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Meet Emma Van Vranken of Emma Lea Floral in Arvada

Today we’d like to introduce you to Emma Van Vranken.

Emma, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I fell into floral design after college. I graduated with an art history degree and was looking for museum or gallery work. I came across an internship for a local wedding florist and decided to get event experience while looking for my dream job. I had gotten used to taking art classes through college to fulfill degree requirements, so the creative aspect was really appealing. I pretty much fell in love with the work instantly and never looked back!

I learned everything from my boss/mentor and after a few years found myself starting my own business. I’ve always taken it really slowly with my business, making gradual changes and building my portfolio. I’ve worked in basements, living rooms, and garages. I am happy to say that this May (2020) I officially began leasing a studio space! I am very excited for this new chapter!

Has it been a smooth road?
There were definitely struggles! For several years, as I got my business off the ground, I worked as a waitress so balancing the two and still having a life felt practically impossible. I can definitely admit to many friendships falling by the wayside which I regret very much. One of my biggest focuses now is nurturing a team that can take on some of the work I do so I can keep striving for that work/life balance. Watching others create has also been a real joy of this job so I am looking forward to giving them more opportunities.

Probably my next biggest challenge was realizing I have absolutely no talent when it comes to bookkeeping. Finally handing all of that off to my accountant was a big relief (for both of us! – it was seriously a mess).

As an industry, the next big challenge for florists is abandoning the use of floral foam. It’s such a convenient design tool but it is made of microplastics and toxic chemicals that go right into the garbage after each use. As I am quoting weddings now I focus on using sustainable techniques like reusable materials and sourcing as many locally grown flowers as I can.

Floral design requires quite a bit of trial and error, but those mistakes are always kind of exciting and fun to learn from. Even after being in business for five years, I am still learning from each event, which is great because it means I’m still growing and pushing my own boundaries. I feel lucky that I have had such incredibly trusting clients that have given me the freedom to learn and grow through their designs.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Emma Lea Floral – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
Emma Lea Floral is a wedding and event floral design studio. We create completely custom bouquets, arrangements, installations, etc. Pretty much anything you can dream of!

We are probably known for our really lush and textural designs style. I tend to think of it as being “bootylicious” and I have that song in my head pretty often…

I am proud of the level of service that we provide. I believe that my team and I give 110% by nature so our clients always get taken care of. It has also helped to build excellent relationships with others throughout the industry. I think this work ethic has also set us apart in many ways.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
I grew up in Denver so this has always been home. I live in Golden now, which is right between Denver and the mountains. I love that in twenty minutes I can be on a gorgeous hike or at the Pepsi Center watching a hockey game.

Being from here I think I just dislike some of the typical growing pains like the traffic and rising cost of living. Mostly I think it is great how our city is growing and creating its own cultural footprint.


  • Full service weddings with setup/installation start at $5,000.00
  • Pickup orders have no minimum- packages coming soon!

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Tyler Freear Photography, Tara Bielecki Photography, Connie Whitlock Photography, Alison Epps Photography, Decorus Fine Art Photography, Allen Tsai Photography, Kimberly Mitiska Photography.

Getting in touch: VoyageDenver is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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