As we move a little closer towards spring, one of the things we’re most excited about seeing is the plant life that will blossom across our beautiful countryside. With this in mind, we felt inspired to learn more about the flowers we love with the British Academy of Floral Art as part of our search for things to do in Devon.
Based in the serene setting of Dunchideock near Exeter, Devon, the award winning flower school runs courses and workshops throughout the West Country. With a vision to making floristry accessible to all levels of interest and ability, a group of highly qualified teachers offer a full range of professional qualifications as well as specialised workshops.
Flower arranging is not just about creating beautiful decorations, it’s also a therapeutic and calming practice for many people. Showing how nature can enrich and uplift peoples’ lives, the academy’s flower arranging workshops provide students with a relaxed opportunity to explore floral design, as well as their own creative expression. From discovering the significance and meaning of local and British flowers, to experimenting with floral design, each student is encouraged to discover their unique sense of style and share this within a supportive group setting.
Set up in 2008 by Floristry Masters Julie Collins and Tina Parkes, the school was founded on their passion for sharing knowledge and skills in a way that is both practical and inspirational. Together they work with Amanda Randell, a RHS Chelsea Gold Medallist, freelance florist and experienced shop owner and Kathryn Delve, who holds a City and Guilds Higher Diploma in Floristry and runs a wedding business.
The majority of the academy’s courses take place in converted farm buildings with views across the rolling hills of Devon, making this a special place to learn about flowers whilst being in the heart of nature. Dedicated to giving everyone the chance to experience the joy of floristry, the academy is open to complete beginners, as well as providing practical support for those who might want to turn their passion into a full time career.
The weekend and day workshops are a great introduction to floristry, but if you are looking for something more, the academy’s part-time level two course is described as the ultimate floristry course for complete beginners and a great starting point for life in floristry. Working closely with tutors, students are guided through techniques and practices, allowing them to get hands-on right from the beginning. By the time students have fully qualified from the level two course, they will be ready to work as a freelance or shop florist, start their own business, or enter floristry and flower arranging competitions.
The British Academy of Floral Art currently has around 100 students, many from Devon, Somerset, Dorset, Wiltshire and Cornwall. Graduates have gone on to run successful businesses, teach at other colleges and win gold medals at shows such as Chelsea and Hampton Court. So whether you are looking to pursue a new career, or simply want to work with beautiful flowers, the British Academy of Floral Art is an inspiring venue to experience the wild and wonderful art of floristry.
Visit The British Academy of Floral Art
8 Dunchideock Barton, Dunchideock,
Exeter, EX2 9UA
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