A day in the life: Lucy Houghton of Lu Diamond Flowers

19 April 2016
By Fashion Quarterly

Lucy Houghton of Lu Diamond Flowers wears Converse Chuck IIs

From the outside looking in, it seems there’s no profession more romantic than that of a florist.

So as part of our look at the daily lives of inspiring Kiwis in our local community, we thought we’d get the inside scoop from founder of Lu Diamond Flowers, Lucy Houghton. You might already follow her on Instagram (@ludiamondflowers) or have bought or admired her blooms at a wedding or two over the summer and there’s no denying the 29-year-old florist is one bright spark.

FQ: Tell us about your life as a florist? There’s probably no typical day for you…
Lucy: It’s so very true my life as a florist is very different on a day to day basis and lucky for me I’m a morning person and like to get jobs ticked off early. Emails, ordering, prep and planning – so much planning. Being a florist is like being a problem solver. It’s a numbers versus creative game and I thrive on this. Meeting with clients, setting up events and weddings, whether it be 5am in the morning or starting at midnight, to just fluffing around the city cutting down people’s trees and annoying my flower brokers with flower requests. Oh, and playing with flowers of course; this is the best part but often it only takes up 40 per cent of my week.

How did you get into the floristry industry?
I had this epiphany one day that I wanted to become a florist and started cold calling florists to give me a job. I found it really hard to get work as I had no experience. I started playing with flowers in my kitchen so I could practice. Soon after I started to concentrate on my own work and not trying to find work.

Lucy Houghton of Lu Diamond Flowers wears Converse Chuck IIs

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At what point did you decide to start your own business and how did you turn your dream into reality?
I started a Facebook page, back when Instagram wasn’t a thing. I would make a bouquet and post a picture with some really fruity caption like “strawberry and cream sorbet scoop bouquet”. The Facebook page was just for fun and a way to share a few snaps. My friends and family would get me to make them up bouquets then one day people I didn’t know started messaging me for my services. The business was born and it’s been my baby ever since. I live and breathe it and have worked really hard to make it a full time job.

What types of services does Lu Diamond provide?
It started with me slinging bouquet orders around Auckland City, which I still do, but my main focus is events and weddings. Over time I have become more confident in my floral skills and really enjoy taking on big projects, it’s that problem solver in me.

Lucy Houghton of Lu Diamond Flowers wears Converse Chuck IIs

Who or what inspires you creatively?
People who are positive and ooze enthusiasm really inspire me, it rubs off on me and encourages me to go above and beyond. Everything and everyone inspires me in some shape or form. Just taking a deep breath and going for a walk can have a creative impact on me, plus a bit of travel always keeps the imagination fuelled.

Working on your feet all day, comfort must be paramount when you’re getting dressed, right? How do you dress for an often messy job but always look so well put together?
I live in Converse Chucks. They have been my shoe of choice since way back. I need to be able to climb ladders, jump in and out of meetings and generally run around a lot, so comfort is essential. They work with my wardrobe style perfectly and I can dress them up or down with the click of my fingers. My style is very casual, shorts or jeans paired with a simple top. I love jewellery and often wear it to dress myself up.

Lucy Houghton of Lu Diamond Flowers wears Converse Chuck IIs

Do you have any tips for aspiring florists?
Practice, practice and practice. And be patient.

What do you like to do in your downtime?
Go to the beach and soak in the ocean, nothing makes me happier. And eating out for breakfast while reading the paper.

What exciting plans do you have in store for the rest of the year?
My last wedding for the season is in June and I’m hoping to skip to Sri Lanka for some sun and surfing as I’ve managed to miss NZ summer this year.

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