A big welcome to Holly from Holly and the Ivy Floristry in Surbiton, the next in my interviews of #incredibleindependents. Here is more about her wonderful independent business and how she started up.

1) Why did you start your business?

I’d been working for a soundproofing company for 2 years and as much as I did well at my job and it was an incredibly flexible role, it just wasn’t allowing me to channel my creative juices! Although the flexibility was great, it came with a lot of stress and I would find myself upset regularly about things that were essentially out of my control.

My partner and I purchased our first home in July 2017 whilst I was still working in soundproofing and there had been a small shop to let with two beautiful bay display windows either side of the door with art deco style lead piped glass and the shop front painted in white in the parade of shops near our new home. It was a perfect little space! I’d worked in Events Management and Floristry for the best part of a decade before soundproofing and had studied an Event Management and Marketing degree, which had given me all the business skills I needed to set up a company; before I knew it I’d called the number on the “To Let” sign and had organised a viewing. By November 2017, I had applied for a loan and made the leap to enrol on a floristry refresher course and start the Holly and the Ivy adventure!

2) What do you love about running your own independent business?

I love that all the decisions are my own and that I have wonderful local support from some amazing people in my community. I love that this is my very own brand that’s developing and the best bit is seeing it grow and flourish into the business it is today, not even a year down the line.

3) What is your favourite product or service and why?

I love the workshops that we offer, whether its a 1 to 1 Hand-tied design session, a group of people that don’t know each other building their own terrarium or a family that has booked onto one of the classes to make Christmas Door Wreaths together – it’s always a real giggle and a lot of fun. Seeing how chuffed the students are once they’ve completed their arrangement is just wonderful – it’s so rewarding.

4) Let’s spread the indie love, name some other independent businesses you support

Little Koyo is a fab new brand that is local to our shop, they make the most beautiful children’s clothes in gorgeous Liberty of London fabrics and they rock! We stock some exclusive pieces in our little shop. The Fellowship Barber Shop on Maple Road is where my partner gets his hair sorted, they are a great team and its a super cool shop with awesome vibes. Also our lovely dog walker Dollie who recently started her own independent business K9s keeps our minds at rest when we are working and need our dogs entertained – they come back knackered every time!

5) Which is your favourite social media platform and why?

Instagram without a doubt! Being a company that relies heavily on visuals, I love that in an instant your image and story is out in the world for everyone to see – that’s bonkers and great all at the same time!!!

A big thank you to Holly for sharing more about her lovely business. Her classes sound like great fun! Please continue to support independent businesses by using the hashtag #incredibleindependents when talking about independent businesses that you love or have just discovered!