How to Become a Floral Designer: Start Your Dream Career
Want to know how to become a floral designer? You’ve come to the right place!
We’re willing to bet that you have a ton of questions about this new, exciting career path. Luckily, we’ve answered ALL of them for you in this article.
So, sit back and relax. In less time than it’d take you to watch an episode of your favorite Netflix show, you’ll learn everything needed to start the career of your dreams!
Is Floral Design a Good Career?
Before we begin, you need to know if it’s worth it to start a career as a floral designer in the first place. After all, if it won’t pay the bills or fulfill you, what’s the point?
Luckily, in terms of demand, this is a GREAT job to pursue! Floristry services are always needed, as there’ll never be a shortage of weddings, birthday parties, proposals, and a myriad of other celebrations in need of some truly stunning floral decor.
But what about the job itself? It’s important to go into this venture with a clear understanding of what to expect. So, let’s start by taking a look at the job description of a floral designer in a nutshell…
As a floral designer, here are the sort of tasks you can expect to do on the job:
- Conducting initial client consultations and follow-up appointments;
- Planning and arranging gorgeous floral designs for any occasion;
- Choosing and caring for flowers in order to ensure long-lasting and fresh designs;
- Working with clients to create unique designs that exceed their expectations (but not their budgets);
- Working efficiently to increase productivity, better your salary, and improve your bottom line;
- Marketing your floral design business and attracting/retaining clients;
- And much more!
So, if you’re the type of person who loves getting creative, working with flowers and other greenery, and knowing you’re playing a critical role in some of the most important moments of your clients’ lives, then you should definitely get started as a floral designer!
How Much Money Does a Floral Designer Make?
Next, if you want to know how to be a floral designer, it’s worth knowing how much you can expect to make from this career path. Here are some average salary ranges for floral designers, based on location:
- Canada: Between $30,000 CAD to $55,000 CAD per year (Source: Glassdoor)
- United States: Between $33,000 USD to $73,500 USD per year (Source: Salary.com)
- United Kingdom: Between £27,000 GBP and £44,500 GBP per year (Source: ERI Economic Research Institute)
- New Zealand: Between $40,000 NZD and $67,000 NZD per year (Source: Salary Expert)
- Australia: Between $46,500 AUD and $76,000 AUD per year (Source: Salary Expert)
The Added Value of an Internationally-Recognized Certification
When you get a proper education, you’re investing time, effort, and money into your expertise. As a result, you then earn the right to price your floral design services in a way that properly reflects that.
Not to mention, if your business offers other types of services (such as event/wedding planning, for example), you can raise those rates as well!
Moreover, having a credible floral design certification will do wonders in terms of helping you stand out from the local competition. Setting yourself apart from the crowd will not only better your business – it’ll definitely help you earn a higher income!
Fun Fact: Did you know that ALL of QC Event School’s courses, certifications, and designations are internationally-recognized and accredited? Check out the full list of courses we currently offer here!
How Long Does it Take to Become a Certified Floral Designer?
The length of time it’ll take you to work as a floral designer will depend on where and how you choose to obtain your certification training. So, the first thing you’ll need to decide is whether you want to do your schooling online or in-person.
In-Person vs. Online Schooling
The obvious perk of in-person training is that you’ll be in the same physical environment as your peers and instructor. That said, it’s important to keep in mind that brick-and-mortar schools are always more expensive.
Furthermore, you’ll need to work your schedule around the school’s schedule. This means you’ll never have the wiggle room to miss a class. Not to mention, you’ll have no choice but to follow the same pace as everyone else in your course. Thus, if the program is 6 months long, you won’t be able to graduate any sooner than that.
Most online schools, on the other hand, offer the freedom of self-paced learning. As a result, you can work on your course whenever YOU want to – and graduate in as little or as much time as you need. Plus, distance learning is a lot more affordable, since there are no physical campuses to maintain.
Can You Be a Self-Taught Florist?
Technically, yes, you can. There are no strict qualification requirements in order for one to start a career as a floral designer.
However, if you think this means you can go ahead and skip professional training, you couldn’t be more wrong! The fact is, a proper education is the single best way to set your career up for both success and longevity.
Why is this? Because prospective clients will NEVER want to hire a floral designer who can’t prove that they know what they’re doing. I mean, think about it… Would you?
Floral services are important. In the world of events, they’re the very element that can tie all of the decor together, bring the theme to life, and personalize the experience even further for the client. Fail at these things, and the celebration as a whole can wind up feeling very, very off. As such, clients will only want to hire legitimate experts that they can trust to deliver top-quality results!
If you want to have a truly fruitful career, your best bet is to enter the field with a reputable, accredited education already under your belt. This is just yet another reason why aspiring floral designers will benefit from enrolling in QC Event School’s Floral Design Course.
Okay, now that you know what it takes to be a floral designer, how can you actually start your career as a floral designer?
The following 5 steps will walk you through the process. This way, you can get started ASAP!
Step One: Learn About Floral Design
It’s important to approach your career with a game plan in mind. After all, going in blind will drastically decrease your chances of success. The better prepared you are, the better your chances will be of leaving a lasting mark on the industry!
So, take some time to sit down and do your research. Here are just some of the important things you should be looking into and figuring out:
- Popular and current floral design styles;
- Traditional floral design styles;
- Past and current floristry trends;
- The soft skills required to thrive as a floral designer (i.e. creativity, artistic ability, people/customer service skills, communication and listening skills, organizational skills, etc.);
- Demand for floral design services in your area;
- Your local competition, the services they offer, and how they run their businesses, etc.
During this stage of your journey, it’s also important to brainstorm what you’d like your future business to look like (should you wish to start your own business once you become certified). Here are a handful of questions you’ll want to answer:
- What name would you like to give your business and what do you need to do to get it legally registered?
- What will your brand be?
- Will your brand reflect certain colors, images, messages, emotions, etc.?
- Do you want to strictly offer floral services, or will you offer additional industry services to clients as well?
- E.g. Event and/or wedding planning, event decor, etc.
- Would you like to exclusively offer in-person services, virtual services, or both?
- Who will be your target clientele and how will you market your business to them (as well as in general)?
- What are your career/business objectives? How will you achieve them, and what’s your anticipated timeline for each?
Step Two: Take a Course on How to Become a Floral Designer
If you want to become a floral designer, then QC Event School‘s Floral Design Course will provide you with everything you need to know to make this dream a reality!
For starters, it’s worth knowing that this 7-unit program is 100% self-paced and done online. Starting on the day you enroll, you’ll have a full 2 years to finish the course. But if you were to devote a mere 1-2 hours per week on your studies, you could graduate and earn your International Floral Design Professional (IFDP) certification in as little as 3-6 months!
As a student of this course, you’ll discover EVERYTHING you need to know about the floristry industry and how to be a successful floral designer. What’s more – you’ll also acquire extensive business knowledge that’ll help you launch your very own business, get it off the ground, and make a name for yourself in the industry!
Ready to learn more about QC’s Floral Design Course? Find all of the details here and get started today!
Step Three: Offer Your Services for Friends and Family
When you first start your career as a floral designer, you likely won’t have any past projects under your belt. This means you won’t have much of a professional portfolio yet.
Until you have these things, it’s going to be a challenge to book real, paying clients. After all, they won’t be able to see visual proof of your awesome floristry abilities. Moreover, there won’t be any raving client testimonials for them to read. Now, I know what you’re thinking: this feels like a bit of a Catch-22.
At the beginning of your career, you’ll need projects and clients in order to build your portfolio – but you’ll need a portfolio in order to book projects and clients.
So, what exactly are you supposed to do?
The Value of Providing Complimentary Services
One suggestion is to provide free floral design services – at least, for a limited time at the beginning of your professional journey. Although it’s not exactly the most financially-attractive move, it’s definitely is a smart business move. When you provide complimentary floral services, you’ll be able to gather high-quality images to use in your portfolio.
You’ll also be able to gather positive client reviews that can be used on your website, in newsletters, on social media, etc. Moreover, the people you give these free services to could wind up referring you to people they know – which could lead to legitimate, paying jobs in the future!
Here are a few ways you can provide freebies in order to build your floral design portfolio:
- Offer floral services to friends and family for parties, weddings, home decor, etc.
- Create your own floral designs at home and take high-quality pictures of the final results;
- Take part in a stylized photoshoot;
- Lend your floral design expertise to a not-for-profit and/or charitable cause, etc.
Step Four: Set Yourself Apart
As we’ve discussed a couple times throughout this article, standing out from the competition will be super important during your career. Prospective clients will find no shortage of floral designers when researching their options. With that in mind, what will make YOU and YOUR BUSINESS so special? Why should people book with you, rather than someone else?
If you can’t answer this question, you can’t expect anyone else to!
So, before you officially launch your business, know exactly how you plan to set yourself apart. Grab a pen and paper, sit down, and brainstorm your answers to the following questions:
- What is your local competition currently doing? Which similar business moves would you like to adopt – and what would you like to do differently?
- Do you want to have a niche? If so, what will this niche be?
- E.g. You can specialize in wedding florals, floristry for corporate events, provide online services (or hybrid services), and SO much more!
- What can you do to hone in on your floral design skills and take them to the next level?
- Would it be worth it to invest in additional training, in order to expand your business services?
- How can you market yourself to your target clientele? Are there any avenues of potential that your local competitors haven’t tapped into themselves yet?
Market Your Services!
While we’re on the topic of marketing, it’s crucial for you to map out exactly how you plan to promote your business in general.
After all, once your business is officially launched, you’re confident in the services you’ll be providing, and you have a portfolio you’re proud of, it’ll be a matter of getting your business seen by the masses. So, how can you do this?
Tip #1: Build a Business Website
Firstly, you’ll want to build an official website for your business. Ideally, your domain name should be the same as your registered business name. Your website – which should look professional and clean – needs to showcase your portfolio in an easy-to-find way. I guarantee you that prospective clients will want to browse it!
Additional information you should include on your website includes (but is not limited to):
- An “About Me” page that tells viewers more about you, your certification(s), and any other relevant qualifications
- The list of the services you offer (as well as service rates, if you wish to publicly provide those, too)
- Client reviews
- Your contact information
- Links to your social media channels
- An online booking option
- Important policies and/or clauses (i.e. refund policies, cancellation policies, etc.)
Tip #2: Set Yourself Up on Social Media
Everyone uses social media these days. In fact, it’s one of the greatest ways to meet others in the industry and secure clients! Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, YouTube, and TikTok are just some of the popular platforms you can establish a presence on.
When setting up your social media accounts, keep the following points in mind:
- As much as possible, your handles should be the same as your registered business name.
- Just as your website will provide links to your social media accounts, so too should your social media channels link back to your website.
- The aesthetic and overall vibe of your social media platforms (i.e. what you post, how you speak, etc.) should always reflect your brand.
- Post often and always share original content as often as you can.
- Try to find new, fresh angles for your posts. You don’t want to be the same as all the other floral designers out there, or your channels won’t be as memorable!
- If there’s someone in the industry that you’d like to connect with, follow them, like their posts, and leave encouraging, supportive comments. This will better your chances of them doing the same with you.
- If someone takes the time to comment on your post and/or message you, make sure to get back to them and acknowledge their support.
- Use your social media channels as another way of showcasing your portfolio and promoting your business!
Tip #3: Network, Network, Network
Networking will be your BEST asset as you become a floral designer. I’d even go as far as to say that it’s one of the single smartest ways to advance your career!
After all, the floral design industry (and events industry as a whole) is a pretty close-knit community. As a result, it won’t take long for you to become acquainted with the other floral experts in your area. You’ll also get to know vendors, suppliers, venues, and event/wedding planners. It’s important to establish positive connections with ALL of them!
Because remember, while other floral designers are technically your “competition”, they’re also allies. The reason for this is simple: when you network, you’re increasing your chances of future collaborations and client referrals. Other florists might potentially send clients your way if their own schedule is completely booked (and so long as they trust that you’d do the same for them). You’ll have a much more fruitful career if you network with other floral designers and event industry experts.
No matter how you choose to market your services, your endgame should be to make a positive, memorable name for both yourself and your business. Ultimately, this is what will keep clients coming back to you!
Step Five: Stay On Top of Design Trends
While this step may be last, it’s certainly not least.
Staying current is the very thing that will keep your floristry career prosperous over time. In order to start a career as a floral designer, it’s imperative that you get properly trained and become a proper subject-matter expert.
But the fact is, taking just one or two courses at the beginning of your career won’t be enough!
In reality, your educational journey will actually be a lifelong effort. It’s important that you recognize and embrace this fact now, rather than later. After all, the world of floral design and events is ever-changing. As a result, there’ll always be new floral trends to try, new lessons to learn, and new design skills to master.
If you limit your training, you’ll be limiting your career’s potential. You (and your business) will eventually become stagnant. That’s just inevitable – and trust me, your clients will notice sooner or later.
If you want to avoid this (and I know you do), then continue to proactively build upon your skill-set. Take more courses and add more internationally-recognized certifications to your resume. You can also maximize your downtime by browsing social media and reading industry-relevant publications.
All of this will help ensure that you stay on top of the newest, hottest floral and event trends. At the end of the day, when you keep your skill-set current and fresh, you’ll be able to make your mark for that much longer!