Meet Patty Baker
Hello! I'm Dr. Patty Baker and I'm passionate about wellbeing and environmental sustainability. These are directly tied to my interests in historically inspired floral design, the history and archaeology of Roman medicine, healthy landscapes, and gardens.
Ever since childhood, I felt compelled to do my part to safeguard nature.
The only time I felt truly at peace was when I was in natural spaces, such as by the sea or in the mountains. Being in these places made me realize how important a salubrious environment is for all life on this planet.
Two other aspects of my life contributed to my affiliation with nature. First, I have always loved flowers. As an undergraduate at Millersville University, Pennsylvania, I had a holiday job at a florist where I acquired my design skills. It was a pleasant and imaginative experience, and working creatively with natural materials also helped to alleviate my anxious nature. Second, I was studying anthropology, archaeology, and history for my degree and discovered that people in different societies in the past and present often had close relationships to their natural surroundings which they believed influenced their wellbeing.
Being inspired by this, I wrote a PhD at the University of Newcastle (UK) on the history of ancient medicine, which gave me an intimate knowledge of ancient philosophies of the body and nature. I was an assistant and associate professor and chair of my department of Classical and Archaeological Studies at the University of Kent (UK). As much as
I loved my teaching and research, something was missing from my life.
I felt powerless in regards to making
a significant impact on environmental issues. Most of the work on sustainability is undertaken by scientists, which I am not. Additionally, working in a full-time
academic position meant that I had very little opportunity to engage with the wider public about my concerns. Finally, there was little time for creating floral designs. Essentially, I had become unbalanced.
Eventually, however, I found a niche in all of my interests and bring them to a concerned, caring, and creative audience of people who want to engage with nature for both their own and the environment’s wellbeing. Teaching how to create floral designs and other crafts inspired by history—and using sustainable materials in doing so—is the perfect medium for thinking about ways to safeguard our natural world.
I now offer workshops and classes on crafting, floral design, and/or gardening history to promote sustainable practices, with the aims
of bringing us closer to nature and creating a sense of calm and wellbeing.
So, why not join me for one of my workshops and bring a sense of balance, health, and happiness into your life and your surroundings?
Dr. Patty Baker has over twenty years’ experience teaching ancient history and also holds a floral design certificate from the Covent Garden Academy of Flowers, London.
The recreation of a Roman Garden with the Trust for Thanet Archaeology and a workshop recreating Roman flower crowns with the Canterbury Flower Club, UK are just a couple of the several outreach projects Patty has undertaken. Both of these projects were generously supported by the Institute of Classical Studies, London, Public Engagement Fund.
Patty has also published widely in her academic field, including works on healthy landscapes.