Monday, August 31, 2009

Warning: Caution*****DANGER****step away from the rant


I apologize in advance if you don't like what you are about to read. I am normally a nice...well...I am normally a reasonable, woman. :D But today, I don't really want to be PC.

The Rant:

I am a studio designer. These are my questions as I read a blog that I really like, but was thrown off because she is knocking studio and home based designers.

What if I don't want to have a bucket shop?
What if I do and I just can't afford it now in this economy?
What if retail space is almost $10k in my area?
Does this make me less of a designer than you?
What if I freelance for other studios and floral shops and I like working my own events and want to set my own hours.
What if I charge $100 for my basic bridal bouquets, and you charge $300..should I adjust? Or should you?
What if I have worked for bucket shops and their stuff is garbage and they hire me to do some stuff that I can't put my name on or document because they get the cred?
What if I my flowers were published but I couldn't get the cred because I was technically working for studio and moonlighting at the same time?
What if I am better in my baby stages than you are in your 10th or 16th year?
What if your business model sucks and you aren't competitive because of your overhead and it sucks to be you right now?
What if, hehe, what if you can't be competitive because you pay other designers to make your designs because you and your flowers are dated....

*sigh* that was the one that made me feel better to type.

So now I'm coming back to happy land.

Just do me a favor, don't knock our hustle.
You don't know what we are up to, but we are coming. :)
Hitting publish before I change my mind.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Industrial Chic

I love it when couples are willing to try something new.
I love that someone wants to see what copper mesh and succulents would look like and mostly, I love creative freedom. :D

A while back I made a napkin ring holder that was a lotus pod made out of copper mesh and decorative wire. I liked it but I didn't have a place where I could show it off. I also wanted something to mix it with something sustainable and so I found the perfect union. I have a bunch of horsetail and succulents growing outside, and left over copper mesh and copper wire, so I suggested to a bride that was looking for something in green to consider the addition of copper.

Here is what I call Industrial Chic.

This is a corsage with a matching boutonniere.

Here's a close up of the boutonniere, it's made out of equisetum and a small succulent with a copper mesh wound around it.

Hope you like!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Ost Inspired

I have a ton of people I admire, so I won't bore you with my list of fabulous designers, but I will share with you my project on Daniel Ost. If you are not familiar, just go and check out his site and come back. I don't mind, go ahead. :)

The New York Times did a piece on him here and here is an excerpt:

"While bouquets and centerpieces are the core of his repertory, Ost is also known for his exuberant installations that venture into the realm of sculpture. Massive rings of rhododendrons displayed in a field look like supernatural, organic wheels, while a meticulous construction of dogwood and bright eucalyptus leaves resembles the stained-glass windows of a Gothic cathedral. Ost is just as likely to work with branches, seaweed and fruit as he is with fresh blossoms."

He is a master at repetition and he plays with only a couple elements at a time, making his flowers, well, art.

So for a project in my events class, my group had to report on Ost(not a problem) and make some sample designs that incorporate his look with a twist.
I went back in the vault to find these babies, I almost forgot about them until recently that I pulled them out because I will be recreating one of these for a wedding.
The first one was a structure inspired by his outdoor garden work. This is equisetum that has been fenced together with 18 gauge wire to stand all by itself.

One of my classmates calls this the Emerald City design :)

The mechanics, as you can see, are river rocks to make sure it doesn't topple over.

The third one was made out of Mitsumata Branches.

I contorted the branches into a chandelier and then hung up decorative glass vases and water tubes with White Phalaenopsis.
My structure is a fraction of what Ost does.

This is a cascading arrangement made out of Calla Lilies and Green Goddess Lilies, variegated lily grass, curly willow and some greens.

Here they are together!

So I hope you like my Daniel Ost inspired post!
If you ever come across one of his books,
snag it and RUN!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Lime Green

Chartreuse, Citron, Lime- whatever! Me loves :)

Yep, I love me some lime.
My wedding colors were Chocolate Brown and Lime Green and my business cards are as well.
So naturally I'm drawn to these arrangements and ribbon.

I made this little guy for my viewing pleasure at home.
I like to make myself stuff that I haven't seen anywhere and that doesn't necessarily follow the rules of what flowers are "supposed" to look like.
Kind of looks mushroom-y right? But I like the clean color of the yellow cymbidium throats (Don't worry- I don't usually kill my cymbidiums mob style, I'm working on something and these were the broken cymbidiums that couldn't be used) and the green kermit mums and the ivory urn.

I've been a happy camper buying up the cool ribbon in the dollar section at Michael's lately.
I usually buy ribbon from the supply stores at the Flower Market but these fun patterns have been catching my eye.

I hold on to these whimsical ribbons in case anyone ever says they want some super cute ribbon but sadly no one has been adventurous enough yet.

I like the look of a solid ribbon, don't get me wrong.

Simple is quite pretty, too.
This is a simple kermit mum accented with tips of green larkspur and ivy, then ribbon wrapped with a thin yellow satin ribbon.

But then again, take a look a this pink boutonniere. It has a little pink larkspur, some pink cockscomb and some hot pink cockscomb. The white ribbon has gold, fuschia and aqua designs on it and I love it!

I love that cockscomb looks like velvet:)
Nature sure is sweet.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Molto Grazie

Clustrmaps sent me an email that I exceeded my map capacity. hehe, I don't know why but that cracks me up. Every time someone pops by, they leave a red dot on my map from the country or state they visited from. My map was completely red in the U.S. and in other random places.
(I'm huge in Japan, lol)

So it restarted itself! I just noticed the map was different when I finally opened up my email today.
I have had 120,500 hits to my spot!!!swe-eet.

Thanks for stopping by! :)


Cornflower and Saffron

Or blue and yellow if you want to keep it real, heehee.

Personal flowers for a yellow and blue wedding.
Personally I love bright bouquets, these colors are fun.

Simple little blue boutonniere from one blue cornflower with a black satin wrap and some decorative wire.

Go lakers! not. I'm a Celtics fan.:P
GO CAL!(yeah, I can get down with that)

Monday, August 10, 2009

Pink Wedding in a Green Room

Green Room you ask? Yes. The color interesting color green. Loved by some, loathed by most. It is what I loving call a retro puke green color. I love the layout of the room, the high ceiling the chandeliers, the view, my God, the view. The color ,however, is a color that you have to work with. When my Hot Pink bride came and inquired about services in the Green Room in San Francisco of course I made myself available. I have wanted to work this venue for quite some time and I was happy to be able to provide color via the flowers to the room.
The Green Room in San Francisco is in the Veterans Building right in back of City Hall. It was originally designed as a lounge for WW1 veterans but now it's used for special events, performances weddings and the occasional photo shoot.
My daughter has her spring concert there every year because the room is right across the hall from the Hearbst Theatre.

Anyhow, when my Hot Pink Bride {who was almost my multicolored bride or actually my Polychromatic a.k.a. Pollyanna Bride} contacted me I was delighted to work with her!
She knew her flowers and as a matter of fact I believe she was trying to DIY her flowers, but realized about 4 weeks before the wedding that was out of the question.

I have had a lot of brides contact me for help on this and for last minute wedding orders because the idea of this seems doable at the time but as the wedding approaches they see that it will be hard to nearly impossible for them to get the look they want and still be sane by the wedding date. It can be done, since I did my own wedding flowers, but ask me again if I would ever do it.
I have a picture of me in full makeup with my veil on and sweats, WIRING my husbands boutonniere.
I will just fly SPROUT or JANET over here to arrange my flowers for me.{wink}

Ok, sorry for the rants....

{Hot Pink Bride}

Here is the brides and the MOH bouquet.
The bride knew she wanted to brighten up the room and wanted to have flowers that were
really pink with touches of fuchsia and pops of lime.
I used pink esperance roses, bright pink spray roses, hypericum berries, green cymbidiums, Jade roses, and gloriosa lilies.

The grooms boutonniere was matching green cymbidium, hypericum berries,
and pink spray rose.
I delivered these to the groom while my crew went to the Green Room around the corner form the hotel and I must say, this was the calmest groom I have ever seen. Usually there is nervous excitement or chatter or they say they are ok but they keep asking questions or fidgeting, but he was so cool.

The corsages and boutonnieres were simple.
She wanted them bright and colorful so we chose the magenta dendrobiums with green hypericum a simple ribbon loop on the side.

The drive to the venue was short and sweet. I could literally see it from where i was parked to unload the personal flowers. San Francisco's City hall is so beautiful to me. No matter how many times I drive by, especially at night when all the lights are on, I am always in love with this building.

Here is a shot of the Green Room with the chivari chairs lined up ready for the aisle.
The aisle is pretty wide because the tall centerpiece would be placed in the aisle to mark the front, last and middle rows in the pews. Later they would be moved to the high centerpiece.

The chandeliers are my favorite in this room.
I love the crown molding.

So are ya checking out the color of the room? Its like an old pale green with gold accents?
Here is the crew setting up the amber up lights.
The room definitely needed the burst of color. To give it energy, like ADIZAT, said. hehe

The weather and the view were stunning that day.

The centerpiece were tall arrangements in 26 inch tapered vases composed of dahlias in four colors, roses in three shades of hot pink, Jade rose, bells of Ireland, lime spider mums, and some lime kermit mums.

The inside of the tapered vase was a simple design of pink dahlias and spray roses.

The low centerpiece were arranged in a mint julep cup and the dahlias were just so big and juicy it didn't take that many to fill out a nice 10 inch diameter.
Here I used pink dahlias, mauve dahlias, cheery o roses, jade roses, shocking versilias, esperance roses, some dendrobium and cymbidums, pink hydrangeas, kermit mums, and a bit of the bells of Ireland.

We placed a small arrangement at the guest check in table and look at how cute they are with all their pictures.

The tall ceremony sprays were placed at the head of the aisle on two chocolate linen tables.

The third centerpiece were floating dahlias in water with a little bit of the glass rocks provided by the couple.
We were supposed to have three sets of centerpiece but when we arrived on site we learned that the cocktail tables needed arrangements and one of the larger glass bowls was accidentally broken so we ended up using the extra cylinder vases that were on hand and these fishbowls to create 8 extra pieces. Thank God I always bring an extra bucket of Flowers with me for these instances.

These were the cocktail table centerpiece we placed on the outside area
The couple had the most darling pictures of themselves as children at every table and these were the perfect size for the tables out there.

How cute right? They had soooo many pictures of themselves at different stages of their childhood and I thought that these two were very much loved by their families as they grew up. I spoke with the grooms mother the morning of the wedding as I delivered the personal flowers and expressed my thoughts on how sweet the bride was and she just lit up and agreed she was the perfect addition to their family. :) *sigh* I love weddings!

So the happy couple are on their Honeymoon now and I can't wait to see the pro pics by Lisa+James photography.

{And they lived happily ever after.....}

Saturday, August 1, 2009

AIFD Symposium{The Wedding Bouquets}

Oh sweet Jesus, when they came on stage I just about started crying a little because I thought they were so beautiful and I was waiting to see them up close. Luckily they set them all out for display for me to drool over these lovely bouquets.

As a result of this, I am determined to make it to the Green Academy Belgium.
I talked to Isabel Gilbert Palmer at symposium before the show and after the show and would love to go for their ten day workshop in Paris and Belgium. My instructor, Holly, who
is a past AIFD president, introduced my friends and I to Thomas De Bruyne, who happens to be one of the instructors at the Green Academy and a part of Life3, and he was marvelous.
He makes stuff like this:


That rocks my world.
One way or another, I'm going to get myself there. : )

Some of the following bouquets were made and presented by Ania Norwood, Moniek Vanden Berghe, Isabel Gilbert Palmer, and Bruce Wright.

Keep in mind these are freeze dried flowers form Avalane, that were made months ago overseas, packaged and shown at a couple different shows! Check out the site, it's got great information and pictures on there.

{Above} Ania Norwood's Lily Sphere

{Above} Moniek Vanden Berghe's Bouquet

For the bride that loves drama on her big day! Baccara roses and feathers.
{Ania Norwood's Feather Bouquet}

This is a Moniek Vanden Berghe Bouquet.
Simply gorgeous! I learned how to make the mechanic for this in school and it's pretty cool I must say. I will look for the picture and post.

This heart shaped bridal bouquet with miniature roses was stunning.

Geert Pattyn made these two beauties, the heart bouquet and the round bouquet below.

This is the Queen of the composite rose. The Dutchess Glamelia I would say :P

Pink Baubles should be the name of this beauty.
Or pink pearls?
Either way the pink peonies and silver pearl accents are GORGEOUS. Just the type of bouquet I want for my wedding.
{below} Fluer

These next three were from Colby Neal and Beth O'Reilly.