Josephine Bonaparte once described herself as like a swan – elegance and grace on the surface, and paddling like crazy beneath the waterline. I cannot help but think that West End florist, The Little Flower Company, operates in the same manner.

The shopfront is pretty as a picture, perched upstairs at its Montague Road address. Baskets of beautiful freshly cut flowers, bouquets and quaint glass vases line the shelves and floor space, yet downstairs from the shop is a hive of activity, run by a dedicated team, keeping to short deadlines.

The Little Flower Company’s founder and owner, Kristy Lakomy, sheds some light on what a typical day at this West End business looks like. “Trust me, you don’t want to know what my average day is!” Kristy laughs. “An average day for me unfortunately isn’t very exciting. My role is marketing, accounts, general manager and mother. I work from home most days juggling work and kids. We have a warehouse manager, production manager and seven florists who are all super talented. We are a little floral family and they keep everything working wonderfully.”

The nine other staff members keep the business running from day to day, while Kristy oversees the bigger picture. “The girls are all very much part of the team and all have the same goal — to have a happy, pleasant work environment and be part of a successful company,” Kristy says. “They understand that hard work equals results so they mostly work autonomously. We do have Bron Gregg, our warehouse manager, and Emily Lisney, our production manager, who oversee operations and report to me. I go in a couple of times a week and we are otherwise in contact via phone and email every day.”

Chatting to two of the florists, Nicola and Chelsea, it seems as though working at The Little Flower Company is as lovely as it looks. Surrounded by the smell of a thousand fresh flowers and creating bouquets that will be sent with love and received with a smile, it has the most immediate work satisfaction. However, when it comes to special events, the pressure is on. “Our peak seasons are Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day and Christmas,” says Kristy. “Planning for these three events you could say is ongoing through the year but we really knuckle down for a good two months before each one.”

Despite the pretty nature of the business, and her 18 years of experience as a florist, Kristy’s motivation runs beyond floral compositions. “I love being in business. I love the stress, I love the challenge and I love the reward,” she says. “We’ve had our online business since 2007 starting in our garage and then moved to a warehouse in Albion. We quickly outgrew that and then ventured to Montague Road, West End in August 2014. This is where we opened our little retail shop front and haven’t looked back!”

If this wasn’t enough to keep Kristy busy, she also owns and runs sister companies The Little Hamper Company, The Little Plant Company and The Little Balloon Company and is striving for gift domination! “We are striving to be a one stop gift shop for every type of person from babies to grandmas, men and women.”

Words by Alice Thompson | Images by Tahlia Moloney