Flowers provide universal delight whether monochrome and of a delicate persuasion or an exuberant festoon of colour and perfume. As our senses are engaged, so emotions are mobilised. Flowers can be a gift to both the giver and receiver, as neatly expressed by Confucius, “flowers leave some of their fragrance on the hand that bestows them”. It is little wonder that working creatively with flowers can be highly fulfilling.
I am highly attuned to the marriage of “passion at work” and a viable business model. As such, I am delighted to have spotted this winning combination at my local florists. This isn’t a typical flower shop. With retail overheads being onerous, a smart decision was made to co-locate flowers alongside beautiful designer clothes in an appealingly staged setting, complete with chandeliers and other items for sale. The end result is that the sum of the parts is so much greater than the constituents.
Recognising the creative thinking behind this enterprise I arranged to interview one of the business owners, Naomi. It is impressive that her first foray into retailing has been profitable in year one. Also, she isn’t afraid to experiment in order to uncover her next ambition. She is heading towards devoting more time to interior designing, with flowers undoubtedly having an adorning role.
yourSecondWind relates to the renewal and energy which kick in when we find our path. Typically, my clients have significant achievements under their belts and are in transition. Some choose to advance in their existing or in an adjacent field of expertise. Meanwhile, others are embarking on a quest for new horizons in unchartered territories. Whatever their circumstances, my clients are rewarded by devoting time and energy to considering their strengths and where their deepest interests lie. In Naomi’s case, while serendipity led her to floristry in the first place, her love of creating beauty is enlarging the canvas of her work life.
Here’s to doing what you love, loving what you do. For help in discerning and plotting your path, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
How/why did you set up your business and what were you doing before?
I was originally looking for space to sell furniture online and bumped into a friend who is a fashion designer and she asked if I was interested in a collaboration. Just two weeks later we opened a shop together selling both flowers/interior objects and fashion. Before I was lying on the beach in Mexico recovering from a 10-year business doing high end corporate and events, mainly floral designing. My first business happened organically over a few years. It was a fairly easy transition.
Who’s in your team?
There are four of us – Natalie and I are business owners and we have two in our support team.
What has surprised you?
I think we have done extremely well with a profitable business considering we have been open just over 12 months.
What do you like most about your set up?
I love the design aspect, logo, shop display, window display, marketing etc.
What would you like to do less of?
Less time in the shop would be great so that I can do more designing.
Do you have a motto that you live by?
You’re only as good as your last job! – and it doesn’t feel like work when it’s a passion.
What advice would you give to somebody looking for a new direction ( job/career)?
Dream job – if you could do any job in the world what might it be?
Who/what got you into flowers/interiors?
My cousin was a florist and her boss was looking for someone to hire!
What’s your favourite “look”?
I love luxury vintage.
What has been your best gig and what’s on your bucket list?
Interstate corporate function for 500 people in Melbourne Star Casino and a few celebrity events. My bucket list is to live in Spain – not really work related!
What’s the best bit of advice you would give a small business person who’s just starting out?
Don’t stress about the small stuff, focus on what you can do and allocate jobs you don’t like doing – for me this is paperwork/accounts.
What would you love to learn?
More about the mathematical/technical aspects of design.