This story comes to you from Sahan Journal through a partnership with MPR News.
A viral trend of massive bouquets, some costing hundreds of dollars, is finding an audience in the Twin Cities among social media-savvy florists and their Latino clientele.
Ramos buchónes is what 21-year-old Brittany Vega of Designs by B calls the big bouquets of roses she sells as a side gig between working full-time and going to school.
These aren’t your typical flower arrangements, and most florists in Minnesota don’t make them. But they’re all over social media where some #ramobuchon videos on TikTok have more than 30 million views.
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According to one Mexican newspaper, a ramo buchón is characterized by being very ostentatious in its decoration and size.
The elaborate arrangements start at about 50 flowers, usually roses, and can go up to as many as 100. Ramo” is Spanish for bouquet.
“It’s not a necessity, but it’s a luxury,” Vega said from her makeshift workshop at her Bloomington home, as she dipped roses in glitter, “It’s not every day that a girl gets a big ‘ramo.’”
In addition to the sheer quantity of roses, florists like Vega wrap them in carefully folded Korean paper, and add LED lights, glitter, pins, chocolates, ribbons, and even stuffed animals. Some even include money in the form of folded bills.
Vega said she’s been getting two to five orders a day in the weeks before Valentine’s Day. It’s her first year selling the arrangements.
She isn’t the only florist driving the ramo buchón trend locally.
Joselyn Chacon, owner of Siempre Con Amor, was in the middle of a gap year in college when she started selling flower arrangements to a majority Hispanic clientele.
“We really consider flowers, and especially roses, a love language,” Chacon said. “Giving someone flowers is really a sign that you appreciate them, and that you love them.”
Chacon has since moved to New York to finish college but still makes occasional trips back home to Minnesota to fill orders for her customers.
She’s even scheduled a weeklong break in early February to be in town for Valentine’s Day and fulfill her orders.
According to her, Ecuadorian roses are the main flower used to create ramos buchónes because they’re bigger and sturdier.
Prices for bouquets start at around $50 but can go up to more than $400, depending on the number of flowers and customization required.
A single bouquet can take a florist between one to three hours to create.
The bouquets are arranged with tightly arranged roses with the majority of the leaves cut off; they’re meant to be displayed as a bouquet rather than in a vase, according to Vega, who said she’s still waiting to be gifted one.
“Nothing big, but I want one,” Vega said. “I mean I’m making them for other people and I see how nice it looks, I want one.”
The bouquets are typically used as a grand romantic gesture. But can also be given to friends and family.
Vega said Valentine’s Day is always a popular day for flowers, but Mother’s Day was equally busy for her because of having to plan out two days of orders as Latin American countries don’t always celebrate the holiday on the same day as the United States.
Chacon said many of her customers send her photos of bouquets they’ve seen on social media for inspiration, and that she’s always willing to accommodate their wants and needs, but because the bouquets can get expensive she also offers budget-friendly options.
These limit customizations but at the same time allow Chacon to express herself creatively, sometimes leading to the creation of a favorite bouquet for the florist.
Chacon features different types of flowers in what she calls her “freestyle” bouquets. She also works with colors not commonly used, like orange.
“They were very aesthetically pleasing to me, so they’re my favorite ones to make,” Chacon said. “I put a lot of work into it.”
Both florists are nearing the end of their Valentine’s Day preorder period but say they have extra flowers available for last-minute orders.
“Anything you have in mind, we’ll work together with you to make it happen,” Chacon said. “Everything we do is with love.”
These mega bouquets are called ramos buchónes. They've been popularized on TikTok over the past couple of years, especially in Latino communities. A recent story from Sahan Journal introduces us to two young florists in the Twin Cities who jumped on this trend. Brittany Vega and Joselyn Chacon are on the line. Brittany and Joselyn, welcome.
JOSELYN CHACON: Hi, thank you for having us.
CATHY WURZER: Absolutely. Brittany, I'm going to begin with you. Of course, my Spanish isn't good. I'm so sorry. Explain-- did I do a decent job explaining what a ramos buchónes is?
BRITTANY VEGA: Yeah, so it's kind of like what you said. It's usually a big bouquet consisting of from anywhere from 50 to 200, 300 and up, so in the hundreds. It's usually luxurious with crowns, glitter, diamond pins, all of that sort of stuff.
CATHY WURZER: Oh, my gosh. Joselyn, I mean, which word among of those two words means "bouquet" in Spanish? What's the meaning of it in this context?
JOSELYN CHACON: So the ramo is bouquet, and bouchon, which is like the word for extravagant or very luxurious, that's what the name is about.
CATHY WURZER: OK, so that is how it describes this humongous bouquet. They look beautiful. And I'm looking at pictures on TikTok. I mean, my goodness. Why do you both think this really ignited in terms of popularity? Brittany, what do you think?
BRITTANY VEGA: Kind of how, like you previously mentioned, TikTok, I think, is a big one, social media, seeing influencers with these big, extravagant bouquets. They're all over TikTok right now as well. And I think that's kind of how it started spreading more faster.
CATHY WURZER: Mm-hmm. By the way, how did you get into this, Brittany?
BRITTANY VEGA: Um, I think it's actually kind of a funny story. So I had started with making bottle arrangements, so like alcohol bottle arrangements. I had started with those originally. And one day, one of my brother's friends had texted me, asking if I could make him a ramo bouchon. And I was like, I've never made one before, but I'll give it a try. It was 100 roses. And from there, from that day, it just kind of went from there.
CATHY WURZER: Oh, my gosh. Joselyn, how did you get into this?
JOSELYN CHACON: I got into during my gap year before college. I really used roses as a way to show my self-love. I would go to the grocery store and buy myself roses because I really wanted to focus on loving myself. And I realized how much flowers meant to me. And I realized that they gave me a lot of happiness, too. So I wanted to be that happiness for other people as well.
And I also noticed that ramos bouchónes were a thing through TikTok. So I kind of got inspired from there. And I, one day, kind of just threw myself into it. And I never looked back.
CATHY WURZER: [LAUGHS] Well, as I say, of course, I love anything that's kind of-- I like the grand gesture, right? I like glitter, and I like all of this. And so you both will have to help me out here. Would you consider this a serious gesture of love if someone were to give you one of these, Brittany? What do you think?
BRITTANY VEGA: Yes, after doing them, I realized how much time and effort and how expensive they are. So if someone gets one for you, you're special. You're special.
CATHY WURZER: [LAUGHS] Joselyn, what do you think?
JOSELYN CHACON: Yeah, I definitely agree with Brittany. It's definitely a very dreamy thing to get because of how luxurious and big they are. It does take a lot of time to make them. And they can get expensive, too. So it's a really well thought of gift to give someone or to receive. So it's a huge sign of love and appreciation.
CATHY WURZER: Now tell us, how much are folks spending on these bouquets, Joselyn?
JOSELYN CHACON: For me, my prices range from 115 to 500 at most for the bigger bouquets. But I also have budget-friendly options, where I freestyle the bouquet, and I personalize it myself. So that's between 75 and 180.
CATHY WURZER: Wow, OK. So, yeah, you are right. If someone gets you one of these, you are definitely high on their list of favorite people. [LAUGHS]
JOSELYN CHACON: [LAUGHS] Yes.
CATHY WURZER: Brittany, do you have a favorite ramo you've made?
BRITTANY VEGA: I think it's actually the one I did on Sahan Journal. I think that one has to be my most-- like my favorite one so far.
CATHY WURZER: OK, and I'm going to tell people to go see that, too, because that is pretty impressive. Joselyn, do you have a favorite that you've made?
JOSELYN CHACON: I love pink bouquets. Pink is my favorite color, but I really do love making the freestyle bouquets, just because it gives me a little more creative freedom. And it's nice to know that my customers trust my work enough to know that I'll make them something that they'll love.
CATHY WURZER: All right, now Brittany and Joselyn, tell folks if they want to get a hold of you, where can they do that.? I think, Brittany, you have Designs by B in Bloomington, right? Is that correct?
BRITTANY VEGA: Yes, that's correct. I have an Instagram page and a Facebook page.
CATHY WURZER: OK, and Joselyn, where do you sell bouquets?
JOSELYN CHACON: I am located in Brooklyn Park. My business name is Siempre Con Amor. And you can find us on Instagram or Facebook at flores.sca, which is F-L-O-R-E-S dot S-C-A. And we're happy to help you anytime you need flowers.
CATHY WURZER: I'm assuming both of you are really busy for tomorrow, right, Brittany?
BRITTANY VEGA: Yes, correct.
CATHY WURZER: Yes, [LAUGHS] and Joselyn.
JOSELYN CHACON: Yes, it's busy, but really grateful for all of it.
CATHY WURZER: All right. Thank you both for joining us. And best of luck tomorrow. It's really fun to watch, to get to hear what you're doing. Best of luck.
BRITTANY VEGA: Thank you.
JOSELYN CHACON: Thank you for having us.
CATHY WURZER: Absolutely. Brittany Vega's been with us. And of course, we've also talked to Joselyn Chacon. And they told you how to get a hold of them. See that story, by the way, at Sahan Journal. You can see that at sahanjournal.com. You can also go to mprnews.org for details.
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