Small Business Interviews

WTFinance with Fox Fodder Farm

Updated: March 27th, 2020

WTFinance with Fox Fodder Farm

Taylor PattersonFOUNDER

Taylor Patterson is the founder of Fox Fodder Farm, a floral design studio based out of Brooklyn with a retail outpost at Canal Street Market.

Employees

7

Founded

2011

LOCATION

New York, NY

Industry

Floral Design

Social

For our inaugural issue of WTFinance, vendors at Canal Street Market share their two cents on money-saving strategies, professional rituals, and what freaks them out most about small business finances.

MONEY TALKS

Funding Circle

What’s one thing you’ve done in your career that helped you succeed, and that very few other people do?

Taylor Patterson

I attribute my success to not only working hard myself, but also building a team that is willing and excited to meet me at the level I ask them to. I’ve been able to accomplish so much because of them. I’m pretty sure that many others would agree and so it’s not necessarily something that few others do, but building a good team for me has been the thing.

Funding Circle

What’s a mistake you see get made all the time, even by very smart people? What have you learned from that to handle that thing the right way?

Taylor Patterson

Unproductive micromanaging. I’ve learned to let a go a little in terms of needing to be in control of every detail. Instead I use that energy to offer support and encouragement to those working for me.

Funding Circle

Is there—or has there been—expenses you now see as big wastes in the rearview?

Taylor Patterson

I did a trade show early in my career that cost me a lot of money. It was good exposure in a way and while we had a few products out, I hadn’t put the time into making them really great. So when push came to shove, I felt like my ignorance was highlighted more than the products.

Funding Circle

If you had an extra $___, what would you do?

Taylor Patterson

Get a delivery van.

Funding Circle

What are some money-saving strategies you’ve used as a growing business?

Taylor Patterson

Still trying to figure that one out…. have any you want to share?

Funding Circle

What business expense–if any—have you most underestimated?

Taylor Patterson

It’s not that I’ve underestimated it, but I spent some money on our logo and brand in the early days when I didn’t have any money and it’s really paid off. People see it and they recognize it and so as we’ve grown and take on more projects our brand just as much as the work we create is becoming more and more valuable.

Funding Circle

As a creative, is there anything about finance (or a financial concept) that still totally freaks you out (or you just can’t seem to get the hang of)?

Taylor Patterson

I feel like there is so much I’m still trying to get the hang of. I don’t come from a business background and I’ve built the company to the point where it is rather organically. A lot of trial and error has occurred and is likely still occurring. Making mistakes and learning from them every day.

MISCELLANEOUS MUSINGS

Funding Circle

Best summer job:

Taylor Patterson

Running a farm stand in PA.

Funding Circle

Worst summer job:

Taylor Patterson

I worked for a pharmaceuticals tech company one summer. It was my friend’s dad’s company and while it was easy per se it was rather soul-sucking. I spent every day in a windowless room entering data from a never ending stack of printed papers into a database. Not my vibe.

Funding Circle

What professional rituals do you have?

Taylor Patterson

Not quite sure if I do…. should I?

Funding Circle

Finish this sentence. Money is _________.

Taylor Patterson

Necessary evil.

Funding Circle

If you had to do another job, what would it be?

Taylor Patterson

I would be a  FT Garden designer…. not so far off from what we do now. But reality is there isn’t much else I see myself doing.

Funding Circle

3 favorite local independent businesses in NYC (and why):

Taylor Patterson

  1. Lizzie Fortunato Jewels. Run by twins sisters this amazing brand is a constant source of inspiration. Both creatively and professionally, LFJ is a brand that is never static. Lizzie is always pushing the envelope of design while kathryn runs the business side. Both of these women truly embody what it means to be strong female leaders.
  2. Vinegar Hill House and recent launch VHH foods. Vinegar Hill House has been my favorite restaurant since the day I moved to New York. There are few people as supportive and nurturing as its owner, Jean Adamson, has been to so many people who came up under her wing. It’s from her that I learned what it means to be a good boss.
  3. Emma Allen’s “Everyday Oil“… She has one product and it’s an amazing product and she doesn’t compromise anything for its quality.

Funding Circle

Why is it important to support local independent businesses?

Taylor Patterson

Small business is what drives creativity.

Funding Circle

Must-have item at Canal Street Market (that isn’t yours):

Taylor Patterson

The bonsai hosta from Dandy Farmer! I love what they do so much.

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