Graduate student Abby - Building a beautiful blooming business in a country town

Renovating a house, opening a new business and having a baby, all in a day's (okay maybe a year's) work for passionate creative Abby.

In this student story we meet  Abby Schofield,  founder and owner of Once and Flor'al by Abby in Dubbo.

Abby completed her certificate III in Floristry on our 3 month fast track course at Pearsons school, so she could get on with the business of opening her business!

Recently we caught up with Abby, to update us on her story!

How has life changed for you since completing the course? 

Since getting my floristry certificate I moved back to my home town, Dubbo with my partner and bought a house to renovate. I started my business from the granny flat for the first 12 months and got a lot of event work. I then decided I wanted to grow and do more everyday gift bouquets as well as events so I opened a studio in an industrial shed in the center of town.

Whilst doing the fit out I found out I was pregnant with our first baby! Life was hectic but great! I had lots of weddings booked in, 4 events the week before my due date,  but I was committed to getting them done!

I did my biggest wedding yet, 5 hours away from home,  on the Friday and returned home to carry out the last 3 jobs on the Saturday..... and of course went into labour just a few hours after knocking off! It hasn’t really stopped since, with my beautiful flower girl coming to her first wedding gig at just 4 weeks old!  At 3 months old we have returned to the shop and opened the doors again. This year is looking just as busy but with my own little sidekick!

What was it about Pearsons School that made you want to study with us?

Pearsons school was always something I had dreamed of from starting out after school, I would stalk the website for fresh design ideas. So it was no surprise I wanted to study here 8 years later. I loved that everything is thought of for you. All flowers are picked fresh and waiting for you at school.

Is there anything that you particularly loved about studying at Pearsons School?

Walking out of class onto Oxford street with your hands full of your own flower arrangements felt pretty damn cool. The teachers are all so supportive and have such extensive careers as florists so they are great to help find your individual style whilst reminding you of the core design elements.

Have you always wanted to work in Floristry, if not how did floristry come about for you?

I have always loved flowers from a young age and got my first job in a florist after leaving school in year 11. I worked here for a couple of years and then found my love for it again years later when I decided I wanted my own business

How would you describe your floral style?

Eclectic, modern and sculptural

What are your flower favourites go to’s?

Hybrid delphinium and hydrangeas

Did you take on any work experience opportunities during your study at Pearsons, and if so what were they?

I worked at the head office in Stanmore for 3 days creating preserved and fresh arrangements as well as helping one of the teachers with a wedding for 2 days.

Did you make any meaningful connections with fellow students, teachers, or florists during your course?

I made lots of life long flower friends whilst at Pearsons and cherish these relationships still! We bounce ideas weekly and often freelance for each other.

What is your favourite experience so far in your floristry career?

I have had some great opportunities, being apart of the Sydney world pride Fleurs de ville in Feb 2023 and also creating for farmer wants a wife. While these experiences have been great I just love weddings!

Who/what are your biggest sources of inspiration (doesn’t have to be a florist)

I source a lot of inspiration from other florists around the world over instagram and books! I am currently losing my mind over the September studio in Sydney and love the weddings by the petal project, film and foliage and the naked florist. I have found the florist community to be so kind in helping everyone find their way.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to get in to floristry?

To learn the correct way and then put your style and spin on it!

What does the future hold for you?

Hopefully an employee soon and a holiday ;)

To see more from Abby and her amazing story visit -


Facebook: Once & Floral by Abby


 Ready to start your own dream floral life? - enrol now!