Our Story

The name Floral Design Institute® is synonymous with excellence in floral design education. Founded in 1969 and purchased by Leanne Kesler AIFD and David Kesler AIFD in 1988, Floral Design Institute® has grown into one of the leading accredited floral design schools in the world.

Both Leanne and David have been active designers, speakers, educators and floral business consultants for over 40 years. They have created and maintain a wonderful learning atmosphere where both the complete beginner and the most advanced floral designers feel comfortable, and are able to develop their individual skills and talents to the maximum potential. Floral Design Institute® is licensed to conduct a private vocational school by the Oregon Higher Education Coordinating Commission. Floral Design Institute is a member of the American Institute of Floral Designers (AIFD) Educational Partners and is an Approved Educational Pathway to AIFD Certification and Accreditation.

David & Leanne

Our Instructors

Floral Design Institute® Instructors are outstanding trained educators as well as experienced and exceptional floral designers with years of real world floral experience. Any student taking a professional training program at Floral Design Institute® will be exposed to multiple instructors, each with their own area of design or business expertise. In addition to teaching, most Floral Design Institute® instructors work as floral designers and managers. All instructors are registered with the Department of Education. Some own their own floral businesses and some are accredited members of the American Institute of Floral Designers, AIFD. The Floral Design Institute® Team of Instructors is regarded as the finest in the world.

Instructors Biographies

Student Accommodations

It is our goal to make your stay in Portland as comfortable as possible while you are attending Floral Design Institute®. If you have any questions or concerns about lodging, restaurants, planes, buses, trains, shopping, weather, what to wear, what to see or what to do, please feel free to call and ask.

There are excellent housing options at all budget levels for students taking classes at the Floral Design Institute in Portland. We have selected accommodations on which our students have given favorable reports. All are within an easy commute or walk from the Institute and Downtown Portland. With all selected accommodations you must contact and make arrangements directly with the innkeeper or management. Always ask for a Floral Design Institute "student rate" and a discount on extended stays. We attempt to keep prices and other information up to date, but we cannot make any guarantees.

Hostelling International - NW Portland

425 NW 18th Avenue (at Glisan Street)
Portland, OR, 97209

If you are on a budget, this is the place for you. For those of you unfamiliar with hostels a hostel is a hotel with dormitories. There are separate facilities for men and women. You don't like a dormitory? This hostel also offers private rooms. This hostel is clean, safe and very well managed. There are group cooking facilities available. For longer stays make your reservations well in advance. Rates vary by season; check the website for current rates. The hostel is located 12 blocks from our Learning Center.

Portland International Guesthouse
2185 NW Flanders St.
Portland, OR, 97210

European-style accommodations for the budget minded located in the heart of Portland's most charming and vibrant neighborhood. The guesthouse has six clean and private guest rooms that share three baths. and a two room suite with three shared full baths. They also offer a fully furnished, private, one-bedroom garden level apartment. Rates vary by room size and season. Check the website for complete details. This guesthouse is located on 14 blocks from our Learning Center.

Inn at Northrup Station
Portland, Oregon 97209
503-224-0543, 800-224-1180

Located in the heart of Nob Hill, just steps away from a variety of trendy shops, boutiques and dining. This unique modern retro styled Inn offers rooms with full kitchens, executive desk, data ports and voice mail. Continental breakfast and on-site parking are also provided. Nightly rates vary by season and extended stay rates are available. This hotel is located a mere 4 blocks from the Learning Center.

The Mark Spencer Hotel
409 SW 11th St.
Portland, OR 97205
503-224-3293, 800-548-3934

This comfortable and newly remodeled hotel is located in downtown Portland just a short streetcar ride away from the Learning Center. They offer studio suites with full kitchens and also have studio apartments available. Internet access is complimentary, phone and fax services are included, along with continental breakfast, and concierge services. Rates vary and extended stay rates are available. Call to explore room options and make your reservation. This hotel is located 1.2 miles from the Learning Center; requires a four block walk and 10 minute streetcar ride.

The Silver Cloud Inn
2426 NW Vaughn St.
Portland, OR 97210
503-242-2400, 800-205-6939
Silver Cloud Inn Northwest Portland

This newer contemporary hotel offers on-site parking, laundry service, a fitness center, complementary in-room DSL service, in-room refrigerators, coffeemakers, hairdryers, irons, ironing boards and complementary breakfast. The hotel is within walking distance of dozens of restaurants and shops in the trendy 23rd Avenue district. Check with the hotel for current rates. This hotel is located 3/4 of a mile from the Learning Center. The hotel offers a free shuttle service to and from the Learning Center.

Holiday Inn Express
2333 NW Vaughn St.
Portland, OR 97210

The Holiday Inn Express offers on-site parking, free continental breakfast, indoor pool and spa, fitness center, guest laundry, voice mail, and data services available. There is also a gift shop in the lobby. The hotel is within walking distance of dozens of restaurants and shops in the trendy 23rd Avenue district. Check with the hotel for current rates. This hotel is located 5/8 of a mile from the Learning Center; requires a six block walk and 9 minute bus ride (bus #77).


In the last few years more and more of our students have been using this service and have been very pleased with the lodging that they have found. When doing a search for lodging use the zip code for the learning center, 97209. Founded in August 2008 and headquartered in San Francisco, Airbnb.com is operated and privately owned by Airbnb, Inc. The company is an online service that provides a platform for individuals referred to as “hosts”, generally private parties, to rent unoccupied living space and other short-term lodging to guests. Listings include private rooms and entire apartments. Users of the site must register and create a personal online profile before using the site. Every property is associated with a host whose profile includes recommendations by other users, reviews by previous guests, as well as a response rating and private messaging system.

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The Floral Design Institute Learning Center is located in Portland, Oregon in the vibrant and fashionable neighborhood of Northwest Portland. Nearby are the trend-setting shops and restaurants of the Pearl District, NW 23rd and NW 21st streets. The Learning Center is easy to locate, convenient to freeway access, and easily accessible by mass transit. Every attempt is made to recreate in our Learning Center the working atmosphere of a highly professional, progressive flower shop. The work tables, equipment and tools are all professional and mirror what will be found in the workplace. The Learning Center is brightly lit with natural light. Fresh flowers and floral products are used throughout the program with each student working exclusively on their individual projects. Classes are kept small with and a student to teacher ratio of twelve to one is maintained. Plenty of individual assistance is given to all students.

A Creative Resource

Specialized Floral Design Training, Trends Research, Product Research, Sourcing and Purchasing, Floral Design Photography and Videography, Marketing Research, Media Strategy, Retail Store Analysis, Merchandising, Educational Seminars and Workshops; Floral Design Institute is a Creative Resource for the Floral Industry. If you would like additional information please contact Rose, 503-223-8089 – Rose@FloralDesignInstitute.com