Getting to know...florist, Joanna Game


Getting to know...florist, Joanna Game

June is host to British Flower Week, a nationwide celebration of Britain’s finest blooms and the talented florists that design them into works of art. It encourages people to source, buy and value locally-grown, seasonal British flowers and foliage, something very close to our good friend Joanna Game’s heart. 

We got chatting to Jo, a floral artist and grower with a creative knack for beautifully un-done floral arrangements inspired by her stunning surroundings of Dartmoor in Devon, about how she got into the industry, tips and tricks for budding florists and everything in-between!

June is host to British Flower Week, a nationwide celebration of Britain’s finest blooms and the talented florists that design them into works of art. It encourages people to source, buy and value locally-grown, seasonal British flowers and foliage, something very close to our good friend Joanna Game’s heart. 

We got chatting to Jo, a floral artist and grower with a creative knack for beautifully un-done floral arrangements inspired by her stunning surroundings of Dartmoor in Devon, about how she got into the industry, tips and tricks for budding florists and everything in-between!

 

How did you first get into floristry?
It all started in London when I was helping a friend with events and charity work in large venues.


What made you fall in love with it as a career? 
I just love flowers - pretty simple really. For me, they are the perfect medium to express my creativity and so it never really feels like work.


How would you describe your floristry style?
Naturalistic, undone with style.


What inspires your arrangements?
My environment and surroundings (so mainly Dartmoor) and my garden of course where I grow many of my own flowers, but wherever I find myself really. Colour also plays a crucial role…

 

Who’s been the biggest influence on your work?
I really can’t name just one so here are a few that have inspired or influenced me in one way or another…  

 

Dan Pearson, landscape and garden designer - for the way he uses his surrounds to inform his incredible designs

Ngoc Minh Ngo, photographer - flowers and gardens captured in an emotive way. See for yourself here.  

Sarah Ryhanen, writer, floral artist and farmer - the owner of SAIPUA, outside New York, Sarah’s main work is focused around a floral style that embraces nature but is unconventional.

Amy Merrick, writer and florist - a colourful floristry career that’s taken her around the world - her arrangements are so gorgeous.

Rachel Siegfried - designing and creating beautiful bouquets from her own cultivated flowers in the Cotswolds.

Brigitte Girling, gardener, teacher, florist - owner of Moss and Stone that create seasonally inspired bouquets.

 

How did you first get into floristry?
It all started in London when I was helping a friend with events and charity work in large venues.


What made you fall in love with it as a career? 
I just love flowers - pretty simple really. For me, they are the perfect medium to express my creativity and so it never really feels like work.


How would you describe your floristry style?
Naturalistic, undone with style.


What inspires your arrangements?
My environment and surroundings (so mainly Dartmoor) and my garden of course where I grow many of my own flowers, but wherever I find myself really. Colour also plays a crucial role…

 

Who’s been the biggest influence on your work?
I really can’t name just one so here are a few that have inspired or influenced me in one way or another…  

 

Dan Pearson, landscape and garden designer - for the way he uses his surrounds to inform his incredible designs

Ngoc Minh Ngo, photographer - flowers and gardens captured in an emotive way. See for yourself here.  

Sarah Ryhanen, writer, floral artist and farmer - the owner of SAIPUA, outside New York, Sarah’s main work is focused around a floral style that embraces nature but is unconventional.

Amy Merrick, writer and florist - a colourful floristry career that’s taken her around the world - her arrangements are so gorgeous.

Rachel Siegfried - designing and creating beautiful bouquets from her own cultivated flowers in the Cotswolds.

Brigitte Girling, gardener, teacher, florist - owner of Moss and Stone that create seasonally inspired bouquets.

 

The biggest challenge facing the floristry industry at the moment?
Environmental impact

 

What’s the most creative brief you’ve ever been given?
I love a “I trust you - do whatever you like” answer. They will always get the very best out of me!  

 

Why do you feel British Flower Week is important?
It's a great way to educate the public about seasonal, local, sustainable flowers. The best way forward for floristry in every country.

 

Do you always have fresh flowers at home?
Yes - always in the studio and often a few stems in jam jars on the kitchen table.

 

Top tips for creating a typically English garden arrangement?
If you have a garden, always add a few stems of what’s growing to your arrangement and even better if you can forage a few stems too. If not, make sure the flowers you buy are in season. Oh, and if you can, use chicken wire and pin holders in your vase for a loose arranging style with movement.

 

A few tips for a budding grower?
Grow what you love - autumn sow if you can get a jump start on the season. Try and have a focal flower for each season eg tulips in spring Dahlias in late summer/autumn. Add perennials to your list to have a few reliable fillers that are pretty bulletproof.

 

The biggest challenge facing the floristry industry at the moment?
Environmental impact

 

What’s the most creative brief you’ve ever been given?
I love a “I trust you - do whatever you like” answer. They will always get the very best out of me!  

 

Why do you feel British Flower Week is important?
It's a great way to educate the public about seasonal, local, sustainable flowers. The best way forward for floristry in every country.

 

Do you always have fresh flowers at home?
Yes - always in the studio and often a few stems in jam jars on the kitchen table.

 

Top tips for creating a typically English garden arrangement?
If you have a garden, always add a few stems of what’s growing to your arrangement and even better if you can forage a few stems too. If not, make sure the flowers you buy are in season. Oh, and if you can, use chicken wire and pin holders in your vase for a loose arranging style with movement.

 

A few tips for a budding grower?
Grow what you love - autumn sow if you can get a jump start on the season. Try and have a focal flower for each season eg tulips in spring Dahlias in late summer/autumn. Add perennials to your list to have a few reliable fillers that are pretty bulletproof.

QUICK FIRE QUESTIONS

Favourite flower...
I’m a fickle soul and the list is too long - I’d find it impossible to name one


Favourite tree...
Anything with blossom


First floral memory...
Always coming home with a little fist full of flowers from wherever I'd gone exploring


Gardening tool I couldn’t do without...
My husband of course (he may object to being called that though!)


One thing you’ve learnt the hard way
How to charge properly - it’s a process and I’m still learning


What job would you be terrible at...
Any 9-5 desk job


Go-to drink when arranging...
Coffee!


Best advice...
It’s ok to say no


Favourite place visited
South Wood Farm - an Arne Maynard designed garden near Honiton.

QUICK FIRE QUESTIONS

Favourite flower...
I’m a fickle soul and the list is too long - I’d find it impossible to name one


Favourite tree...
Anything with blossom


First floral memory...
Always coming home with a little fist full of flowers from wherever I'd gone exploring


Gardening tool I couldn’t do without...
My husband of course (he may object to being called that though!)


One thing you’ve learnt the hard way
How to charge properly - it’s a process and I’m still learning


What job would you be terrible at...
Any 9-5 desk job


Go-to drink when arranging...
Coffee!


Best advice...
It’s ok to say no


Favourite place visited
South Wood Farm - an Arne Maynard designed garden near Honiton.