Congratulations to Level 3 Diploma in Floristry student, Karen Massey, who was invited by the British Florist Association (BFA) to showcase her skills on the Debut Designer stage at this year’s FleurEx Show. The event, held at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel is the leading industry event in the floristry calendar. Karen received great feedback on her designs from the large industry audience and also picked up many fresh ideas at the event when she attended masterclasses with Heidi Lawley and Tomasz Kucyznksi and design demonstrations by Pim van den Akker and David Ragg.
Karen has built up her own shop, Fleurtatious, in Dublin, over the past ten years and will complete her Level 3 Diploma in May. Earlier this year she won a local heat of the WorldSkills Floristry Competition at Greenmount Campus to secure her place in the UK Final at The Skills Show, NEC, Birmingham, in November. The Skills Show is the largest skills and careers event in the UK, and the competitions give thousands of visitors the chance to witness exceptional talent in a range of disciplines.
As part of her preparations for the UK WorldSkills Final Karen also recently attended a free training weekend provided by the BFA with leading floristry judge, Lynda Owen, and trainer, Laura Leong, who has twice been awarded the Florist of the Year title. The theme for the Final this year is A Haute Couture Fashion Show. The eight finalists will create a range of associated designs including a floral sash to be worn by a model on the catwalk, a wired bridal design to be carried for the finale and two surprise items.
Two of our current Level 2 floristry students, Emma Fegan and Clara Agnew, will also be at the Show to cheer Karen on. They are fortunate to have been invited to promote floristry skills on the Colleges NI stand at the event. Final year Extended Diploma in Horticulture student, Shea McFerran, will also be there to represent CAFRE in the Landscape Gardening Competition. Shea is currently in the UK Squad training for the WorldSkills Final in Russia in 2019.