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Valentine’s Day puts florist to the test

 

By Tyler Penney [9]

KINGSTON – With Valentine’s Day upon us, one local florist is put to the test to keep customers happy on this day of love.

Jen Atkinson [10] is the owner and florist at Sage Flowers [11] in Kingston and is a one-woman show. Atkinson works out of a shared space at 842 Gardiners Rd. and her florist area is no bigger than 100 square feet, but she makes the best of the small area.

“I like it because when customers email me I know who they are and what they’re talking about,” said Atkinson. “Because I’m the smallest shop in town, I kind of use it to my advantage because I get to be there for the whole process.”

Atkinson shares the space with Safari Cake Boutique [12], but the small space doesn’t keep her from completing her orders during this busy day.

For Valentine’s Day, “I bring in three to four times more product than I normally would, and I’m not going to be sitting on much by the time it’s done,” she said.

In that one day, Atkinson completes as many orders as she might normally have over the course of a whole week.

“I come in early and I stay late,” she said.

This Valentine’s Day Atkinson brought in 10 dozen roses and 150 flowers for mixed bouquets.

Even when she is at home, she’s staying on top of things at the shop.

“I can reply to emails and take orders from home, so I keep an eye on things overnight.”

For every order placed on Valentine’s Day, Sage Flowers is donating one dollar to the Heart and Stroke Foundation [13].

“My dad was in the cardiac unit for the past couple of weeks, and I wanted to incorporate some charitable giving this year,” said Atkinson. “I was on my way to visit my father at Kingston General Hospital when a student from St. Lawrence College who was interning with the Heart and Stroke Foundation called me and asked if I wanted to donate some money for every Valentine’s Day order.”

“It was personal for me, but it’s something I was thinking of doing.”

Atkinson also sells toques at her shop to help reach her goal of donating $50 to the Heart and Stroke Foundation.

Sage Flowers is located at 842 Gardiners Rd. in Kingston.

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