December has arrived! We recently took a break from decorations and present wrapping to catch up with floral designer, Kitten Grayson. She also shares her essential wreath crafting skills in the below video!
Is working with flowers something you’ve always been interested in, or did you ‘discover it’?
I grew up in Somerset so spent a lot of my childhood outside. My grandmother is a wonderful painter, and I would watch her painting fields of poppies and lots of other wild flowers.
Where did you train?
I started working with flowers at a beautiful flower shop in Somerset. I then moved to London and got a job at luxury florist Wild at Heart, which was amazing and I learnt so much.
Are there any people that you had as a mentor or that really helped you along the way?
Yes, Victoria Brotherson, founder and owner of Scarlet & Violet and her wonderful sister Charlotte were always a huge inspiration to me. I admire them and their work hugely.
What was your first or most memorable project?
I was asked to plant a walled garden full of cutting flowers in Somerset. I grew the flowers and plants from seed. Nurturing them and watching them grow in their own time within the garden environment was a wonderful thing to witness. It was such an incredible product, I learnt so much and it was lovely being a part of the project.
Is there a piece of work that you’re most proud of?
Probably the garden in Somerset. I also did a wedding in Paris this year which I really enjoyed.
You’re obviously well-known and respected in your field now. Do you have any tips to give to aspiring floral designers on how to gain recognition?
Instagram is amazing! I also think it’s incredibly important to support each other. If I’m booked for a job and another comes in that I’m unable to manage I always pass it on to another florist.
What plants and flowers do you favour personally for your own home? Does this change with the seasons?
I grow a lot of my own flowers on my balcony. I’m very lucky as my fiancé is a wholesaler at New Covent Garden, and he always brings me home flowers – it’s a lucky dip every time.
Christmas-time is fast approaching and at The Chromologist, we agree that there’s nothing better than hanging a beautiful festive wreath on your front door. Do you have any tips on gathering the best plants and flowers for a wreath at this time of year?
At the moment there’s so much outside to forage and gather. Anything that will last out of water is perfect to use in a wreath; pink pepper corns, dry hydrangeas berries, rose hips, the list goes on! Covent Garden flower market is an Aladdin’s cave, you’ll find lots of treasures there!
Does the professional side of you ever want to tweak the wreaths of doors that you walk past?!
All the time! I’m constantly passing beautiful doors thinking “Wow I’d love to make a wreath for that door to fit the colours and style of the house!”.
Finally, do you run any courses or events where people can learn more from you about the art of floristry?
Not at the moment, but hosting workshops is definitely in my dreams notebook! During December I will be collaborating with Lamplighter London (calligraphy and stationery studio) to produce magical creations for all occasions. We can be found making wreaths, garlands and all things festive at The Chelsea Gardener until 23rd December.
Discover more of Kitten’s work at @KittenGraysonFlower on Instagram.