In Berlin Mitte on Charlottenstraße, is probably one of the most beautiful flower stores in the whole city. Since the 2000s you can find there wonderfully colorful flowers, beautifully tied bouquets and since some time also antique vintage treasures. We spoke with Annett, one of the three founders of Marsano and were allowed to look behind the scenes. In an exclusive interview she tells us what she did before Marsano, what she enjoys most about her job and where she gets her inspiration from. She also tells us about her favorite place in Berlin, talks to us about her own home and describes what a typical Sunday looks like for her.
Who are you? You could introduce yourself briefly.
Annett Kuhlmann - mother, friend and one of the 3 managers of Blumen MARSANO Berlin.
Annett, where are you from?
From Kummerfeld, a village in Schleswig Holtstein, 20 km from Hamburg.
How did Marsano come into being?
A Mr. MARSANO migrated from Italy over the Alps to Berlin in 1905 and then founded MARSANO Zurich at Paradeplatz in Zurich.
This company/AG was sold. In 2000 Urs & Adom from Zurich came to Berlin and opened MARSANO here. Andreas & Katrin (my partners were already working here. I joined in 2003 fresh from London. In 2004 MARSANO went bankrupt. But the 3 of us stayed on at MARSANO as employees. In November 2005 Urs & Adom announced that they were going back to Switzerland. At that time, I had been learning photography on the side at the Ostkreuzschule. I thought this was a sign that I was now going full time into photography ... but then Katrin, Andy and I consulted and we bought MARSANO from them, changed the location & concept and started as 5. That was November 2005 now we are 40 people in our MARSANO gang....
What makes Marsano so special in your opinion?
Our diverse team, but also that we always stay agile. We do what we love and when we don't love something anymore we leave it alone.
You also sell vintage furniture at Marsano. Where do you find the treasures?
At flea markets. Many dealers already shock me on WhatsApp when they discover something....
What did you do in the time before Marsano?
I worked in London as a florist and learned photography.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
One thing is the team I work with. Every day I learn something new in terms of leadership...But every Tuesday I have my flower day. That's when it's really back to my creativity and creations. I love to combine different shapes (leaves to grasses), colors, scents, but also surfaces. But I also love to put a sprig of tomato or currant to it, so that all the senses are addressed ...
Do you have a favorite flower? If so, which one?
Of course. Vetches & peonies, but also the 8 o'clock flower. They're all in season and not available all year, which is what makes it so special to me.
Where do you get your inspiration from? Nature, architecture... For example, last week I went to a monastery for hiking & yoga. I found the old church windows super inspiring for our new Christmas decor/exhibition/collection, but also for new rugs with THE KNOTS. The hikes were so inspiring to see how the plants grow in their natural arrangement, not grown in our garden and then planted.
When and what inspired you most recently?
The windows of the basilica from Steinfeld Abbey (one of the windows can now be found in the Royal Albert Museum London). But also at the Studiovisits with Julia Rosenbaum (we go to artists) in the studio). There I see and above all hear a lot of things that stimulate thoughts and inspire me.
What is your favorite place in Berlin?
My garden, a small paradise at the Tegeler See.
Which places in Berlin impress you with their design/ special atmosphere?
I am gobsmacked every time by the König Galerie, St Agnes. Here comes together wonderfully culture, architecture and nature, but also change. When you enter the great room upstairs, I always have to take a deep breath. The perennial garden outside by Lena König is so wonderfully varied that no matter what time of year, you can always discover something new... But of course also the art.
How do you come to rest in Berlin?
In my garden.
Do you like being at home?
Very much so. We have such a great, bright apartment. I always hear when friends come in that it's such a good atmosphere....
What is your favorite room to be in at home? Why?
In the living room, almost everything happens here. On the sofa you can take a short breather or do your home office, while the balcony door is open and a lavender/rosemary breeze blows in from the balcony. At the round dining table is tinkered on the side. A little creative chaos...
What do you do on a typical Sunday?
In summer in the garden in winter at the flea market in the city. But no matter what time of year, eating cake. Preferably home baked.
Thank you Annett!
You can find MARSANO at Charlottenstraße 75, 10117 Berlin.