Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Professionals - Georgina Agutter, Rose and Wolf

Where do you live?
In leafy Balham, South London 

Trainers or boots?
I'm always in trainers, they're perfect for all the running around!

Old movie and bag of M+M's or kohl eyeliner and martinis?
The way I'm feeling today (I'm slightly exhausted from this weekend's wedding), I'll take the movie and chocolate! But I'm definitely partial to a martini or two.

Favourite style icon?
Anyone who can look good at the flower market at 4am.

Signature dish?
Roast chicken

Coffee or tea?
I'm unhealthy addicted to both.

Best hidden local gem?
Battersea Flower Station. A beautiful garden centre right in the heart of Battersea. A former piece of wasteland, they've transformed it into a magical garden right under a railway track. As soon as you walk in It feels as though you've left London and entered a secret garden. Its very special and peaceful with a huge variety of plants and flowers on show. It has a great gift shop too.

What does Rose and Wolf do?
We're a bespoke floral design studio based in London creating beautiful designs for weddings, events, commercial projects and everything in between.

Have you always wanted to be a florist?
I'd love to say that I have, but in truth I had no idea what I wanted to be growing up. I've always appreciated flowers and their beautiful varieties and colours and I've always enjoyed being visually creative. But it's only in the last few years I realised I could combine the two. I absolutely love it and now I wouldn't want to do anything else.

How did you become a florist?
I wanted to be my own boss and set up my own floristy business, but had no experience so I knew I had to take the plunge and start from scratch. I quit my job in marketing and events and took and intensive floristry course. It pretty much covered all the basics of floristry and was a great insight into the industry. As part of that I was lucky enough to gain an internship at one of London's most prestigious event florists, working on grand-scale weddings and projects all summer, including one for Buckingham Palace which was an amazing experience and gave me a huge amount of confidence. Nothing is more valuable than hands-on experience in this industry, you never stop learning. I then spent a year or so working for a variety of top London florists learning all I could before I decided to go it alone. 

Where did the name Rose and Wolf come from? 
Roses are quite possibly my favorite flower and I love the way the word sounds. To me it just evokes beauty. The wolf part represents the other love in my life; my sister's miniature wire-haired dachshund, Otto. He often keeps me company on early morning trips to the flower market. As an essential member of the team I thought it was only fair to pay tribute to him.

What is the best and worst thing about your job? 
The best thing is getting to see the smile on people's faces when you deliver their flowers or finish setting up an event. Particularly for a wedding. It's a real honor to be a part of a very special day like that. Its also so rewarding to finally stand back and look at the end result of what may have been months in the planning and seeing what you've achieved - I get a real buzz from it. The worst thing would have to be the very early mornings and very cold hands in the winter!

If you could pick just one flower which one would it be? 
Always such a difficult question! It changes all the time. Of course roses, but at the moment I'm completely in love with peonies, particularly the 'coral charm' variety. I love the way they change as they open and get paler as they get older. They are so beautiful but so different at every stage. 

Do you do any demonstrations or workshops for groups? 
I currently hold floral-crown making workshops. They are proving really popular with hen parties and groups that want to do something a bit alternative to celebrate a birthday or just to learn something different for a few hours. I'm hoping to start up other workshops soon, including hand-tied bouquets and wreath-making in December.

I do not know anything about flowers and looking at pinterest wedding pages for my just baffles me more.... can you help? 
Just go with what you think think looks great. There aren't really any rules. I would say if you are planning a wedding the best thing to do is meet your florist as early on as possible to establish a colour scheme and get the best advice you can out of them. Try not to look at Pinterest too much until you have met.  Its a great tool, but, like you say, it can be baffling and too often brides will find a certain image they will have their heart set on, but be disappointed when they realise their budget just won't allow.  Don't worry too much about which types of flowers would suit either as its the job of your florist to interpret your vision into real arrangements with suitable flowers that will look beautiful, as well as being right for the time of year. Of course if you have a love for a particular flower then make sure you tell them you want this to be included. It's also vital to go with flowers that are in season, that way they will be in abundance and you'll get more for your money. 

Would floristry suit a mum juggling childcare and work? 
I can't speak from experience (!) but i do know women who have young children and manage to juggle that with a career in floristy. Many people have businesses they run from home which mainly focus on weddings and events. So as long as you have enough space, I don't see why it wouldn't be a great option for working mums.

To find out more about Rose & Wolf visit - www.roseandwolf.tumblr.com or follow me on twitter @roseandwolf and instagram @roseandwolf_flowers

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