For International Women's Day, I have decided to write a somewhat more personal post. Many older women feel invisible. Having brought up their families and perhaps been sidelined in their career as a result they feel lost when their children leave home. Society appears to favour youth and beauty and as we age this is no longer our party. Older women can easily feel irrelevant. Some believe themselves unemployable. I had what would be considered a high power career which I left to bring up my children. When my eldest son went to university I took a two year City and Guilds course in Floristry. I loved it and became increasingly interested in growing cut flowers and the new wave of naturally styled flowers. This led to a year training in horticulture and then both the launching of The Garden Gate and a job growing and arranging flowers at Somerleyton Hall in North Suffolk.
I have recently read a comment ( sorry I am not sure where so I can't attribute it), " empty nest, full mind". This is certainly what has happened to me. When I least expected it, I have found a new passion in life, growing, selling and arranging cut flowers. I go on courses, read books and am constantly learning new things. This is not just about growing better and arranging flowers in new and exciting ways but also covers other things, photography, social media, selling, marketing, websites, colour, fashion, wedding trends etc I have met new people and some of these have become friends. It is not the answer for everyone but learning new things and attending courses can be a gateway to a new phase in life. It has certainly been the case for me.
My story in flowers started as a child growing a tiny patch of London Pride Saxifraga...also known as Whimsey or Look Up and Kiss Me! Fast forward to 8 years ago when I started a City and Guilds training in floristry. I qualified as a florist and then to deepen my growing knowledge and skills I trained in horticulture as well. I trained under a WRAGS scheme at Darsham Nurseries and at Somerleyton Hall. Developing a passion for both growing and designing/arranging British garden flowers, I planted a cutting garden. Having become increasingly concerned about where and how flowers are grown, coupled with a love of British grown flowers. and natural styling, I now specialise in growing and using beautiful British grown flowers to make romantic natural designs. for weddings, events, gifts and much more.