We had the good fortune of connecting with Meghan Marsala and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Meghan, how do you think about risk?
Taking risks has not always been easy for me, but it has been an essential part of my growth as a small business owner and as a working artist. Not every risk I have taken has led to success but I believe that failure is a part of the journey to success and learning more about yourself. This pandemic has forced me to take some of the biggest risks thus far in life and in my career. For over 10 years, I have worked full time as a floral designer for weddings and special events in Los Angeles. My success and livelihood has revolved around large, once-in-a-lifetime celebrations. Last April, with the onset of COVID-19, everything came to an abrupt halt, all weddings were cancelled and I found myself without work, like so many others, especially those who are in the event industry. I was forced to take a giant risk to figure out what to do next. I needed to dig deep to stay afloat and find new ways of expressing myself creatively. One of the biggest things I realized during this pandemic is that being an artist is just as important for my financial well being as it is for my mental and emotional health. Working with my hands to make art and challenging myself creatively is what feeds my soul and it’s who I am. With the absence of working with fresh flowers I longed to create something else tangible that people could enjoy. I decided to completely shift gears and I started doing macrame 8 months ago. I had never in my life done anything like it and quite frankly, had no idea what I was doing! I spent everything I had to order supplies to get started and it was terrifying at first. Not to mention, this pivot in my company would completely change people’s perception of me and what my brand has been all about. For a long time, I have thought to myself, “just stick to one thing and do it well, it’s working so there is no need to change it.” But taking a risk during the pandemic to learn a new craft has changed this opinion. I now tell myself, “you can either step forward into growth or step back, into safety.” Challenging myself to do something new pushed me as a creative designer and made me think differently about how I can improve as a florist, when I am able to return to that work. Who knows, maybe in 2021 I will create a custom wedding backdrop with macrame AND fresh flowers. The possibilities are endless and I would never have been here without taking risks…I would have just continued to do the same thing, stayed safe but without growth. During this challenging time that also would have contributed to the struggle. There are so many ways to create and I believe if you do it from the heart you will always be successful. I now think about risk as a gateway to becoming a more versatile artist.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I have always been an artist with a lifelong desire to create and evolve works of art. My background stems from my sculpture degree from USC and designing for over 10 years at high end flower shops across Los Angeles, catering to some of Hollywood’s most famous stars. My career highlights include being on floral design teams for The Four Seasons Hotel in Beverly Hills, Christian Dior on Rodeo Drive and The Annual Academy Awards and Governor’s Ball. My desire to start MM Florals came from the pure love and enjoyment I found doing flowers and the ability to share that joy and passion with others. For me, using the knowledge and skill I have acquired working with flowers to improve someone else’s day has been the most rewarding part of the business. This past year, my work has evolved to include hand crafted macramé and other home decor to enhance interior spaces. A lesson my work has taught me is that, beauty and happiness means so much more when its shared. Whether I am making flower crowns for little girls in the neighborhood, teaching a succulent wreath workshop at my studio or designing flowers for one of the most important days of someone’s life, my goal is always the same – to make people happy sharing my art. I am blessed that I can use my creative gift to tell a story and showcase flowers in a unique way. With MM Florals my intention is to do just that- to make floral art and home decor for people to enjoy. It is a very rewarding feeling to give a piece of something you love so much to someone else, so they too can fall in love with it and see something new.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
My favorite things to do in the city (when we are not in a pandemic!) are visiting LACMA, The Getty and The Broad art museums to get inspired, checking out the talented street artists in DTLA and in Venice Beach, going to Griffith Observatory for the sunrise to clear my head and get outdoors. I am a big “foodie” and in LA, I feel like there is always somewhere new to try! Some of my favorite spots to eat and drink are Terroni, Scopa and Angelini Osteria (when I want to be feed my Italian roots), Cha Cha Chili (Asian Fusion) and Sonoratown (amazing tacos)! I could also, of course, wander for hours around the Los Angeles Flower Market and do this on a weekly basis. You have to be an early riser for this, the 4-5am morning person type! But its well worth to get first pick of the best and freshest blooms available!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
To my family and friends who have always believed in me as an artist and consistently supported all of my creative endeavors. And special thanks to the unconditional support and mentorship from fellow creative designers, Jason Vorse @pollenfloralworks and James Benn @james.benn.design.