November 8, 2022
MY STORY CONTINUED ~ A PHOTO SHOOT IN Bresč, CROATIA | LORETA DAKA
I fell in love with flowers at a young age. Growing up in Croatia, I would explore the meadows with Mother, run through Father's garden, and marvel over creation. I picked grass, wheat, persimmon, and figs off the tree and there was nothing I loved more than to gaze at the blossoms that grew on the mountainsides overlooking the Adriatic Sea. I found my passion . . . Croatia is where I became familiar with nature. My father taught me how to garden. Everything he touched; bloomed. I was drawn to all the little things that grew. Over the years, I acquired the floral industry tricks of the trade while scrubbing buckets in a floral shop. I learned how to cut, treat, cultivate, condition, and preserve flowers. I was given the opportunity to manage a floral department, while raising two small children and attending business school. After college, I worked for several designers in the city. A former client asked me to flower her wedding and the rest is history! THE FACE BEHIND THE FLOWERS For those of you who are curious, that's the truncated version about me. Clients and friends have told me, that what they love most about my website is my 'About' page. Of course, they drop by and check out my work but when they read my story it resonates with them. So, for those of you who want to get to know me, here's my story . . . MY STORY CONTINUED . . . Most of my childhood, I spent in my father's garden. I was curious about nature and would explore the mountainsides. While playing in the meadows, it never occurred to me that I would become a florist. Instead, I had dreams and ambitions of fashion design. In my spare time, I would play with fabric, make my own clothing, and sketch my own designs. I even made my dress for prom and enrolled myself in school. My mother taught me, I was there to learn the 'golden rule' . . . I planned on furthering my education in fashion when I came to the United States. Instead, I wound up working in a market putting together fruit baskets of all things! These baskets were unlike any other. They were three feet tall with special wrappings. I remember telling my boss that this 'wasn't for me'' but I knew that becoming a fashion designer was out of my reach. Little did I know, God had other plans and was leading me on a path to bigger and better things. Now, back to those fruit baskets! I designed each basket with my own two hands and each basket was a work of art. Blogging about this, takes me back to when I was a child and my father would tinker around in the yard. Still to this day, at eighty-three years of age, he has a green thumb. What I remember most about growing up was how he taught me how to plant from seed and it was a lovely reminder when I returned home for a visit recently. His garden was full of pumpkins and persimmons which surrounded me.
While working in the market, the beauty of watching my father garden never left me. But that was only the beginning. My dream was to become a fashion designer but that all changed when I became a mother of two and started working in a floral shop while attending business school. I was paid to cultivate plants. I learned about flowers and how to treat and heal them using special chemicals to keep mealy bugs and diseases away. I also washed, sprayed, and scrubbed buckets throughout the day. It was hard work but it taught me discipline. While under other designers wing, I learned the tricks of the trade and working with flowers kind of became my thing.
A short while later, I was given the opportunity to manage a floral department. Around that time, I graduated college and earned my degree. I realized I wanted to grow more in the floral industry, so I applied for a job in New York City. City life was fast paced and I worked as a manager with other designers flowering weddings. Learning from them took me to a whole new level of growth. I quickly became interested in Dutch product and European style flowers, which I still purchase today. Although, I have to say, there is nothing like home-grown product from the U.S.A.
A customer took interest in my floral designs and would stop by my place of work from time to time. She purchased many bouquets I made because she loved the way they were arranged. One day she popped in and walked up to the clerk. She leaned over the counter and asked me to 'flower' her wedding. Me? Flower her wedding? All by myself? Not as a freelancer? I couldn't believe it. There was no way I was passing this up. It was the first wedding I did all by myself and after that the rest is history! I went from fashion design to floral design and although, I'm not sitting behind a sewing machine with a sketch book in hand, I became the designer I was destined to be. But something in my heart always told me that there was more for me in this industry. Several weddings later and a push in the right direction from the people who wanted to see me succeed, Loreta Daka Floral Boutique came to be. Becoming a business owner was no longer a dream. It was reality!
THE CONCEPT BEHIND THE PHOTO SHOOT Reminiscing about this, takes me back to my roots and is the reasoning behind this photo shoot. This past November, I jetted off to Croatia. I had some spare time on my hands and I wanted to spend the day with my niece. We planned an outdoor photo shoot with Impala Studio and split the session between the two of us. I felt like a kid again, being back in my homeland. I explored the mountainsides and picked the very flowers I once knew and familiarized myself with as a child. I spent many days running around in play clothes and rugged jeans, picking grasses, persimmon, and wheat. When I look back at my life and all that I have accomplished, I give God the glory! He instilled in me a love for nature and has given me a gift that has sustained me.
specialty flowers and fillers that were utilized in these phot oshoot arrangements were wild flowers, grasses, berries, and (my childhood favorite) persimmon
I hope you enjoyed this photo shoot in Brsec, Croatia. Do you know Iva, Pavale, and Loreta? Show them some love by giving this post a 'Heart' in the section below!
VENDORS & VISIONARIES
Photographer: Iva Znaor and Pavle Kaplanec @ Impala Studio | Floral Design: Loreta Daka | Location: Brsec, Croatia
ABOUT THE FLORAL DESIGNER
Loreta Daka Carrero is a premier wedding and event floral designer serving Connecticut, New York, and Coastal New England! She specializes in timeless and spiritually curated fine art floral designs for beautiful couples and extraordinary clients.
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