We had the good fortune of connecting with Krystal Barrett and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Krystal, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
The most important factor behind the small, but steady growth of my business, Peace Petals is the support of my loved ones—hands down. I know it’s said by many often, but it very much rings true for me: without my family and friends, I would not be where I am today. As someone who has always been a perfectionist and my own worst critic, especially in regards to my art, I have carried a lack of self-confidence and been very hesitant in starting my own small business. I frequently say that those closest to me have supported me since before day one of Peace Petals though. Without their continuous encouragement, I’m not sure that I’d even be creating.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My small business is called Peace Petals! I create pressed flower art and goods; all of my work is handmade and intentionally created. One of my goals for Peace Petals has always been to cultivate peace for others, and myself, through my work.
The pressed flower art and goods I create include: framed pieces, necklaces, cards, bookmarks, ornaments, stickers, eco-friendly confetti, infused oils that I call “Peace Potions”, and sage and palo santo bundles that I call “Peace Burners”. Pressed and/or dried flowers are incorporated in every single item I make and I strive to be as eco-friendly as possible in all aspects of my work as well.
I also offer custom work for my customers, too. Pressing wedding bouquets tend to be my biggest custom request, though I have also worked with flowers from graduations, celebrations of life, anniversaries, and other life events. Seeing the joy on a customer’s face when I create a piece out of flowers that are so special to them seriously warms my heart.
One aspect of Peace Petals that I’ve been most proud of is incorporating my background as an activist into my artwork. In the past, I have offered donation-based giveaways in support of a social justice cause, asking for donations in exchange for an entry to win a pressed flower-framed piece. The money gathered has then been donated to important causes, supporting movements like Black Lives Matter and mental health justice. This is a part of Peace Petals I definitely want to offer more often. As someone who struggles with Generalized Anxiety Disorder and OCD, Peace Petals has been one form of therapy for me, and I’ve especially loved using my art to support mental health advocacy and other social justice movements.
My professional background is actually housed in higher education; I worked for a college in Orlando for close to 10 years. In August of 2021 though, after realizing my career wasn’t growing, despite my efforts, and I was at a struggle with my own happiness, my husband encouraged me to leave the college and focus on Peace Petals. While I’m still working hard at growing my business, navigating the many bumps along this journey, and transitioning to this very different type of career, I am so happy to be focusing on what I love and am passionate about.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Oh, I love this question!! I was born in Orlando, have never moved, and supporting our small, local businesses is pretty much one of my passions! Here are my favorite spots in Orlando:
-The Owl’s Attic
-The Neighbors at East End Market
-Rifle Paper Co
-The House on Lang
-Purple Ocean Superfood Bar
-Mecatos Bakery & Cafe
-Lineage Coffee Roasting
-Craft & Common
-East End Market
-Audubon Park Garden District
-The Milk District
-The Hourglass District
**Plus so many other places!**
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
As mentioned previously, I wouldn’t be where I am in life without the support of my family and closest friends. There are so many of them to shoutout and thank, and for this particular piece, I’d like to shoutout two of my sweetest friends, Brittany and Auggie, owners of The Owl’s Attic in Orlando, FL. Even before I began my small business, Brittany and Auggie showed support for my artwork and motivated me to keep creating and growing. They even offered for me to sell my work in their shop whenever I was ready. Without Brittany and Auggie, I’m not sure that Peace Petals would exist at the level it’s at today. They are some of the kindest, raddest, and hardworking small business shop owners I am lucky enough to be friends with. Thanks, y’all!