& how it all began...
Here’s a little insight into the business of SweetPea & Jasmine, established in February 2014. I’m Shontelle, the proud owner of my company and have been a florist for over 20 years.
Originally from New Zealand, I started my profession after finishing high school, working in Auckland and then Tauranga. I travelled to Australia and worked for a chain of florist shops in Melbourne, becoming the manager of one of the shops.
After three years in Melbourne I decided to travel to London and was lucky enough to be accepted to work for Jane Packer at her Selfridges branch on Oxford Street. Here I worked for Jane Packer for five years and after my first year I was asked to become the manager of this branch. Through this role I gained experience working with high profile clients, helped with contract teams installing flowers, working on movie sets, photo shoots, teaching at her flower school and many more large scale events. After leaving Jane Packer I was interested in finding a florist role in a wedding and event team and contacted Paula Pryke. Paula was happy to take me on as part of a team helping to create and install weddings and events throughout the UK and Europe almost every week of the year. I was lucky enough to have my first child and carry on working within the team part time and then after having my second child I began freelancing with other florists throughout London on many high profile and large scale events. In 2011 Jane Packer asked me to freelance for them and help create the victory bouquets for the medal winners at the London Olympics, this was a major highlight of my career.
My family and I moved to New Zealand at the end of 2013, bought a large property in Pahoia on the outskirts of Tauranga and with all of this land I decided to try out growing my own flowers.
I found that at the flower wholesalers there was limited choice in what I could buy so I started growing the English flowers that I enjoyed using in the UK and sold these fortnightly at a local market. People started asking how to order a bouquet for delivery and there was an interest in creating bouquets and arrangements for weddings. So I started up SweetPea & Jasmine with a website, kept going to the markets, began creating wedding flowers and supplying contract arrangements to businesses. Within two years I had established a successful business around creating and installing weddings from October through to May then focussing on my Flower School from May through to August, and September is my flower seedling planting month.
I love to use locally grown flowers and have many growers within Tauranga, Hamilton and as far as Masterton who supply me with fresh cut flowers. My style is contemporary country garden and it’s all about the flowers as that’s what you are paying for.
SweetPea & Jasmine Studio
28 Lowe Road, RD8, Pahoia, Tauranga
PHONE: 027 662 0010