How to buy Valentine’s Day flowers for the NYC-specific personality in your life

Caroline Bailly
Caroline Bailly and flower’s for your favorite Chelsea gallerina

The Valentine’s Day onslaught continues! First there were the pricey restaurants with their aphrodisiac tasting menus. Then there was our guide to designer engagement rings. We discovered that NYC is the most expensive place in America to take your date out on Valentine’s Day. And now, for our final look at how to create the perfect unconventional Valentine’s Day, we spoke with Caroline Bailly, owner of L’Atelier Rouge, a high-end New York City-based flower and event company located near the Flower District at 39 West 29th Street.

Bailly helped us pick out flowers for all of those only-in-NYC types that can be so hard to please.

Hi Caroline! Tell us a little about yourself?
Before founding L’Atelier Rouge in 2010, I worked for years in high-end private dining and production at some of the finest restaurants and venues in Manhattan. I cut my teeth managing events for Daniel Boulud, Geoffrey Zakarian, and Olivier Guigni, building off of her training at the prestigious Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne in Switzerland.

How did you get into the flower business?

I have always been fascinated by floral and event design. My Mom was a botanic specialist in France and flowers have always been part of my life. Even though I have a food and beverage background, during my career the [famed floral designer] Olivier Giugni hired me as events director. He was a wonderful floral mentor and taught me a lot.

What’s your favorite flower?

Phalaenopsis orchids
Phalaenopsis orchids

I do not have just one this time of the year. I am in love with mimosa and poppies for the fragrance and textures. I love flowers and love discovering new varieties.

Is there a flower you think is over used?

Phalaenopsis orchids.

What has changed in the flower business since you started?

The shapes of the arrangements for sure have changed recently. I am happy to see more bouquets that allow you to see the beauty of the flowers that are less perfect. At L’Atelier Rouge we play with textures and design 3D bouquets vs. compact flower balls. This creates more beauty rather than just being massive.

Now for the fun part! We are going to give you a list of NYC specific personalities, and you’ll tell us what kind of flower you would pick for then for Valentine’s Day.  Here we go.

A Bushwick Health Goth.


Financial District Trump Supporter.

Red, White and Blue dyed roses (LOL)

West Village expat from Eastern Europe.

Mixed hand tied bouquet with Freesia, Roses and Greenery

Ranunculus and Sweet Peas for a Park Avenue princess.

Park Avenue princess.

Ranunculus and Sweet Peas

Upper West Side antiquarian.

Lilac bouquet

Lower East Side communist.


Tropical floral sculpture with Proteas and Birds of Paradise for a Chelsea gallerina

Chelsea gallerina.

Tropical floral sculpture with Proteas and Birds of Paradise

Poppies and Tropical Flowers for a Tribeca waif.

Tribeca waif.

Poppies and Tropical Flowers

Classic bouquet of a dozen roses for a Midtown insurance bro

Midtown insurance bro.

Classic bouquet of a dozen roses


If your New York City weirdo wasn’t on the list, pay Bailly a visit at her Nomad shop and she’ll find you the perfect bouquet.

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