The AIFD (or AIFD (American Institute of Floral Designers) is a big deal in the flower industry. Established in 1965 to advance the art of professional floral design through education, service and leadership, and to recognize the achievement of excellence in this art form. Almost fifty years later it remains the floral industry’s leading non-profit organization dedicated to establishing, maintaining and recognizing the highest standard of professional floral design.
Accredited membership in AIFD is very hard to achieve. The association is extremely selective and accreditation can be obtained only after a candidate has demonstrated advanced professional ability of his or her floral artistry. Florists try and do this each year at the National Symposium where they choose to undergo a very rigorous test – creating five designs in four hours. The products and criteria are not revealed until the testing is underway. The completed designs are evaluated based on ten different aspects of professional floral design including mechanics, balance, color, theme, line, creativity and mechanics.
It is a very difficult and demanding test. This year 143 florists attempted the test. Of those 50 designers earned their CFD credentials, 24 designers maintained their CFD credentials and 69 professionals created artistic designs that were so excellent that they have been invited to become a member of AIFD.
One of those was Doug Bates of Designs by Vogts in Sturgis Michigan, who was one of those that took the test and passed. AIFD accreditation was very important to Doug and it is great to see him receive this honour. He'll be inducted next year when AIFD holds the symposium in Denver.
Doug will be joined by Eileen Cheng of Blossom Street Florist in Tamarac Florida. I spoke to Ellen in June at the FSFA event in Weston Florida and she was very excited about testing. It's great that it worked out for her. Another incredibly talented designer, Janet Jacqueline Corrao of Kingsland & Franklin Florals, in Nutley New Jersey also took and passed the test.
Rhonda Little of the Millinocket Floral Shop in Millinocket Maine passed the test last year and was officially inducted as a member this year.
All of these flower shops have used the FloristWare POS system for years. They aren't just incredibly talented designers – they are great people and it is a pleasure and an honor to work with them.