Take 101 florist and suppliers. Add in four awesome speakers. Mix well with some fabulous floristry - most of it completely foam free - and the result?
A fabulous, fun and fact filled weekend of floristry, friendship and inspiration of every kind!
And that’s not us saying it ... that was the reaction of the delegates ... in fact the instant feedback forms were staggeringly positive with many asking when the next one would be as they wanted to make sure they were there!
Designed to cover all the key points facing florists today, the weekend kicked off with hands on floristry to give delegates the chance to try for themselves new alternatives to traditional foam as well as design skills needed to go foam free.
And with the support of Oasis® Floral Products and FleuraMetz not only did delegates get the chance to play (you can see some of them in the gallery below) but, under the guidance of Morgan Douglas Nuth and his brilliant team of Good Florist Guide members, help create some incredible designs ranging from classic Moongates to deconstructed Arches, reception runners and some amazing foam free table decorations that even managed to impress the DJ – someone who has probably seen more table decs than many – who described them as the best he has seen!
Created by Nicola Evans, Karen Lindsay and Alex Thompson
Created by Morgan Douglas Nuth, Eve Kilkie and Abbi Gilpin
Created by Irina Victoria and Abbi Gilpin
The first day ended with a brilliant presentation by Amy and Katie Bennet of Strelitzia Software who showed delegates the importance of databases, emails and newsletters and who helped many on a one-to-one basis make more of their customer information.
The Sunday speaker line up was equally brilliant. Kathy Ennis of Little Piggy – generously supported by the Floristry Trade Club – kicked off proceedings with one of the most down to earth and do-able sessions on marketing and social media practices. And not only inspiring but with the aid of a take-away planner kit something everyone could start the next day!
Next up Tim Huckabee of Floral Strategies brought his trademark style to the room with a – at times - blunt but often humorous take on what florists need to do to up the sale without squirming or offending the customer ... all actually incredibly easy once you get your head round it!
After a working lunch that focussed on sustainability and allowed delegates to talk with suppliers and fellow florists on how to achieve best social practices without damaging profit, John Davidson of Tom Brown Wholesale carried on the money theme in his presentation.
Referencing the issues facing the industry in terms of global influences, exchange rates, supply issues (you can read our special report here) and economic downturns he highlighted ways florists could save money and deal with the challenges ahead.
And closing the day was Richard Eagleton, the charismatic and inspiring former CEO of McQueens who had taken the time over the weekend to talk with virtually every delegate and within his round up speech managed to not only address many fears and concerns but encouraged everyone in the room to realise just how amazing they are and how powerful the role of a bespoke florist is!
Commenting on the event organiser and host Caroline Marshall-Foster said: “The events we run are probably the best part of my job because I get to do what I love the most ... bringing the industry together to share and develop ideas. GFE ’22 was no exception not least because I know that spending time and money on anything at the moment is tough and so I was even more appreciative of the support shown to us.
Delegates travelled from all over – Ireland to Cornwall, Scotland to Wales ... we even welcomed a delegate from Romania! Best of all the vibe was amazing and proved that there are so many forward thinking florists in the sector who are going to take whatever is thrown at them and turn it into a positive. I can’t wait for the next ones!”
Good Florist Event in pictures!
Florists get creative
On Saturday afternoon and with the support of both Oasis® Floral Products and FleuraMetz more than 50 florists practiced funeral floristry using both the newest and more sustainable products available as well as self made frames and moss.
Florists get talking
Whether it was engaging with the speakers, the suppliers or each other, talking was the order of the day. Serious, laugh out loud and all points in between ... Good Florist Event was true connection and collaboration!