Jacalyn said:

I went up on the Sunday and then it took us about an hour to set up.

It wasn't too bad. In previous years they have had great 10 foot thrones.

It was Queen Victoria's 200th birthday and we had to creat a crown using the old traditional floristry techniques of wiring.

I wanted to go against what everyone else was doing, so instead of the usual vibrant colours I chose those jewel tones like rubies and sapphires.

She had connections with Balmoral in Scotland, so I used heather to show that.

I have been working on this since January, and it just sort of evolved as I did.

Just going up to the show and seeing the level that they expect, I learnt so much I can use to go again.

Having not done many competitions before, I feel like I did the best I can do.

I am sure next year I will be chomping at the bit.

I am due (to give birth) next week.

My husband loved it when we got up there and it was an amazing experience getting to walk around before all the people came in.

I don't think he realised how big a deal it is.

I was just so happy to be at Chelsea. My mum and my sister went along the next day to represent my at the award giving, and they got an envelope with the bronze certificate in, and they were on the phone to me and started screaming.

I was so chuffed, and I cried a bit.

Angie said:

When I saw Jacalyn's crown there was just so many people taking photos of it, really stopping a taking note of her entry.

I just had a moment. I was so proud of her.

She did really well, and it is all because she is dedicated and passionate. She loves her job and she is so good at what she does.


AN Ilminster florist is off to the most famous flower show in the world, and is in with a chance of being crowned one of the nation’s best designers.

Jacalyn Arscott had entered the competition for only her second time ever and, after battling through a tough South West heat, was named of one of the UK’s top 16 entrants.

Jacalyn, who went to the British Academy of Floral Art, works at Cottage Flowers in Ilminster.

She said: “I am pretty chuffed. There are 16 people that have been chosen and are in the running for Florist of the Year.

“I got everyone here to enter a few years ago, but since then I keep saying I should have done it this time, I should have gone again.

“This year I went for it and I didn’t tell anyone.

“I have been once before. It is the most famous flower show in the world. To think I am going to have a place there, and perhaps have my work seen by the Queen, is amazing.”

The weekend of Chelsea Flower Show 2019 coincides with Queen Victoria’s 200th birthday, and that is set to be a running theme throughout the event.

Jacalyn and her fellow competitors have been tasked with designing a crown from flowers, with the key element being that the headdress must be wearable.

Angie Blackwell, owner of Cottage Flowers, said: “She is going to be showcasing at Chelsea Flower Show, and we have just heard that she will have to create a crown fit for Queen Victoria.

“Jacalyn had to go an do some heats in October and she got 92 out of 100 there.

“She then had to wait to hear that she had been picked as one of the top 16.

“For a little florist shop in Ilminster to have someone going to Chelsea Flower Show, we are thrilled.

“We are so busy here that competitions aren’t something we do a lot of. She has done this all off her own back.

“She is so talented and so hard working. It feels like the crowning glory of all her work coming together.

“For Jacalyn to be chosen for Chelsea Flower Show is amazing.”