I felt so privileged to be the first florist to christen this beautiful chapel! I remember this day so vividly. I went on to the grounds of Summergrove, sat by a hedge and made these enormous garlands for hours. It was so peaceful and I tried my best to listen to all the sounds around me. I could hear the bees. I could hear the birds. I could smell the freshly cut lawn. I concentrated intensely on each bit of greenery I was placing and thought about how amazing it was that I was sitting there doing this. It was pure bliss. I had just come out of four years of high school teaching. So I knew all about stress and noise, but I had forgotten all about peace and solace. It was hard to learn to appreciate it and to practice "calm". I have a tendency towards anxiety, so the transition into floristry taught me some important lessons.
Firstly, being a florist is not for the faint at heart and having systems is important. There is so much more to it than sitting by hedge, listening to the birds and bees and wiring greenery together. For this shoot, I didn't have time pressure. I went to Summergrove early in the morning and slowly worked my way through the tasks that I had to do, enjoying all of it. But for a wedding it's different. There is so much to do on the day (not to mention the week leading up to it). Sometimes I can be driving to three different locations: the location of the bride, the ceremony and the reception. Just driving can be stressful, because you have a million things you need to do and you can't do anything while you're driving! There are buckets to clean, buckets to carry, buckets that spill over, buckets that won't fit in the car, buckets with holes, buckets where the handle breaks, buckets that are too small, buckets that are too big or just not enough buckets! Then there are vases to deliver, collect, clean, bleach, collect, deliver and buy. I buy a new set of 12 vases for each wedding (it seems) because every wedding is different and unique. Then, I don't have anywhere to store them for the time I might use them again. Did I say I love my job? Because I do!! Truly. But there are so many crazy aspects of the job that caught me by surprise. But the lesson that I've learnt from it all is, systems are good, not evil. I've learnt some amazing systems and processes that make all of the above easier, but it's taken time. Lots of time.
The second lesson I've learnt from floristry is how to be calm. When I get stressed or anxious my fingers and hands don't work so well. My husband laughs at this, but it's quite stressful for me. I always do the "fine motor skilled jobs" the day before the wedding so that I'm not trying to do a flower crown when I have time pressure. I always do a much better job. I have learnt that how I schedule my days leading up to a wedding is paramount! I'm learning to be calm, even among the chaos. I think this world is chaotic full stop. And no matter what profession we're in, we have to try and find our "calm". With flowers, I listen to quiet and peaceful music while I'm doing it. I always have a cup of tea with me (even though I never end up drinking it) because it makes me feel calm and like I have all the time in the world. I also hire people now to help me. This brings more calm into my job too. Knowing that I have people that do such an amazing job alongside me and knowing that I don't have to do everything myself makes me calm.
Anyway, I always surprise myself when I start writing at what comes out. Hopefully you've enjoyed my rant, but if not, here are some photos to enjoy instead.
Polka Dot Bride: http://www.polkadotbride.com/2016/07/modern-romantic-bridal-ideas/
Location: Summergrove Estate Styling/coordinating: Casuarina Weddings and Creative Weddings Photographer Ivy Road Photography Film Figtree Pictures Vases The Palace & Co Furniture Hampton Event Hire MakeupThe Beauty Lineup Flowers Floral & Mineral Dress The Babushka Ballerina Shoes Forever Soles and Model- Shannon Taylor