Happy birthday to us!

Ryde gifts

13% discount on all purchases* made before 31 July 2019.

July is an exciting month as our little floral business turns thirteen. Happy birthday to us! Did you know that you can buy a range of gifts from us here in Ryde, not just flowers? 

This expansion into homeware and garden decor prompted our name change 5 years ago. It seemed to evolve naturally as we moved beyond stocking flowers to include an ever changing supply of indoor plants, unique ceramic pots and elegant glassware. We wanted to offer an alternative to customers looking for a little extra to accompany a bouquet, or to customers wanting to support us despite not being greenfingered!

One of the very popular lines that we’ve branched into is stocking St Eval candles. St Eval have been making candles from their Cornish home for over 25 years and their ethos of ‘treading softly on the earth’ and a strong belief in keeping traditions alive, seemed to fit with how we strive to do business too. They create their own unique blend of wax and fragrance ensuring a truly fabulous scent. Our most popular candle is definitely the Sea Salt, we have customers who stock up on 2 or 3 at a time! But I think my personal favourite is the Bay and Rosemary, a comforting and welcoming fragrance as you step inside the door of your home. 

We rate these candles so highly that we’ve added them to our online shop as an addition to any …

Why June weddings are my favourites…

June wedding

I always look forward to June. And not just because it means warm summer days are on the way, but because it’s the month I got married.

The beginning of June is a lovely time as we see the transition of flowers from spring into summer and can enjoy the best of both worlds.  Ranunculus, peony and dahlia are available now and when used together create stunning arrangements. I couldn’t wait to use these goodies and more in my own wedding flowers!

When John and I got engaged (whilst out kayaking around the picturesque Priory Bay) I had no idea how my ‘dream wedding’ would look. It wasn’t until we had chosen our wedding venue at Landguard Manor, Shanklin, that I could picture our special day. All we wanted was a relaxed day to share with everyone we love. I don’t like a fuss!

I knew I wanted bright summery flowers – lots of clashing colours (because I didn’t have a favourite flower or colour to choose). So when it came to ordering them from my suppliers I didn’t do any calculations like I usually do, no lists or post-it notes, I simply scrolled through the selection of what was freshest that week and added it to my basket. I think you get the best combinations when you see what nature can bring. I was literally a kid in a sweet shop!

The day before our wedding we loaded the shop van with flowers, vases and the trinkets I’d collected …

Peonies…the ‘must have’ flower for many wedding parties!

Peony wedding isle of wight

Peonies always arrive with fanfare, announcing their arrival rather grandly with their big blousy heads with layers and layers of petals, beautiful foliage on the stem, and the most heavenly scent. They really are a prince among flowers and so naturally are first choice for many of our Isle of Wight brides (we once had a bride change the date of her wedding so that peonies would be in bloom!).

At this time of year bridal Pinterest boards are brimming over with peonies featuring in bouquets, centre-pieces and buttonholes! They’re so versatile and are available in many different colours and shades with new varieties being grown each year. They can pretty much lend themselves to any colour scheme a bride might alight upon.

Last year was the year of the Coral Charm peony. We had vases of them in our shop throughout the season and they were hugely popular with our customers. This year we have a particularly charming variety of peony in stock called Gardenia. It’s so delicate with soft powdery blush tones. The perfect flower for a late spring/early summer wedding with its pale pink outer petals and delicate white inner layers (purity and innocence all rolled up in a flower head). It’s absolute magic watching them open up! A little known fact for you about the peony… it’s known as the ‘flower of riches’ and is said to bring good fortune, luck, and a happy marriage. No wonder then that brides (and us florists!) love using them …

A day in the life of a florist…

a day in the life of a florist

Every day of the week is different in our little flower shop. Different suppliers come on different days. Different staff on different days – and for me different working hours on different days depending on the pre-school run! I love the variety and it’s a big part of why I love my job. No two days are the same.

The first priority of any florist is fresh flowers for the day. Before we started our family I spent many a misty morning driving over the downs for 5.30am flower collections from our suppliers. But since having my babes I’ve found a few new suppliers that are happy to deliver great quality flowers straight to our store up to 4 days a week. That’s been life changing to be honest, not to mention saving precious minutes of a morning!

Once in the shop (after a cup of strong English Breakfast) we start the day by checking all of our online orders, what deliveries need to be scheduled and any priority arrangements. If there is a funeral planned our first delivery is to take the funeral flowers straight to the funeral directors.

Next stop is to get our imaginations firing by arranging our display of plants outside the shop and creating our ‘ready to go’ flower bouquets. I really enjoy playing around with our outside display, using crates, tables, ladders, benches – anything interesting that we have to hand really! One of my favourite props is our vintage bike – pop a …

The flower girl

Flower Girl

I think I was always destined to be a florist. My first floral memory is from when I was around 8 years old picking handfuls of petals from my mum’s rose garden (sorry mum!) and mixing them with water to create a perfume – can you imagine how that looked or smelt?! I would spend masses of time stirring the petals to get the water nicely scented, decant into small glass bottles and sell them from a little table I set up in our front garden hoping to get customers from the pavement beyond (it was a popular dog walking route – I had my fingers crossed!).

I started as a Saturday girl in a local florist in Ryde when I was 13 years old. Literally starting at the bottom – washing out dirty buckets and vases, watering and repotting plants and making bows – so many bows! All this before I was even allowed to touch a flower and get arranging. I didn’t mind though, I think it’s important to learn your craft from the bottom up. I really loved going to work on a Saturday with such a great group of people and learning new skills.

Next up, I moved to a florist in Southsea. I would commute over on the boat five days a week and on the sixth day I attended Highbury College. The college provided a fantastic opportunity to study traditional floristry skills so important for any budding florist. Loaded up with my armfuls of …

What are my favourite flowers?

Isle of Wight tulips

Oh February! We love you – and not just on Valentines Day! January is out of the way and longer days are peeping through. It’s amazing how positive the world looks as the days draw out.

There are definite signs of spring popping up all over our beautiful little Island. Green shoots unfurling all over the place. We took a chilly walk around Newchurch last week starting off at the church, walking around Martin’s Woods and ending at The Pointers pub (where we enjoyed a REALLY tasty roast FYI). As we were strolling I spotted a carpet of delicate snowdrops. Pure and white. The first spring flower to bloom after winter frosts. A sign of rebirth, consolation and hope.…

How will you look after your roses this Valentine’s Day?

red rose valentines day bouquet

And we’re back to the bench! After a lovely break over Christmas and new year making special memories with our families we’ve come back to the Floral Boutique in Ryde refreshed and ready to see what 2019 has in store.

January can be a nice quiet time in a florist, gradually getting back into the swing of things and making lots of exciting plans for the year ahead (as well as drinking copious amounts of tea to keep us warm!).

This year we will be introducing special offers and discounts as well as adding workshop dates to each season – if you’d like to be the first to hear about them why not join our mailing list?…

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