How to become a florist?

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How to become a florist

Introduction

Contrary to appearances, floristry is not only about arranging flowers. It is also the general skills of practical and creative activities, as well as knowledge focusing on botany and plant physiology. Today's flower artists, as true florists should be called, combine artistic skills and gardening knowledge, transforming them into floral works.

Characteristics of an ideal florist

Florists are not only botanists and gardeners, but also real artists of the 21st century. Certainly, lovers of plants and gardens with a sense of imagination and a bit of an aesthetic idea will find themselves in this profession.

A good florist should have:

  • Creativity
  • Precision
  • Sensitivity to beauty
  • Diligence
  • Good work organization

An ideal florist, apart from the above-mentioned characteristics, should have the will to constantly develop his knowledge. Only in this way will it be able to achieve long-term success.

The scope of the florist's knowledge

Florist and botanical knowledge

To be able to use plant material, you first need to prepare it. It doesn't just mean putting flowers in the water. Plants should be cleaned of unnecessary parts, trimmed and placed in water at an appropriate temperature. And when creating plantings, species and their habitat requirements should be selected so that they do not compete with each other for a place to live. Here, the knowledge of plant anatomy and physiology will certainly be helpful. It will also be helpful in creating cut flower bouquets. Botanical knowledge will also be useful when creating floral arrangements, because most exotic species or fruits can turn out to be poisonous not only to people, but also to domestic animals.

Florist and botanical knowledge

Florist and gardening knowledge

Floristry is constantly related to the knowledge of horticulture. A true florist should know the requirements of plants for their cultivation and development. A large part of the orders in floristry is the creation of plantings in containers, or even external compositions of garden plants. Also, when selling potted flowers, it would be good to know at least the basic conditions for growing each of the offered plants. It also often happens that customers come to the florist's shop asking for advice and asking "what's wrong with my favorite plant?". In such cases, it is worth showing professionalism and providing professional advice, which will certainly encourage customers to use our services in the future.

Florist and gardening knowledge

Florist and artistic abilities

It will be difficult to become a good florist without an innate sense of beauty and aesthetics. While the techniques and methods of preparing plant materials can be learned, without the sense of beauty and a sense of aesthetics, it will be difficult for us to become top-shelf professionals. Florists create a variety of floral decorations, ranging from mini bouquets or buttonholes, to bouquets and compositions, to huge floral installations. Thanks to the creative senses of aesthetics and artistic vision, a florist can create floral arrangements for weddings and events, delighting his clients with extraordinary works of art.

Florist - nature lover

Most of the florists I know personally have a love of nature and beauty. This is a very good character trait that certainly helps in getting better results and effects in the world of floristry. In fact, most, if not all, flower designers, the so-called "Floral designer" draw inspiration from nature and the world around them. What is imperceptible and useless for the average person will be a source of inspiration for a true florist.

Florist - nature lover

Florist - mathematician

In the natural world there is a golden, harmonious, even divine rule, namely the golden ratio. This principle has also been used for centuries in architecture, painting, technical projects, photography and nature. Each florist must remember to keep these proportions when creating flower arrangements. It seems difficult at first, but over time you can acquire a so-called measure in the eye.

How to start your adventure with floristry?

I know a large group of people who take their first steps in the profession of a florist by creating home decorations for their own use, for sale to friends, or exhibiting their works on handicraft websites, through Facebook or the Marketplace. If you have already caught the flower bug and you have a lot of fun creating floral decorations, you are probably considering taking the next step.

Post-secondary schools and private florist schools come to the rescue. These schools run a number of preparation courses for working as a florist. The more courageous decide to go deep into the water and start working in a flower shop. This was also the case in my case. Therefore, from my own experience, I can list both advantages and disadvantages of such a path.

Pros of starting a florist career in a flower shop or florist workshop

Undoubtedly, one of the advantages of throwing yourself into deep water is direct contact with this beautiful and fragrant world from the kitchen, literally!

The benefits of starting work in a florist shop without prior preparation include quick learning and the ability to use acquired skills in practice. As a rule, if we learn and master the individual techniques of creating flower arrangements, we have the opportunity to constantly improve our skills.

Everyone who starts their work in a flower shop initially perform general work, such as:

  • Changing the water in vases
  • Dusting
  • Plant care
  • Creating new exhibitions and constantly taking care of the cleanliness of the floor

A solid foundation is extremely important as it prepares us to continue working with plants.

The next stage of getting to know the world of floristry from the kitchen is learning the methods and principles of creating floral compositions:

  • Creating bouquets
  • Selection of material, color structures
  • Selection of the size while maintaining the golden ratio and twist of the stems
  • Creating new exhibitions and constantly taking care of the cleanliness of the floor

Twisting is the bane of many novice florists. However, one cannot get discouraged as practice makes perfect.

Profession of florist - pros and cons

The disadvantages of starting a florist's career without training and courses

Work and practice develop some habits in us that are difficult to eliminate later. If our mentor was a good florist, we certainly won't have a problem with that. It is worse if our guru is a person with no floristic flair. This is when schools, courses and floristic training courses come to the rescue, preparing their students for activities in the world of floristry. By choosing a reliable school and participating in this type of classes, we can be sure that we will learn each technique and the best methods in accordance with the current floristic principles.

By joining the florist course, you learn and prepare the arrangements in class, which you can later recreate in your own studio.

In addition, the courses are not only about learning, but also people with a diverse, sometimes magical personality. You make friendships and gain contacts that will surely bear fruit in the future. The floristic school gives you wings, increases self-confidence, motivates you to act and obtain even better results.

Private or public floristic school?

The choice of floristic courses and training is considerable. Private centers offer paid courses. State-owned, free tuition in a full-time, weekend and extramural system. When taking the course, it is worth getting to know the institutions in your region. There are many options and everyone will surely find something for themselves. Both in the weekend, stationary and extramural form. Depending on the situation we are in, sometimes it is worth choosing courses in public institutions. The more that you can use the option of financing the school as part of EU projects.

List of floristic schools in Poland

The list below is a list of private and state institutions in Poland where you can study and become a florist or even a master florist.

Private schools

Małgorzata Niska Floristic School (SFMN)
The first floristic school in Poland. Established in 2000 by Małgorzata Niska - International Champion of Poland and a precursor of floristry in Poland. The school runs courses, trainings and workshops in floristry for both those who are just starting their adventure with floristry and those who are more advanced. He also conducts specialist courses, such as "The Wedding of Your Dreams". Graduates of the school are, among others: Piotr Sekunda, Mariola Miklaszewska and Zygmunt Sieradzan.
Website www.florystyka.com
Facebook @szkolaflorystycznamn
Instagram @szkola_florystyczna_sfmn
Mariola Miklaszewska Academy
The Mariola Miklaszewska Academy was founded by Mariola Miklaszewska in 2006. The school conducts annual preparatory courses for the profession of florist and master florist. The academy's offer also includes numerous thematic courses and trainings, as well as workshops for companies. The Mariola Miklaszewska Academy organizes numerous shows and floristic exhibitions. The school is located in Sękocin near Warsaw.
Website www.akademiaem.pl
Facebook @szkolaflorystycznamn
Instagram @szkola_florystyczna_sfmn
Polish Floristic School (PSF)
A floristic school founded in 2001 by Małgorzata Bukalska. It is the first floristry school in Poland registered by the Department of Education. The school offers thematic courses and training as well as training trips. The school is a partner of the Federation of German Florists. PSF works with such personalities as: Gregor Lersch, Wally Klett and Daniel Santamaria.
Website www.psf.pl
Facebook @PolskaSzkolaFlorystyczna
Instagram @polskaszkolaflorystyczna
Floral Academy
The school was established in 2012 and its founder is Piotr Sekunda - the International Polish Champion in floristry. The school offers courses and training, and popular e-learning in the form of videos or live coverage.
Website www.floralacademy.pl
Facebook @floralacademy
Instagram @floralacademy.pl
Gretaflowers Floristic School
A floristic school founded by Greta Katarzyna Szymkowiak in 2005. The Gretaflowers School offers basic and advanced courses as well as specialist training. The facility introduced the first online training in Poland.
Website www.gretaflowers.pl
Facebook @gretaflowersszkolaflorystyczna
Instagram @gretaflowers.pl
Kwitnące horyzonty (Blooming horizons)
Kwitnące horyzonty is a floristic school founded by Małgorzata Bębenek - Poland's vice-champion in floristry in 2005. The school offers workshops, courses and training, also online.
Website www.kwitnacehoryzonty.pl
Facebook @kwitnacehoryzonty
Instagram @kwitnace_horyzonty

Public schools

Currently, in almost every major city in Poland, free vocational and post-secondary schools are established, which also train in the florist profession. These schools are recommended for people who are just starting their floristic education. When choosing such a school, it is always worth getting familiar with the opinion and the level of education in a given institution.

Szczecin Floristic School
The Szczecin Floristic School conducts annual qualification courses in the florist profession. As part of the post-secondary school for adults (extramural), floristry classes are conducted on the premises of the facility. After completing the course and passing the exam, students receive a school leaving certificate and an OKE (Regional Examination Commission) diploma.
Website www.szczecinskaszkolaflorystyczna.pl
Floristics Academy
The Academy of floristry is an educational institution whose founding body is the Human Capital Development Fund. The school runs a basic and advanced floristry course. At the end of the course, you receive a certificate of completion of the course and a diploma confirming preparation for the profession of a florist.
Website www.akademiaflorystyki.pl
Atut – Lider Kształcenia
Atut - Lider Kształcenia - is a post-secondary vocational school offering a one-year weekend floristry course. By completing the course, you get a school leaving certificate and a professional diploma (after taking the exam).
Website www.atut.pl
ŻAK
ŻAK is a post-secondary school offering education in the profession of a florist. By completing the course, you receive a course completion certificate. You can also take an exam organized by OKE. After its successful completion, you will receive the title of journeyman florist.
Website www.zak.edu.pl
Teb Edukacja
Teb Edukacja is another post-secondary school that offers extramural floristry education. At the end of the course you get the professional diploma 'Florist' (after taking the exam) and the school leaving certificate.
Website www.teb.pl

After graduating from post-secondary school, it is worth taking an examination conducted by REC (in polish OKE) - Regional Examination Commission. After passing the exam, a professional florist's diploma is obtained.

Co-financing of floristic courses

In Poland, institutions entered in the Register of Training Institutions allow their students to obtain funding for part or all of the course through the Employment Office. The help is addressed to the unemployed or people who want to develop their skills in their business. Florists in Poland most often use KFS (Krajowy Fundusz Szkoleniowy) and BUR (Baza Usług Rozwojowych).

Vocational exam for a florist in Poland

The exam will confirm your qualifications in the florist profession. It is an external examination, therefore it will enable obtaining an objective assessment of knowledge and skills in the field of floristry. The exam consists of two parts: written and practical.

Written part

The written part of the exam is conducted in the form of a 60-minute test. It consists of 40 closed questions, only one of which is correct. At least 50% of the answers must be correct to pass the test.

Practical part

The practical part of the exam consists in completing the task included in the examination sheet on the examination stand. The practical part of the exam lasts no less than 120 minutes. Before starting the task, the candidates have 10 minutes to read the content of the task. This time is not included in the duration of the practical exam. To pass the practical part, you must obtain a minimum of 75% of the points available.

Examples of exam sheets (written and practical parts) can be found here: www.arkusze.pl/egzamin-zawodowy-kawodowy-r-26/

The best florist schools in the world

Boerma Instituut
One of the most popular floristic schools is the Boerma Instituut, founded in 1980 in the Netherlands. The school offers training and specialist courses for everyone. From beginners to advanced ones who want to expand their knowledge and skills.
Website boerma.nl
Floral Art School of Australia
Floral Art School of Australia is an international floristic school founded in 1972. Beginners and advanced florists who want to improve their competences can start learning there.
Website internationalfloraldesignschool.com
American Institute of Floral Designers
The American Institute of Floral Designers was founded in 1965. A private school educates the best designers in the world. In order to attend classes conducted by the unit, one must pass an exam assessing the competences and abilities of the candidate.
Website aifd.org
Hong Kong Academy of Flower Arrangement
Hong Kong Academy of Flower Arrangement was founded in 1989 in Hong Kong. It is the first institution of this type in the city that enables international education. The founder of the school is Theresa Lam - she learned the art of arranging flowers in Europe, but she was inspired by Japanese teachers.
Website hkafa.com.hk
The Judith Blacklock Flower School
The Judith Blacklock Flower School is the only school in the UK to be accredited by the British Accreditation Council (BAC) and the American Institute of Floral Designers (AIFD), which underlines the importance of the school. The school runs stationary courses and online training.
Website judithblacklock.com

Is it worth joining a florist course?

'’What do you need this course for? You know everything!'' - these were the words of many people with whom I had contact in the floristic world before. In retrospect, after the first class, I knew that I had made the right decision by joining the Florist course. There is never too much knowledge and we learn throughout our lives. By broadening your horizons, you have the chance to impress your customers. If you are wondering whether to take any course, even a one-day course, do not hesitate, because it is really worth it. You will surely take a dose of inspiration, which you will later use in your own works.

By joining the florist course, you learn and prepare the arrangements in class, which you can later recreate in your own studio.

Additionally, floristry courses are not just about learning. Courses, schools and trainings are also people with a diverse, sometimes magical personality. You make friendships and gain contacts that will surely bear fruit in the future. The floristic school gives you wings, increases self-confidence, motivates you to act and obtain even better results.

Summary

The profession of a florist requires constant work, broadening horizons and drawing inspiration from global trends. When choosing this profession, arm yourself with persistence in striving to be a professional. Customer requirements are constantly changing and must be adapted to them. For a true florist, floristry will not only be a job and source of income, but a lifestyle. Therefore, in order to do your job well, you need to be passionate about the arrangements you make. By communing with plants and looking for new, extraordinary solutions in their beauty, which in turn you can change into your own works.

Profession of florist how to become a florist

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