Vendor.Interview.DK Designs


From time to time I enjoy getting in touch with some of my favorite vendors and getting some inside information on their creations, talent & inspirations. For my first interview I got in touch with Diane of DK Designs. Here is the interview with Diane…

What’s your inspiration for creating flowers?
DK Designs – I love looking at bridal magazines for the latest flower and color trends and they serve as my inspiration.  I also have a few favorite floral designers (Yvonne Floral, The Flower Girls, etc).  It’s always helpful if a bride who wants to order a bouquet have some pictures and an idea of what they would like.  When brides who don’t have an idea of what they want, but have a color in mind, it gives me an opportunity to be creative and design something I think they will like.  I love flowers and enjoy analyzing them.  My goal is to spend more time when things aren’t so crazy to develop new flowers out of clay that I don’t already know and continue perfecting the ones I do know.
How do you create the flowers?
DK Designs – The clay basically comes in packages of white, yellow, red, blue and black.  With the primary colors and white you can create any color of the rainbow.  The clay is the consistency some say of marshmallow or soft taffy.  I mold the clay into balls or teardrops and use my fingers or different detail sticks and sometimes texture molds to create the petal shape of my choice. CLAYCRAFT by DECO Soft Clay is an air-dry, polymer clay that enables me to create thin, lifelike flowers one petal at at time.  The clay dries within 24-48 hours to a firm consistency while maintaining it’s lifelike quality.  It’s quite durable.  I do paint some of the flowers to accent or highlight the colors I want to bring out in the arrangement.
One of your biggest challenges?
DK Designs – creating a flower that I don’t already know how to make.  I wish I had more time to do this so I could offer my clients a lot more selection of flowers to choose from.  To date, I’ve been fortunate that the majority of my brides have been happy with the flowers I do offer.
Your Top 3 Favorite Pictures:
Tell us about yourself and how you got started making clay flowers for weddings?
I’m a native of California and worked in the high-tech marketing field of over 10 years.  I had to make a choice when I was pregnant with my son whether to go back to CA (as we lived in Hawaii at the time) and work or quit and pursue my dream job of making clay flowers and doing wedding invitations full time.  I obviously decided on the 2nd option and it’s been the best decision I have ever made.  I absolutely LOVE what I do and I enjoy creating stylish and totally unique floral arrangements for my brides.  I found the clay flowers in 2001 and there was a school, DECO Clay Craft Academy in Hawaii where I could take classes.  I took classes for a year and a half and became a certified instructor so that I could teach others how to make the flowers.  I could see the business potential from the beginning not only the teaching aspect but the finished product aspect.  In 2005, I really pursued the finished product side of the business and it began to evolve from there.  I like to say I’m a corporation of “1” because I do it all, everything you see, from my website, my designs, my PR, accounting and everything else, is all done by me…..   Some may think that my prices might be a little high, but I believe they are in line with what a florist would charge.  Brides need to understand 2 things: 1. I handcraft the flowers one petal at a time and 2. The flowers will last for many, many years to come with just a little care (light dusting and keeping them away from direct sunlight exposure and water).  Money well spent if you ask me.
I currently reside in San Jose, CA where I work out of my home studio creating wonderful designs for my bridal customers.
Here are some key highlights in 2008:
April 2008 – Featured on the Martha Stewart Show where I got to teach Martha how to make clay hydrangea flowers
May 2008 – Miss Pineapple of www.weddingbee.com hired me to do her wedding and got exposure with brides nationally and internationally.
July 2008 – TheKnot.com – Real Weddings – Mae & Jeremy and MyKnot.com Real Weddings – Alicia & Crash – my creations from those weddings were featured
August 2008 – My arrangement which is sold through www.estiloweddings.com was featured in the Fall 2008 issue of In Style Weddings Magazine
How can someone purchase clay flowers?
DK Designs – most of my items are custom order and the bride can contact me via email at dk@dkdesignshawaii.com.  I have ballpark pricing, but every bouquet and order is different based on the size, style and type of flowers the client chooses.  I can guarantee that every bouquet will be an original design and no one will have the same bouquet as you!
My website is www.dkdesignshawaii.com.  I also sell finished products on my Etsy site at: www.dkdesignshawaii.etsy.com.  For my latest creations that don’t exist on my site I update my blog at www.dkdesignshawaii.blogspot.com.

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