Floral art by The Petal Cart

Published 3:07 pm Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Mother-daughter team Leelee Gaissert and Kayla Ellis own The Petal Cart, a floral arrangement business that recently opened in Pelham. (Reporter photo / Jessa Pease)

The mother-daughter team Leelee Gaissert and Kayla Ellis own The Petal Cart, a floral arrangement business that recently opened in Pelham. (Reporter photo / Jessa Pease)

By JESSA PEASE / Staff Writer

PELHAM— When you walk into The Petal Cart in Pelham, you’ll be greeted by the colors of dozens of silk floral arrangements, wreaths and home décor and the scent of Swan Creek Candles.

The Petal Cart, located at 136 Bowling Lane, officially opened Aug. 28, specializing in custom floral designs for the home, cemetery flowers, casket saddles, event arrangements and more. The whole storefront is run by mother-daughter team Leelee Gaissert and Kayla Ellis.

“It’s fun. There’s lots of laughter,” Ellis said. “We’re always goofing around, but we get the job done. We’re both hardworking people, but she’s more the creative one.”

Ellis handles the pricing, takes care of the customers, places displays in the storefront and updates The Petal Cart’s social media, and Gaissert creates the arrangements. They carry a wide variety of flowers to cater to any want or need.

“We want to try to please everyone and have wide varieties,” Gaissert said. “You can come to one place and get everything you need.”

With football season back in swing, Ellis said the big sellers right now are the football wreaths. They keep a supply of already-made Auburn and Alabama styles in the shop, and customers can order custom colors to cater to out-of-state fans.

Gaissert has been arranging floral designs for about five years now. It all started when she told her husband’s boss she was going to start making and selling wreaths as a hobby.  His boss ended up being Gaissert’s first customer, ordering eight tombstone saddles and six sets of vase inserts.

The business just continued from there.

“One thing led to another,” she said. “People would keep asking me and I ended up with so much stuff. Doing it out of the house, we really outgrew our home with all the stuff.”

Meanwhile, Ellis had just finished up at the University of Alabama and noticed that her mother’s business was increasing.

“The business was just growing so big out of her house,” Ellis said. “Everyone told her to open up a store. I came back from the beach and she was like, ‘Do you want to open a store with me?’ and I was like, ‘Sure, why not?’”

The spur of the moment decision led to the duo finding a location in Pelham. In three weeks, they created all the display pieces in the shop and opened the doors just before September.

Football season will keep the team busy, and Christmas is the biggest time of the year for them, according to Ellis. They’ll create anything from tree toppers to wreaths to bows to mailbox covers.

Creating displays for events big and small, Gaissert said her favorite part of her job is making people happy.

“That’s really what I get out of it is making sure that I make people happy and pleased with what they get,” she said. “Making other people happy makes me happy.”