Florals for Mankind / by Alexander Jaime

A conversation with Floral Modernist, Designer Mike Hines.

 

On an unusually warm day this early May we had the pleasure of a conversation with Mike Hines. He takes a rather masculine approach to Floral Design. With the release of his new book "Uprooted" we sat down with Mr Hines and he shared with us his first thought when he wakes up, the flower every man should have in their home, and what makes the perfect man, perfect.

What's your first thought when you wake up?

Who are you?  LOL, just kidding. My very first thought: COFFEE!!

What do you wear to workout?

At the gym I wear Todd Snyder tees and sweat shorts. At Bikram I wear only a very Short pair of workout shorts. It's sweaty and if I wore anything more it would get in the way. Gotta be able to move.

What's your favorite body part? And your least favorite?

Depends on my mood...I like my head the most..it doesn't change and it's reliable. Least favorite, hmmm, my left leg. After rupturing my Achilles it's never gotten back to normal.

Boxers or briefs? Trunks or Speedos?

Briefs C-in2 and Calvin Klein 4" Trunks, Kyle King swimwear and Parke & Ronen. I used to be a swimmer in high school..I'm speedo'd out

What music is inspiring you at the moment? What’s on you phone?

I'm loving Elle King at the moment. I have her on a loop on my phone. Most of my music on my phone is mellow or pop-ish. Love Sara Bareilles and retro Meatloaf, Queen and a good dose of Adele. 

How did you get into floral design?

By accident. Was on holiday in Rome 20 years ago and stumbled upon a flower shop who took me in and showed me design. It was one of those cheesy moments when you're like "whoa, I love this". Floristry allows me the medium to dive into design and pull up my know how of interior design and spark my creativity. Everyday seems different. It also lets me express myself. 

When did you realize this was your space? and Epoch Floral needed to happen?

I knew in my gut I had something different to add to the floral design world. I try to follow my instinct on most everything I do in life. The idea of creating epoch, staying true to my style and persistently playing against "norms" made it an easy decision to open epoch and stay true to my design esthetic. I'm outspoken by nature and with florals I'm giving that platform to speak out all the time, flowers let me shout quietly.

Explain the concept for Uprooted your latest Book, your approach seems surprisingly refreshing?

UPROOTED was in my head for over a decade. Truly. I knew it would have a life one day but wasn't ready to dig into it until last year. The time was right.  I wanted to design original floral designs specifically for this book. Yet, I wanted to make sure I was creating designs that were truly expressions of my esthetic and self. After we shot the first pic, I knew the book would take on a sexy, masculine, moody feel. Contrary to what you'd expect from a flower book. I wanted to show the reader that flowers aren't always these pretty perky things. Because I revere floral design, great floral design, as art....UPROOTED is the antithesis to what you thought you knew. It seemed natural to me without trying so hard to make an irreverent statement. Rather, it's what I do, what's in me and my intention to get the reader to escape into a sexier mood. Frankly, it's heavy in masculinity. But, at the same time, it appeals to all genders because after all, it's flowers. 

Favorite artists?

Eva Hesse, Doris Salcedo, Rothko...I'm sure I have others but these are my top.

What makes a perfect man?

Humble men are f***ing sexy.

What florals complement the perfect man’s living space? and what triggers the decision?

Men and flowers, any flowers in their space(s) is SEXY. There are no rules. However, one kind of flower, en masse, in a great vessel or a giant leaf/branch in a vase is cool and stated. Something that looks and seems and often is effortless.

Where do you go to switch off?

The desert, any desert that has a spa and a great hotel/resort.

Three products you can't live without?

Mario Badescu Seaweed Cleansing Lotion, Baxter Face Moisturizer and Le Labo Santal 26 everything. 

If you had a choice, where would you choose to spend your last day on earth?

At the tranquility pool at the Four Seasons Hualalai... pure bliss.

The Perfect Man is a humble man, humble men are f****ing sexy.
— Mike Hines