Jim's Journey to Floral Design
Let me tell you about myself. I never expected to work with flowers. I grew up thinking that I was going to be an adolescent counselor. I went to Auburn University to study family development and got my Masters in Counseling. I worked with Daystar Counseling Ministries as their male counselor for boys and as the camp director. This was the job I always wanted. I actually loved what I did but I noticed that I was really into my surrounding and how it was viewed. I wanted my office to have a certain feel, anything we did I had to have my hand in the overall feel of the event or the look. I eventually stopped counseling because I could not keep sitting in an office behind a shut door. I wanted to create using my hands. I was going stir crazy.
It was my sister in Law, Kelly, who saw my potential. I didn't know what my next career was but I knew I wanted something different. I think we were celebrating a birthday at my home and she noticed how much time I spent creating our home to be the perfect look. It was seen through flowers. I had no education or skills working with flowers but I knew that I liked what they did to a room. I took her lead and placed arrangements on tables where she managed the Bread & Companies in town. People started calling for help with Christmas and the rest was history.
I took my first job at the Franklin Freeman's Flowers to get some skills. I learned quickly that I was not a florist. Counting stems was not what I thought of as being creative. Nor looking through a ftd book inspiring. Thankfully Martha Greenwood invited me to help her with some weddings and she allowed me to learn by watching and by making mistakes. She was the beginning of my excitement towards creative design with flowers. My fans that really brought me to really loving flowers were... Terry White with English Garden ( I loved his style) , Steve McClellan with Garden Delights ( he knows how to use interesting materials), and my wonderful mentor, Mamie Mason. She had the whole package. I loved spending time with her. She was patient and had an amazing eye for color and style. I could spend hours just listening, watching and learning from her years of experience.