One to Watch: Ali Louwe of Powell Floral Design
“I started Powell Floral as a revolt against how flower shops are traditionally run.”
When Ali Louwe spent six months teaching yoga in B.C.’s Great Bear Rainforest in 2015, she fell in love with the lush ferns, salals and other greenery she encountered daily. So when she returned to her home base of Victoria—eager to learn the floristry trade—and discovered that many big-box florists source their blooms from outside B.C., an idea blossomed.
“I started Powell Floral as a revolt against how flower shops are traditionally run,” says Louwe. “But also because I wanted to experiment: ‘Is it possible to use all local products year-round?’”
The answer, as it turns out, is yes. By ethically foraging and forming relationships with local flower farmers, the designer produces stunning bouquets, tablescapes and “floral therapy” workshops that showcase Vancouver Island’s best bounty.
Think delicate foxgloves, hellebores and vibrant parrot tulips, plus peonies, eucalyptus and roses—all thoughtfully arranged in a way that defies fleeting (and unsustainable) trends. It’s only natural in a town that bills itself the City of Gardens. “It’s about looking at the big picture of plants,” notes Louwe, “and not just looking at flowers.”