We had the good fortune of connecting with Gilberto Espinoza Freihoff and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Gilberto, any advice for those thinking about whether to keep going or to give up?
Once my mother told me that if your purpose in life is to gain money or recognition, your life will be meaningless. She taught that when you do thighs with passion and love a lot of things happen so instead of become a doctor because it’ll give you a good salary, you have to do it because it’s your passion saving lives. Passion and love always will drive you to do amazing things, looking for new adventures and nourish your soul and in consequence you will become good at something no matter what it is, and money and recognition will come in addition. When you are not going to give an extra effort, when you are not willing to learn more about your carrier or your craft, when you don’t want to wake up early because you aren’t excited to start your day with a new project or when a big smile on a customer’s face doesn’t give you joy. It is the time to stop and think if you want to keep going or is the time to give up and seek for something that makes you feel all of the previous emotions.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
My journey in the Floral art started 4 years ago and this is my story. I born and raised in Mexico and one day I decided to spend some time in Montreal, Canada to learn the french language. After spending some time there and getting my certification in the language my family decided to move to San Diego from Mexico so wanted to join them in this new adventure. At the beginning it was very challenging because it was a new city and I didn’t know people, I didn’t know how to start from zero, but luckily I have my family to support each other. We needed to to look for sources of income so we started to sell returned items from Walmart, target, amazon at the swap meet. It was not an easy job, I remember once in a winter day a huge storm arrive and we got all wet, we were trying to protect all our merchandise from not getting wet. Finally when the rain stopped all the clients arrived and we sold out!, I remember that day very well because I learned about patience, perseverance, team work and the most important thing family union. I was not a fan of selling at the swap meet to be honest, so I started looking for new horizons and I found my passion for floral design. I looked for schools and workshop to learn the crafts and become a professional, I knew that here in San Diego exists the adult school where they teach job training programs and suddenly I found floral design so I enrolled right away! While I was studying floral design I got the opportunity to assist at the floral show in the San Diego County fair and thanks to that I got my first part time job in a flower shop. I used to divide my time between 3 part time jobs and freelancing for other florist as well and finally I graduated from floral design class and received my certification in Floral Design. I met my husband and when we were dating COVID 19 arrived, I lost some of my jobs because the pandemic. One night when we were having dinner he encouraged me to start my own company because he trusted my vision and passion and next day both of us started the planing, the logistics and all the needs for a new company, 2 months later we gave birth to Dogwood and Fir. To me all the previous situations were a huge step in my life because I learned not just about floral design, I learned how to be responsible, I learned about work ethics, perseverance and if you really love something in life never give up. Starting a new company in uncertain times is never easy, but thanks to all the changes in my life I’m not afraid of changes, I’m not scared of starting again because life is about renovation and change, is adaptation and looking for new ways to improve.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
San Diego is a very fun city, the weather is always nice and inviting to be outside. I consider myself a foodie so my best experiences and people I’ve met in life is trough food and nice mixology. Here in San Diego there are many places to eat well and diverse. We could start a trip to Palm Springs on Monday and stay at the Parker Hotel and enjoy the decor and croquet game. In the way back stopping by Temecula is always a good idea to enjoy the wineries and learn about the wine process. Getting hungry and driving by Encenitas its a good option and getting a table in Herb and Sea sounds terrific but planing to go to the flower fields in Carlsbad and getting a bite at Jeune et Jolie sounds cool too. Maybe by Friday we will be exhausted so we can just go to the beach and lay out, but for dinner will be hard to decide if we want French food from Blue Boeheme in Kensington or Italian food from Red Door in Mission Hills and probably we will end up dinning at Madison on Park in University highs. Saturday morning going to the farmer’s market in Little Italy is always fun and by brunch time morning glory has the best shuffle pancakes!, we gonna need a walk to burn those calories so probably walking around Bayfront it’s a good option. For dinner we have reservations in Herb and Wood and after that we can stop for drink in Cache or Polite Provisions. Sunday is here a morning swim in La Jolla Cove is a good experience, after that La Valencia Hotel for brunch could be nice. Balboa Park for a sunset walk and last supper at Lion’s Share to end an amazing trip. I know my friend will come back for more because there is always new things to see and discover.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
To My Husband, Thank you for believing in the passion that drives the heart of my creativity. To my Family, Thank you for all the support and encouragement that you’ve been giving me. To my Teachers and Mentors, Thank you for sharing your knowledge and inspire me.

Website: https://dogwoodandfir.com

Instagram: @je.suis.gilberto/@dogwoodandfir

Facebook: Gilberto Espinoza Freihoff

Image Credits
Photographers: @whimsiephotographie @by.darius Venues: @luceloft @westgatehotel @julepvenue Rentals: @adorefolklore @catalogatelier

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