The Life of a Florist – by Donna Cornish

Have you ever wondered how it would be to work as a florist? In this article series, we give you a peak in the life of a florist. This week’s article features florist Donna Cornish who’s keen to crack on with her ambassador role and start expanding her shop once again. Read on to learn more about how it all started at Flowers by Donna.


Written by Donna Cornish – Flowers by Donna


donna cornish

How it all started

My love for flowers began when helping my late Nan growing up in the garden. It was the array of colour and texture that caught my eye alongside the changing seasons.

I’m extremely lucky enough to have my other Nan – who loved to arrange flowers – still with me. Her father was a horticulturalist. So, she also had a keen eye for flowers. Once I’d shown interest in flowers she would take me along to the local floral art groups to watch the demonstrations and help pick flowers to recreate designs. Encouraging me to enter the local shows and follow my passion for flowers to become a florist.

Work experience week came around at school when I turned 14. I was lucky enough to have a fantastic week in a beautiful florist. At the end of the week, I was given a Saturday job. I cleaned buckets and conditioned flowers until I finished my GCSE’s. Off to floristry college I flew.

donna cornish
Samples of Donna's work
donna cornish

Flowers by Donna

Seven years passed by working in the wonderful shop. I gained my Higher Diploma in Floristry. I got married and 12 months later started ‘Flowers by Donna’ from my garage with a sign-written van. I’d dash around delivering bouquets and meeting customers. It soon became apparent that the garage was becoming too small. I opened the shop in November 2011. Selling giftware and plants alongside our lovely fresh flowers. This was the life.

I then had our first daughter 12 months later. Born on Saturday and was back to work mid-week with my little bundle in tow in the Moses basket. I decided to have the best of both worlds bringing our daughter up in the shop. How hard could it be? The playpen was built and away we went 6 days a week. She soon became the star of the shop. Fast forward almost three years she started preschool, perfect timing with another baby on the way. After being born on Friday, we had a weekend off. Bringing the Moses basket back out again on Monday morning to begin work again.

Life with the shop is crazy with two children at 5 and 2. But I have huge support from my husband, parents, sister, parents-in-law and auntie whom lucky for me live just five minutes from us in the shop.

donna cornish
Grower Ambassador – Qualirosa
donna cornish


It was an absolute joy to start buying from Florismart. After over half of my life working with flowers, the passion for buying and learning started again. The knowledge gathered in the last few years has been amazing. So when the opportunity arose to apply to become an ambassador I applied right away. Working on my own can be lonely at times. It’s so lovely to be able to be part of a group, whom each one is so passionate about the florist industry. #thinkflowersthinkflorist #florismartfamily #supportsmallbusiness #shoplocal

This year I was nominated by my lovely customers for the Muddy Stiletto’s ‘Best Florist in Cornwall 2018’ award. I was lucky enough to win and attend the awards ceremony in May. Then got to become grower ambassador for Qualirosa and made a trip out to Holland in July to learn all about them. I’m now keen to crack on with my ambassador role and start expanding the shop once again now the littlest one starts preschool and look forward to seeing what the future brings…


Have a look at Donna Cornish’s designs in our Florist Finder. Go check it out!

Related articles