Sometimes the best advice given is to 'just do it!' ...and I must say it's probably my favorite piece of advice that I've heard in the COVID world! For me, my long planned, elaborate career dreams changed once my family moved across the state just as the the pandemic peaked. Luckily, all of my vendors and clients changed gears and supported our changing from a big, small town brick & mortar shop with a 1960's business model to an intimate, online shop run from my family home in Atlanta! Every day people ask me how to turn their love of flowers into a floral career and if you've been pinning gorgeous centerpieces and pretty bouquets for years, maybe this is you. You may dream of spending your days surrounded with beautiful buckets of garden roses and loads of peony boxes overlooking a courtyard of luscious greenery.
Since some of my favorite images of my personal floristry are by Washington, D.C. based Kim Brannigan, I thought it'd be fun to share some of her photos as featured in 'Darling Friends' on B.Loved blog along with some things you should know before you stack your office with vases and pots and adorable arrangements.
Check it out below and remember... just do it.
Best to you,
In Darling Friends written by B'loved "Bridemaids play such a special role in your wedding day and there are many precious moments you share in the run up to the day and getting ready together n the morning of your wedding. This beautiful shoot by Kim Branagan Photography is inspired by this relationship and the exciting experience of a Bride and her Bridesmaid on the morning of the wedding.
The shoot is set in beautiful Savannah and styled by Tristan Needham as part of the Better Together Savannah Workshop. I’m smitten with the little details which nod towards the getting ready portion of the day, such as the antique hand mirror, velvet ring box and the lovely little ‘I Do’ vow book. You’ll also find some rather special Susie Saltzman rings which are incredible – it’s certainly becoming one of my favourite designers!"
Read on to understand how to learn the basics of floral design and what it takes to have a career in flowers.
Start at the Beginning
Start at the beginning with the basics by signing up for a flower workshop. Courses can be traditional, academic and/or hands-on. Whether in person or online you'll learn the basics of flower identification, prepping and good practices. I recommend attending classes in the style you like, for example, one the first classes I attended was led by highly artistic Joy Thigpen, whose work I adore. Business classes are just as helpful as ones on technique and composition. Understanding pricing and costs in this industry is critical.
Get Yo-Self Experienced
Real on-the-job-experience is necessary in this business which is very manual. Flower shops always need help especially around holidays like Mother's Day while event companies are staff-strapped during wedding season. I recommend staring out assisting as a free-lancer, or in a grocery store or hotel. You'll be doing everything from sweeping the floor to breaking down an event to washing buckets to dethroning roses. It can be tough, hard work but interesting and worth it.
Don't say I didn't tell you, you might be hired on the spot! Lots of floral designers prefer newbies so they can be trained up in the aesthetic of the brand.
Decide What You Want To Do
Once you have experience and have attended workshops you'll realize there's more to floral work than meets the eye. There are so many careers in this industry what will you do?
Here's some ideas:Event production
Floral design teacher
Flower shop owner
Home studio event floral designer
Stylist with a botanical focus
Flower farm sales
The possibilities are endless.
Not All Florist Are The Same So You Must Put Your Work Out There
Before you got started you knew you wanted to play with flowers all day long. Sounds like a dream, right? After your research you should have a clue the industry can be brutal. It's important to realize the downsides (along with the upsides, of course!) before choosing your career. Because it's a natural product very early mornings can be the norm, think 4a. It can be debilitatingly manual. Even though I love a good workout, those days that ran 15 hours long including hauling buckets and lifting boxes are rough. There have been days that literally, I am immobile after a big event.