FAR OUT FLORALS | Madi Grinde
Madi Grinde is a student at Point Loma Nazarene University. She has been running her successful and sustainable small business Far Out Florals since high school “bringing 70’s flare back to life” and spreading positivity along the way with clothing, accessories, and prints. We got to chat about surfing, roller skating, and what it’s like to run a small business as a full-time student.
Tell us about yourself:) Where are you from? Where do you go to school? What is your major?
Hi. I’m Madi. I’m from Orange County, originally Tustin. I go to school at Point Loma Nazarene and study graphic design.
JUSTINE: What do you do in your free time?
I really like to surf, paint a lot, picnic-ing. I roller skate. Really anything outside, I like to camp a lot.
When/How/Why did you start your FAR OUT Florals business?
I started my brand Far Out Florals my sophomore year of high school and I would just make little phone cases with flowers in them just to make money. And then just when I was in graphic design in college I really liked creating art and putting it on clothing so it kind of developed into that. And now I just love spreading positivity through it and sharing my art.
Where do you source your sustainable fabric and materials?
I source a lot of my materials sustainably. A lot of them are vintage deadstock fabrics and some of them are from little shops in LA that use recycled materials. All the tags we have are just excess scraps from cropping the tops, and we have some new things coming up and that’s gonna be all sustainable fabric.
What’s your favorite design you have made?
My favorite design is probably this tank top just with the Far Out Florals design right here. It was kind of a random design I made and I was just like “Oh let me try putting it on a shirt?” I love seeing people wear it! So it’s just super rewarding that it doesn’t really make sense to people that it just says Far Out Florals but I know it’s my brand so it’s kind of fun that way
Things that you do to live a sustainable life?
To live sustainably, I don’t use Ziploc bags, I use rubber bags. I go to farmer’s markets and support people locally there, so I don’t really shop at main grocery stores. I don’t know, I use my hydro flask haha. I just try not to use a lot of waste, and the same with my brand. I think that’s really important to me because I don’t want to hurt the environment.
Favorite place to surf/roller skate?
I love to surf and roller skate. My favorite place to surf is probably Old Man’s at San O. It’s just so fun there, and the community is super cool. And to roller skate, probably Holiday Skate in Orange. It’s a super fun roller rink and it’s huge. It’s just so fun there. They play fun music and there are lights everywhere.
How did you get into surfing?
I’ve been surfing for a little over a year now, so not super long. I’m the only one in my family that surfs. I kind of just got into it because Point Loma is right on the beach over there at Sunset Cliffs and the whole community over there normally does surf. So I was like Oh I should try it -so I did my Freshman year and then I bought a board and I just like it a lot.
When did you paint your first board? How many surfboards have you painted and how do you do it?
The first board I ever painted was the first board I bought for myself. I just bought a used board and I think it was last May that I painted it. It turned out way cooler than I thought it was going to because I didn’t really know what I was doing. I did some research and I was like I don’t know if this is going to work because it was on top of the glass, so I didn't put on a hot coat or anything. And then when I did that a lot of people really liked it and were like, “Woah can you paint my board?” and I was like, “I mean I can try.” So I’ve probably painted seven or eight boards now and every one of them has been so fun to paint, people always give me creative freedom to do whatever I want. Normally I’ll do it on top of the glass, like on the resin, and I’ll sand the board down and put a layer of spray paint and then I also have oil-based paint pens and I can make the design that way. And then you have to seal it with clear spray paint and that works, or I’ve also done it where I have painted on the foam before and those ones are super cool too.
When did you pick up roller skating and why?
I’ve been roller skating since sixth grade in middle school, actually at Holiday Skate. My mom, and best friend, and I at the time took lessons there like figure skating lessons with a lady named Carol and I did that for like a year and I loved it. I just didn’t continue to do it, but probably the past three years I’ve been roller skating just here and there with friends and just go to the rink and hang out.
Hardest trick you have learned?
As far as tricks, I’m not super skilled, I know the funniest one is cross-stepping when I’m going fast on a turn like putting your leg over and it’s super fun.
What do you do outside of Far Out Florals?
Outside of my brand, I do a lot of things. I love hanging out with my dogs. They are my number one best friends. I love going thrift shopping and swap meets are super fun. There’s one in La Mirada that I go to that’s an old movie theater. I love going to estate sales. That is probably one of my favorite things to do, like every Saturday I’m always out looking for little vintage items.
What is the biggest difficulty of being a small business?
The biggest issue with being a small business is probably just me doing everything because there’s no one else here that helps me with it. My dad will give me advice on finance and stuff, but I do everything between making them, sourcing the items, taking the time to package and meet with customers, and communications. That can be a lot sometimes just because I am a full-time student and it’s a lot of work sometimes, but it’s super rewarding and I still love it.
How do you deal with stolen designs?
So I have had some designs stolen before and it’s just really discouraging because I’m a small little brand and it’s not really fun to see your stuff just taken and sold cheaply on the market. Dealing with it is kind of hard because you kind of just have to contact them and then they won’t really do anything because they don’t really care. Like one time Shein had stolen my design and I made a Tik Tok and they saw it and they ended up taking it down. So it’s kind of hard.
What’s next? Plans for expansion?
What’s next is I’m working on making some swimsuits. The fabrics are actually right here. They’re not sewn or anything but I have the patterns so that is exciting, because I just want to test out different areas of the brand and see what works, so I’m super excited for those. And expanding, I have a website and it’s not up yet. Everything is done. I just have to get a couple of legal things figured out and then it will be up because that will make things so much easier instead of selling things through Instagram. I am also working on some new designs for some shirts and some guy apparel so stay tuned for that!
Justine is a marine biology student at UH Manoa & a contributor at withitgirl. She is passionate about sustainability and loves surfing, skating, camping, and scuba diving in her free time.
Far Out Floral Instagram
Far Out Floral Website (In the works, should be ready soon!)
To purchase items DM Madi on Instagram and let her know items you are interested in with your information. Madi also participates in flea markets and on occasion pop-up shops in Orange County and San Diego.
Ecomadic Article about Far Out Florals
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