My name is Sarah Statham and I run Simply By Arrangement, a small flower business based halfway up a hill in one of those small corners of Yorkshire. I gave up my ‘job for life’ at the age of 42 to see if I could make a new career out of something that I really loved – flowers. In 2013 the ‘British Flower’ trend had barely started, and I had no idea how big it would become, thanks mainly to Flowers From the Farm.
We dug up the front garden, made raised beds and a large flower patch and I started growing. My work now is mainly teaching others how to ‘do the flowers’ always with a strong emphasis on locally grown flowers and working in ways that don’t use floral foam (I’ve never liked it and the recent shift by many florists away from using it makes me very happy).
I teach new florists, experienced florists, flower lovers who want to learn more, growers, and people who are here on their travels from other countries. I also do a few weddings each year too, not too many, because I want them to be special and to be able to use as many of our own flowers as possible.
What I love most about my job, apart from the obvious pleasure of being surrounded by flowers, is that I get to help new florists and new growers work in ways which I know bring about positive benefits not just for their own businesses and their well-being but also for the environment and the local community. I really do believe that the beauty of flowers can have a powerful effect on us all. My favourite flower is a tulip, a fritillary, a dahlia and whatever new will have appeared overnight.