When I grow up: Florist

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, January 31, 2001

Many people work their whole lives to meet their dreams.

Wednesday, January 31, 2001

Many people work their whole lives to meet their dreams. And some people work their dreams throughout their lives. Tina Stripe falls in the second category.

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She and her mother have owned Flowers by Curt since 1984, taking it over from the original owner and keeping the established name.

But even before 1984, Stripe was no stranger to the floral business. Her grandfather owned a similar shop in Wisconsin when she was growing up and she spent time in the store as a youngster.

&uot;I think that’s how I started,&uot; she said. &uot;Just making these goofy little vases of flowers as a kid.&uot;

Her desire to create never ended. She still makes most of the arrangements she sells. She believes her arrangements are a little different from other florists’ works.

&uot;We have a lot of personalization in here,&uot; she said. &uot;We create things for the individual.&uot;

According to Stripe, her customers appreciate it. She said she often gets thank-you letters, and people frequently thank her personally for some arrangement she created specifically for that person. Stripe is very appreciative of others’ appreciation.

&uot;It’s the people. That’s the best part of the job,&uot; Stripe said excitedly. &uot;People get these flowers, usually at a special time in their life.&uot;

She even said she enjoys filling funeral orders for the simple reason that she is able to provide a service that makes people feel just a little better during a very difficult time. Of course, she also has fun with weddings and other festive occasions.

Although the long hours during the holidays often disturb her, Stripe said the benefits outweigh the detriments of the job. She loves making beautiful arrangements, no two days are ever the same and she helps add a little bliss to many different people, she said.

&uot;I can’t imagine doing anything else,&uot; she said.