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Mother’s Day musings…

Mother's Day

Whilst we’ve been busy in the studio with your luscious orders heading out of the door each day, it has also been a treat to carve out a little time for myself. I’ve managed to head out of the door once in a while for a dip in the sea with friends. The beauty of having the sea right on your doorstep. It’s exhilarating and definitely something I’d recommend to anyone thinking about sea swimming. As invigorating as it is in winter, I’m looking forward to some warmer sea temperatures ahead now that we have made it into March.

With a sense of spring in the air it’s so lovely to start planning for the year ahead. The garden is beginning to show signs of new life and the beautiful colour palette of the season ahead. My head is buzzing with ideas for Spring – including a living Spring wreath! It will include dainty spring bulbs, moss and a plethora of other seasonal flora and fauna – as well as being plastic free! Keep an eye on our social media pages for updates and we’ll be sure to let our newsletter subscribers know when the wreaths are added to our online shop. Only a limited number will be available as they are very time consuming. Watch this space!

 But before I get a chance to perfect our Spring wreaths we’ve got another date in our calendar…. Sunday 27th March 2022 is Mother’s Day. Mother’s Day is the perfect time to …

One Year On…

The Floral Boutique Studio, St Helens, Isle of Wight

It’s been a whole year since we packed up all of our scissors and wrapping to move to our Studio. And what a busy year it’s been!

I didn’t really have any expectations for our first year. Were we going to be forgotten and not receive a single order? Were we going to be bombarded and not be able to cope? I think I just hoped it would organically scale allowing me to flex and to get back to what I truly love doing – the flowery bit! And boy have I done a lot of that over the last 12 months – and loved it! The work/life balance has definitely been the most rewarding part of the move.

With the move done, I was keen to explore how to make the business work both for me and for the environment. One of my biggest goals (and challenges!) was how to move towards becoming more eco friendly. It has been so interesting delving into our packaging and tweaking it so that it can be recycled or composted where possible.  

Now that we are on the farm we also have use of a compost heap for our green waste. The majority of our water waste is poured straight into the surrounding gardens. Then there are the flowers, we’ve introduced some locally grown flowers into our bouquets this year and very much look forward to adding more lines over the coming months. Would you like to hear more about our local flower …

Local sustainable flowers

The Floral Boutique Isle of Wight

Providing local, sustainable flowers has been a hot topic in the Studio for well over 18 months now. We’ve been exploring how we can provide our customers with luxurious bouquets whilst at the same time minimising the ‘flower footprint’.

We would never hide the fact that the majority of our flowers are imported from Europe by sea, but up until now we haven’t felt ready to share with you the steps that we’ve taken to try and off-set this journey. This is a subject close to our hearts so we feel that now’s a good time to share the following practices that we’ve put in place.

Recycling flower waste

We separate all of our waste. All of our green waste is put onto our own compost heap, cardboard is recycled and any plastic from our flower deliveries is reused for extra packing in the van for deliveries. It keeps everything in place on our bumpy island roads! We even use any water from buckets and vases to water our small cutting garden. Win win!

Sustainable packaging for flower bouquets

Our bouquets are tied with natural twine which can be reused or composted. The gift boxes can be used to store things, returned to us or recycled. The cotton handles can be chopped up and put into the compost. The natural Kraft and tissue paper can both be recycled.

We are currently using a bio-based clear cello for the aqua pack bouquets. This will disintegrate into carbon dioxide, water and humus …

Florist Choice Bouquet

Florist Choice Bouquet

It’s an absolute privilege and joy as a florist to be given free rein to create in line with the seasons. I introduced our Florist Choice Bouquet in response to the many conversations I’ve had with customers over the years who say ‘anything you create will be lovely’ or ‘whatever you think, I’ll leave it up to you’. It’s always lovely to hear these sentiments which come as a result of the reputation that we’ve built over the last 14 years, and which we never take for granted.

More blooms for your buck!

Our Florist Choice Bouquet gives us greater flexibility to design something both exclusive and exquisite, in a considered style that makes sense for the occasion. There’s also a price point that comes into play. With these bouquets, we always take advantage of readily available seasonal flowers. Very often this means that you, the customer, will get more ‘blooms for your buck’ to hack a well known phrase! The combined effect of Covid and Brexit has meant that some stems have increased in price by a whopping 52%. Seasonal flowers mean that we can capitalise on the abundance of a particular bloom, allowing us more scope with which to create a unique design just for you.

What’s included in June?

This month we have seen the return of one of our faves – gorgeous peonies! – which we try to include in our Florist Choice Bouquets where possible. We’ve also got antirrhinums, lisianthus, delphiniums mixed with soft and …

Mother’s Day…what a difference a year makes!

Nic, The Floral Boutique

Hello!

Sorry it’s been a while. This year has been a huge roller coaster and the days have slipped by filled with home school (I am officially renaming it ‘emergency school’!) and delivering beautiful bouquets to you all. Finally the days are getting lighter and the garden is showing wonderful signs of  spring.  Crocus, daffs, snowdrops and primroses are all showing their faces, and are very welcome.

We were so lucky this year to enjoy a super sell out Valentine’s Day. For the first time, we had to limit the number of orders we could accept (being a smaller team, working from a new studio with a different set up, and lockdown 3.0 restrictions) which was unknown territory but hugely gratifying. Thank you to everyone who supported us, we really enjoyed hand delivering your blooms and saw lots of very happy, and surprised, faces along the way.

You may have noticed some new photos of me and the Studio Barn on our social media platforms recently. Back in December, and with the final details of the Studio near completion, we invited the lovely photographer Amanda Herbert to the Barn to take some photos of me in my happy place. Of course, my family also wanted to get in on the action which was lots of fun! Thank you to Amanda for putting us all at ease in front of the camera, and I hope you enjoy the photos we are using to promote The Floral Boutique in our new home …

How to make door wreaths

How to make door wreaths

As the weather starts to turn chilly our thoughts are turning towards Christmas. It will certainly be different this year but we’re feeling positive and so have come up with 3 ways to answer the question you always ask us, ‘how do I make my own door wreath?!

As many of you will know, usually we host our wonderfully popular ‘Wreath Making Workshops’ in December. Always well attended and one of the highlights of our year. It’s a great opportunity for us to spend time with you, have a glass of mulled wine, exchange stories, and, of course, create a fabulous Christmas door wreath too.

This year we’ve decided not to host these workshops due to the ‘Rule of 6’ and of course because we’ve moved to the Studio in St Helens. To be honest we’re just not set up to welcome the public safely this year, which is why we’ve devised 3 alternative ways for you to get your Christmas Wreath jiggle on (so to speak!). We will miss seeing all of your faces but hope that these options prove to be exciting alternatives!

Here goes:

DIY Door Wreath Kit

How about gathering 5 friends or family members and making your own door wreath this year? I’ve put together a beautiful kit and filled it with carefully curated materials that will add some sparkle to both your door and your evening! This DIY Door Wreath Kit will include a moss wreath ring, a bundle of festive foliage, pine cones …

We’re still here!

We're still here!

It’s been such a crazy 6 months since we moved out of the retail shop and into our new Studio Barn with lots of juggling of both mumma and floristry duties. It’s been a huge project but we’re nearly there and I can’t wait to share the space with you. We now have a working sink (oh the challenges of being a florist with no sink… that’s a whole other blog right there!) and also lights!

Whilst the Barn renovations have been in full flow we’ve also been managing The Floral Boutique day-to-day. Keeping up with all of your orders (for which we’re so grateful) for birthdays, anniversaries and ‘just because’ bouquets. We’ve also created several bespoke farewell flowers for loved ones, lots of floral hearts and garlands paying final tributes.

I’m always thrilled when an order comes in via our website or over the phone so thank you for supporting our business during this change. I’m a lot closer now to every element of the business – it’s so exciting when my phone pings in my apron with an order! It’s working and I am over the moon. As some of you know I’ve also had my two little ones with me whilst on my delivery rounds which has meant that, on occasion, I haven’t been able to reach the phone or respond to messages immediately.  So thank you for your patience. We’ve finally made it, the school gates are open, and we are back at the bench on …

Easter Wreath

“To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow…” Audrey Hepburn

The Floral Boutique, Isle of Wight

So here we are in week 4 of lockdown and I just wanted to put a few words together to let you know what it means for us.

The initial isolation struck us right on Mother’s Day week – usually our busiest time of the year. We had to make huge changes to our schedule in a very short space of time. With the threat of a potential lockdown we put together 4 days worth of huge piles of orders in just over 48 hours. My super duper colleagues worked so hard to ensure that our bouquets made their way to all the lovely mums across the Island just in time. Phew!

The ‘perfect storm’ of the pandemic and Mother’s Day meant that we weren’t able to take on as many orders as usual.  We even closed on Mothering Sunday (again, another first)! I am so sorry to any of our customers who were disappointed that we had to close our order book sooner than planned, but I feel that it was the safest thing to do under the circumstances.

We sold every stem and spring bulb we had in the shop before we tidied up, gave the plants a drink to keep them happy, and turned the sign to ‘closed’ on our door. 

As sad as it was to shut up shop (this is the longest we’ve ever closed since we opened 14 years ago) I know that we made the right decision to protect our staff, families and …

Her favourite flowers this Mother’s Day…

Her favourite flowers this Mother's Day

Mum, Mummy, Mother, Mama. Whatever you call her she’s one of the most important people in your life, right? 

When choosing a bouquet I think it’s got to be something that suits her style and personality, so here’s a little guide to my favourite Mothers Day flowers:

Roses – what woman doesn’t love them!? They are so versatile and are available in many many colours and shades. Mix them with some beautiful foliage and that is sometimes all you need.

Tulips – one of my favourites! A true sign of spring when these little guys arrive in our store. We love stocking the unusual varieties such parrot and frilly edge beauties. Enchanting colours and graceful petals. We even have a bouquet dedicated to just these little gems.

Lisianthus – delicate and elegant. These long lasting flowers have petals that are soft like tissue paper and natural and wild form. A perfect accompaniment to a bouquet or even perfect on their own.

Gerbera – known for representing happiness and joy. Simple in style, these feature in our Pretty In Pink bouquet, a bold and beautiful design. 

Narcissus – spring is here! We are in full spring flower season with an abundance of unusual varieties of narcissus and daffodils available this month, from traditional sunny yellows, soft buttery lemons and zingy orange trumpets. All so beautiful and unique. 

Eucalyptus – it’s not always about flowers you know! This foliage has become so popular in our shop with some customers coming in just …