Business Spotlight: Rebecca's Flower Shoppe
Local Flower Shop Keeps Blooming with Help of PPP Loan
Now in their 21st year, Rebecca’s Flower Shoppe is one of the go-to places in Bellingham for fresh, local floral arrangements. Rebecca Wiswell and her husband Eric run the shop, doing everything from designing the bouquets to delivering them to their delighted recipients.
Local & Sustainable
Rebecca’s Flower Shoppe's commitment to local growers is one of the things that sets them apart from other florists. Many of their growers are located within an hour of Bellingham, so flowers are in the shop within 24 hours of being cut. Larger floral companies have difficulty matching that speed and freshness, since product can wait up to 5-7 days in transit. As a small business owner herself, Wiswell also loves that she can support other small businesses through local sourcing.
Recycling and composting are an important part of the Wiswells’ commitment to sustainability. Their customers love the use of organic and repurposed materials, reducing their carbon footprint. One innovative example are their card holders fashioned from bamboo, replacing the plastic spears often found in bouquets.
The First Fed Difference
Wiswell had been with her previous bank for 40 years, but they had never developed any personal connection with her. When First Fed opened a Fairhaven branch in Bellingham, Wiswell was immediately inspired by their community outreach to local businesses.
“First Fed showed a real investment in the community, which we didn’t feel was the case with other banks,” said Wiswell. “They have really been here for us, and I’ve never felt that before in my experience banking.”
During the pandemic, First Fed helped Rebecca’s Flower Shoppe navigate the complexities of applying for PPP loans. Wiswell worked with Jennie Barnhart, Universal Banker, and Andy Powell, Consumer Loan Specialist.
“Jennie was amazing! I’m not sure we could have done it without her help,” continued Wiswell. “She and Andy gave us great advice on optimizing our finances without the need for additional loans.”
A Flourishing Future Ahead
After an initial 90-day pandemic shutdown, Rebecca’s Flower Shoppe’s partnerships with local growers helped them maintain inventory while many floral companies struggled with far greater disruption to their supply chains. Wiswell is grateful to have stayed so busy.
Even during popular floral holidays, the Wiswells try to fulfill every order request they receive. Based on current trends, they may need to bring on more team members soon. Rebecca’s Flower Shoppe looks forward to many more years of celebrating local beauty and delivering joy throughout Bellingham.