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Bursting With Pride: The Flower Shop In Glencoe



Happy Pride Month, Yelpers! Each June, celebrations around the world commemorate the Stonewall riots of 1969, a pivotal moment in the fight for LGBTQ equality. Just as these events honor the struggles and advances of the gay rights movement, Yelp would like to celebrate how businesses with queer connections have shaped the cities that they call home. Follow along all month as we profile some of America’s top LGBTQ small business owners, all Yelper approved.

Brooke Lawler always thought she’d be a lawyer –– she even has a degree in Criminal Justice. However, at an early age nothing could stop her from being surrounded by plants and flowers. All those late nights in Geneva tending her mother’s garden, flashlight in hand, had nothing to do with investigating a crime scene. Brooke was instead passionately planting her roots for her future 2017 takeover of The Flower Shop In Glencoe.

The path to owning her own business took many years. Brooke’s gifted eye for envisioning beautiful landscapes landed her a long career in landscape design. But it was her true calling to work with flowers that led her to ex floreus flower shop in Lake Forest, where she worked for years as a floral designer. When ex floreus closed, she and two other co-workers were scooped up by The Flower Shop In Glencoe, where she eventually took over as manager, and 10 years later was in the right place at the right time to purchase it. The same team still works with her, and she’s lucky to be joined by her wife, Christine, a couple days a week.

Has it always been your dream to own your own business, and what advice do you have for others who are considering it? It took a little longer than I thought it would, but I always knew I wanted to do something with flowers. My long hours and 18 years of experience in the flower industry really paid off. I am a “yes” girl that’s passion driven, and owning my own shop was a happy accident. As far as advice for anyone thinking about starting their own business, work really hard and be open to opportunities. Know that you’re your own worst critic. Nobody else is going to think as badly of you as you think of yourself.

Tell me more about The Flower Shop In Glencoe. What’s different now that you’ve taken over, and do you have any favorite projects you’re currently working on? I like to think we’re more laid back now with an approachable feel. We’re fun and people like us! We have the same design aesthetic, more or less. We still love traditional English and Victorian style but can get down with most anything. As far as favorite projects, we have amazing clients and regularly work with a lot of interior designers. We recently donated floral hats for a fundraiser and donated to the Art Center Highland Park. I am most proud of our weddings and special events––I live for the pressure. We go the extra 10 miles and it always shows.

How do you support the local LGBTQAI community? I regularly attend Pride Fest in the city, but I also attended North Shore Pride Fest in Highwood this year and look forward to getting more involved with efforts on the North Shore. I am a member of HRC (Human Rights Campaign), and I donate to Howard Brown. Since my time is limited, I try to give back through donations.

What other local businesses do you love supporting in the North Shore and Chicago?
Black Sheep General Store is a favorite stop around the corner from me. In Evanston I like to dine at Kinship, and I regularly frequent Stumble & Relish and carry floral paintings in my shop by local artist Amanda Evanston. I am a huge fan of Chalet Nursery in Wilmette, and I carry a collection of handmade candles from nearby Edgewater Candles.

I know Halloween is one of your most favorite times of the year. Can you share a little bit more about that? Aside from the fact Christine and I got married on Halloween, we host an amazing annual Halloween party at The Flower Shop In Glencoe every year. Growing up, my mom was a huge inspiration and a Halloween freak! I have an affinity for holidays in general because of her, but was always drawn to the slightly more peculiar…I dunno…we were always a little dark! A friend once called me “Rainbow Dark”. That pretty much sums it up! I dressed up for trick-or-treating through college. When I hit 21, we just took it to the club. Also, what flower designer doesn’t love a theme?

Want to know more? Check out and bookmark The Flower Shop In Glencoe on Yelp!

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