We re-opened the shop on Monday Dec 30th with just a small amount of fresh flower. Well to be honest we opened with no flower at all because the first delivery into Southampton following the Christmas break was LATE!!!
I flung the doors open at 8am, expecting our first delivery of flower soon after, but three hours later we were still waiting. I was dreading anyone walking in and asking for a bouquet. I wasn’t expecting to be that busy with it being twixmas, after-all you wouldn’t expect people to be going to visit friends and relatives to celebrate the new year – wanting to take a bouquet of fresh flowers with them – would you?
As it happened there was a large huddle of people starting to form a long queue outside the door. With other people jumping out of cars and running over, waving their arms crying “Flowers, flowers, do you have any flowers?”
Thankfully, the Little Bean Cafe was open and I’m sure I must have boosted their sales by suggesting a spot of breakfast or a pot of coffee…after which I’m sure we’d have plenty of fresh flowers!
We eventually managed to get a small delivery of flowers, which we used up pretty quickly and then spent the rest of the day relying on sales of scented candles, which are always good as an alternative gift. What I was most concerned about was the huge delivery of flower that I was expecting early, and I mean EARLY, on Tuesday morning…NEW YEAR’S EVE morning!
What if there was a shortage of flower coming in from the continent, what if they were being rationed and each florist could only expect to receive a couple of sprigs and a tin of Roses !!!???
That would be a major disaster and I mean MAJOR DISASTER and I’m not talking about someone in the army above the rank of Captain.
We were booked to provide the flowers for a New Year’s event at Amberley Castle. NEW YEAR AT AMBERLEY CASTLE!! I know I keep repeating myself, but New Year at Amberley Castle (I have I mentioned that before?) is a huge event. Huge, huge, HUGE!!!!!
Even before the devastating realisation that our flower order may not arrive on time I’d been forced into coming up with a creative solution to a teensy little problem….
How to make a stunning, amazing, jaw-droppingly, fantastic display of flowers to adorn the table and dining room at Amberley Castle on a budget. Not a small budget, but a budget that was a quarter of what I initially anticipated.
When put under pressure it’s amazing how ingenious I can be. I mean who else could come up with a flaming fantastic idea of replacing expensive hydrangea heads with cabbages, delicately sprayed with a touch of silver to add class?
Thank heavens the flower order arrived early on Tuesday morning, but it was still going to be a mammoth task to get all the table displays assembled, delivered to Amberley Castle and for us to decorate the whole room ready for all the guests to take a sharp in-take of breath as they entered.
What we didn’t want was the sharp in-take of breath to be because there were two florists stood on the dining table, sprayed silver with grubby little hands all over the bone china and footprints all over the starched white tablecloths.