Q&A with Abigail’s Flower Truck

First up with my Q&A style blog post is Abigail’s Flower Truck, a local pop-up flower truck…. I hope you enjoy!

I’m Abigail, the face behind the vintage VW Pop-Up Flower Truck. By the sea is where I feel most at ‘home’, I’m a BIG lover of crispy spuds soaked in gravy and I have an unhealthy obsession for crockery (My great Grandparents were from the potteries and worked for Wedgewood and Royal Doulton – so I guess it’s in my blood).

1. What is the story behind your brand name – how did it come about, what does it mean?

Since I was young I have had strong interest in gardening, imagery and fashion and have always wanted to do my own thing. After jumping from one job to another within the creative industries since university I found myself on a bit of treadmill chasing money, not really having a clue where I was hoping to end up. I was forever asking myself, what is the point of earning good money and continually saving if you have such little time to enjoy it. Through various roles I was incredibly lucky to have gained fantastic contacts who offered me so much support and the experience I needed.

It was essential I could offer floristry in a fashion that inspired creativity in anyone, of all generations. I wanted to create a business that encouraged people in the way I wanted to be. Be hands on, create something you can be proud of, and not be limited by what your budget allows. I bit the bullet, quit my job and the hunt for my VW T2 bay started…

The initial idea of Abigail’s Flower Truck stemmed from (excuse the pun) wanting to create a more hands on approach, and in an effort to escape technology that now plays such a large part in our everyday lives, I was incredibly keen to bring back an element of traditional shopping habits and encourage conversation within communities.

2. What makes your brand different?

Growing up by the beach in Devon was magic, but I often felt cut off from so many things available to others, the truck allows me to offer the pop up across the wider community without limiting the possibility of anyone enjoying it, as I could come to them, wherever they are. The flower truck is for everyone! Anyone can come and create their own bouquets as little or as large as they wish, whether its one single stem to brighten surprise tea and toast in bed or a bigger birthday bunch for your Grandma.

2. List 3 of your favourite flowers

I often get asked about my favourite flowers truck side, and it always stumps me as they are forever changing from season to season. Today my favourite picks would be Delphinium, Scabiosa and of course Sweet Pea’s as they smell incredible, are are beautifully delicate.
 

4. What inspires/motivates you?

My boyfriend Scott, he makes me laugh every single day, he is incredibly supportive and his remarkable positive outlook on life keeps me going on difficult days! Okay, enough gushiness… I am a big fan of change but I am always thinking of new ways to encourage the younger generation to embrace nature and enjoy creating like I once did. I feel incredibly lucky to have grown up in a generation where making mud pies in the garden and being outdoors in all weathers was the norm.

More and more time is spent in front of screens with the fast paced, throw away lifestyle we have now adopted and I find myself increasingly motivated to encourage old ways. Our planet is certainly a big motivator for me in regards to the day to day running of my business. I spent everyday possible surfing in Devon and Cornwall with my brother growing up so have always been incredibly inspired and supportive of the work Surfers against Sewage do.

I try my very best to be as sustainable as possible, using NO plastic, not even a scrap of celloptape to wrap our flowers. Often we use fabric and hessian which can be reused for crafts, encouraging further creativity. I grow a lot of the seasonal flowers from seed myself in my cut flower garden in St Albans and use British Flower Farms wherever possible, which is why I have been extremely inspired by the work of Sarah Diligent and the growing movement towards sustainability within floristry.

5. Who do you enjoy following on Instagram?

  • @emmarosestyle for fab fashion finds with gorgeous interior of her newly renovated home added to the mix.
  • @annabarnettcooks for delicious recipes, hidden travel hotspots and striking interiors.
  • @Natali_in_norfolk for hilariously genuine stories!
  • @Laurengilberthorpe I actually went to school with Lauren and her brother and sister and have always loved Laurens designs! I’m totally obsessed with her beautiful studio in the Cotswolds and her spaniel Darcie!
  • @putnamflowers for the most incredible floral arrangements with a whack of fun thrown in!
  • @leathousecornwall – of course! For snippets of home and beautiful coastal interiors!

6. What’s the most interesting thing you’ve read or seen this week?

Something that has certainly struck a chord with me this week, has of course been all the press regarding the millions of pounds worth of flowers and plants that will go to waste due to covid-19. The closure of florists, garden centres and nurseries will mean hundreds of companies often small/independents will go out of business too, I find the waste of all these perishable goods so desperately sad. I struggle to understand why something is not being done urgently to avoid the scrapping of all of the plants and flowers that so much time and care have gone into growing.

Supermarkets are donating food to food banks and to the NHS staff for meals to avoid any waste so plants and flowers should surely be the same, perhaps I feel so strongly as I know just how much effort goes into growing flowers and plants and completely appreciate the benefits both physically and mentally they can have.
As I only buy or cut what I need, when I need, I was fortunate to have very little waste and the few stems I did have left from Mothers Day Deliveries, I dropped outside a local care home to lift the mood of the residence stuck in isolation without any visitors. Thats a very small gesture to ensure the flowers are enjoyed as long as possible but one that I hope meant more than ever.

7. What is your favourite film?

Oliver Twist – I do a cracking Nancy Impression! Ask my best friend Soph!

8. What is your favourite recipe?

At the risk of blowing my own trumpet, I’m a ‘really’ good cook and I often think the invention test on Masterchef would be my best round, so at this particular time I haven’t felt too overwhelmed by creating meals with minimal ingredients. I have attended a few cookery courses at Ashburton Cookery School which have always been fab! HOWEVER I simply cannot bake! Cakes and deserts are what often leave me feeling disappointed in the kitchen, so my absolute go to recipe is Nigella’s Sticky Toffee Pudding. A firm favourite amongst family and friends that has never let me down! Phew

9. What is your favourite quote?

This is a tough one, as I’m not a big lover of quotes… If it was flower related it would be “ There are always flowers for those who want to see them” Which I absolutely agree with, especially as a big fan of wildflower. I can spot them a mile off, but one I have on my wall at home is “ Seek a little magic everyday” I am a big believer in this, Since starting my small business, I have begun to stay in the moment and appreciate all the little miracles of life, which previously I had been too busy to notice. A beep and a wave from a passerby as I drive about in the truck or a beautiful note of kind wishes to attach to a bouquet. These are the moments of magic I now find time to pay great attention too and most importantly enjoy, which is incredibly rewarding.

10. If you could share one tip for being successful, what would it be?

Allow things to evolve! When I first set out I thought it would be fab for truck pop ups outside cute coffee shops on the weekends and the odd person hiring the truck for photoshoots, luckily that was the case but now I host workshops, hen do’s, my little’uns party pop ups are hugely popular, along with my wedding collection. I never imagined it would bloom as it has. You have to allow for that, but trust your instinct. Its incredibly hard to say no to offers in the early days but It’s so important to be true to what you believe fits with your brand. Just got for it! “You’re so brave to have quit your job and followed your dream” I get told this often, but I don’t see it like that, I have always been an ‘all or nothing’ kind of girl and a big DOER- I get that from my Dad! It is really hard work, there will be lots of tears and tantrums but I really believe you have to work hard for anything in this world, and if you’re not prepared to throw everything at it, someone else will – so take the risk, work hard and be nice! What’s the worst that could happen? My only regret is not doing it sooner! I think that might be two… whoops, sorry!

1 Comment

  1. lesovitch
    April 5, 2020 / 4:59 am

    Love this concept and the flowers look so beautiful!

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