Monthly Archives: December 2010

Which Bouquet?

The Dress…

kenneth poole…the Fashionista from Kenneth Pool…a strapless mermaid gown with shirred tulle bodice and low dropped waist…skirt features layers of seamed tulle and clear paillettes…in Ivory…

The Bouquets…

Bouquet #1

bridala1 gilly flowersimage via Gilly Flowers

Bouquet #2

DSC_0287-1024x819 flourish designs.comimage via Flourish

Bouquet #3

karen2bouquet fleurs nycimage via Fleurs NYC

Which would you choose? Don’t forget to give us some great insight into your choice…that’s my favorite part!

Hope you have a festive and safe New Year’s Eve. See you back here in 2011!

Vintage Tins And Discarded Cans

Love this trend…easy to recycle cans into something beautiful…fun to hunt estate sales and antique stores for vintage tins…

6a0120a5914b9b970c0134887d6708970c florali blogimage via Florali

DSC_2990-Edit poppies and posiesimage via Poppies and Posies

IMG_4066 meg perottiimage via Meg Perotti Photography

krystalharrisesesh6 JL Designsimage via JL Designs

mad men 44 poppies and posies eventsimage via Poppies and Posies

Matilda-Jane-435-Art-Fair-Dinner cat mayer photoimage via Cat Mayer Photography

PoppiesPosiesTable2 (29 of 54)poppies and posiesimage via Poppies and Posies

plants_w8517-819x546 DIRT Flowersimage via DIRT

ashley23 Meg Smith Photographyimage via Meg Smith Photography

When I was filling daily orders, I loved to use vintage tins for arrangements…mostly because it gave me a great excuse to visit estate sales and antique stores…while telling my husband I was working! If the tin was deep enough I lined it with cellophane and dropped a glass jar or vase inside to hold the flowers. In smaller tins I was forced to use floral foam. I much preferred using the vase because the recipient could add water (with floral preservative) as needed and the flowers seemed to stay fresh a lot longer. Water can be added to floral foam, but it always seemed a little more confusing to the customer…is that enough water? is that too much water? And I never could get past thinking, “How can the stems take up water as well in foam with the ends of their stems crammed in a piece of foam?” Now, please, Mr. Oasis don’t get mad and email me…there is definitely a NEED for floral foam in designing…just not in every situation…in my humble opinion…

Have a great Thursday!


Working Designer Wednesday: Home Studio Design

Before we get started today, I want to encourage you to check back to these Working Designer Wednesday posts throughout the week (if you’re interested in the topic) because designers comment throughout the week…and you’ll find some great ideas and advice.

Now, for today…several people have emailed me to inquire about the work space I used when I operated a floral design studio. So…let me tell you a little about my studio space and then you can tell us about yours. I always operated from a home studio because I had young children. I loved that they could be at home while I worked…they could be in bed on time…and my husband could help with the kids and the flower chores when I needed him 🙂 The overhead cost was also a huge consideration.

I converted an unairconditioned laundry room into an air conditioned office space/laundry room/ribbon storage area with a long galvanized metal worktop. I converted an adjoining one car garage to a studio/consultation space with a floral cooler, commercial sink and stainless work tables. I’m realizing how few pictures I took of some of these things as you ask and I try to share! So pardon these pictures and just try to see as much of the studio as you can…

1-11-08 018 

I step down two steps from my kitchen into the laundry/office/ribbon/packaging space. A bride brought one of her bridesmaid’s dresses to this consultation so I could have a picture to work from…beyond the dress you can see the studio area (down two more steps). The entire space has a basic concrete floor. I had a local artist come in and paint a large white/grey marbleized harlequin design on the concrete. It turned out to be one of the best parts of the remodel…we must have spilled 100 gallons of water on it over the years we worked on weddings in there and it was never a problem…just mopped it up.  In the laundry area I have a stackable washer/dryer concealed from sight (behind where I’m standing to take the picture), a long work counter with storage underneath to the left, a desk and a French door leading to the deck on the right. The entire space is filled with windows and full light French doors for tons of natural light…which I love!

Picture 049 I can see the deck from my desk…a great place for coffee or reading your emails…

pittman 017 Here’s a typical wedding prep picture…we used this long counter space in the ribbon/office area to wrap bouquet handles and label the containers…the antique drawers in the background hold gift tags and rubber stamps/ink…I had several plugs installed above the countertop for using our hot glue guns…the hot glue comes right off the galvanized metal…

2009 08 14 005Under the countertop in the office/laundry area I have boxes of ribbon spools labeled and stored by color…a couple of cabinets on the right hold floral preservative, finishing spray, bout/corsage boxes and other unsightly supplies I would rather not look at…under the ribbon boxes are containers for paper towels, paints and trash…

DSC_0045Stepping down into the studio area and looking to the right, I placed a 2-door floral cooler, a stainless rolling tool box behind a curtain and a commercial stainless sink along the back wall. The rolling toolbox was handy for holding all the designing supplies and tools….and was easy to roll wherever we needed it. You may be thinking, “How are you going to get all those flowers in that cooler, Amy?” Well, the more we grew, the more I needed another cooler, but there wasn’t room for one…so we got really good at figuring out which flowers needed the cooler space and rotating flowers as they opened.

DSC_0042You can see my favorite part of the studio to the left. The original garage space had a dirt floor, no garage door, open rafters and four square wood windows with no glass. During the remodel I asked the contractor to restore those original windows and he nearly laughed at me. He never understood why I wanted those old windows, but I’m so glad I kept them.

Hebert (144)…my favorite windows…they look out on the backyard/garden shed…

Picture 007 

A couple of pictures from another wedding weekend…

2008 06 28 124

2008 06 28 127The door on the right opens to the deck…the office area is to the right of this picture up two stairs and also opens to the deck. Directly behind where I’m standing to take this picture, I had two tall windows and a full light French door installed in the original garage opening. We built a covered porch over this entrance…which is the entrance clients used for consultation appointments. The shelves to the right of the work tables are covered by a Restoration Hardware shower curtain to conceal a collection of floral vases and containers. 

Over the years, I rearranged the space several times to fit my needs. At one point I had a bistro table and chairs in front of the large windows in the studio space to seat clients during consultations. At another point I moved the desk into a spare bedroom in the house and used the desk area in the office/laundry area for consults with an IKEA table and four chairs….that configuration didn’t last long because I didn’t like having my office in the house. I always found it much easier to work and be inspired in the studio space…usually with the door to the house closed! At another point I rented a small space in an old warehouse retail space for consultations and just used my home studio for the actual floral designing…that’s a topic for another day…

I hope these photos give you some ideas for a home studio. A couple of years ago I decided to take a break from the floral design business to spend more time with my family…so we turned my studio into a hangout space for our boys. I kept a stainless work table next to the sink to use for “flower play” and now the space looks more like this…

2009 07 22 001Here you can see the tall windows and covered porch on the left. Now the guys hangout here to watch sports…

So what about you? What does your work space look like? Please share! I’d love for you to email pictures so we can share with each other. Seeing other designers’ workspaces can be very inspiring…

Hope you have a great Wednesday!

Sarracenia (Pitcher Plant)

Quite possibly the most interesting botanical around…unique in floral design…

Sarracenia_leucophyllalarge us botanical gardenimage via United States Botanic Garden

20100625026 floral verdeimage via Floral Verde

IMG_6579-1 ea, sarah winwardimage via Ea 

pink-peach-white-wedding-bouquet-joy-thigpen-580x386 the sweetest occasionimage via The Sweetest Occasion

IMG_338_blog La Partie Eventsimage via La Partie Events 

FLO00041 jayson home and gardenimage via Jayson Home and Garden

So interesting…the United States Botanic Garden website describes it like this… “occurs in bogs and wet pine savannas in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi. The nectar-producing ‘pitchers’ of these rare carnivorous plants are actually specialized leaves that lure, trap, and digest insects as a means to obtain the nutrients lacking in the infertile soil in which they grow.”

What do you think of Sarracenia?

Color Inspiration: Pink and Blue

Today’s color inspiration comes from my greatest Christmas gift…a”first” at our house. Our oldest son can drive now and he took his younger brother on a shopping trip for my Christmas gift without my knowledge…and they spent their OWN money to buy my gift…and here’s the best part…they wrapped the gift and put it under the tree using what ribbon they could find in my flower studio stash. Imagine my surprise when I saw this under the tree…

DSC_0003 editDSC_0005 edit…can you believe two boys wrapped that?! They know me so well…the box was filled with chocolates and a Starbucks gift card!

So, drawing inspiration from their impressive (for two teen/preteen boys) wrapping job, let’s look at some blue and pink today…

0058 le fleur and mi belle photoimage via La Fleur Weddings and Mi Belle Photography

4926149950_3498244a5e honey and poppiesimage via Honey and Poppies

6a00d83451be3369e20133f1e8a539970b-500wi  heather bullard   image via Heather Bullard Photography

blue-white-polka-dot-tea-cup-pink-roses the sweetest occasionimage via The Sweetest Occasion

5094137152_82668e1d42 honey and poppiesimage via Honey and Poppies

DSC07954 poppies and posiesimage via Poppies and Posies

HITCHED_2010SARAH_YATES_PHOTOGRAPHY0004image via Sarah Yates Photography

KJ-89 mondo floral design auimage via Mondo Floral Design

MB-details-group the nicholsimage via The Nichols

mla101158_0905_jewel_tone_xl martha stewartimage via Martha Stewart

pameddiewed-398 style me prettyimage via Style Me Pretty

tinasam10 adrienne gunde photoimage via Adrienne Gunde Photography

Carmen-Salazar-Photography-12-681x1024 botanica floral designsimage via Botanica Floral Designs

Carmen-Salazar-Photography-24-2-681x1024 botanica floral designsimage via Botanica Floral Designs

elizabethmessina1121LaPartieEvents_Blogimage via La Partie Events

From-Inspiration-2b_blog La Partie Eventsimage via La Partie Events

bluecube-detail cebollaimage Cebolla Fine Flowers

What was your favorite gift? Hope your Christmas was wonderful!