Who is Floriography…
Floriography is Holly Dog, Alice, Emma, CJ, Jan, Josie, Anna, Abs, Sophie, Angela, me, the flowers, lush friends, and comrades, and all our beautiful supporters! All though it is all these people obviously Holly Dog, Alice and Emma keep it all afloat so the others can help, and that I am able to still be me, and do all the flower arrangements.
Most of these are unpaid, and do it out of love, and for love, those who get a bit of money, well it’s nothing compared to what they do, and our worth . And well me, I certainly don’t earn minimum wage but that’s alright …. cause I choose this, and I feel wealthy in other ways. Very so.
Um Covid, lockdown and yeah us lot!
Well, it has definitely been a year and more, of extreme light, and extreme darkness. There have been some in-betweens but mainly it’s felt like I’ve been caught in the biggest wave of everything beautiful, or washed up on the shore bedraggled, and broken. It’s been hard to find any balance for long, and that can be exhausting.
At Floriography we have kept the flower love coming always, and even through this last year but it hasn’t always been easy. Full of love always, from the heart always but I particularly have struggled to do some of the things we have needed to do to make it stand time. We might make it look easy from the outside, but on the inside there have been some really tough times.
Practically, physically and emotionally we have had a lot of different things thrown at us, but also within each of us we have had our own battles, challenges, adaptations that have both fuelled us, and weighed us down heavily. And without doubt we have each affected each other. But without each other we also wouldn’t have got to where we are. Loving and not by halves, will always bring both sadness and great joy. But this last year has tested all of us.
And I am sure as we move forward tentatively but with buckets of love, and newly discovered parts of us there will be continued and new challenges but also a deeper fuller understanding of each other and ourselves. And I reckon in time there might be the odd day when we can just sail, or float the seas. A little less turbulence.
We got through one part of a syndemic together, and we will help each other with the next part and as many others as we can safely. It’s important to remember that we have only come so far through it, and that close to home, here in the UK, and globally we have a long way to go. We intend to be who we are, to feel, talk about it all, and try to reflect in our actions what we hope for, believe in, in the world for everyone as individuals and a collective.
Out of the syndemic came things that were out of our control, and responses to that of both light and dark.
Why will Floriography not run as a walk in shop… Lock Down…more words !
At Floriography we were forced to shut our doors but actually it hasn’t all been negative. It allowed me especially to be creative and to use my energy for, and into the flowers intensely. With the extra love and support from Emma, as she was furloughed from what had been her life for a long time, we have managed to achieve some things that we had tried to before but never managed to achieve.
I never liked the idea of a shop, I’ve said that lots before. Well, not the kind of shop like we often see these days.
The whole point of Floriography was to see if it was possible to create a pocket of something different within mainstream society, to see if a community could be formed around flowers and a set of social and spiritual beliefs. Flowers representing all of life. Flowers being everything we can’t see, touch or hold in a real thing. Flowers representing our passions and our sadnesses. Being the holders and the healers. And they are real things. And doing that with the people I love the most.
The lockdown actually meant we were able to focus on the flowers, and the healing side of the flowers and let it flow out. It’s now flowing all across Bristol and beyond. Floriography has wings. It’s nest has stayed local, and our roots start in Totterdown but we have branched out a little, offering soul food further afield and that has always been an intention of ours but again confidence, space, practicalities have got in the way. We had to do some things to stay alive, we needed to flourish a little to keep going and well it helped us to all see how we could do that and still be true to ourselves, and the heart of Floriography.
We have had the pleasure and beauty of connecting so many people through flowers during this last year. Yes, there has been deep sadness and loss in those flowers too but always so much love. And that is what flowers are truly about. I was able to convert the energy, and use it for flowery creations. Between me and the Floriographers we got a lot of flowers, to a lot of people and that was magical.
It also helped me to be able to use the flowery creating to stay steadier than I might have felt, and create silent movement within me to help deal with this health- physical and emotional crisis ( to me you can’t have one, without the other) I am having. I truly got to put the flowers’ healing qualities into practise. And I got to see how it wasn’t just me, or those that love me deeply that see and feel it too, and that has been magical.
It made sure that we were as safe as possible, especially me who without a lockdown/syndemic would have struggled to keep myself safe in times where I have needed to both physically and emotionally. It helped me to look at it like it was keeping others safe too. Yes, that’s a bit selfish but it’s true. I’m not saying that’s been easy, and I’ve still needed quite a bit of help with that (sorry you have had to look like the dragon at times Emma) but it has probably meant that I didn’t get too much more ill whilst having treatment, and allowed me to do what I love and need too.
After Lockdown Floriography
As we come out of lockdown we have decided to not reopen as a shop. That isn’t so we don’t share with you it’s because on many levels it didn’t work, but what we are doing now does work. By the nature of who I am I wasn’t making enough flowers and selling what we do enough to keep it going longer term, and that was always in my heart a bit. The shop doesn’t pay for itself. It didn’t make enough money to just run as a walk in shop, always stocked, always ready to go. That’s often the case for many local businesses like Floriography, and often you do need to do a lot of different things to keep alive what it is you do love and believe in. I never wanted to compromise too much and well this gruesome but enlightening time has enabled me to see how a little compromise could, and has actually made it feel all more promising, real and true. Flowers are energy and energy is love. Seems an even stronger statement than before. It’s not only what I see and feel in my heart, it has been expressed over and over by others throughout this time. In truth.
We will be keeping it so the flowers, and the creating and healing side of what we do glows. That it continues to be felt by more of you, and more deeply. We will be running in a way that allows the key hearts at Floriography to be who they are too but to give what they can to Flori and me in love too. I don’t want to do it with different people, I want to do it with them and so we will be weaving around their things too, and making it work. It’s in their hearts too and without that it wouldn’t be. It allows me to manage my time around health stuff and appointments. Basically it makes it possible. It makes the wave of life possible doing it this way.
How it is…
We will be running a full delivery service, and a collection service too, and stocking a couple of local places that we love connecting to. You can even visit my little healing shop online. We have healing packages, and things I think amplifies, or compliment the flower energy. Regular flower deliveries, vouchers … and well it’s very us, even the inline version. It’s not perfect but it’s real, organic … and we hope full of Flori love and magic.
Things change or grow depending on energy and that is just the same for the healing packages and healing shop stuff. And we will open the space for a couple of sessions a week for healing and being you, and for community events and activities.
It is extremely important to me to provide both space and activity for connection, and healing. For a sense of home for anyone who needs that. A space to be healed by the flowers, and by vast love. I have missed being able to share the space for those reasons not for selling flowers, cause most of that happened in the background or behind the scenes really. This way we get to fill the energy vessel with all the flower power and healing, and offer you the space to share in all that too. And we should be able to keep going, and actually survive practically too which right now is important for my mental health.
Floriography is a place, a thing, where everyone should also be enabled to be all of who they are. This is important in my heart and this way we can do all the things flori stands for a little better.
So another thing that has happened is Brexit, and Brexit has been a real um …. Nightmare! On so many levels but for now I’m just going to talk about the availability and price of flowers. This does link to so many important values but I am gonna stay focused and try not to bubble over.
During lockdown etc there has been a little extra help, support and that will be gone and well prices not just on imported flowers but on all flowers has risen massively, around 30 to 40 percent. Obviously I like good quality, seasonal and sustainable flowers, and to provide a diversity of flowers to represent all of life and changing energies .
It had been possible during lock down to mop up a little of that but moving forward we have had to look at this a little. Again, I haven’t wanted to compromise too much on some key things, but if we don’t do a little then the likelihood is we won’t get to continue doing this at all.
We like to give you something reasonable, fair and that’s what we will always try and do. It has meant that we have had to look at pricing… yep, prices…. Eek. We aren’t able to provide posies under £15, unless they are ones we stock for pick up and go, from the lush @foxandwest or @arnosvalecemetry. You can still get what I’m told is a very reasonable posy for £15 or £20, and our bespoke bouquets start at £25 upwards. We still think for what we do this is fair and competitive (hate that word), can’t think of another! There are a few multi-buy options which are cheaper for those of you buying for multiple people, well cause that’s a nice thing to do isn’t it, and we want to support that! Believe me this will cover the costs and a little bit, it isn’t about fancy holidays or even savings. It’s so we can keep having Floriography and what it stands for – for you and for us.
Maybe, this will help you think about the changes that are going on alongside the impact of Covid. It’s important not to forget about other issues affecting humans. It can be understandably easy to do so when there is so much fear, but at Floriography we want to talk about things. Real things. Light and dark. I’m not going to go on a rant and tell anyone what to think. But maybe if you haven’t stopped to think for awhile or no somebody who hasn’t maybe just a little nudge is needed. I know I feel so fortunate and wealthy compared to so many others but even I would say it’s tough some times. How is it really for other people? Even your neighbours … do you know. Do you really understand their situations, or past experiences…
Okay, I’ll stop. Love. X
And who knows what will happen next in this world, and how society will reflect the changes… but we will keep adjusting and keep trying to be open and upfront with you. That’s the promise I’ve always made, and that’s why I am writing all this.