A florist plays a big role in a lot of significant times in your life. From the flowers you will enjoy on your wedding day to those on display the day of your funeral, florists play a big part in the lives of all members of the community. There is rarely a woman who doesn't remember the first bouquet she was given, and florists also play a role during the holidays to send love and warm greetings across the country.
People who wish to be florists have many choices. Many florists choose to go into business for themselves. Creativity and talent should be the first thing you consider. You should not take on such an endeavor before being fully prepared, having extensive experience and knowledge of not only flowers, but of the floral industry. A florist who becomes a small-business owner must create a distinct edge and reputation and continue to learn about the industry. A florist in business for himself can make decent to great money as long as he makes and follows a well-researched business plan.
Many beginning florists simply want to work with flowers. They apply for jobs at local florist shops. Some choose to even work at mainstream stores that sell flowers, simply to gain experience and knowledge. A florist who chooses that path can expect little more than minimum wage until raises and other promotions come his way. These florists sometimes work from huge warehouses shipping products nationally.
Florists work on roadside stands in some areas. When there isn't the potential for high-volume business--or money isn't available to open a shop--roadside floral shops can be a florist's best bet. It can be a great convenience to a customer who suddenly realizes he shouldn't reach his destination empty-handed.
Some florists even choose to sell flowers from their home. While you will still have to get the proper business licenses, that is an option by placing your designs, history, references and contact information on a comprehensive business website. Being this sort of florist is a big risk, but the benefits can pay off with proper advertising and word of mouth.
Some florists, upon immigration, choose to create floral shops that represent the culture they come from. Many floral arrangements are unique to cultures, cities and even countries. The English-garden style is often copied in the American culture.
While there are no formal education requirements to break into this field and succeed, a florist needs to know a lot about flowers. Getting an undergraduate degree in another field is recommended, while you should also take business classes if you plan to open your own florist shop. A horticultural degree may be helpful, but it isn't necessary to become a florist. Local community centers probably offer floral arrangement classes that beginners should take to get down the basics.
Florists should keep a portfolio, a photographic display of events catered, bouquets arranged and events handled. Baskets done in the past for holidays should be photographed for display for an example of what you are capable of doing. Even if you want to customize every order, a potential client needs to know what you are capable of, even if she wants you to do it completely her way. Another must for a florist is a website. The portfolio can be placed on the website, and you can also provide a guest forum. By having easy access to comments from past customers, a potential client will feel as though he can instantly trust you...or not. Florists' reputations are made--and kept--by presenting a high-level quality of work and creativity.
Florists should be willing to create a bouquet for whenever that perfect gift is needed...Whether it's for a birthday or a two-month anniversary, a really good florist will have a "can do" attitude when it comes to assembling a bouquet, arrangement or basket. You need to respect that the florist is an experienced "artist" who knows the best look and feel for arrangements. However, if you know what you want specifically, most florists will respect that and simply give you your choices without further suggestion. If you are unsure, trust the professionals every time.
When it comes to a florist, you often get what you pay for. If you are simply looking for a simple dozen red roses, going to your local grocery store will typically satisfy your needs. However, if you want a bit more planning and sophistication to go into your floral planning, shop around at several florists. You will want to choose a professional florist for a bouquet or basket that will truly impress. Not only are the varieties extreme, but a true florist will know how to express what you want to say with flowers. Get a clear idea of what you want to say and what your loved one likes before seeing a florist. Armed with that information, the florist can take over in creating a perfect floral arrangement for your loved one.
It's simply not enough for a florist to have a traditional education. He must also learn the history and significance of flowers and floral arrangements. There are not many schools specifically set up for that, and most choose to do their own research. In fact, it is wise for all florists to learn the language of flowers. The language of flowers refers to how people used to send flowers to get certain messages across to others. In Victorian times, speaking the language of flower symbolism was important.
The balm of Gilead meant cure or relief. Acacia meant friendship. Flowering almond meant hope. Amethyst meant admiration. The bridal rose meant happy love. Many other flowers had meanings, too. You'll find in Resources below a website that goes in depth about dozens of flowers that symbolized emotions or significant messages in those times. Some florists still refer to those guides in their selection of floral arrangements for weddings, parties and even for funerals.