WHO: Alice Shepherd
WHERE: Pop-up store at King of the Castle Café 24 Pakington Street, Geelong West
Daisy: What kind of a garden do you come from?
Alice: Oh, I don’t come from any garden.
Daisy: Do you suppose she’s a wildflower?
- Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
EVERYONE loves flowers! From pretty posies to mind-blowing floral and foliage installations, this girl has got you covered! I first met Alice when we were looking for someone to take over our pop-up shop at King of the Castle café. She had recently headed out on her own to establish She’s a Wildflower. Like me, Alice hasn’t always lived in Geelong. She grew up on a farm in northern Victoria and moved to Melbourne to study Tourism and Business. Eventually, she moved to Geelong to study floristry and now calls the Surfcoast her home!
DID YOU ALWAYS WANT TO BE A FLORIST?
No, my career began in talent management, liaising between comedians, bands, celebrities and their agents. Some of my clients include the likes of Ita Buttrose, Sir Bob Geldof and Jackie Stewart! It was an incredibly demanding job, but I really loved working on the social functions, where I got to spend time organizing the décor for each event. Things changed on my 25th birthday when a friend presented me with a hand picked posy of fresh flowers, straight from the garden, and I thought it would be so nice to do that for a living! So after some quick thinking and encouragement from my partner, I enrolled at The Gordon.
WHAT IS THE BEST PART OF YOUR JOB?
Not being bound to a desk! I love talking to people and really getting to know my clients. It’s rewarding to know that they have total trust in me and I have full creative reign over a job. I also love going to market and being inspired by all of the different blooms and foliage!
WHAT IS THE WORST PART OF YOUR JOB?
Stinky water; kale and stock water are definitely the worst offenders!
WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE FLOWER?
That’s like asking who is your favourite child! It changes week-by-week and season-by-season. At the moment I love flowers like sea holly, anemones, poppy pods, beehives and stock.
WHAT FUN THINGS HAVE YOU BEEN DOING?
I’ve been working with the Pot & Pan Stylists, creating some amazing floral displays at their events. We had one here at King of the Castle and the next one will be at Boom Gallery in September. I’ve also been working with Little Creatures and had so much fun creating a forest in the foyer for their White Rabbit beer launch last week. I’ve also been collaborating with some stylists and photographers on photo shoots for wedding publications.
WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS FOR THE FUTURE?
Working with flowers is so much fun! Ultimately, I’d love to work from my studio on events, with stylists and photographers, rather than retail.
She’s a Wildflower is open from Monday – Friday from 7am ‘til 3pm (on Monday’s Alice uses an honesty box system; she’s got to have at least ONE rest day a week!) and Saturday – Sunday from 8am ‘til 2pm.
I’ll give you the hot tip though; Thursday is market day, so she is just bursting with spectacular blooms that will make your heart sing!