SO MANY IDEAS
For those of you who have followed my previous posts, I have been very transparent about my desire to expand Ameila’s. When I first started out with our ‘build your own bouquet’ concept on wheels (really cute wheels), I kept dreaming up ways to expand. From the beginning I knew we were unique and innovative and things would take time, but I had so many ideas!
ACT OUT OF NEED
I have said this before, but I am not a florist and I never set out to be one. In our business plan, there was no mention of traditional floral services. I often look back on the time I spent planning. Before everything began, I would find myself pulling from both my head and my heart to marry the most beautiful ideas together. I fell in love with a concept and used knowledge to build ideas around that; what a wonderful matrimony it was! I have always been flooded with excitement when thinking about Amelia’s and all the ways in which we could potentially grow. When you’re really excited about an idea that you are pursuing, it’s natural to become overzealous and even anxious to see it through – that was me. After we launched, everything was moving so quickly that I found myself in this state of reactiveness, only responding to things that had already taken place with our business model. Don’t get me wrong, everything I was reacting to was positive and thrilling. The trucks were doing well and the community of Nashville was more than receptive. In the blink of an eye, we establish a brand and a place here. While soaking that in, I immediately felt hungry to continue growing right then and there. Since the trucks were just gaining traction, I didn’t have a large enough revenue stream to expand the way I wanted to, or better yet, in the timeframe I desired - womp, womp. Instead of going back to the drawing board and having a meeting with my heart and my mind, I acted out of impulse. I wanted to reach more people and do more things, so I looked for ways to make that happen. If you read nothing else in this post, please read this: act out of need, not impulse. I learned the hard way on that one.
SOMETHING WASN’T CLICKING
I started to do anything I could to bring in more revenue, while also keeping the overhead costs low. We started offering delivers, truck event rentals and wedding services. Instead of focusing just on the trucks, I decided to go out of that box and pursue wedding florals. We had already received a few requests, so it seemed like a great idea. As we entered our second season, we had a few weddings booked. I, once again, found myself humbly asking for more guidance from people within the floral industry. I received more encouragement and advice than I knew what to do with, but I still didn’t feel confident. Despite my nerves, we moved forward into the season. Even though the designs came together perfectly and we were proud of the work, something wasn’t clicking. It’s hard to explain, so I am sure it’s even harder to imagine, but even during some of the most magical, sacred moments, we felt out of place. As a team, we spent so much of our mental energy on trying to make everything perfect, that we started to lose sight of who we were and what we set out to do. Every time we booked another wedding, I found myself immediately feeling stressed over it.
FIND YOUR CENTER
It wasn't until someone shared an analogy with me that my perspective began to shift. This person told me to center my water bottle on the table. I complied and centered my water bottle. Immediately, with a swift hand, she pushed the water bottle to the side. As the water bottle slid and gravity played its part, I watched the once balanced water climb the thin plastic walls and then thrust back down like a crashing wave in a storm. She told me to center it again. I did and she pushed it to the other side. Again, the water was displaced only to come crashing down. She told me to imagine the bottle as my business. She proceeded to tell me how important it was to center our businesses so we don't lose sight of our “why” and inevitably come crashing down. This hit me HARD. I immediately started to think about how off centered I felt every time we did a wedding. As soon as I could, I called our Truck Manager and told her not book another wedding.
OUR SIMPLE IDEA
Our center of balance is to make flowers more accessible to everyone. To flood the streets of Nashville with beautiful flowers and to give people the opportunity to build something with their hands that is both personal and unique; we have a ‘build your own bouquet’ concept on wheels. I have so many dreams for Ameila’s and I know we will eventually expand in different ways, but as a start-up, we need to remain focused and take everything one day at a time. It’s a wonderful thing to dream for the future, but enjoying the present is ever-so-sweet, too.
I want to end by saying we are so incredibly honored to have been able to be a part of so many beautiful weddings this past year and a few more this year. Maybe one day, when we have more resources, we'll start doing weddings again. We will keep you all informed each step of the way.
Thank you all for loving us so well!