Happy Easter! (No eggs were hidden in this picture)
Watermelon coleus! In unrelated news, I’m ready for spring.
Makes a very dry greyhound.

Such are the light-hearted and funny captions that Liz Carter adorns her colorful and intriguing photos with on Instagram. And those photos are intriguing in part because the gorgeous flowers in them – peonies, Anemones, Zinnias and more – look just like beautiful fresh flowers, but they’re not.

Instead, Liz, who owned a flower shop in Colorado for 10 years before returning to her native Michigan, specializes in handcrafted crepe-paper flowers. For the past year, she’s been using Instagram to spread the beauty of her creations farther and farther.
“I think Instagram is the best social media platform to reach people and share your work simply and without all the fuss,” says Liz, who designs with fresh flowers, too. “It’s a great tool to connect to people who are interested in what you are doing and find others who are in your niche.”

LIZ CARTER, THE STRIPED PETALWHO: Liz Carter, of The Striped Petal, who specializes in handcrafted crepe-paper flowers as well as fresh flowers.

WHY WE LIKE IT: Liz’s amazing paper creations are incredibly lifelike, and her personable and humorous captions add a splash of color that makes them even more vibrant.

A POST A DAY: If Liz has a formal strategy with Instagram, this is it: Post once a day. “I think it’s good to keep your page fresh and new. You never know who is just needing a bright spot in their day.”

HASH IT OUT: Hashtags have been extremely beneficial to Liz, who uses as many as she can on each post. “I like to provide some information on the flowers I have made or used, which is aimed toward people who are interested in buying my blooms.” Additionally, Liz says she likes to list her hashtags in the comment section of her posts, so they don’t interfere with her captions.

SHIP TILL YOU DROP: Over the past year or so, Instagram has rolled out Shoppable Posts, which take users to specific product pages for easier shopping when they click on the post. Liz has had some nice luck using the posts on her site. “I have added shoppable links, which are now bringing a lot more likes and click-throughs to my website. I’ve seen a spike in interaction because of that for sure.”

LIZ CARTER, THE STRIPED PETALBIGGER BENEFITS: Instagram has helped drive business for Liz, but she’s seen some bigger benefits, too. “Instagram motivates me, in a good way. It makes me try new and different flowers, and it’s stretching my photography skills.”

TIPS TO TRY: “Post what interests you. The world is small. You will find others who are interested and supportive if you are true to your own creative vision. I also find that it’s not hard to post once a day since I have a stockpile of a few pictures that I can always pull from and I add to it regularly. This way, I’m never stressed about not having an image to post. Likewise, I keep a few lists of hashtags I use so that I can just copy and paste them in. It saves a lot of time.”

SEE FOR YOURSELF: @thestripedpetal

By Jon Bell