In this work-is-life world that we live in, it’s no wonder that we often forget to stop and smell the roses. While it's easy to turn to a glass of wine or a mani-pedi for much-needed self indulgence, there’s nothing quite like Mother Nature's wonders to soothe the soul. Which is exactly the thoughts of Chloe Milligan, brains (and beauty) behind Mud Urban Flowers the digital florists based in Glasgow. Bringing back the practicality and the fun in gifting flowers, Mud's fresh, seasonal and on trend bouquets change daily, filling our lives - and insta feeds - with all the flora and fauna we need, not to mention creating a brand that everyone (and their Granny) wants their hands on. But what does a day in Chloe's life look like? Let's find out.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do?
I’m Chloe at Mud, 24 years old, Glasgow born although I’ve travelled and moved around a lot so my accent is a little confused. Day to day I design bouquets and post them on our Instagram. We deliver one daily design in three sizes (starting from £19 inc delivery). We also do super big bespoke bouquets for special occasions and have just started weddings. Yikes! Currently, we’re only in certain postcodes of Glasgow. Fingers crossed we can expand in Glasgow, to Edinburgh and beyond early next year!
How did you get into this business?
My super talented cousin is Nick Priestly (editors note: When Rihanna needs roses or Keira Knightley has an urgent Valentine’s delivery of fritillaria, they call in Nick Priestly) and the wonderful couture florist Holly Chapple in the US. Both are very talented designers and generous with their knowledge. They have taught me heaps about the floral industry!
Wow! It's almost as if it was in the bloodline! If you weren't doing this, what would you be doing?
My dream job would be working for Martha Stewart in New York, failing that… probably some form of office based 9-5 job.
Do you have a life motto / mantra?
I say “keep on keeping on” a lot. No matter what turn and hike life takes you on, I try to keep going and keep pushing myself to be better and do better.
We hear that, girl! So, take us through a typical day. What time do you get up at?
I wake up around 6am. Check social media and my emails. Head to the market to buy fresh flowers for the day. Onto the studio usually with a quick coffee stop. Arrive at studio. Catch up with team and start sorting orders, making bouquets, mini photoshoot and send deliveries out. I then spend a couple of hours doing office admin. In the evenings I either go to the gym or meet up with friends and then home for an early night. And ready to do it all again…
Like a well oiled machine, eh? How do you keep yourself organised?
I try to write EVERYTHING down. Even if I think I’ll 100% remember this, I write it down in notes on my phone, or on a sheet of paper or in my diary. Having those memos usually helps me stay on top of everything.
How do you keep yourself going through a humpday?
By taking a break. I’m always nipping out for a coffee, or to get my nails done, or to go to the gym.. these mini breaks keep me going. Sometimes(!) I even put my headphones in and sit at my desk watching TOWIE or MIC and it looks like I’m working. Guilty!
Biggest misconception about the job you do?
That it’s so lovely and pretty and lovely.. but there’s actually a lot of hard grafting and not very pretty things. Early hours, it can be freezing in the studio (flowers don’t like radiators), emptying buckets, filling buckets, emptying buckets, sweeping.. when flowers get old and nasty? Yeah, there’s lots of not very pretty or lovely parts.
How do you wind down?
Driving in my car with music on… I can’t use my phone so no emails, no social media.. it helps me wind down a lot. OR.. going to the gym. Again, I put my phone in a locker, no emails.. no social media.. OR cinema is also a good one to wind down. Again, no phone.. no emails.. no social media. Bit of theme going on?
YES! There's nothing like some time away from your phone. So tell us, what's your favourite thing about what you do?
100% designing the bouquets. I love playing with colour and the textures. I also love seeing people’s reactions to different designs.
Any advice for someone who would like to follow in your footsteps?
If you want to get into floristry, try get a part time job in a flower shop. You’ll most likely be conditioning flowers, emptying buckets and sweeping. I think it’s good to see what the day to day is like before you get to “play with the flowers”. After doing so, if you’re still keen, I’d advise going to college or speaking to a florist about training you up. If you want to own your own business, my best advice is to believe in yourself. It can take months and months of planning and trying before anything hits off. Don’t give up!
Do you have an idol?
My mum. She has climbed to the top of the ladder in a male dominated sector, owning her own company and being one of the best at what she does, I couldn’t be more proud.
Treat yourself to Mud Urban Flowers today and make sure you follow the instagram on @mudurbanflowers.