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Menlo Park: Pandemic signals end for J Floral Art, longtime floral design and event planning business

Jeffrey Adair and Craig Kozlowski are photographed in J Floral's Menlo Park warehouse on May 28. Photo by Magali Gauthier.

After three decades in the business of floral design and event planning, Jeffrey Adair and Craig Kozlowski of J Floral Art in Menlo Park plan to close their shop and relocate to Southern California.

The business partners and couple specialize in floral design for events, and have been closely involved in charitable and philanthropic events in particular over the years.

"We've been involved in pretty much any charity event you can think of on the Peninsula," said Adair in an interview.

A prepared bouquet at J Floral's Menlo Park warehouse. Photo by Magali Gauthier.

When the pandemic struck, the supply chain for imported flowers disappeared, he said. Then, the flower market in San Francisco shut down. It's been slowly opening up in recent weeks, he said, but the more exotic flowers have been slower to return. Fortunately, he said, they did have a successful Mother's Day, which provided critical revenue to cover rent at their warehouse in unincorporated Menlo Park, located at 3489 Edison Way.

They moved their studio to the warehouse about 17 years ago, after starting about 30 years ago in the historic building at 1162 El Camino Real, followed by a location on Santa Cruz Avenue.

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Over the years, the duo expanded their work into not just floral design, but coordinating events. "It's something we graduated into over the years," Adair said.

Adair said one of his favorite events to plan was Stanford's "Rodin by Moonlight" fundraiser for the Cantor Arts Center, held every two years. People dined among the stars at night, and he helped to decorate the museum and coordinate the theme. "It was a lot of fun to come up with a different theme each time," he said.

They have also been involved in civic, business and arts affairs in the community. Adair has served on the board of the Menlo Park Chamber of Commerce, and on the national board of the Human Rights Campaign. He directed the Menlo School benefit for many years and was a professional dancer and singer before opening J Floral Art. He grew up in Redwood City, attended Sequoia High School, and studied theater arts at San Jose State University before performing around the world and the U.S.

He and Kozlowski were married by county Supervisor and Assemblyman Rich Gordon the day that same-sex marriage was legalized in California in 2008, and have been involved with LGBTQ issues in the community, according to previous Almanac reporting.

J Floral plans to be in business through June 27, and is lining up a liquidation sale with supplies and props from the many events the owners have coordinated over the years, likely to be held around the third week of June.

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Adair and Kozlowski are planning to relocate to Rancho Mirage, a community near Palm Springs.

It'll be different – and the changes bring feelings of excitement, nervousness and sadness, Adair said.

"It's going to be good for us to slow down. After working so hard for 30 years, we're looking forward to the next chapter," he said.

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Menlo Park: Pandemic signals end for J Floral Art, longtime floral design and event planning business

by / Almanac

Uploaded: Fri, May 29, 2020, 11:45 am

After three decades in the business of floral design and event planning, Jeffrey Adair and Craig Kozlowski of J Floral Art in Menlo Park plan to close their shop and relocate to Southern California.

The business partners and couple specialize in floral design for events, and have been closely involved in charitable and philanthropic events in particular over the years.

"We've been involved in pretty much any charity event you can think of on the Peninsula," said Adair in an interview.

When the pandemic struck, the supply chain for imported flowers disappeared, he said. Then, the flower market in San Francisco shut down. It's been slowly opening up in recent weeks, he said, but the more exotic flowers have been slower to return. Fortunately, he said, they did have a successful Mother's Day, which provided critical revenue to cover rent at their warehouse in unincorporated Menlo Park, located at 3489 Edison Way.

They moved their studio to the warehouse about 17 years ago, after starting about 30 years ago in the historic building at 1162 El Camino Real, followed by a location on Santa Cruz Avenue.

Over the years, the duo expanded their work into not just floral design, but coordinating events. "It's something we graduated into over the years," Adair said.

Adair said one of his favorite events to plan was Stanford's "Rodin by Moonlight" fundraiser for the Cantor Arts Center, held every two years. People dined among the stars at night, and he helped to decorate the museum and coordinate the theme. "It was a lot of fun to come up with a different theme each time," he said.

They have also been involved in civic, business and arts affairs in the community. Adair has served on the board of the Menlo Park Chamber of Commerce, and on the national board of the Human Rights Campaign. He directed the Menlo School benefit for many years and was a professional dancer and singer before opening J Floral Art. He grew up in Redwood City, attended Sequoia High School, and studied theater arts at San Jose State University before performing around the world and the U.S.

He and Kozlowski were married by county Supervisor and Assemblyman Rich Gordon the day that same-sex marriage was legalized in California in 2008, and have been involved with LGBTQ issues in the community, according to previous Almanac reporting.

J Floral plans to be in business through June 27, and is lining up a liquidation sale with supplies and props from the many events the owners have coordinated over the years, likely to be held around the third week of June.

Adair and Kozlowski are planning to relocate to Rancho Mirage, a community near Palm Springs.

It'll be different – and the changes bring feelings of excitement, nervousness and sadness, Adair said.

"It's going to be good for us to slow down. After working so hard for 30 years, we're looking forward to the next chapter," he said.

Comments

rdegolia
Atherton: West Atherton
on May 29, 2020 at 2:51 pm
rdegolia, Atherton: West Atherton
on May 29, 2020 at 2:51 pm
Like this comment

I'm really sorry to see J Floral Arts closing. Jeffrey and Craig are genuine artists who have worked wonders with beautiful flowers. It is a real loss to our community. I wish them both the very best and am sad for our loss.


Margo Ritter
another community
on May 30, 2020 at 1:32 pm
Margo Ritter, another community
on May 30, 2020 at 1:32 pm
Like this comment

I now live in Rancho Mirage with my Husband Pete Hammond and hope Jeffrey and Craig will give us a call when they relocate here ! I have sent them our address and phone number. It is so beautiful here although the weather is getting up there at 110 ! Sorry for Menlo Park's loss, but happy for our gain !


C Monroy
another community
on May 30, 2020 at 11:13 pm
C Monroy, another community
on May 30, 2020 at 11:13 pm
Like this comment

I am so sorry to see J Floral Art close their business in Menlo Park, but I wish them the very best in their new endeavor. J Floral Art created the bouquets and boutonnieres for my May 1994 wedding held in San Juan Bautista. All of these items were created the day before my wedding day and I took these items down in neatly packed boxes created by them. These florists had an exquisite eye. They took my mother's wedding bouquet made of seed pearls, added jasmine flowers, and transformed it into a magical bouquet. My maid of honor carried a small bouquet of a peony or two mixed with other flowers, and my husband and his brother, the best man, wore delicate white boutonnieres. On my wedding day when I opened the boxes, all the flowers were as fresh as when I picked them up. This was a testament of true artists dedicated to their craft. Again wishing you the best of luck!


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