Abigail Spencer’s Flower Delivery Service Opens Retail Business in Playa Vista – The Hollywood Reporter
In time for Father’s Day, actress-producer Abigail Spencer County line flowers flower delivery service opened its first retail space in Free market, a new boutique collective in Playa Vista. The collective, owned by Alchemy Works and Apolis founders Raan and Lindsay Parton, also includes Jeni’s Ice Cream, Loqui restaurant, Heyday skincare, hatmaker Teressa Foglia and boutique Studio C.
When Spencer spotted what looked like a greenhouse on the site, she knew it was meant to be and brought in design firm Manoeuvreworks to help build the new, roughly 1,000ft home. squares of County Line Florals.
“We’re creating a space where people will want to hang out,” Spencer says of the store, which will feature a “florista bar.” All bouquets (starting at $65) are pre-designed and listed on an iPad menu. “You can walk around the open market, have a glass of wine or an ice cream, then sit at the bar and watch your florist make your creation. It’s a good date night.
The store will also have a branch and a flower delivery service (with subscriptions ranging from $229 to $449 per month for bi-weekly and weekly service); a plant pond with a selection of pre-potted houseplants displayed in a rock pool inspired by the Italian countryside; custom concierge designs; and “florista’s choice,” the latter of which “is like Sugarfish: trust us,” she explains.
“Everything is organized,” she said. “It will be the first florista bar, plant pond and design space to eliminate the hold of flowers, incorporate an educational component and make design an essence.”
spencer (Rebel, Suit) launched County Line Florals last year as a mobile flower truck and subscription service.
The business is a tribute to her late father, surfing legend Yancy Spencer, who died 10 years ago while visiting her for Valentine’s Day.
“On the last day of his visit, he went surfing at County Line in Malibu, one of his favorite spots,” she recalls. “An hour after his arrival, I received a phone call from him. He said, ‘Abby, I’m having a heart attack. I’m at County Line. Dial 911. I love you and I pray. Ten minutes later he died. My life changed then.
In time, her grief turned to gratitude as her friends and colleagues reached out to her. “The first person who had flowers on my doorstep was Jon Favreau,” Spencer says. “The outpouring of love, affection and support really touched me.”
Thus began Spencer’s love affair with flower arranging, which led her to take classes in New York as she “went through the long, winding road of grief, healing and recovery”. She adds, “When something crazy happens to you, which is unexpected, which is traumatic, which changes your life, you have a choice: make it something beautiful, or it can destroy you.”
In the years since, the actress has been constantly looking for ways to combine her interest in flowers with surf culture as a tribute to her father. “Right after my last show, Reprisals, I had an aha moment,” Spencer says. “I was like, ‘I’m going to take an old surf truck and I’m going to turn it into a mobile flower shop. … I bought a 1965 VW Transporter and took it to the store to give it a facelift and I started dreaming of County Line Florals.
Then COVID hit. With productions on hiatus, Spencer focused on her passion project. She made and delivered 36 bouquets to friends. “I knew everyone would be home,” she says, sharing that a week later she gifted 50 more, allowing her to fine-tune arrangements while spreading the word about her new business.
Spencer and a small team then took his VW van converted into a mobile florist, affectionately named Betty (the term translates to beautiful woman in surfing lingo), for a ride to Caravan Outpost in Ojai on Father’s Day l ‘last year.
“All of a sudden, we had a business,” says Spencer, sharing that she’s since collaborated with fashion brands Heidi Merrick, Janessa Leone, Melinda Maria and Vince Camuto. County Line Florals also attended the drive-in movie premiere for Amazon Studios’ romantic drama Sylvia’s love with Tessa Thompson and Nnamdi Asomugha in addition to giving gifts to the crew and set tours for Station 19, Grey’s Anatomy and Rebel.
Spencer says she and her team want to collaborate with companies and individuals. “It’s leaning into essence and storytelling,” she says, sharing that she enjoys “meeting someone and getting to the core of who they are, and then creating or materializing something that represents them.”
Case in point: For writer-producer-director Krista Vernoff’s birthday, Spencer surprised the creator of Rebel and current showrunner of Grey’s Anatomy with an arrangement. “I built this bouquet that looked like her,” Spencer says. “She was like, ‘I didn’t know I needed a bouquet named and built after me, but if I was a bouquet, this is what I would be.'”
Spencer’s unique approach also inspired County Line Florals’ Icons collection, which was created “to honor the incredible changemakers in history,” she says. Among them, the Gloria (Steinem) for $139, the Stacey (Abrams) for $169, the Jacinda (Ardern, Prime Minister of New Zealand) for $169 and the Soul mate for $169, the last of which, Spencer says, “is in honor of my best friend” and benefits Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Archewell Foundation. “It’s my personal way of honoring these icons and paying homage to them,” says Spencer, who also recently launched Astro-quet, a line designed around the spirit of each particular star sign. “It’s a fun way to approach flowers,” she says.
Over the past year, Spencer has driven Betty all over Southern California, from Montecito and Joshua Tree to Culver City, Venice and Highland Park. “Betty is a scene stealer,” she says. “While I was doing all of this, I was wearing a mask. I would be picking flowers and making bouquets and no one knew it was me. All the time people were like, ‘Oh, hi. Could you walk away so I can take a picture of your truck? »
She said the sense of anonymity led to a number of intimate conversations with strangers. “We were on Abbott-Kinney and this man and his friend pulled over,” she said. “They ran up to Betty and he had tears in his eyes. He was like, ‘What is this?’ I told him about the concept, gave him a little insight into my dad and that it’s a mobile avenue for joy. It’s a mobile flower shop, but we really bring joy. He looked at me and he said, ‘I just lost my wife and something knocked me out of my car. I had never seen anything like it. … When I was with Betty in a mask, I was able to m I could identify with people and I could hear their stories, and it really healed me to have more anonymous relationships with people. It was very comforting for me last year.
Spencer has three projects in various stages of development as a producer and a few as an actor. Even so, Spencer acknowledges that she’s experienced quite a bit of self-actualization over the past year. “What I’ve noticed in the pandemic is that I want my life to be the event and the occasion,” she says. “I don’t want to keep waiting for the event and this roller coaster.”
With that in mind, Spencer has big plans for her business. “The hope is that we can lean on this model and take it anywhere,” she shares, explaining that the idea also stemmed (no pun intended) from her desire to have flowers. and branches in his own house every week. “I wanted that in my life,” she says. “If I didn’t do this as a business, I would never have the time to do this. [as a hobby].”
“What I love about flowers is that when you send flowers, you’re there for someone’s greatest joy or sorrow,” she continues. “It’s the thoughtfulness of a surprise. First day. The loss of life. The flowers are there. There is something that interests me in this energy vortex of meeting someone at this time, and that is the deep meaning of the company – because of my loss and the way I have been met at that time. It’s to honor the ups and downs and everything in between.
A version of this story first appeared in the June 9 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. Click here to subscribe.