Today, as part of my Florist Friday blog post series, I’m delighted to feature an interview with Rebecca Collier of The Bespoke Florist.
Could you tell us what prompted you to become a florist?
The thought of being a florist never actually crossed my mind! I went to university to study Psychology, but quickly realised it wasn’t an area I wanted to work in after my degree. It was during the last year of my degree that I did a night course in floristry. A cousin of mine had previously done the course and I thought it would be something I would enjoy as I’m very creative and love making things. I enjoyed the course so much that after my degree I signed up for a Level 2 Diploma in Floristry at Berkshire College of Agriculture. Here, I learnt the foundations of floristry.
Could you tell us how your floristry career has progressed?
During my Diploma, I worked for several fantastic florists, both shop based and event based. It was here that I learnt how to run a business and gained the confidence and experience to set up my own business. I started off making Christmas wreaths and then quickly progressed to taking on corporate contracts and weddings. It was very exciting starting out on my own but very scary at the same time!
When did you start your business and where are you based?
I started my business in 2011. I’m based near Wallingford in South Oxfordshire, which means I’m very close to lots of fantastic wedding venues such as the Oxford Colleges, Blenheim Palace, Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons and Notley Abbey.
What kind of floristry services do you offer?
I specialise in wedding flowers. Whether the wedding is small and intimate or grand and lavish, my emphasis is on personal service and meticulous attention to detail. I love the process of getting to know couples and working with them to create a beautiful vision for their day. I also love the variety of wedding work. One week I could be setting up flowers in a private marquee and the next week at Blenheim Palace!
Where do you get inspiration for your floral designs?
I get a lot of inspiration from social media, such as Pinterest and Instagram. It’s great that there are so many lovely pictures and ideas available at your fingertips! I also love to learn new styles and techniques to continually challenge my style. I’ve attended several courses both in the UK and abroad learning new techniques and styles. I think it’s quite easy to get into a ‘rut’ with your work, especially if you work on your own. So, gaining fresh knowledge is invaluable!
How would you describe your style?
My style is classic and elegant with an emphasis on the flowers and foliage themselves. I find that this style is most complementary to the venues I decorate.
What are your plans for 2016?
2016 will be another busy year for weddings and I will be continuing to focus on providing beautiful wedding flowers. I would also like to start growing some of my own flowers. I don’t have a lot of expertise in this area, so I’ll be booking myself on some gardening courses soon!
What is your favourite flower?
This is a tricky question as the answer changes depending on the season! I love paperwhite narcissi in winter, ranunculus in spring, peonies in summer and hydrangea in autumn.
Thank you so much to Rebecca for all her help in compiling today’s blog post. I had the pleasure of meeting Rebecca when she attended our Branding for Florists workshop in March. And further to attending the workshop, she relaunched The Bespoke Florist website with new branding. It looks absolutely stunning! Do pop over and take a look…