You can now begin to learn the art of floral design in a full day course offered by Poppies Floral Art in Victoria, BC.
Next course is Sunday, January 20th, 2019
If you are serious about looking into floral design as a career, you should talk to more than one person in the industry and get a few different perspectives. I think you'll find that people who are in the floral industry fell into it and now can't imagine themselves doing anything else. It's addictive. They're not afraid of hard work, they like excitement, the pressure, and the opportunity to be creative and work with their hands.
I was born into the business. My father's father's business was a flower shop passed down from father to son. And I grew up as an employee working for my dad. For the past 15 years, my step mom and I have been running Poppies in Victoria.
I have been told by long timers in the industry, that it's not the accreditation that gets you the job, it's experience and it's talent. But how can you get the experience? Where do you learn the basic skills to get started if you don't take a course of some kind? And why would someone invest a chunk of money to prepare for a career that is, for the most part, considered a retail job? And the question that eventually always comes up, what is the expected pay?
And now the whole industry has changed.
Now we are becoming social media experts. Our point of sales systems are sophisticated data bases that we need to master, and our websites need constant attention. The game has changed. Whoever has the best online presence wins. And as long as you can follow up with a beautiful product that meets the customer's expectations then you are going to succeed.
So what does the future hold for floral designers? I think the days of mass produced floral arrangements, like the ones on many generic online catalogues, are over. Consumers are more sophisticated now. And their expectations are going up along with the access to beautiful designs they can find online. Designers in Europe and Asia and other parts of the world are raising the bar. Floral design is becoming an art form unlike ever before. And people want it.
So that's the goal. We want customer's to walk away with a bouquet that wows them. We want flowers to become more than just an offering of a sentiment, but also a true appreciation of floral design as an art form.
There are many ways to find floral design courses, but maybe not in the town you live in. And it might not be practical to travel to another city, so you may choose to learn online. Then, in addition to what you learn, you need to practice, so buy your materials and then create your practice designs. Usually, you then will need to photograph them and then send the photos in to your online instructor for feedback. It's time consuming and can get expensive I would imagine, especially if you are trying to get it done in a hurry.
Many people will do it because they love the idea of it; working with beautiful flowers and foliages, creating gorgeous floral works of art. I had one person apply for a job with us saying she wanted a career that was relaxing. Well, hate to burst the fantasy bubble, but being a florist is hard work. There are high expectations from the customers, and at the same time they want low prices because they have seen packs of roses at the big box stores for $14.99 after all. But the really great floral design doesn't come from big box stores.
After doing some research, I discovered that to get a course in floral design Victorians either have to go to the mainland for a couple of weeks or months, invest in weeks or months of evenings, or you have to try to do an online course by yourself.
So, in the end, we decided that we would try to offer a course in floral design for people wanting to pursue a career in floristry or step up their DIY skills, but rather than the expectation of weeks of training, I'd teach as much as possible in a full day workshop. To be a florist you don't have to have accreditation, just the knowledge, skills and experience. This is very difficult to achieve unless you are hired and receive on the job training, which is how most of us in the industry get started. I hope to offer many of these one day courses, not only for novices but also for people who want to sharpen their skills and have some hands on experience in a new environment. Once you know the basics, you can research designs you love, and start to create your own unique style.
My hope is to not only be the best I can be at my craft, but get the public excited about what I do. I want to share my ideas, and encourage others to participate. For more details see our workshops page.
**Original blog posted Oct. 16th, 2015- updated periodically with new course dates.