Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Flamenco Flowers Is Now Open in the Loop

Posted By on Tue, Jul 18, 2017 at 8:52 AM

click to enlarge Flamenco Flowers fills the spot that previously held Fleur de Lou. - PHOTO BY SARAH FENSKE
  • PHOTO BY SARAH FENSKE
  • Flamenco Flowers fills the spot that previously held Fleur de Lou.

For the past six months, Elisheva Heit's gorgeous floral creations have been sold at Fleur de Lou, the gift shop next to the Tivoli housing the Loop's only florist. So when the store's owner announced she was closing, Heit knew exactly what she needed to do: She decided to buy the shop.

Earlier this month, Heit reopened the small storefront as Flamenco Flowers & Sweets (6346 Delmar Boulevard, University City). Her shop is more single-minded: Gone are the dog balloons and quirky candles that previously animated Fleur de Lou. In their place: a beautifully simple space that focuses on flowers and plants, with a few prepackaged kosher chocolates to boot.

Heit is a one-woman show. She greets customers at the door and personally designs all the flowers, with striking designs that seem completely at home in the brick-walled space. She's responsible for the store's lushly romantic look — and even wired the pipe-based lamps that light it. It is her baby, through and through.

"I've been thinking about all of this for a long, long time," she confides.

Indeed, for Heit, a native of St. Petersburg, Russia, the store is the promised answer to a long-ago dream. "I walked into a floral shop in Russia and said, 'This is exactly what I want,'" she recalls. "That was 27 years ago."

click to enlarge Elisheva Heit at work in her preferred medium: flowers. - PHOTO BY SARAH FENSKE
  • PHOTO BY SARAH FENSKE
  • Elisheva Heit at work in her preferred medium: flowers.

She kept plenty busy in the intervening years. Heit emigrated to St. Louis in 1992 and raised seven children as a single mother. Ten years ago, she started a floral business, handling weddings and other special events, but it wasn't until she got hired at Fleur de Lou that she was in-house. The kids are now (mostly) grown; it was time.

And when the shop's owner decided she was done with the business, Heit quickly saw the opportunity. "I just felt like I couldn't leave things to change any more," she says. "I didn't want to die regretting something."

For Heit, that means being a part of the Loop, a part of St. Louis that reminds her of St. Petersburg. "Ever since I first visited the Loop, I loved it," she says. "I hang out here when I'm not working! The people here are the ones I can connect with and understand. In Town and Country, I'd probably feel a little more intimidated. But these are my customers."

Flamenco Flowers & Sweets is open Tuesday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Friday and noon to 4 p.m. on Sunday.

click to enlarge Heit says she may start selling the striking pipe-based lamps she has on display at the store. - PHOTO BY SARAH FENSKE
  • PHOTO BY SARAH FENSKE
  • Heit says she may start selling the striking pipe-based lamps she has on display at the store.
click to enlarge Chocolates are kosher and wrapped for gifting. - PHOTO BY SARAH FENSKE
  • PHOTO BY SARAH FENSKE
  • Chocolates are kosher and wrapped for gifting.

click to enlarge The shop is located next to the Tivoli in the heart of the Loop. - PHOTO BY SARAH FENSKE
  • PHOTO BY SARAH FENSKE
  • The shop is located next to the Tivoli in the heart of the Loop.



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