Here is a recommended supplier feature with Jacqui from Akito Floral Design, a short interview about her and her business.
Tell us a bit about yourself and your business.
I have worked as a florist for about 10 years, and set up Akito Floral Design, after successfully helping friends and family with their weddings. In my previous life I was a Mechanical Engineer. I sort of got into wedding florals by chance. Over the years my business has grown through mainly, word of mouth recommendations. Last year was very busy and this year is already looking to be even better.
I specialise exclusively in wedding and event florals, running my business from home. This gives me great flexibility with meeting new clients. We can make appointments for daytime, evening or weekends at a time to suit them. I am also happy to meet up in my client’s home or at their chosen venue whichever suits them best, to discuss their ideas and look at the space to be decorated.
It also gives me the space and freedom to create beautiful and individual flowers for each new couple. ‘Akito’ was set up to realise a dream and to indulge in my long standing love with all things floral. The name Akito comes from a ‘white’ rose.
How did you get into wedding florals?
I really came into floristry by chance. After having my son and enjoying a few years as a ‘stay at home’ mum, I decided that I needed a new direction, but, ‘’What to do’’?
It was my Mum who suggested floristry. She had seen a Floristry course advertised and said that I had always been creative and artistic, and I should go for it. So I did! After gaining my Btec in Floristry, I worked for a few years in a florist shop before deciding on setting up Akito Floral Design.
I have also always enjoyed gardening and growing my own flowers and vegetables. When I was younger I used to help my dad on his allotment, and today, I still grow a few flowers and plants that can be incorporated into my floral arrangements.
So, as I say, it was purely by chance that I’m where I am today.
What is your favorite part of being a wedding florist?
I absolutely love meeting up with new and excited couples who can’t wait to share their ideas and dreams for their big day.
Turning their floral dreams into reality. Seeing a bride so happy with her bouquet.
Playing a small part in a couples Special Day, and finally, receiving beautiful images…
As a florist it’s the only way we can ‘see’ how the whole look came together.
What is your favorite flower or style, if you have one and why?
Every season is different, in the winter I love Hellebores and Anemones, Narcissi in the spring. I love old fashioned garden roses as they look beautiful and have an amazing scent, they can make a design look extra special.
What are the biggest lessons you have learnt and are there any tips you would pass on to new wedding florists?
I would say be prepared for hard work, early morning starts, long hours, being cold and wet. It’s not all glamorous. It is also important that you find a good quality, friendly and trusted supplier, as they are a really valuable part of the process.
What are your favorite trends when it comes to wedding flowers?
I’m absolutely loving the new unstructured, oversized bouquets, with ribbon trails to finish them off.
Vintage is still a big trend in the UK at the moment, I love putting this look together as it can be interpreted in so many different ways.
Any top tips you can give to couples ordering wedding flowers.
These days I do get a lot of emails from couples asking for quotes without meeting up, this is quite difficult to do. There are so many different choices, both in style and design. I would always suggest meeting your chosen florist, you need to know that you are comfortable working with them. It also helps us to get a better understanding of your personality, your dreams and needs.
I would also suggest choosing flowers that are in season, as these will be the most cost effective. A good florist will be able to give you alternatives, if the flowers you have chosen are not available, recommending flowers that are in season to give a similar look and to suit your budget.
Be realistic, a large arrangement full to overflowing with choice blooms is going to be way more expensive than an arrangement using fewer roses and greenery.
Use magazines and social media to help find a style and blooms that you like. Don’t be ruled by it. No two bouquets would be the same, and do you really want a bouquet the same as someone else’s? Your flowers are unique to you and should reflect your own personality and style.