Flowers are intertwined with feelings—and Jose Ibarra and Efrain Escalante of Apis Floral get that. Though they never went to school to learn the art of flower arranging, Ibarra and Escalante (who playfully call themselves “The Flower Guys”) describe a deep connection with, a deep understanding of, the natural world. The name these partners chose for their boutique—Apis, the genus of the honeybee—seems particularly fitting.
Apis specializes in natural, rustic-chic arrangements for corporate events, weddings, holiday parties, and window displays. Though Ibarra and Escalante are of Mexican heritage, they’ve been told their designs have a Parisian flourish. They go the extra mile for quality—visiting the flower market twice a week and tracking down flowers in other cities. Escalante takes on a supporting role, nurturing the moss and succulent walls and botanical designs, handling marketing, and memorializing their creations through social media. Ibarra is the lead floral designer, feeding roses, carnations, and dahlias into vases until they’ve matured into bouquets.
“It’s always an emotion that moves Jose to start working on the bridal bouquet,” says Efrain. “It’s a process. Every time he’s going to start working on bouquets, he’s thinking about the bride. How does she look? What was she wearing for our last appointment? What was her vision for the wedding? How is she going to be carrying that bouquet? It’s like art.”
Written by Johanna Hickle
Photography by Daniel Garcia
This article originally appeared in Issue 9.5 “Profiles”