Voted Best Florist in Norfolk

Hello from Norfolk’s Best Florist!

Photo by Richard Jarmy

We are so very grateful to everyone who kindly voted for us to receive this title at the 2022 Muddy Stilettos Awards in Norfolk – especially overwhelming to achieve this amazing honour in only our second year.

We put everything into our little business, which continues to thrive month by month, so this is a great buzz.

Photo by Richard Jarmy

Here we are celebrating with the other local winners at the Royal Norwich Golf Club, 6/7/2022.

26 Weeks Later

Six months ago, after our plan A was pulled from under us, I initiated plan B. I went to the wholesalers, bought some supplies, made up some samples, took some photos, and started our own business.

We weren’t sure what to call it at first, but remembered my late dad saying that your work should be good enough to put your name to it. Which is why he and Mum did that very thing.

We were Flowers by Danielle Wyatt for about a week, before we decided on Danielle Wyatt Flowers (the husband liked that it sounded like I was blooming after being severely pruned).

We started off cautiously buying minimal stock, two vases at a time, and this week we have almost a hundred arriving.

I asked the universe for five orders a day to make it viable, we now regularly have more.

I am almost at capacity for Mother’s Day weekend already, and our customer base is expanding by the day.

We would once again like to thank our very dear friends and family, and the customers who have become friends, for all their love and support, which has helped us realise that our Plan B should have been our Plan A all along.

Here’s to the next busy six months.

A Last Gift

One aspect of running a floristry business I learned very early on is the communication skills I would need.

The shop I worked in was very cold (it had been a funeral directors), which was ideal for a florists. So we all worked in a very slightly warmer part of the building, being alerted to customers by a doorbell (which would sometimes get low on battery, making a very amusing noise – but that’s another story), and we would take it in turns to go out and serve people. I must have been about 18 the day I walked out to probably my most vivid and memorable consultation with a client.

There stood a man, I would soon discover, who was distraught and consumed by grief for the loss of his young wife, accompanied by some of the children he’d been left to care for.

I have since put my careful handling of this down to subconsciously observing my mother’s natural ability to counsel the distressed.

What followed was a lesson in how to guide the bereaved – calmly, patiently, and with empathy.

This gentleman could barely speak. Occasionally he would have to walk off to the other end of the shop to compose himself.

With time, we were able to put together a plan of the tribute we would make for his beloved wife. Cards were sent away with him to write, as I knew he needed privacy and quiet to say what he needed to.

As it happens, this lady is two plots down from my own dad. They passed not too long apart. When I see her name, I remember her husband.

I’ll never forget that day, and what it taught me – skills I still use now. Dealing with the bereaved doesn’t daunt me. I don’t think it did back then. Probably because I have stood in their shoes, and tried my best to treat them how I needed to be at a similar time.

It continues to be an honour to produce the last “gift” for a loved one, and a lot of love and care goes into each and every one.

Yes (again) to the dress

Sad was I when it was time to pack away my wedding dress in the wardrobe. I’d waited so long to wear it, and now it was being put away, retired for the rest of my days . . .

This past week has proved me wrong. ‘Olivia’, as it is known in the dress world, has been proudly adorning a mannequin in the lounge, and has a starring role again! This time as a backdrop for my latest creations.

It’s so good to see it again and look at the back of it! I never saw the back, was never the one doing it up! It’s beautiful.

I’m enjoying it all over again. The mud on the hem from our photo shoot in the woods, the little drops of something down the front. All little reminders of one of the calmest, loveliest days I’ve ever spent. The day I married my best friend.

I’m so looking forward to helping create part of your special day. Now, where are those Jenny Packham shoes…

Full Circle

So once again I have found my way back to floristry, or maybe it’s found its way back to me?

I grew up surrounded by flowers from a very early age. My mum started her business in her front room. Our lives were planned around weddings, our lounge a permanent display room, our spare room a workshop.

After many years of searching, Mum found her shop premises. And I got my own bedroom.

At 16, during an anxious and depressive collapse, my mum set me to work. A career which began with not being able to answer the phone soon turned into providing consultations to very recently bereaved families. It became clear I was rather good at this. By 19, I was helping run the business and was fully trained, although I consider myself to still be learning after 25 years of practice.

Motherhood arrived at 20 and I left the shop behind. In a way I felt I had something to prove. I had never wanted to be a florist, I wanted to be a pharmacist. I was stubborn and didn’t want my path to have been carved out for me. Floristry had gotten me out of bed when I was extremely ill. But I didn’t do it out of choice. So I kind of rejected it as a career, even though I was good at it.

Over the past 20 years, it has always reared its head – people have asked me to do their wedding, funeral flowers, Christmas wreaths – but I didn’t value my work.

I now find myself home-schooling my youngest child, and wanting to have a career of some sort.

And I’ve noticed the difference now is that I enjoy floristry. I’m finally doing it out of choice.

I had the very best teacher in my mum. Her work is meticulous.

I’m starting from home, just like Mum did. Her task was harder as she didn’t have the internet back then.

My lounge is now starting to resemble my childhood one. There are blocks of foam in the house again. My head is bursting with ideas.

I’m very much looking forward to helping create memories, whether it be wedding flowers, tributes to loved ones, or a ‘just because’ bouquet.

Perhaps our paths will cross soon.