Nothing lifts our spirits quite like discovering a bright new florist, and this instance is no exception.
When asked what her favourite flowers is, Melissa Jane has a hard time narrowing it down. “I could tell you that right now, my favourite flower is tulips. Next will probably be freesias, then ranunculus, then the next will be peonies,” she says. “Honestly I change my mind day to day, week to week, season to season.”
It’s an indecisive trait that she credits for her adoration of the trade: each weather event, season, or request from a client giving her a new excuse to indulge in dissecting a new favourite in the world of petals and posies.
Melissa turned to floristry at 20 after a quick stint in the corporate sector. She embarked on a six-month training course, worked her way around Wellington florists, then set her foot to travelling, gaining experience with a range of reputable London florists before returning home.
Having been in the trade for eight years, she says her style constantly evolves just as any other designer’s would, although her current flavour of fancy is “lush garden with a modern influence”.
November 2014 saw the launch of Melissa Jane. Originally an online floristry service operating out of a small garage in Wellington, the business now runs from its own retail space in Ngaio. In the last year alone, wedding bookings have doubled.
“What sets you apart from others in the same industry is your personality,” says Melissa. “Your style should naturally reflect your personality.
“The biggest compliment is that so many former clients have recommended me to their friends and colleagues. That word of mouth growth, and knowing that people like what I do, is immensely encouraging.”
Melissa’s top flower tip
“You don’t necessarily need to email every florist in the area to get the best price. If you find a florist and love their style, be up front with your budget so they can work with you to create something that doesn’t break the bank account.”