Illustrator Katie Laura Ashton

The daily struggles of a florist illustrated playfully

By: THURSD. | 07-12-2019 | 3 min read
I’m Katie, a florist & artist. I’ve been working in the floristry industry for 12 years in various ways like full time florist retail, to floral design studios to running my own wedding flower business to freelancing. It’s a vibrant industry, there’s never a dull moment. Katie Laura Ashton article portrait on Thursd For a long time, I wanted to write a book about being a florist but could never get the right words together. In hindsight I realise it was the wrong medium. Drawing my stories & quips just comes naturally to me. I’ve drawn illustrations depicting the little things involved with day to day life like finding leaves in your boots or not being able to return home from a walk without foraged branches in your arms. Yeah it’s not really about being ‘good’ at drawing, it’s more a celebration of the florist lifestyle, a reminder ‘hey, you’re a florist! Washing twigs and leaves out of your hair and obsessively photographing that bouquet over & over till you get the one that 100% represents your love & talent for flowers isn’t normal. You’re a bit weird and that’s really COOL!’ Katie Laura Ashton article delivery on Thursd I always say being a florist isn’t a job, it’s a lifestyle. Because it is, once you become a florist and dare to delve deep into the flowery world, you’re never the same again. The things you learn and experience and the fellow florists you meet, it makes an awesome way to live and make a living. However, saying all that, there are the dark corners of the industry which aren’t really talked about like burn out, comparison, undercutting competition, market saturation. I think it’s important to sometimes touch on these to help stop others feeling isolated and remind one another, we’re not alone. Katie Laura Ashton article portfolio on Thursd I’m amazed by how much the industry has changed since my early days. The sense of community is awesome, that wasn’t really a thing even 5+ years ago, now we have florist meet ups where methods and ideas are traded over cups of tea & biscuits. Seriously- back in the day, fellow florists would barely even look at each other while passing the wholesale aisles. We also have local flower growers popping and flower schools which I think are raising the industry standards. And not to forget the enormous amount of inspiration and resources to get one started on their path to becoming a florist. Overall, there’s a lot of change happening in the flower industry which brings about elements of uncertainty but also a lot of positivity. I’m excited to be a part of it and to watch it evolve. I’m especially intrigued by the eco floral foam- free movement which for a lot us means unlearning years and years of old methods. And I think right now, we have more questions than answers but it’s a huge opportunity for innovation and really intentional sourcing of the materials we use which can only be a good thing for the future of floral design.
Instagram Katie Laura Ashton
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