Spotlight: Silk Stem Collective Aims to Cut Waste by Offering an Alternative to Cut Flowers

Wedding flowers can make a major impact on a couple’s big day. But cut flowers often represent a major expense — and a potential waste. That’s why Silk Stem Collective aims to offer a more sustainable solution.

Instead of real, cut flowers, the company rents faux flowers that look just like the real thing. Read about the founders and their mission below in this week’s Small Business Spotlight.

What the Business Does

Offers rent-and-return wedding flowers.

Co-founder Megan Rapacz told Small Business Trends, “We believe in reducing waste in the wedding industry by renting affordable, high-quality faux flowers. We offer 10 different collections each with a unique style but all as beautiful as fresh flowers.”

Business Niche

Sustainability.

Rapacz says, “Our mission is focused on minimizing the environmental impact of weddings. Customers choose us because our product is beautiful and affordable. But our mission is what sets up apart.”

How the Business Got Started

Upon realizing there was a market for faux wedding flowers.

Rapacz says, “After using faux florals in my wedding, I went to sell them on Facebook marketplace and got a surge of interested couples. My sister, a Chemical Engineer by education, has always had a passion for environmental conservation and saw an opportunity to help others reduce wedding waste.”

Biggest Win

Being awarded a $10,000 Amber Grant for women owned small businesses.

Rapacz adds, “This was not only a huge honor but a jump start towards our 2021 business goals.”

Biggest Risk

Investing in quality flowers.

Rapacz says, “High quality faux flowers are extremely expensive because they are very labor intensive to create. Some flowers cost up to $15 for one stem! Because we source the highest quality flowers, we often buy in bulk to keep costs low when we are creating new collections. At one point we spent over $5,000 on a bulk order of flowers which we had never seen in person. If the flowers were not up to our quality standards we would have been out that money… the manufacturer does not accept returns! Luckily, only a small portion did not live up to our realism standards and we were able to use a majority.”

Lesson Learned

No business can grow quickly without well spent marketing dollars.

Rapacz explains, “At first, we had hoped that word of mouth would grow our brand. We quickly learned that high quality product and affordable prices are not enough! Customers needed to hear about us to know renting fake flowers for a wedding was even an option. Had we shelled out the money sooner, we would have grown much faster.”

How They’d Spend an Extra $100,000

Flowers!

Rapacz adds, “We love creating new collections and expanding our offerings. Variety is the spice of life and we strive to offer as much variety as possible to our diverse customer base.”

Favorite Quote

“It does not matter how slow you go as long as you do not stop.” -Confucius.

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Find out more about the Small Biz Spotlight program

Image: Silk Stem Collective; Megan and Amanda Rapacz

This article, "Spotlight: Silk Stem Collective Aims to Cut Waste by Offering an Alternative to Cut Flowers" was first published on Small Business Trends



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