what an overwhelmingly supportive response! There was clearly a demand so I continued every week...cut to six weeks later, and I’m selling out each week!

 

 

It was mainly about looking at new ways to adapt in order to survive as a business - I didn’t really have any other option! As well as deliveries, I have created virtual workshops which I host via ZOOM each week, and now have a merchandise range with new items dropping every few weeks - including an adult colouring book, MLG candle, bucket hat and other apparel!

 

ONE FOR ALL US LONG DISTANCE LOVERS: WHICH MLG BUNCH SHOULD WE BE SENDING TO OUR CRUSH?

Ooft. Depends what they're like! Romantic? Send the ​Peony Lady Garden.​ Something to impress? The ​Signature Lady Garden (​maybe even throw in a MLG candle too, for extra ambience..!).

 

FROM YOUR HOMEPAGE TO THE FLORALS ON YOUR DREAMY FEED, WE’RE A LITTLE OBSESSED WITH MLG AND YOUR COLOUR PALETTE. WHERE DO YOU DRAW CREATIVE INSPIRATION?

Currently, I'm drawing inspiration from citrus fruits (SO zingy!), Aperol Spritz, and a LOT of 90s cult classics films. I try to find images that I’m really drawn to with their mood/colours, and interpret them through my flowers!

 

FROM CLASSICAL COMPARISONS OF FLOWERS AND VIRGINITY TO ARTIST GEORGIA O’KEEFFE’S MODERNIST ODES TO THE VULVA: DO YOU THINK THERE’S AN INHERENT EROTICISM TO FLORALS?

I really do, and this is probably why I love the “innuendo” of My Lady Garden. Flowers are super sensual, from the textures and colours to how they’ve been represented in art over the years. If you’re looking from a literal perspective, some even have shapes which often are associated as being phallic/yonic - often these are anthuriums or phalaenopsis orchids! I adore this element of working with flowers!

 

 

OKAY, QUICKFIRE ROUND:

WISTERIA OR PEONIES?Wisteria

LOVE LETTER OR VOICE NOTE? ​Voice note

SWEETPEAS OR RANUNCULUS? ​Sweet peas

DINNER DATE OR DRINKS? ​Dinner date (with drinks!)

FIRE NEONS OR SOFT PASTELS? ​Both, clashing!

TIM TAMS OR BOURBON BISCUITS? ​Tim Tams - obviously!

 

WHERE DO YOU SEE MLG IN FIVE YEARS TIME?

Oh goodness, I could go on...I envision a large studio, with retail space at the front which is open to the public, and space at the back for all wedding and event work. Super sleek, a nice tiled workbench with all the flowers available in the front, as well as a workspace for all the delivery/orders. Super large windows, bright light - disco blaring! Maybe even on a monthly transforming the space and hosting disco/music nights. Or a MLG deli at the front with seasonal produce, I’d love to combine my love for food with flowers somehow!

 

Thanks, Kaiva! Take your quarantine self-care to the next level with My Lady Garden's bunches and stay home with HANX condoms and lubricant now.