Arts & Entertainment

A Martha Stewart Surprise

Mum's Flowers of Whitefish continues momentum after wreath featured on cover of 'Martha Stewart Living'

WHITEFISH — If you ask Cara Lard and Tyler Burfeind of Mum’s Flowers, it was just random chance that landed their winter wreath creation on the cover of ‘Martha Stewart Living’ last Christmas.

For the floral shop, which feels like Pinterest come to life with its general gifts and various accouterments specifically for weddings, it was like getting the call up to the big leagues when Stewart put her name above their designs.

“We were at the right place at the right time,” Burfeind, manager at Mum’s, said.

The story started when the folks at Mum’s were called upon to help style an annual holiday shindig for the Iwersen family. Cassidy Iwersen asked for garlands and wreaths to help give her family’s famous Christmas party extra Montana flair. The floral shop was aware that Iwersen had pitched her family’s party as an idea to write about for ‘Martha Stewart Living,’ but didn’t know the extent to which it would be picked up.

When Burfeind and Lard, owner at Mum’s, showed up with various wreath options, they had no idea theirs would end up on the December 2017 cover, let alone be featured in the magazine at all.

“We knew we were going to be featured just before the magazine came out,” Lard said. “I got a call about it on Ladies’ Night (in downtown Whitefish) and immediately started to cry. I cried. I only cry like once a year.”

The wreath on the cover was especially interesting, Lard said, because Stewart’s magazine rarely features cover shots taken outside of a studio, let alone in the snow with a wreath featuring all-natural ingredients. The wreath itself, made of grapevine and decorations only on one side, was also an asymmetrical choice, she said.

“I’ve been picking up ‘Martha Stewart’ since I was like 5 years old,” Lard said. “This photo was a little forward for them. It was probably the first time that something that abstract and natural showed up on the cover.”

Suddenly, the small flower shop in Northwest Montana was inundated with calls from all over the country asking for the “Martha wreath,” or how to make the wreath. Lard, who gave birth just two weeks after the issue hit shelves, said her shop was underprepared for the attention they received, but loved it nonetheless.

For instance, a tourist kept stopping by the shop this summer with a copy of the magazine hoping to snag Lard’s autograph, Burfeind said.

Now, a year after the cover, the shop that spends most of its time and effort providing flowers for weddings over the summer is ready for the holiday rush. Their website is set up to help with sales, so fewer need to be taken over the phone, Lard said, and they’ve created a similar wreath for this year they’re calling Version 2.0.

Along with the reorders and gift orders, Mum’s Flowers also offers wreath workshops. Though the shop’s annual wreath-decorating workshop happened earlier this month, the staff teaches private workshops that are catching on as an evolution of the typical office holiday party.

Mum’s Flowers also decorates people’s homes for the holidays, though their schedule this year is full.

Lard said her goal since taking over ownership at Mum’s nine years ago was to create a welcoming environment in her shop, and get in the pages of ‘Martha Stewart Weddings’ with the work Mum’s does all summer. She had no idea her holiday wreath would be the floral arrangement that got her there.

They’ve noticed that major distributors such as Pottery Barn and William-Sonoma are now offering wreaths in similar designs as the one they made for the Christmas party, making Mum’s Flowers an official tastemaker for the holidays.

“It’s super flattering,” Lard said.

For more information on Mum’s Flowers, visit www.mumsflowersonline.com.

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