Is summer officially over? Judging by today’s miserable wet weather my answer would probably have to be yes! Although I shall remain optimistic that we might get a second chance of sun. I have a treat on the blog for you today as I’m sharing our foam free installation one to one flower workshop from a couple of weeks ago. It was a wet dreary Thursday, much like today but that didn’t stop myself and the lovely Clare from Flowers by Clarey Belle having the most wonderful day flowering at the beautiful Beckenham Place Mansion. Which also provided the perfect backdrop for the foam free installation we created with the pale blue walls and ornate decorative details.
Clare was keen to up her repertoire of floral skills. In particular with regards to creating large scale designs using no floral foam. Something that is growing increasingly popular amongst the flower industry. With many florists opting to not use any oasis foam within their arrangements, for various reasons. Probably the most prominent being the environmental impact that using foam brings. For a start floral foam isn’t biodegradable, like the majority of plastics it will just sit in landfill sites forevermore. There is also the health implications associated with floral foam, whilst there is no solid scientific research associated with the harmfulness of it what we do know is it does contain carcinogens,which is bad news.
Whilst I don’t claim to be 100% foam free, I feel there are certain situations from a business and time pressure perspective that means it’s the only viable option. We do however commit as a business to being foam free as much as we possibly can. Championing foam free mechanics, doing our bit for the environment and being mindful of our health. It was a joy creating this foam free asymmetric installation with Clare (pictured above). A labour of love as they say.
The design included a mix of seasonal British foliage’s. Some of which included; Ivy, Beech, Go-go, Cotoneaster and birch. Flower wise we used heavenly scented Garden Roses, including some of my favourite varieties. Prince Jardinier in a light blush pink colour which opens up to the size of a saucer plate! We also incorporated David Austin Kiera and Charity (a variety I have never used before) and the famous Margaret Merrill spray roses with their intoxicating scent! At the bottom of the installation were snow white Delphiniums which added height. Along with Larkspur in a pretty two tone soft white and pink. Paired with hints of Ammi or Queen Anns Lace as it’s also known for the natural ‘flower meadow’ effect.
After lunch and much admiring and taking photos of our handy work we then moved onto bridal bouquets! Clare wanted to learn to create bouquets that were front facing and had less of a ’round’ shape to them. The image above is of the demo bouquet that I created whilst showing Clare the technique we use and the process I like to adopt when creating bridal bouquets. The ingredients consisted of a mixture of Garden Roses (obviously!) along with white Cosmos, Scabious and Astrantia to name a few. The first of the Snow Berries ( a sign that Autumn is most certainly on the way). Not of course forgetting the Carnations in that lovely peachy/caramel colour. A much debated about flower in terms of it’s marmite status, people seem to love or hate them? They don’t seem to have shaken their ‘garage flower’ status fully either which is a shame.
There are so many gorgeous colours available too particularly the more muted tones which almost have an heirloom feel to them. If you’re not a fan I urge you to rethink the humble Carnation. Give them a chance when you’re next creating a design, in my opinion they have a lot to offer! How utterly beautiful was the bouquet Clare created pictured above? She did a superb job! I adore the touch of blue Oxy too, it compliments with the blush peachy tones so nicely. The stunning silk ribbon that finished both bouquets perfectly was from C Fleurs Design. Clare is a total natural in front of the camera too. Despite insisting that she doesn’t like having her photo taken!
It was a thoroughly enjoyable day and it was lovely finding out more about Clare, I’m super excited to see her floral journey unfold. She is a lady who has her head screwed on and I have no doubt that her business is going to be a real success! If you would like to find out more about booking a one to one masterclass with us check out the website. We also have our Autumn urn masterclass coming up on the 19th September. Where we will be creating beautiful urn arrangements using foam free mechanics. For further information and to book, check out our seasonal masterclass page.