BERLIN — Ordering online wasn’t an option when husband and wife residents Sebastian and Sharon Elizabeth Malespini first started Sharon Elizabeth’s Floral Designs 30 years ago.
“I think people are coming back to trying to use small local businesses because when they call, they know that the shop is making it and they’re delivering their own work,” Malespini said.
She said online services have been a challenge to their business. To remain successful, the Mill Street shop relies on personalizing every order.
“It’s unique to each client and each client’s vision,” She said.
“We’ve gotten bigger,” her husband added. “There’s a lot of wedding work.”
By the time the couple married in 1988, they had already established a business based in their hometown of Berlin. They first started down the road in Anchor Village, then moved to Heritage Plaza, and ended up in their current location in 1998.
“They’re truly devoted to the town,” said Chris Edge, town director of economic development. “They’re incredibly responsive.”
The shop is now gearing up for Valentine’s Day, though it’s not their busiest time of year.
“May, June, September and October,” Malespini said. “Those are our busiest months with events and lots of graduation parties.”
In the summer, the shop orders mainly from local farms for flowers that are in season like dahlias, peonies, and a variety of wildflowers. In the winter, roses, lilies and mums are flown in from around the world.
The business is looking to expand into customer-requested subscription services.
Over the years, the business has been able to cater to a variety of events and customers.
“There are so many kind people out there,” Malespini said. “All the kind clients that just make you feel like ‘wow,’ — we did something really great for them and they appreciate it.”
“Something special,” his wife added.