Why am I a Florist?
Updated: Oct 14, 2019
I would like to share my story with all of you. If anyone asked me 5 years ago where I would be today, I wouldn’t have given them the answer of business owner, or even florist. I had thought I would be a graphic designer. I can’t tell you when exactly my interest in flowers started, but I can tell you I loved to pick them from the side of the road when I was younger - even if it was just a dandelion. Maybe I just knew that they were something happy, I love my job today because I love to spread happiness. When a recipient of our flowers comes in, or calls us to tell us we made their day, it just makes me smile! I love that what I do every single day makes people smile. I love that my job is to spread happiness.
My story starts about 7 years ago, when I was 15 (yes, I know you are doing the math) I was looking for my first job. I knew many places didn’t hire until you were at least 16, so I made phone calls to ask age minimums. One of the places I called was a flower shop, they wouldn’t even tell me an age, they simply said I needed to be a florist or a designer, and not to bring a resume in since I didn’t have experience. This was a bit disappointing, as I would have loved to work in a flower shop. I continued my job search, and ended up working at different fast food restaurants until I was 17. At this point, I had been working at the same restaurant for 2 years, and I was tired of it. I wanted to do something more rewarding than just handing food and drinks to the next person. I wanted to meet people and build relationships with them, and to see them again. Yes, I was probably seeing the same people often, but so many people came through that they were just another face.
It took a while of job searching, but I ended up at a point where the decision was mine. I was offered two jobs! I was offered a full-time assistant manager position at a bakery, and a part-time cashier position at a floral shop. I made the decision to take the job at the flower shop, where I was offered minimum wage. I started out wrapping arrangements and bouquets,
handling cash, cleaning anything, and many more duties! I had always thought it was easy, you play around and be creative with some pretty flowers, and that is your day. I quickly learned this was not the case - I spent many days moving buckets, taking orders, and dusting shelves. The worst part was every Saturday, we cleaned the cooler side to side, front to back. What exactly does this involve? Take out every single bucket, sweep and mop the cooler, empty and sanitize each bucket, and put everything back in fresh water; with a fresh cut of course! There was rarely any down time where I just sat and played on my phone, there was always something to do. I continued this pattern part-time, and picked up more shifts when
holidays came around.
In 2015, about one year after I had started, I had just graduated high school, and was not going to college or university right away. I was still working at the same shop, and
happy as could be! I was working more often, and being given more
responsibilities. Yes, I knew how to make small bouquets that were not in a vase, but nothing fancy. I was shown the math, shapes and colors that are involved in making a nice arrangement. I was learning from a second-generation florist, on the job! As time went on, I made more arrangements, more often. The shop owner would compliment me on my designs, and how fast I was learning. She said she could see me being a florist in the future, and I always told her “Maybe, but I plan to be a graphic designer.” One year later I went to NAIT and got my graphic design certificate. I started in September of 2016, and
graduated in April 2017. To finish, I had to do an internship at a framing store in their graphic design department as part of my grade. It was 2 weeks long, and I was just over it. Sitting alone, in silence at a desk all day was not for me. I started to work at the shop more after I realized I enjoyed it more.
I ended up leaving the shop in August of 2017, shortly after I heard the owner was retiring and the shop was going to be under new ownership. This was the perfect time to leave and start my own business. I had graphic design experience, which saved me a lot in the start up. I was able to work on my own logo, business cards, and any other design material I needed - including my website! I spent months working on everything from home, and officially opened December 6, 2017. I have been in business for a little over a year now, and could not be happier!
To this day, I cannot answer why I picked the flower shop - it offered less hours and less money. It seems illogical, but now I look back at my decision, and I am so glad I had made it!