Wow, do we have a contemporary, vibrant floral feast for you today. Sharing our love of all things uplifting, positive and colourful, we are so pleased to introduce Emerald and Jade Flowers.
As you will see as you take a look at the photos below, jewel tones combined with a keen eye for on trend styling is the signature style of Emerald and Jade and the effect is so photogenic and life affirming, it’s not surprising we love it!
Accessible, make you smile arrangements like these will add a fabulous pop of colour to your day whilst oozing modern romance. Over to the owner of Emerald and Jade now to talk you through her fascinating journey into floristry and much more about her business.
Tell us a little about yourself and your business
I’m Fiona, I’m originally from France and had a very culturally diverse upbringing. I moved to Bristol 10 years ago on a whim, and have settled here with my husband and two children.
I studied law and qualified as an Employment lawyer. When I had my second child, I started to rethink how I wanted to live my life and this led to me quitting my job & giving myself two years to reinvent myself. It was terrifying, but within six months I was taking a floristry course, and I have now been running Emerald & Jade Flowers for two years. I have since launched two additional businesses, and I am loving my new life.Emerald & Jade Flowers, as well as my other two businesses Bristol Walk & Talk, and Emerald & Jade Lifestyle (launching in September & October), are all centered on the same belief: Live a beautiful life. With flowers, this is such an easy way to respect this. I especially favour bold, bright colours with lots of interesting texture with a relaxed style. My work has been described as colourful, creative and bright.
What motivated you to start your business?
Wanting a better life for myself. I strongly believe that work and your personal life are so closely intertwined now. For me, it got to a point where work had completely taken over my personal life, and I couldn’t see any benefits from it, whether it be professionally, financially and especially not for my family life. I wanted more. I have always been drawn to being my own boss, so I knew I wanted to start my own business. I also always had a hand at creative activities, so wanted to try a more creative career (not difficult after being a lawyer… admittedly!.)
I absolutely love my job. It’s hard work, and it’s so different from working in an office with a regular salary, but I wouldn’t go back. My husband has since left law too to become a gardener, and is looking to become a garden designer, so we have gone through some big changes this past year. But we have never looked back!
Getting to create beautiful arrangements for people is such an honour ,and I get so much back from it. Whether it be for weddings, or funerals, I take time to really make them personal and reflect my clients. Creating beautiful things to help celebrate people’s lives is an honour and so incredibly amazing ❤
Tell us a little more about the day to day activities of your business
I mostly focus on events. I work around my two young children, which means working around the school hours. Early morning starts, from about 5am / 5.45am. I tend to get up at this time whether I have to go to the market or not. If I don’t need to go to the market, I tend to have a coffee in the quiet mornings and journal, a great business tool for me. I also try to fit in a little admin before the kids get on and then the mum hat comes on: from feeding them to taking them to school.
After the school run, I’m on full productivity mode: whether it be conditioning the flowers bought that morning, starting to put together the arrangements for an upcoming event, or meeting with clients for consultations. There also networking events, chatting to other suppliers and adding to my clients’ Pinterest boards.
Around 3pm it’s school pick up time so back to mum hat, feeding the kids, bath time, bed time etc.
Then I will usually do a little more admin after they’ve gone to bed. Whether it be blogging, writing a newsletter, answering more emails and drafting more quotes or working on my accounts. So many hats to wear, it can get a little overwhelming!
Preparing for a wedding will usually take place from Tuesday to the wedding date (usually a Saturday), as well as all the previous work done through consultations and emails.
If our readers were to order from you, what can they expect?
I make sure I fully understand what my clients are after, and also let them know what I can create based on their preferred flowers, style etc. I am a very visual person, I need to see things. I apply this to my work, working closely with imagery (mostly from Pinterest).
Generally clients come to me for my love of colours and unusual arrangements. And I get very excited when I get to work with bright colours and rich jewel tones (especially paired with gold tones!). Having said that, I have also worked on some pastel tones, which I have secretly loved too. Whatever the preferred colours, my arrangements always look natural, with lots of movement and texture, with a modern twist.
I am also remain available to my clients throughout the whole process, whether by phone, message or email. On the day, I deliver the flowers to them personally, and install the arrangements at the venue as required. I have all of the required info a good few weeks before the wedding, so the couple can relax knowing that everything is being dealt for them.
How can couples judge if a company is the right fit for their wedding?
A lot of my clients come to me via recommendations. I know I personally like to use recommendations too wherever I can, so it’s a good place to start. However everyone has a different idea on what their ideal wedding is.
Generally, I would advise meeting with your suppliers, for example at a wedding fair and a consultation. Get chatting to them, and see how you feel. Follow their social media accounts, get a feel for a work but also for them. I find that if you know your suppliers a little, and you trust them, it will make the whole experience a lot more enjoyable for you all.
We found our wedding photographer through a blog post, as we were looking for images of our venue. We fell in love with the photos and booked her from there. We didn’t get to meet her before the wedding, but we did speak to her through Skype.
Clients should make sure they read the suppliers’ terms & conditions, so they know exactly where they stand.
It also helps to ask about the whole process, from paying the deposit up until the big day, including what happens on the day of the wedding.
Clients spend a lot of hard earned cash for their wedding, and wedding suppliers work hard at what they do. So it pays off all round to make sure that the working relationship is a good one from the start.
What are your favourite moments from previous weddings you’ve been involved with?
I get incredibly excited delivering flowers on a wedding day. Nervous too, as it’s the big reveal and it seems that when a client gets the flowers delivered to them, it suddenly all starts to feel real so it’s always emotional!
I love seeing everyone getting everything ready for the day ahead, there is such excitement and happiness in the air, it’s an incredible thing to be part of it.
I also get to meet some truly lovely people, and have become friends with many of my clients after their wedding, which I love.
I also get to work with some incredibly talented suppliers, and love this new world I am now part of.
The bigger picture – does your business offer goods/services outside of the wedding world? Tell us more
Emerald & Jade Flowers also provides funeral flowers, which again, reflect my love for beautiful, bright colours. My sympathy flowers are not the traditional ones you’ll find, instead focussing on being beautiful and making people smile, reminding people of their lost one in a good way.
I also sell downloadable templates on my websites. Currently these are mostly for other floristry businesses, but I am hoping to add templates for brides and grooms too.
I also do workshops, whether for hen dos, work events or just for fun. I greatly enjoy these and will be doing more as of September.
What have you got planned for 2017?
2017 has started off beautifully for me: I’ve moved to new premises in Clifton, Bristol, started doing workshops.
And finally, what or who inspires you and why?
I find inspiration in so many places.
I’m inspired by so many wonderful suppliers, such as Kate from Heartfelt Vintage, Nicky from Bobby Rabbit, Laura from Laura Payne-Stanley and Vicky from Vicky Farr MUA.
They are all incredible women, who decided to make their own paths in life, and doing so beautifully. They all work really hard, and are very good at what they do. Having them in my life has really helped motivate and continues to inspire me today.
All images courtesy of Emerald and Jade Flowers