When i set my company up 2 years ago, the most important thing to me, was to make sure it was environmentally responsible. I wanted my flower designs to ultimately not have a negative impact on our beautiful planet earth. It seemed counteractive to me? Selling beautiful flowers and killing the planet in the process that grows them? It didnt make any sense to me.
Now to some peoples negative opinion! I have not taken an "eco" course. Nor do i have any formal training in floristry or horticulture. I am extremely lucky to come from a long line of creative beings and to have also grown up in an alternative house, where we have always lived an eco way of life. Its in my bones, it runs through my blood, its second nature for me to spend an afternoon trolling through an old second hand shop, way before it became cool, finding out little gems in the dust. I spent my Saturdays with my mum and nan bouncing from jumble sale to jumble sale, taking all our finds home and doing a fashion show with vintage Chanel suits and upcycling chest of drawers.
We always had to wash the baked bean can out for the recycling and make sure the water was turned off whilst brushing our teeth or the lights that were not being used were switched off. My mum dressed me and my sister in beautiful clothes, always washed and pressed with care, but came from either her vintage second hand shop she owned in Tunbridge Wells or from another jumble sale way out in the countryside. This was all from the early 1980s way way before retro was ever in fashion!
To me being earth friendly is to reuse as much as we can here on planet earth. To be mindful of our impact as humans, at home and in business. To have flowers flown and shipped in from miles and miles away, when we can buy locally grown makes no sense to me?
The British flower growing business is booming! If you look on flowers from the farm, you will see hundreds of us have popped up! You cant beat the freshness, the smells and the fact its grown right where you live! Im even having a dabble myself and really loving it. Anyone can do it!
For me and my business i decided to never use oasis.The floral industry must get through millions of blocks of the stuff. Constance Spry would be turning in her grave! You cant ever get rid of it. Yes it means i have to turn business down sometimes, if i get asked to do a design i simply cant do on willow, but im ok with that because i am staying true to my beliefs, my eco ethos,
I never use plastic wrap to wrap my flowers in, i either use recycled paper, wallpapers, vintage maps, biodegradable wraps or use second hand vases that ive found at boot fairs, charity shops or my even my nans cupboard! I use old vintage ribbons, plus material ive collected over the years, that ill soon be dying naturally from flowers from my own dye garden!
I either grow my own flowers, herbs and plants at my 2 allotments and garden that are within 10 minutes of my business or i source them from some very good friends, at Green Tip Growers, again within 10 minutes. I have often been known to knock on doors of people i know with amazing gardens! Foraging is another natural way for me, so i love to head out with my snips and forage for berries, foliage, nuts and grasses.
I am currently in talks of sponsoring and working alongside The Sussex Wildlife Trust, to promote the importance of nature in our gardens no matter how small.Weather you have a window box or a 60 foot garden, we can all grow something to help our bee, butterfly and bugpopulation, aswell as our own mental health.
I am working with venues and brides to promote and advise how weddings can be sustainable. It can be done and it is even more beautiful knowing that 1 day of love and celebration has not had a negative impact on our earth! Simple steps can make such a big difference. I really enjoy this type of work. The Oak Barn in Biddenden https://www.the-oak-barn.co.uk/ is my top recommendation for a venue that is dedicated to sustainable weddings. It is so stunning and its ethos is sustainability! I am a very honored supplier there and excited to do more in the future.
Every time i create or buy for my business i ask myself "is this good for my planet?" if i say no then its scrapped and i rethink. Its a natural process, thats been taught to me over 40 years and it is was makes me tick. Every one of us can make changes in our life and in business. We have so much available to us. we have more than enough! We can use alternative products, we can reuse, fix and recycle, but above all i would ask you to do this... start today! You really dont need to do an eco course to prove you are eco friendly! You have to really believe in the want to make a difference for not only yourself, but for your children and grandchildren. Its not about promoting your business or being better than anyone one else, its about living to the rhythm of our planet and working together.
I have some exciting plans hidden firmly up my sleeve, for 2021. I want to share as thats what i do, but i have to keep this under wraps for now.
But on an eco note i have to share and talk and for people to take this idea and run with it. The more we have on board, not only in this industry, but in all industry's and personal lives the better! Eco friendly living is the way forward! You cant buy it... you have to live it with integrity. Anyone can do it and everyone should do it.
Blessings to you all