Lucie Merkl runs The Bloom Foundry, a funky florist and antiques emporium on St John’s Road. Here the busy mother of three reveals how she managed to turn her long held dream of running a shop into a reality I’ve lived in Tunbridge Wells for the last 22 years. I’ve got three boys aged 12, nine and six so when I’m not busy in the shop my time is mainly filled with feeding and entertaining them! They love coming to work with me – as long as I remember enough snacks of course! I studied floristry at Hadlow College about 14 years ago as I’d had enough of working in an office. On the day I qualified I found out I was expecting my first son so my floristry dreams had to be put on the backburner as babies and marriage happened. I started antiques dealing online to begin with then branched out to selling to other dealers and at decorative fairs. Things just escalated from there really! I love doing it as I’m always learning about the pieces that I buy and there is nothing like the feeling that you get when you find something really good. I opened my first shop The Bloom Foundry, which combines my principal loves of floristry and antiques, on St John’s Road in April this year. It’s easy to spot as it’s coral pink! I stock beautiful fresh seasonal flowers from Cornwall, interesting, easy-to-car-for house plants, stunning silk flowers and unusual antique items. These currently range from original mid-century Japanese woodblock prints to a 1980s stereo cabinet with clowns styled to look like an 1800s steam organ complete with cassette tapes of organ music. When I was a little girl my favourite game to play was shopkeepers. My sister and I used […]