Marie Williams, owner of , plans to have her two coolers stocked with roses in preparation for Valentine’s Day.
Like many florists, she is bracing for a holiday that means big business.
The small store in southwest Atlanta is decorated with Valentine’s Day balloons and banners, white teddy bears and baskets of goodies. Williams took a break over the weekend to talk about how the holiday matters for small business people.
Q. How much of your annual business do you do around the Valentine's Day holiday?
A. About 30 percent.
Q. Are red roses really the most popular flowers for Valentine's Day?
A. Yes. Most people just get a dozen red roses, but some will also get a teddy, white or pink bears. But mostly it’s just roses. A dozen red roses cost $85.
Q. How much are people spending on average for the holiday this year, and is the more or less than last year?
A. It’s too soon to tell. People start pouring in or making their orders about three to four days early. But most of them will come in the same day. On Valentine’s Day, I have a lot of walk-ins. I have to get two or three folks to help. Normally, I just have one part-time helper.
Q. Is there any other event or time of year when you sell more flowers?
A. No. For our business, the Valentine’s Day holiday is the biggest event of the year. It’s the biggest money-making month.
Q. Why do you like running a flower shop?
A. Because it’s a gift and I love it. I love flowers. I’ve been doing this since I was 15 years old for church. It’s a natural thing. I took courses in New York and I did it in New York for a long time, 15 years. I’ve had this shop for 10 years.