At the St. John's Place post office in Crown Heights, metal gates, barbed wire and weeds greet normally greet customers and employees daily. But on Friday...the building was adorned by a floral display of roses, peonies and ranunculus....brightening a rainy morning.
"Oh, how sweet. Oh, I came at the right time", was the reaction of one post office customer.
The public installation is the work of Crown Heights residents Chana Frankel and Freidel Levin. They opened Mimulo Forists on Albany Avenue eleven years ago, creating elaborate arrangements for all kinds of events. About six months ago they had an idea about how to repurpose their colorful creations.
"An event is only five hours at the end of the day and the flowers are prime at the end of that event they look amazing", says co-owner Freidel Levin.
"There was this revelation of what if we did something with the flowers after the event" says co-owner Chana Frankel.
Frankel and Levin began saving their used arrangements ...and in the dark of night decorated public spaces with them... leaving a calling card... signs with the hashtags #flowersforthepeople and #flowersforbrooklyn by Mimulo.
"It's fun because it's really late at night so we feel a little rebellious. We go straight to wherever we want to hit up and just bust it out", says Frankel.
They first decorated the Franklin Avenue Subway station. Then the Nostrand Avenue train station... and a bus shelter - creating good vibrations for the neighborhood... and some positive word of mouth for their businesss... buzz amplified by Instagram photos of the arrangements.
"We found so much support and so much love for our work so it's been really incredible", says Levin.
They say they pick places that can use an uplift...like the post office.
With this display, Brooklynites were able to grab a bouquet to take home.
We found some who put the flowers in their hair. Others who stopped to smell the roses. Others who made their own bouquets.
"I love it. I love it", says one Brooklynite.
"It's very unique. It's very thoughtful. People get impatient waiting in the line and I think it kind of brightens up the mood", says another.
Flowers... helping to transform the cityscape.
Frankel says, "We realize we have a niche. and we have a space where we can give back in a very special way."
Their next public project? They say part of the fun, is the element of surprise.