Tellie Hunt has been able to establish herself as a creative in Toronto by challenging traditional floral trends with a modern and edgy appeal. Establishing herself as not only one of the most talented floral designers in Toronto, but known respectively for her installation and creative projects as well. Tellie has now opened up her own shop Hunt & Gather Floral on Bloor Street and we couldn’t be more overjoyed. Tellie took the time to answer some questions for us:
- Describe yourself in one sentence.
Oh gosh, I guess you could say is that I am sure of who I am as a person and creative yet still sensitive and always learning. Starting off with the tough questions first i see!
- What made you realize to channel your creativity through floral design?
I always knew I needed to find a way to make a living while being a creative. I started working at a flower shop at the age of 14 and I guess you could say it never left me even though I tried to pursue other career paths.
- From an outsider’s perspective your stylized approach to floral designs resemble images of floral arrangements from traditional Dutch paintings with some very traditional European elements as well. How has your style evolved throughout your career or what has been the catalyst to these changes?
Earlier on in my career, everything I made was extremely compact with no shape or flow. When Coriander Girl opened, so did my eyes to a more relaxed “field flower” design style. Eventually I got a job with Coriander Girl and my style slowly shifted as well. A few years later, I took a class at Saipua in New York which is when my “dutch painting” style really took off. I continue to practice depth and colour transitions every day. You never stop learning and evolving in this industry.
- Aside from your beautiful creations your personal wardrobe is incredible and your Instagram posts are always spot on. How would you describe your personal style & where are your go to shopping spots?
Thank you so much for the compliment. I am totally a Value Village girl. My dirty secret is the pants section (where all of the high-waisted gems lay to rest) and the blouse section. Just find yourself a good patterned blouse and you are set.
- With over 13,500 followers on Instagram alone, has social media affected your career in any way? Do you have a typical process for preparing any social media posts?
I feel like my Instagram following is a bit of a fluke, hashtags have been my saving grace. In this new year I would love to learn more about improving my “grid” and purchase an actual camera to make things a little more cohesive. Since I do not have a website at the moment, all of my 2017 weddings have been booked from Instagram which is unreal. My favourite part about that is that everyone who is contacting me loves what I do and they tend to give me a ton of creative freedom.
- Do you feel any pressure surrounding your social media presence?
Oh of course! Creating a personal Instagram has definitely made me feel a lot more at ease. Sometimes you just want to post a photo of a road trip or a night out with your girls and you worry about the amount of likes you will get, if people will judge you or how it will look on your grid. I will always remember the time where I realized that my Instagram was no longer “mine” but a brand that needed to be upheld. There is a very fine line between showing your personality and looking professional.
7. Do you have any other passion projects?
Oh man… if I had more time, I love doing oil paintings. I also always prioritize getting out of the city and camping/hiking as much as possible to clear my head in wedding season
8. What is the main focus for Hunt & Gather?
I wanted to create a flower shop that steps away from the common soft feminine feel. In the summer I will be foraging all of my foliage from local farms to create a more organic look which you do not see everyday.
9. How has the transition been from working as a shop manager to now owning your own shop? Were there any obstacles you were surprised by?
Haha yes. Transitions are never easy to say the least. Coriander Girl was my family and it was hard to step away. Things happened extremely quickly but I am finally getting into the groove of it all. It has been really weird having a “new job” at your own company.
10. Who or where would you love to design an arrangement or installation for?
I would really like to step in to more destination weddings in Asia, South America and Europe.
11. To Date what has been the highlight of your career?
I would say getting to take the Saipua workshop and being featured in Martha Stewart.
12. What advice would you give someone looking to boost their creativity?
Take a workshop. There is nothing more inspiring than meeting like minded people and learning new techniques with products you do not normally use.
13. What is your favourite colour palette?
Smokey tones with pops of rust.
14. What three things can you not leave your home without?
My dog Olive, red lipstick and an essential oil.
15. Currently, what song do you have on repeat?
Honestly, The Weeknd’s whole album.