This week, as part of my Florist Friday blog post series, I’m delighted to feature an interview with Willow Crossley. I had the pleasure of meeting Willow in May at a press event for Liz Earle’s Chelsea in Bloom entry.
Could you tell us what prompted you to become a florist?
I grew up in a very rural Wales, surrounded by flowers and nature. I’ve always loved them but it wasn’t until writing my second book, Inspire, and working on the ‘Flora’ section that I realised that this was what I really wanted to do. I just felt so happy, like I’d found my calling. So I stopped everything else I was doing and fully concentrated on flowers.
When did you start your business and where are you based?
I started fully concentrating on just flowers about four years ago. I did a short, intensive course at The Covent Garden Academy of Flowers and never looked back. I work from home in my outdoor studio that my husband Charlie built for me.
My first job was one of my best friend’s weddings which I did with my mother, and it all just went from there. Since then, I’ve been doing weddings, events, shop launches, flowers for private clients and working with luxury brands including Jo Malone, Mulberry and Liz Earle. I created the floral element of Liz Earle’s Chelsea in Bloom entry this year and we won The People’s Champion Award. I’m starting to do workshops this year too.
What kind of floristry services do you offer?
Anything anyone wants really. Apart from small bouquets to order. I don’t have a shop full of flowers, so financially it doesn’t make sense for me to do that. One day though… I do events, parties, weddings, workshops, talks, anything flower related you can dream up!
Where do you get inspiration for your floral designs?
Everywhere! Walking in the woods, going shopping, going to an art gallery, at the beach. I’m inspired by the weirdest and smallest of things.
How would you describe your style?
Very natural, wayward and loose. I’m not good at tight, neat symmetry at all. I like my designs to look like they’ve just sprung up from outside.
What are your plans for the remainder of 2016?
My new book is coming out in October. It’s called Flourish, published by Kyle Books and it’s all about flowers. It’s a ‘how to’ kind of book with lots of illustrations. I’ve also collaborated with OKA, working with their artificial flowers, designing arrangements for them and that’s launching in September which I’m very excited about. Then all my normal flower jobs – so lots of press launches, birthday parties, my brother’s wedding…lots to look forward to.
What is your favourite flower?
Solomon’s Seal. Or maybe foxglove. And I do love a sweet pea…
Thank you so much to Willow for all her help in compiling today’s blog post. If you’d like to see more of her beautiful floral designs, do pop over to the Willow Crossley website. Social media wise, you’ll find Willow on Instagram and Twitter.
(Images : Willow Crossley)