Who doesn’t inspire themselves today through social media? Who doesn’t have a Facebook, Instagram and/or pinterest account (not to mention snapchat and tik tok?)? All of these social media channels are the source of inspirations for all lovers of flowers – florists and consumers alike. Florists love to see bouquets, techniques, styles and follow well known floral designers. They’re part of large facebook groups and they love to see any photo of flowers. For consumers, flowers are booming at the moment as they inspire and create awe, especially in Instagram and Pinterst. Consumers love seeing photos full of color, wedding bouquets, large scale weddings, and, of course, beautifully styled photos.
One Core Value
And all of these photos are, generally, the product of good florists with one core value. The power of this value is undeniably a question of craftsmanship, the beacon of success in our industry. But craftsmanship is not just a word, it’s a trait, a way of working, and, especially, a technical concept that one picks up during a florist’s education. Without education, nobody can become a good craftsman and therefore understand the different stages which floristry has passed over the decades.
Picture by Kiana Underwood
Craftsmanship: a fundamental technique
Over the years you get to know who is passionate about floristry and who sees floristry as a means to an economic result. The latter won’t understand craftsmanship; the former lives from it and allows our industry to keep on moving forward, creating further value in our chain.
Why? Craftsmanship is the quality of a design and work shown in something made by hand. As a result, a craftsman must be highly skilled in that craft. Therefore, to reach that skill, one must know the techniques to get there and hone in on your passion to get there. Understanding, and appreciating this skill, is a key difference to success in these who have a flower shop just to sell and those true florists that make a true difference and sell their creations.
Picture by Smithers Oasis
Two Essential Points
Why is craftsmanship so important in our industry? Any craftsman in floristry needs to know two main points:
- In order to advance as a craftsman, any new development or tool is based on certain fundamental techniques. Knowing how to get to that point passes through a basic knowledge to get to that point.
- To build their own brand, style and therefore concept, a florist needs to pass and understand all the other styles and concepts in order to evolve into their own.
These two points are essential to build and progress to today, and any day’s, needs of consumers.
Chris Martens of Smithers Oasis and Jan de Boer of Barendsen
One person who I have always had the most interesting conversations about this has been Chris Martens, manager of Smithers Oasis Benelux. He has always underlined that craftsmanship is the key for the sector in general to move forward. But it’s not just the sector, it’s florists. As he has always rightly pointed out, it’s craftsmanship that ultimately will allow a florist to develop professionally and keep moving. That’s why companies such as Smither’s Oasis have always kept on designing products that help develop this incredibly important factor in floristry.
Jan de Boer
Another important tool in floristry and craftsmanship is honing in to new and exciting flowers as Jan de Boer has done in Barendsen. He’s always married producers and florists so that both seek out the best each have to offer by putting craftmanship and novel varieties together in order for both parts of the chain to thrive.
Innovate and Constantly Evolve
Finally, of course, craftsmanship can only be successful with ongoing education. Every florist needs to innovate and constantly evolve their craft. Schools, floral designers and the new breed of social media florists marrying growing and floristry have had a huge success in increasing versatility, techniques and bringing craftsmanship closer to us via social media.
Ultimately, the evolution of craftsmanship is not singular; each other’s craftsmanship evolves within their own journey. Hence, although one concept, it’s a myriad of different takes. As a florist you need to grasp your own craftsmanship by focusing on new styles, techniques, tools, and products that the market pushes forward.
As a result the only way to really achieve a place in today’s digital world is through the most primitive concepts in floristry.