Teleflora’s celebrating the 100th anniversary of Mother’s Day with an America’s Favorite Mom contest (AmericasFavoriteMom.com/florist). Coincidentally, it was 30 years ago, just before Mother’s Day that Redmond’s Bear Creek Florist, a Teleflora and FTD affiliate, began selling blooms to honor moms, birthdays, anniversaries and other milestones.
Lisa Aliment now runs the shop which was started by her father Ray Aliment and his sister Janice Tanner in the same location at 17186 Redmond Way. It first was known as Ja-Rae’s Flowers and Gifts, but when Tanner and her husband moved overseas, Ray bought out her share of the business and renamed it Bear Creek Florist “because everyone knew where Bear Creek was — this was back when Redmond was still a very small town,” Lisa noted.
A point of pride for the Aliment family is that the store’s current staff has 117 collective years of floral experience, she added. Floral manager Linda Macrae and office manager Judy Mikus have both been with the shop more than 18 years. Master designer Joy Lawrence is a licensed associate of AIFD (American Institute of Floral Design). And Lisa “grew up” behind the counter. In-between getting her business degree at University of Washington, she’d come home and help out at the florist “to earn pizza money.”
At one time, the family also owned Kirkland’s Moss Bay Florist, but closed it 12 years ago. The Redmond store, fortunately, was still doing well, but “the industry has changed, and to stay afloat, we’ve changed to carry jewelry, purses, cookware, plush animals and other gift items, including an exclusive line of jewelry by Sue Huston,” said Lisa. “There’s a lot more competition from grocery stores (selling flowers) and online sources. Flowers are still a staple here but we offer other things, most in the $25-$50 range that could be an add-on or an alternative.”
Spring and early summer are brisk business times for florists, thanks to Mother’s Day, proms, graduations and weddings.
“What’s really fun is that we see a lot of the same kids who got their corsages or boutonnieres for prom here, come back a few years later for their wedding flowers,” she mentioned.
Wedding arrangements are fun because “the trend now is that there is no trend — everyone wants something different and we try to come up with unique ideas within their chosen color scheme, maybe mixing traditional roses with some other flowers they didn’t know about.”
As for baby gifts, teddy bears will never go out of style, but there’s now a lot of interest in specific types of plush dogs, as well as zoo animals and jungle animals.
For information, call (425) 883-3770 or toll-free (866) 883-3770.