It's been 18 months we last checked in with the lovely Mia Stretton from Mimi Floristry but we have been excitedly following her progress on Instagram and thought that we definitely needed a catch up.
Mia completed the Pearsons Certificate III accelerated program over 6 months from January-July 2020.
What are you doing now?
I’m running my own event business, Mimi Floristry. Concentrating on building a brand that specialises in bespoke wedding florals.
How would you describe your flower style?
I would describe my style as ‘doesn’t know when to stop!’ haha… there’s always room for more stems in my opinion.
My style changes a little depending on what my client wants – but it always remains colourful and funky. I love clashing colours and any flower with a personality.
Are you working as a Freelance Florist? If yes .... how does that work for you? How did you get started?
I am a freelancer too! I first messaged a few florists I loved and told them I’d be happy to do some work experience (when I was still in school) and through that I was referred to other florists for paid jobs. It was nerve wracking putting myself out there, but it paid off and I’ve got a great little community of flower friends now.
I freelance on the weeks I don’t have my own bookings.
What is your vision?
I would love to have a studio or warehouse space one day where I can have meetings with clients and have the space to create. Right now, I work from home and am lucky enough to have the space to do so – but the dream is to separate home life with work and keep building my brand!
Advice to your junior florist self?
Advice to my junior florist self would be to get as much experience as possible right away! Studying at Pearson’s gives you a foot in the door, but nothing compares to working real jobs with experienced florists. Most florists are so forthcoming with their knowledge and want to help you be the best artist you can be. I’d get out there right away and just learn on the job – it’s so amazing to see how different florists work and then utilise those same skills.
And most importantly ... are you having fun?
Best decision I’ve made in my life to date was to take the leap into floristry! It is HARD work sometimes. Early mornings, late nights, heavy lifting, lots of planning and behind the scenes work – but it’s all worth it when you see the final product come together by the work of your own hands.
The original post for me .....
What is your Insta handle? @mimifloristry
What work did you do before studying at Pearsons?
Before studying I worked full time as a McCafe coordinator and barista.
Are you working Full or Part Time now?
I’m currently negotiating part-time hours working at a flower cart in Bilpin. The florist is called Vivaldi Flora, it’s very new and the owner, Fiona is really open to me taking over the cart very soon. There is even talk of a shop-front in Windsor which I will get to help start up!
Why did you choose to study a 6 month program?
I chose the 6 month program because I had plans to travel Australia by August this year… obviously plans changed! As did a lot of peoples. The 6 month fast track was still the right choice for me because it allowed me to work full time but still keep the momentum going with my flower journey. I found the second half when I had two classes a week, a little more overwhelming but still quite manageable as the trainers were very helpful and you know what is expected of you from the get-go. The 6 months was a healthy and sustainable work-load for my lifestyle.
How flexible did you find the program?
The programs flexibility with weekend classes, tutorials and make-up classes was quite good! The school helped me out where possible when I missed a class and was really communicative. Vicky obviously works 24/7 haha, she replies so fast it’s amazing and so helpful.
What have been the challenges?
The challenge for me was balancing a social life in the last 3 months where I was full-time working 5 days and had class 2 days. But this was a personal choice I made. COVID didn’t help with that either!
How did you enjoy the classes?
Classes were great, I looked forward to every single one. The experience of the trainers is priceless and it was great to hear real-life stories about the concepts we were learning from working in shops, design failures and success and customer nightmares.
Often, while watching one of the trainers do a demonstration (usually Lee), I would step back and say “how good is this guys! We get to come here and touch flowers all day and have a laugh, can’t think of anything better!”
Did you make new flower friends?
I made SO many friends. It’s possibly my favourite thing about the course. The support was very important and necessary and everyone worked really well as a team, encouraging and not dominating. It changed the dynamic of my learning experience entirely I think. I feel like I have made friends for life, and won’t have to look far if I need a hand in the flower world.
Dressing in vintage theme with flower besty Rachel
What are your flower plans now?
I would love to have my own small work-space/studio. The current climate of the world is strange though and a lot is up in the air. I’ve been given a lifeline by Fiona with the flower cart though, and so soon after finishing my studies. I’m excited to see where that takes me!
Pearson’s was a wonderful experience for me overall. I got quite teary leaving school for the last time, a very positive and fun environment.
Thank you for all the love and support and hard work you guys put in, especially through a PANDEMIC!! If you can get through that, you can get through anything!