How To Become a Professional FloristMar 07, 2023
So you want to become a Professional Florist? Welcome friend, let us spill all and show you the way.
Floristry is one of those creative careers that many discover because of their love of flowers, nature and design. It can often begin as a passing interest or hobby and then reveal itself to hold more potential. More profit, more fulfilment, more joy, more possibility…
It’s true, it can hold all of these things and more. We know this for sure because Our Founder, Joseph turned his Saturday job and love of flowers into an international 7 figure business. The industry is varied with plenty of opportunities to carve your own niche and indulge in your own particular style and passions. You can craft your own boutique bouquet business from the comfort of your own home, land a spot at the sustainability inspired store you admire or build your business to international scales offering destination designs.
It’s not all roses though, the everyday reality of being a professional florist can include early, dark starts to the day. Cold and wet hands, hours on your feet, heavy lifting, unsociable hours and demanding clients who expect nothing less than perfect. Whilst the possibilities are many - and we do hope you take a moment to dream about yours – to become a professional florist you will have to put in the resources, both time and money, to develop the skills and gain the experience you need to get you to where you want to be.
Let’s take a look at these five steps to set you on the right path:
Before you start investing your time and money do some research into the floristry industry to make sure being a professional florist is really what you want to do. It’s time to ask yourself some very real questions. Consider what are the different industry areas you could explore? Can you realistically see yourself working in a floristry environment? What are the opportunities available to you? Is your love of flowers enough motivation? Why do you want to be a florist? Are your expectations realistic? What is your earning potential? Is professional floristry a good fit for your lifestyle?
Write down all your questions and then go after the answers. You can check out industry websites, blogs and speak to other people already working in the industry to start to explore the answers to your questions. If you want to know what your signature floral style could be, check out our fun Floral Archetypes quiz right here.
You might be gifted with a natural ability to create beautiful designs, but education is always going to be our number one piece of advice for florists at any stage! To be a professional florist there are certain things you are going to need to know. Floristry techniques, classic designs, how to work with and care for flowers and the principles and elements of design are all going to help you build stable foundations upon which to evolve.
There is no singular right, defined, or better way to pursue your floristry education. It can look like many different things and can vary country to country. In the UK, it is not a legal requirement to have a specific certification, qualification or licence - we always recommend checking the exact details for your own country though!
To begin learning, options range from free on-line classes and in person workshops, all the way to accredited courses within higher education establishments such as colleges, which typically last one or two years and can cost several thousand pounds or dollars. Of course there is also our personal favourite – online courses and membership which offer a super accessible way to learn with access to the best industry teachers from all over the world, all on your own terms, in your own time.
Our recommendation is to take a look at your learning style, your financial resources and the time you have available to learn. Keep in mind, when looking for jobs, that some employers favour industry experience, and your demonstrable skills and techniques. Others may favour a more formal education and training path. If you have a particular employer or business in mind that you would love to work for, we recommend speaking to them directly to find out what their personal requirements would be. Beyond that we recommend identifying your own personal goals and training interests to identify which course or courses would be the best option for you.
The very nature of learning floristry skills is practical - if you’re just reading about how to make a bouquet STOP and go and grab some flowers. Learning will be life long so we implore you not to wait until you believe you are ready, but to begin gaining experience right away. When you’re just starting out, creating designs for friends, family or your home can be a great way to grow your skills and build your confidence. When you are ready, you can gain more formal experience with internships, volunteering or a trainee job in a local flower shop. It is through actually doing that you will discover your strengths and specific interests within the world of floristry which naturally leads us on to our next step
If you choose to join us in the professional arena of floristry, the education and experience steps will be a continual part of your journey. Pretty soon though you will start to discover your own style and you will be ready to grow intentionally. It is time to start identifying how you want to work, who you want to work with, your ideal market and what you need to do to make your presence known there. You can focus on growing a portfolio that shows off your work to potential employers or clients. You can use your Socials in a similar way too! – Platforms like Instagram can make for a great showcase of your work and can even launch your own business when you’re ready.
If you are pursuing your floristry career outside the walls of traditional higher education establishments, the bridge from being a student to being a professional is simply crossed when you start charging money for your services and designs whether that be as an employee, a freelancer or your own business owner. By this stage you should have a strong sense of your strengths and interests and a good understanding of the different opportunities available to you. By now, you should have what you need to go after that position at your local florist or take your first steps as a floral entrepreneur. we love that your own floristry business can begin as a side hustle, simply from your home and social media – Be sure to familiarise yourself with your country’s legal business requirements though!
Remember, there is no set time line or checklist to tell you when you are ready and the really exciting part? The learning and growing of your floral career will always be evolving. Whichever path you choose, you can lean on me for support at every step of the way inside Flower Class.
Good luck, we know you can do wonderful things!
Team Joseph Massie!
PS We've compiled a list of some of our favourite floristry tools and sundries, which you can find right HERE. Take a look and let us know if you have any questions!