Monthly Archives: August 2011

Visiting Françoise Weeks’ Workshop Part 2

…continued from yesterday…as told by Laurie of Fleurie

On day two, we talked about wedding decoration and Françoise showed us how to make the
sweetest woodland cone arrangements. All of us were very excited to make these fun pieces
to decorate chairs, pews, or shepherd hooks. We all reached for that papery bark to cover the cone,
but that is where the similarities ended.

lauries cone IMG_4571

6 closeup francoise workshop IMG_4574

For mine, I just had to put in an interesting stick and a sisal nest
of berzillia berry eggs. The pinkish silver plant is a succulent from Françoise’s shelf of succulents,
houseplants and ferns.

Jessicas coneIMG_4581

by Jessica

6b IMG_03291-375x500[1]

by Elizabeth

6c francoiseIMG_4563

by Natalie

I love how everyone’s version was so different.  Françoise didn’t teach us to copy
hers. She wanted us to make it our own…with our own creativity.

7 francoiseIMG_4548

…a vase arrangement demonstrated using a method of interlocking the stems so as not to have it
move in transport. Love the interesting elements like poppy pods, green berries and curly garlic she
adds to her designs.

7A francoiseIMG_4546

…a large urn arrangement using berry foliage, dill, tomatillo, spray roses, dahlias and poke-weed.

7 b francoiseIMG_4553

…my version of the large arrangement, using a tall trumpet vase, crossing the stems at a higher
point to make the arrangement as wide as possible. I used the materials from the urn arrangement
above to reconstruct into this one.

On to Day 3, and more new flowers and plants. Françoise had been to the flower market early in the
morning and purchased more beautiful goodies. A new supply of houseplants were on the shelf. She
purchases plants, not to sell, but to use for their leaves and flowers.

8 francoiseIMG_4588

8 a francoiseIMG_4591

8 b francoiseIMG_4594

8 d francoiseIMG_4590

8 dd francoiseIMG_4599

So many beautiful flowers and foliages- how were we to choose?

Today’s lesson was Whimsical and Woodland bridal bouquets and floral purses! We were anxious to
start. Giddy really. The technique she used for this was very detailed for each type of arrangement;
using colorful wire, sisal, feathers and beaded wire to decorate the Whimsical; moss, foliages, sticks,
grasses, feathers and minimal flowers for the Woodland.

9 francoiseIMG_4623

9 a francoiseIMG_4625

9b francoiseIMG_4633

Three of us made the Whimsical version, and Jessica decided on a clutch purse and a hairpiece to
match. All such works of art. Time again flew by quickly. Time for one more little project…
some boutonnieres.

10 francoiseIMG_4636

Woodland boutonniere and spray rose boutonniere

The class was over, no one was ready to leave. But leave we must. It was a great three days
of exploring new techniques, learning new uses for everyday products, using wonderful
plant materials, getting to know new flower-friends. All of us had different experience levels,
backgrounds, and styles, but Françoise wove her magic over us and the flowers, made us all into a
cohesive interesting arrangement, at first a small group of strangers, by Day 3, a small group of new

I want to thank Françoise for her kindness and hospitality. Her studio is the perfect place to learn,
grow and be inspired to new levels. I’d also like to thank Amy for bringing us together. Your topics
and selections are always interesting and inspiring, and a great way to explore other designers’

Thank you , thank you!


I can’t thank Laurie enough for taking the time to document her trip and share it with all of us. If you are interested in signing up for one of Françoise’s workshops, you can find her schedule here. If you need advice on lodging and eateries near Françoise’s studio, let me know and I’ll forward your request on to Laurie or Françoise.  Hope you have a great Thursday!

Working Designer Wednesday: Visiting Françoise Weeks’ Workshop

On July 1st, Laurie from Fleurie won the chance to attend a three day wedding workshop taught by Françoise Weeks at her enchanting studio on Portland, Oregon. I asked Laurie to document her trip and she did an amazing job of providing us with a glimpse into the magical world of Françoise Weeks. Get ready for a treat! Welcome Laurie…

Hi Botanical Brouhaha readers! It’s Laurie, from Fleurie– flowers by L Garza. I was the lucky winner
in the drawing for the Francoise Weeks wedding workshop. My head is still in the clouds and
spinning with new ideas about my recent visit to her studio in Portland, Oregon. Upon meeting
Francoise, I knew I would have a wonderful three days of learning.

When I was notified of my win, I sat there for a few minutes, tears forming. My husband
came in the room, I managed to say I had won the drawing and was going to the workshop.
I had wanted to attend since I first started reading Françoise’s blog and became fascinated with her
work. But, having a new business and other obligations, it wasn’t going to be right away, it would
wait. I could wait until a better time. Someday. Well my someday came, and I couldn’t have been
happier. Started making plans right away. My dear nephew sent me a coupon for a discounted plane ticket. Great! Next was lodging and transportation. I did an internet search for lodging close
to the studio. Bingo! 5 minutes walking distance. Very affordable room. No rental car needed! Now,
how to get there from the airport? Cab, hmmm, maybe. Public transportation? Not much experience
with that, but being frugal, I thought, why not? It turned out to be very easy to get to the B & B that
I chose. Many choices for food very nearby as well. A fun, safe and active neighborhood. A nice little
walk to the studio.

1 francoise workshop IMG_4396

My first peek into the studio on Day 1

The selection of plants, flowers and foliage was wonderful! The variety of materials to choose from
was more than I had ever seen in one place. Not only flowers, but plants, fruit, vegetables, wood,
bark, a bundle of green mossy sticks (which I may or may not have hugged at some point), lichen,
flats of succulents, seed pods, grasses and more.

1a francoise workshopIMG_4447

1b franoise weeks workshopIMG_4533

1c francoise workshpIMG_4593

After getting to know the other students and our teacher a bit, Françoise went to work. We took
notes as she gave us many tips and tricks for being efficient with time, while still having a unique look.

2 francoise workshop IMG_4397

2a francoise workshopIMG_4399

Using aspidistra leaves to cover a plain container, she used a template and a utility knife to make
even strips, then used Oasis glue to attach leaf sections.

2b francoise weeks workshop IMG_4401

Another way to dress up an ordinary container. Francoise layered on mosses, lichen and thin

3 Francoise workshop IMG_4407

She demonstrated using bark as a base for a woodland arrangement.

As she works, she shares so many tips for using ordinary containers, and covering them with layers
of leaves, mosses, bark, even artichokes! After several methods were demonstrated, we got to
choose what we would make for our project. I made a woodland floral arrangement with a hollow log attached to a pedestal.

4 Francoise workshop IMG_4492

The sticks are contorted filbert. The flowers included Cockscomb Celosia, Dianthus, several
types of Eucalyptus seeds and blooms, Eryngium, Allium, Astrantia, and mushrooms.

After a lunch break, we were back to the studio to learn more valuable techniques and fun designs.

Several examples of quick centerpieces demonstrated were:

4a francoiseIMG_4438

…the living topiary, made with roses
and monarda, in a recycled container covered with moss, its base yet to be adorned…

4b francoiseIMG_4439

…a square glass
vase, with a terrarium effect, using small pieces of floral foam and rocks, with minimal flowers and
little bits of greenery (lower right)…

4c francoiseIMG_4434

…and another taller square vase, with fruit in the bottom, and a small round
cage holder for the flowers.

5 Francoise workshop IMG_4456


I fell in love with the paper thin bark that spills out from the front of the arrangement. It was just
such a pretty color, and seemed to go with everything. Add that to my list of must-haves.

To be continued…

Drop by tomorrow to hear about Days 2 & 3!

Garden Roses

Is there anything more beautiful?

6a0120a5914b9b970c0153909e6f03970b-800wi florali

image via Florali

tumblr_l4ddjsl8RF1qzlp95o1_250 its mary ruffle

image via It’s Mary Ruffle

12  michael george

image via Michael George

005988-R1-E014 flowerwild

image via Flowerwild

4913159077_2f578c8b3c_o kristen gardner photo

image via Kristen Gardner Photography

blog-12 missy photography

image via Missy Photography

cakestand closeup blush floral design

image via Blush Floral Design

CoutureFoto-286 tic tock couture florals

image via Tic Tock Couture Florals

D3S_1984-Edit holly chapple

image via Holly Heider Chapple Flowers

detail little pheasant

image via Denise Fasanello 

Martine Guillot, Winchester Cathedral and Pillow Fight garden roses. Camilla Svensson Burns Couture Floral and Event Design, Paso Robles, CA grace ormand

image via Camilla Svensson Burns

nila mock blush floral design

image via Blush Floral Design

2  bows and arrows dallas

image via Bows and Arrows

Happy Tuesday!


Floral Art Photography

Occasionally, I come across a photograph of flowers that I find particularly artistic…

1  bows and arrow dallas

image via Bows and Arrows and Nine Photography

Lambert_Floral_0066  courtenay lambert florals

image via Courtenay Lambert Florals 

166871_135316269864189_100001574506196_239971_2696571_n clementine posy

image via Clementine Posy

mid-century-modern-portland-wedding-1 blum design in flowers oregon

image via Blum and Jessica Hill Photography

ACFAA3 Millie Holloman Photography

image via Millie Holloman Photography

BuffaloMountainLodgeJJ9 orange girl photo

image via Orange Girl Photographs

ErinEric_211 simply bloom photo

image via Simply Bloom Photography

IMG_0240 rebecca honeywell photo

image via Rebecca Honeywell Photography

IMG_4515 copy  isabel lawrence photo and bride's cafe and holly flora

image via Holly Flora and Isabel Lawrence Photographers and The Bride’s Café

JasmineStar010 adorations blog

image via Adorations and Jasmine Star Photography

5660387139_2ac4b0503f_z lotte and bloom

image via Lotte and Bloom

And here’s one that I love…no flowers, but I love it!

blg013 w. scott chester

image via W. Scott Chester Photography

Hope your week is off to a great start! Thanks for stopping by…

Crazy Love Cottage

Today, I want to break from the Which Bouquet? series to answer a question many of you have been asking me in emails…”When are you going to post pictures of the B&B?” Well…today is the day! My great (very talented & generous) friend Emily from Emme B. Photography came over and took some photos so you can see the place. As you know, we have unofficially and lovingly dubbed it the Crazy Love Cottage (inspired by the book Crazy Love by Francis Chan)…so, welcome…

The first day we saw it…and fell in love…

DSC_0331 ed




images via me…can’t you tell?

And now…ready for guests…














images via Emme B. Photography

God is good…

Have a great weekend!

p.s. for the rest of the story, read the posts here and here