Love is in the air …

…everywhere you look around! And no more so than in this fabulous coverage of Katie and Tom’s summer wedding from last year. Shot beautifully by Hannah McClune it has already appeared in Perfect Wedding June 2016 issue but if you missed that, do have a look through at this wonderfully romantic wedding and all its lovely details

katie and tom at Hampton Court House shot by Hannah McCluneFrom the beautiful ceremony in the entrance hall at Hampton Court House, through to the Dining Hall reception, the whole wedding looked so pretty!! Katie was very clear about the look that she wanted… soft, romantic, delicate colours and flowers with hints of blush and gold… but other than that she was happy to leave me free rein to create displays to fit with the venue – a perfect bride in other words

Hannah captured some lovely shots of the girls getting ready on the wedding morning and the arrival of Katie and her maids’ flowers – pastel bouquets of fragrant garden roses, stock, freesia and lisianthus tied with lush silk ribbons from Lancaster & Cornish

And a gorgeous gift in a special blue box from Tom which arrived before she left #love

katie and tom at Hampton Court House shot by Hannah McCluneThe couple were blessed with a lovely sunny day last September and Hannah managed to get some shots outside in the venue’s gardens, just how in love do they look?

katie and tom at Hampton Court House shot by Hannah McClune

katie and tom at Hampton Court House shot by Hannah McClune

All in all a beautiful wedding with lovely people at a fabulous venue on a sunny day… what more could you ask for x

Photographer Hannah McClune

Venue Hampton Court House

Dress Lusan Mandongus

Hair & Makeup Natasha Wiggins

Light up Letters Vowed and Amazed

 

Back to school part 2

As I’ve mentioned before, April has been a bit of a back to school moment for me. After 15 years as a solo florist with no formal training but learning as I go and making mistakes along the way, I decided to take the plunge and sign up for some hands on courses

Having jumped in at the deep end (see previous post!), I followed this by booking onto the 2 day La Belle Epoque course being run by the lovely Becca and Maz down at The Garden Gate Flower Company in Cornwall. They had managed to entice the amazing American florist Ashley Beyer from Tinge Floral to come and teach us. We stayed at Boconnoc, a stunningly refurbished hotel and wedding venue run by the Fortescue family near Lostwithiel

Well, what can I say, other than it was a completely amazing, full on, head spinning, flower filled, swoon inducing few days amongst some wonderful florist friends – new and old – who got absolutely stuck in to creating displays taught by Becca, Maz and Ashley with an incredible array of home grown (and a few Dutch) flowers – ranunculi, anemones, fritillaria, hellebores, narcissi, clematis, sweet peas, stock, tulips not to mention the flowering foliages – camellia, pieris, spirea and on and on!!

We very quickly went from watching Becca and Ashley bring their creations to life to having a go ourselves. Armed with fabulous floral booty, we crafted, bit our lips, changed things around, um’ed and ah’ed a bit longer and finally got the courage to ask the girls how we had done …. ‘very well’ was the general reply followed by a couple of well meant suggestions to improve which of course made everything fall into place!

The before and after of my ‘Ashley’ – can you spot the difference!

We then had a wonderful lunch provided by Emily Scott from The Tudy Inn which was just amazing and, honestly, if the pull of the ranunculi hadn’t been so strong I think we would have stayed at the house all afternoon … but the snips were calling and back we went to create bouquets

la belle epoque class with blue sky flowers

We were able to finish our bouquets with beautiful silk ribbon brought by the lovely Sian at Lancaster & Cornish who are just down the road from Boconnoc – thanks Sian! x

la belle epoque class with blue sky flowers

All in all, we had a wonderful time and learnt a lot … so watch this space to see what happens next! x

Floral learning curve part 1

Having been a florist for over 15 years now, I’ve realised that I really do learn something new with each wedding I do, both from the freelancers that I work with and from florist colleagues that I work alongside and help from time to time

But I’ve never really actually sat down and properly taken a course – shock horror! Well 2016 was the time for me to put this right and I started out at the top, I think, by attending the 2016 London Chapel Designers Conference hosted at Brixton East by the amazing Holly Heider Chapple and her team

Holly is a true whirlwind, a floral force of nature and a good old Southern Belle from Virginia USA who created the Chapel Designer movement back in 2010 as a way to bring together florists far and wide to share knowledge of what they had learned and what should be avoided perhaps, help each other to grow and improve and to ultimately create fabulous florals all over the USA … and now the world!

So on April 4 I went along to the second London Chapel Designers conference at Brixton East to meet around 30 florists, some of whom had travelled from the north of England, from Ireland and Europe and others from the States and even further afield. These amazing people gathered together, completely openly and warmly, wanting to make friends, learn and create new designs, exchange information and pass on hints and tips to improve all our businesses

And over the following three days, that is just what we did. We heard from florists like Nick Priestly at Mood Flowers in Glasgow, who shared insights into his particular business and how he had first travelled to the States to find Holly and become instrumental in bringing the Chapel Designers concept to the UK

Rona Wheeldon from Flowerona spoke to us in depth about Social Media and how we could use it to help our business grow and to make a brand for ourselves

We watched amazing demonstrations from Paula Pryke and Shane Connolly and heard first hand from them about how the florist industry had changed since they started and will continue to change as new blood and fresh talent comes into the market

We also had a fabulous hands on demo from the lovely Mairead and Athena at Rebel Rebel who guided all 30 of us in creating an almost 30 metre long rainbow of flowers see here in all its’ colourful glory!

On day 2, the whole 30 strong team then worked together to create these amazing elevated flower displays under which we then ate the most incredible – and well-deserved I have to say – dinner from Four Gables Group

chapel designers 2016 with blue sky flowersWe were lucky enough to work with the most stunning range of flowers sourced from wholesalers at New Covent Garden Market and donated from Meijer Roses amongst others – roses, tulips, hyacinths, sweet peas, ranunculi, stock, lilac, lisianthus, spirea and much more along with amazing seasonal foliages chapel designers 2016 with blue sky flowers

I can’t wait to get back together with these lovely people and have really enjoyed this journey to meet new friends and colleagues x