Roses are red, violets are blue, being a Florist could be the right career for you!

Are you passionate about all things floral? Do you enjoy making people smile? Florists get to be involved in other people’s special occasions by designing and creating floral arrangements that’ll leave a lasting impression. 

What do Florists do?

Florist collage

Florists design and create beautiful flower arrangements for a whole host of occasions such as weddings, birthdays, and baby showers.

The size and scale of the arrangement will vary – someone may want to purchase a single bunch of flowers to present to their partner on their birthday, or they might want to order enough flowers to fill a whole room for an upcoming baby shower. Either way, most people order flowers to spark joy in others or to offer comfort – which makes the sentiment behind them pretty important.

Some Florists work from standard pre-formatted arrangement layouts while others become true artists – exploring their own floral designs and producing original creations. Those who get really into floral design may also create elaborate displays or floral art pieces for competitions or exhibitions.

Whilst Florists spend a long time designing and creating, they’re also responsible for looking after the plants and flowers within their care. This means that they must know about different species of foliage, flowers, grass, and herbs and how to care for them.

Once they’re cut in preparation for arrangement, their care becomes even more important as they now have a shelf life.

Typical daily tasks of a Florist include:

  • Choosing and ordering flowers for arrangements.
  • Designing and creating wreaths, bouquets, and flower arrangements.
  • Taking customers’ flower orders and making sure that each arrangement is completed by the specified time.
  • Helping customers choose different flower-based products and teaching them how to care for their flowers.
  • Putting together floral displays at events.

What skills do I need to become a Florist?

The right person will:

  • Have a genuine interest in plants and flowers.
  • Have good people skills.
  • Be creative.
  • Have good time management and organisational skills – as people will order flowers and expect them to be ready on time.
  • Have a good eye for detail, as well as understanding and appreciating how different colours and shapes go together.
  • Be tactful and sincere. The people who usually order/buy flowers often do so for important occasions which mean a lot to them, so they’ll expect the person they’re buying from to appreciate and understand this.
  • Have a reasonable level of fitness, as the job can be quite physically demanding – you could be on your feet all day and may need to do the heavy lifting of pots, display materials, and large quantities of flowers.
  • Ideally not suffer from hayfever!

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What will I love about being a Florist?

  • The chance to get creative and experiment with different floral designs.
  • Making people happy with your beautiful designs.
  • Being connected to nature. People typically think of flowers as being products of summer and just being around them can make you feel more cheerful and positive.
  • Variety – no two days are ever the same and you never know which customer will be walking through the door next and what they’ll ask you to create.

    One day, you could be putting together a romantic bunch of flowers for someone’s anniversary and another day you could be making wreaths for a funeral.

What are the challenges of being a Florist?

  • Being a Florist can mean early starts and a lot of physical work, which may be different from the dainty and delicate work that some people associate with floristry.
  • The people coming to you to order flowers may have heightened emotions, which are linked to the event that they want the flowers for. For example, if someone is ordering flowers for a funeral, then they may be very upset, or if someone is making an order for wedding flowers, then they may be very particular about how they want them to look.

    The fact that there’s so much sentiment behind what you’re creating can often add pressure to the role. However, the satisfaction that you get from making people happy with your work will usually make the pressure to deliver worth it.

How much will I earn as a Florist?

As a Florist, you could earn an estimated salary of £26,000. However, if you become self-employed, you’ll be able to set your own rates and some customers may also give tips!

Are there opportunities to progress?

Some Florists go on to become Store Managers, Supervisors, or Head Florists, while others may start off working as an employee for a flower company or shop and then decide to take the self-employed route once they’re confident in their skills.

How do I get started?

floristry courses

In order to become a Florist, you don’t need to have any formal qualifications. However, floristry does involve a lot of skill and knowledge, so there are a couple of routes that you can take to get your floristry career off the ground…

Apply for a trainee role or apprenticeship straight away…

There are many employers who’ll take you on as a trainee or apprentice Florist (with no previous skills or experience) just so long as you have a passion for flowers, plants, and people – and a willingness to learn.

So if you’re keen to get stuck in and you don’t fancy spending the time and money on any qualifications before making your application, then it’s worth contacting your local flower shops to see whether they have any vacancies.

Alternatively, you can have a look online for trainee Florist roles.

...Or gain a floristry qualification to help you develop your skills and credibility

While some people are happy to train on the job, there’s also the option to take a course before you start applying for jobs. This should help to increase your confidence and employability.

Employers will often consider your skills and experience when deciding what salary to pay you – and if you have a qualification under your belt, then you’ll be increasing your chances of getting paid a higher wage.

The Centre for Excellence offers a Floristry Business Diploma course that’ll not only teach you how to make your own flower arrangements, but also how to set up your own floristry business in case you want to strike out on your own.