Who else loves flowers?
I love flowers, not only do they brighten up #MyWorld and make me feel happy but they also feed my passion for floristry…
I don’t really have a favourite flower, probably because I love a whole bunch of them! However, one that always brings a smile is the sun flower – they almost seem to shout out be bright, sunny and positive.
My love for flowers grew from quite an early age and from memory my first childhood flower arrangement took the form of a daisy chain.
Growing up, our garden at Greens Farm House was always full of beautiful flowers. Mum and Dad loved gardening and both spent many an hour, day and a summers evening perfecting their green fingers.
The garden, whatever the season always contained a variety of flowers – snow drops, daffodils, poppies, tulips, sweet peas and sunflowers that grew as tall as the sky!
In particular, I always loved our garden in the summer, especially the wall of climbing roses we had planted at the back of our garage. The smell of the roses was over whelming and I spent many a summer picking up fallen rose petals from the garden and trying to distil them with other plants to try and make what I called ‘perfume’. Of course it never smelt nearly as good as the actual flowers but that didn’t stop me from trying each year to make my very own special perfume brew.
I chuckle to watch Alfie try and do the same thing, although his ‘blooming’ perfume normally contains lots of mud, slugs and worms and not a lot of flowers!
My Grandma was partly responsible for inspiring me to become a florist. I remember many a spring going primrose picking with her. The whole family would go for a long walk into the ‘Blue Belle Woods’ in Odiham to pick bunches and bunches of primroses. She loved flowers and in particular spring flowers like bluebells, daffodils, tulips and Iris’s.
When she came round to ours for Sunday lunch her first request was a tour of the garden! I would often keep her company and learn all about her favourite plants – one in particular that we both always liked and giggled about was ‘granny’s nightcap’ (Aguilegia).
I also remember every summer her growing ‘Morning Glory’ flowers on the side of her house. These flowers would only last a few hours in the morning (hence the name) but she always grew them each year as she knew I adored them especially because of their vibrant blue colour.
When she passed away I enrolled myself onto a Floristry course to learn more about flowers and to help channel my creative streak.
I learnt my floristry skills at Frogmore Community College whilst I was working as a Marketing Manager at Alton Sports Centre. My days were spent being creative designing campaigns, brochures and posters whilst my evenings were spent learning about shape, lines and colour of flowers.
Most of my weekends were spent at local flower markets deliberating over what type and colour of flowers to buy each week for my course. If you’ve never visited the flower green house at Longacres nursery in Bagshot it’s well worth a visit as their choice of cut flowers is very inspiring…
They even stock Birds of Paradise, Painters Pallet (Anthurium) and blue Agapanthus – flowers that I love to buy at this time of the year as they remind me of vacations to Madeira.
If you’re a flower lover and have never been to this beautiful island it’s a flower paradise! Every time I visit Funchal, there’s this one town house that I have to go and see because it’s totally decorated with hundreds of flowers. I’m never disappointed as every year it looks amazing! I’d definitely be happy all the time if I lived here…
After finishing floristry school, I set up ‘BlueBelle Designs’ and straight away got stuck into creating floral arrangements for friends, family and colleagues. I’ve been lucky enough over the years to have been asked to do several people’s wedding flowers and I’m even proud to say that ‘BlueBelle Designs’ has gone global after doing a friend’s wedding flowers in Wales!
Of course, when you’re a florist and getting married there’s no excuses not to do your own flowers. I think most Brides spend their wedding morning relaxing and being pampered as they should be. However mine was a little different – I spent most of the morning checking button holes, making sure the table arrangements were displayed correctly on each table and perfecting that all important bridal bouquet.
I remember our photographer chasing around after me all morning to get those pre-wedding photos and ending up having to tell me to leave the flowers alone as the clock was ticking and I needed to get into that all important wedding dress! He did however manage to get some gorgeous pictures of my wedding flowers.
Although, BlueBelle Designs has been put on the back burner since having both Alfie and Betsy, it will never be dormant forever. To own a little flower shop is still my pipe dream and a lovely one at that! But at the moment I’m happy for it to just remain a hobby and an outlet for my creativity…
Flowers to me are like a gift of nature and without them plants would just be green, and the world would be a much duller place!