Flowers from the Heart: As its name suggests, Epiphany Designs came to life with the goal to bring beauty to an occasion

Published 2:50 pm Wednesday, June 5, 2024

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It smelled like spring in the kitchen of Jennifer Bumgarner. Flowers were set out and ready for arranging, and with each cut and placement, the scent of flowers added to the sunshine promised outside of the window.

Within this homey area is where Epiphany Designs comes to life for customers and as the name implies, Bumgarner’s flowery ambitions came to life rather suddenly.

“I actually had a kind of epiphany about three years ago,” Bumgarner said. “I just kind of stepped back and looked at my life and decided this is it. I only have so much time and I have so many things I want to do and I’m going to start doing them.”

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Epiphany Designs is a simple but elegant flower arrangement business operating out of Bumgarner’s home and runs alongside her full time job with Schiek Dental.

On Friday’s she begins weaving the flowers together for weddings, funerals and special occasions, however, while the job initially came to her as a way of fulfill her dreams, it actually has some deeper roots.

“My mom instilled this in me,” she said. “We would walk down the country road and pick flowers out of the ditch and we would put it together. That’s a memory I’ll always have. I think that’s why I love it so much.”

A farm girl growing up, Bumgarner loves anything green and getting her hands dirty. From there, Bumgarner would create arrangements for friends and family until, finally, it grew into something more.

“I had a friend ask me if I would help them do the flowers for their wedding …,” Bumgarner said. “That would be fun. I got in there, got my hands dirty and fell in love with just doing it.”

For the most part, Bumgarner confines her arranging work in the kitchen, but she also has an office she works out of alongside an array of dried and artificial flowers, which she used in the beginning.

Bumgarner said that she’s done a few weddings since starting, but lately most of her efforts have been spent on funerals by creating arrangements at the request of both families and through the funeral homes themselves.

For funerals, Bumgarner likes to ensure that there is a reflection of the person that has passed away.

“With a funeral, I think it’s super important to incorporate the things the person liked,” she said. “I have a bunch of ideas of taking things that were theirs and incorporating it in so it’s very personal. So someone looks at it and they know exactly what they are seeing and why.”

It requires a close working relationship with those that have contracted with her, much the same as weddings where the bride and groom hope to highlight the perfect background to the perfect day.

“When I’m speaking to a bride, they’re like ‘where do I start?’” Bumgarner said. “I take pictures of what I like and flood them with them. I’m right there with the brides.”

That desire to work so closely with people reflects Bumgarner’s own desire to set the right tone for her clients, and to also reaffirm each time how much she enjoys what she’s doing.

“I’ll work all night. I’ll work two days straight to get it done and in the end I love it,” she said.

But Bumgarner isn’t done with the arrangements when the wedding or funeral is complete. She also has ideas to make sure every occasion is covered with a rather novel idea that she hopes will answer a need for people throughout the year.

The idea is that people come to her with a dollar amount and what they would like to see, and she in turn has arrangements for each special day the person wants. That can include birthdays, anniversaries and more.

“I’ll take care of her birthdays, make sure you don’t forget and that she loves everything,” Bumgarner said. “Tell me how much you want to spend and I’ll put it together and get it for her and she’ll be happy.”

“Or vice versa,” she added. “‘Take care of my mom’s birthday every year.’ That’s something I would really enjoy.”

Currently, Bumgarner is largely devoting just Friday’s to what she lightly calls her “side hustle.” However, she dreams of maybe someday taking it to a new level and devoting more time to it. 

“I think I would enjoy that a lot,” she said. “What’s holding me back is being sure I can make it. Right now this works for me. I can do it and I can say no. I’m not bound to a facility where I’m paying rent or doing things like that.”

To highlight your own special day or shine a light on a loved one who has passed, Bumgarner can be reached through her Facebook page at Epiphany Designs, where she promises competitive prices and commitment to each project she undertakes.

“Everyone I spend quite a bit of time on,” she said. “I’m not just throwing them in a vase and going by a picture. I take it all very personally.”