Located on Allen Street near Main Street in Buffalo, Petal Pusher is a new floral shop with a bar that came out of a mobile flower truck, and while that may sound a bit crazy — the success of the company was built on classic business practices: stand out from the crowd, work hard and network, network, network.
Shop owner and Buffalo native Samantha Reidy was living in New York City a few years ago when she realized: This isn’t for me. After moving back to Buffalo, she did what a lot of us would have done — take stock and figure out what to do next.
“You know when people go down that list of ideal jobs, like detective or marine biologist?” she says. “I’ve always wanted to take a shot at being a florist. So, I was thinking I’ll try that for a while and see what happens.”
She started by working as a floral assistant with a local company. After two years of learning the trade, she was scrolling through Pinterest when she saw photos of floral trucks in warm weather cities like Nashville.
“I know Buffalo obviously has only a few warm months a year, but we summer so hard — and I thought people would love a flower truck,” she says.
By taking her truck to local events and booking appearances in front of businesses, Reidy was able to build up her brand and make money while doing it.
“I met so many great people in Buffalo,” she says. “I think the best part about it was being able to collab with other small businesses. Because I was mobile, I was able to park wherever and do some really cool events, like be in Bidwell Park for the Garden Walk.
“I think people received it really well and I was able to build a fun following,” she adds. “But because it is a seasonal concept, I always envisioned opening up a brick-and-mortar location.”
The time spent as a mobile florist wasn’t just about building up a brand and making money. It was also informative. It may not have been the plan from the beginning, but the new Petal Pusher shop is designed to echo Reidy’s experiences at local events. Beer, wine and cider are available. There’s also a seating area for people who want to hit the pause button on their day.
“Because my truck has been unconventional, I wanted to carry that over to the store,” Reidy says. “I want it to be a place you can come and spend time. Maybe someone could stop by, get a glass of wine after work and make a bouquet. Or come by with friends on a Saturday for mimosas and hang out. Anyone that wants to do remote work here is more than welcome. I just want it to be a year-round space that’s a little oasis.”
Of course, alcohol is bound to put customers in a good mood. But for Samantha Reidy, she’s living her ideal job. It might have started off on a whim and it may have involved some unconventional choices. But solid business practices have allowed it to flourish.
“I actually love what I do because it’s only been a positive thing,” Reidy says. “I always say flowers only bring a positive aspect, no matter what the situation is.”
Hours at time of publishing (Subject to change): Tuesday to Friday 11 a.m. – 8 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Sunday and Monday CLOSED
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