We are always so excited to see the journeys that our students go on. For Krysta her journey began before she got to us, relocating to Sydney from the UK, where Kysta was a successful wedding planner. However, the impact of the global pandemic on weddings and events was the pause that enabled Kyrsta to study floristry and turn her love of flowers in a career with flowers.
Recently we chatted to Krysta to tell us more about her story.
Florist: For the Love of Weddings (soon to be rebranded to ‘Krysta Smith: Floral Artistry + Event Design’!) - Est. 2012
Have you always wanted to work in Floristry, if not how did floristry come about for you?
I have always loved flowers; they have always featured heavily in my life for personal reasons, and then as a wedding planner I began to learn more about flowers, and moreover, floral design. However, I never for a moment believed I would be capable of having a career within floristry. I assumed this was a career for people who grew up with the knowledge that they were indeed creative, or grew up surrounded by nature. I didn’t think for a moment that the little girl who grew up on a rough council estate on the outskirts of London could ever have a “job” as charming and as creatively fulfilling as this.
However, a few years into running my (admin-heavy!) Wedding Planning business, I began spending more and more time with my dear florist friends, India of Vervain and Donna of Pheasant Botanica. They taught me SO much. When we weren’t working together on weddings and editorials, I would take my children to their flower farms and would never want to leave. After losing my mum, growing my own flowers became therapy. My husband always questioned why I wouldn’t make the move from planning to floristry, and I guess imposter syndrome got the better of me!
It wasn’t until we moved to Sydney, and I lost all my Wedding Planning work due to the Global Pandemic, that I thought, ‘why not?!’ It seemed now was as good a time as any for a fresh start/change of direction. Admittedly, it was about 6 months of climbing into bed every night and reading the Pearson’s Prospectus before I built up the courage to call and enquire.
How would you describe your floral style?
I would describe my floral style as being quite loose, organic, and whimsical. Hailing from the UK, I like to use an abundance of variety in my designs with a focus on accent, floaty flowers to create that wildflower meadow, cottage garden vibe of bringing the outdoors inside, however; learning floral design formally in Australia, I find the wedding industry here is often characterised by minimalist lines and structure, and a focus on luxury through the use of premium blooms such as orchids and roses. I have noticed this simplicity and understated elegance seeping into my designs creating an interesting collocation of materials.
What was it about Pearsons School that made you want to study with us?
I was instantly attracted to the Cert 3 course, due to its comprehensive scope of study from learning about flower types and flower care right through to design principles and elements, including colour theory, not to mention customer service and business management. I was also excited to learn from the instructors who were not only experienced at teaching floral design but from what I could see on social media, were very integrated and practical within the industry, bringing a wealth of knowledge and networking. As a result, we have been exposed to so many invaluable experiences through the school, from the flower show to fleur de ville, plus other more experienced florists requesting work experience opportunities.
What did you love about studying the ‘SFL30115 Certificate III in Floristry’ with Pearsons School?
I loved the pace of teachers/the school holding our hands at the beginning but then pushing us to work more independently as the course progresses. As someone who was completely overwhelmed by the flower markets when we first visited, it’s now my happy place and I love being there. That would not have been possible without the gentle encouragement of my teachers and the gentle pace of the course. The most important thing I took from the course was how the teachers nurtured my artistic sensibilities, enabling me to develop my own unique style.
Did you make any meaningful connections with fellow students, teachers, or florists during your course?
THE BEST! I can safely say that I have made best friends for life. There’s nothing quite like your flower fam. Only other fellow florists will truly understand how hard this gig can be but why it’s so worth the blood, sweat and tears (and ridiculously early mornings/long days!).
I have also been very lucky to have had wonderful students come work with me on my weddings.
Now that you’ve finished your studies, what are you up to into the industry?
I am excited to have transitioned For the Love of Weddings away from solely planning to Floral Design. I have now flowered 10 amazing weddings and am fully booked for 2023, with limited availability in 2024! I am leaving 1-2 slots open each year for planning clients, but I will be very selective about who I work with. It’s important to me that my clients share the same vision and passion for creating magical, unforgettable events. Regarding Floral Design, I have availability to take on 20 weddings a year and I am so excited to create events that are unapologetically and unabashedly reflective of my couples. No two weddings are ever the same!
How has life changed for you since completing the course?
I am busy!! But I am content. I am living my best flower life and with each wedding my confidence is growing, and my style is developing.
How have you found finding and securing work in the industry?
I have been fortunate to have been offered an incredible opportunity to flower the latest Ryan Gosling movie, and I have freelanced for a wonderful retail shop in Manly. I am also very consistent on Instagram and Pinterest, and this, as well as several online wedding directories, is where most of my enquiries come from. I think there’s never a right time to wait to begin advertising your floral services – my earliest clients followed my journey from the beginning and were so kind and so supportive.
What projects/floristry work are you most excited about or would love to work on now that you’ve finished your course?
Aside from the incredible experience of working on a movie set, I am creating weddings that feel so aligned to my aesthetic – clients are coming to me because they like my style and I only hope this continues!
What is your favourite experience so far in your floristry career?
Aside from bumping into Ryan Gosling on set?! It must be delivering the bridal bouquets to my brides, or seeing their reaction when they view their wedding spaces for the first time!
What kinds of things have you learnt about floristry since leaving the classroom and working in the industry?
Do not promise flower types for any wedding or event!! No flower is ever safe in this climate… instead, build trust with your clients by communicating colour schemes and style. Learn your subs, and have subs for those subs, and make sure your growers know what those subs are.
What are your flower favourites and go to’s?
I’m obsessed with my grower’s local roses… they beat the imports every time! But, my biggest surprise has to be lisianthus. I always ask my growers for the frilly type and remove all of the greenery and ‘dangly’ buds, and when I can I reflex them. They can work as incredible fillers or focals! I wish there was more colour variety in Australia – I struggle to find my favourite ‘mocha’ lissies, but maybe I will start growing them myself!
What advice would you give to someone wanting to get into floristry?
Don’t wait. There’s no right time. And it can open so many doors that lead to so many paths – it doesn’t have to be full on event floristry, it can be parttime freelance retail work – but you wont know until you start!
What does the future hold for you?
Mocha lissies!!! 😉
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