In summer, the song sings itself…

summerwedbouq

In summer, the song sings itself‘ said a *poet, but if you’re marrying in summer, there’s still plenty of wedding planning to be done.

So this is the start of my busy time, with summer being the most popular season for weddings, when I end up driving from one end of the county to the other fulfilling orders for wedding flowers. I get to see the beautiful locations the couples have selected, from moorland to coast, and all hopefully in the sunshine. Already this month, I’ve provided the flowers for one couple in St Austell and another at The Greenbank Hotel in Falmouth. For the wedding table centre, the bride had chosen beautiful two-tone pink roses, the colour and texture of whipped ice-cream – so lovely to work with and so summery – they looked almost good enough to eat.

There are so many beautiful blooms to choose from at this time of year, it really does makes sense to make the most of your wedding budget by selecting flowers which are in season. Flowers in season are fresh, they’re available, they’re grown in Britain, and fewer air miles on the order ends up working wonders for your pocket.

Here are some early summer choices:

Allium Alstromeria Antirrhinum Astilbe Astrantia Brodiea Campanula Cornflower Delphinium Forget me Not Foxglove Freesia Gladioli Gypsophillia Iris Ixia Lavender Lilac Lily Lupin Peony Poppy Ranunculus Rose Scented pinks Statice Stocks Sweet Pea Sweet Williams Tulip

And for high summer:

Alstromeria Ammi Antirrhinum Astrantia Calendula Cornflower Cosmos Dahlia Delphinium Eryngium Fever Few Foxgloves Freesias Geum Gladiolus Godetia Gypsophillia Lavender Larkspur Lily Malope Nigella – ‘Love in the Mist’ Oriental Poppy Phlox Rose Salvia Scabious Statice Stocks Sunflower Sweet Pea Sweet William Verbascum Verbena Veronica Zinnia

What could be more romantic at this time of year, than the fantasy of a vintage Romany wedding? Such was the idea behind the photo shoot I took part in last week with Christine Trewinnard Couture and Julia Macintosh Photography. With all the elements in place, a beautiful model in a bridal gown which struck exactly the right note, perfect make-up, a charming painted wagon, rustic-style floral designs, it all worked wonderfully. You can see some behind-the-scenes shots over on my Facebook page.

With all this floral inspiration around, it is of course also the season (24-28th May) for the RHS Chelsea Flower Show so, on that note, I’m off. (Pictures in my next update!)

[*From ‘The Botticellian Trees’ by American poet, William Carlos Williams]

 

Warm days on the way

jugbouq2Did you know?

“The UK is the world leader in the commercial production of daffodils, with over 4,000 ha grown. Nearly half of the output of bulbs and cut-flowers is exported to Europe and North America.”

[Dr Rosemary Collier, Warwick Crop Centre, The University of Warwick.]

And West Cornwall is one of the major daffodil growing areas. It’s certainly no surprise to me, because since I was a girl, I’ve loved seeing wild spring daffodils and narcissi showing colour in Cornish hedgerows before they even hint at appearing anywhere else.

Down in Cornwall we leapfrog the cool white snowdrops that are a sign of spring coming but still a couple of months away ‘up country’, and launch straight into spring yellows and oranges. Which makes the county the perfect place for a spring wedding. There may be a touch of rain, it’s true (a fine excuse to carry a pretty umbrella), but temperatures outside will be warmer than everywhere else in mainland Britain.

This Sunday, March 1st, is the first wedding venue open day to be held at a well-loved local hotel, Trenython Manor, (gorgeous views over the Bay and Italianate touches) and I will be there among the champagne and canapés.

So come along, say hello and talk flowers. You’ll find me in the chapel!

A month of inspiration

Whenever I have the chance (and time) I read Floristry Magazine, follow flower growers blogs and Twitter feeds, and keep an eye on styles and competitions with the British Florist Association and their associated magazine, BFA Florist. I look out for award winning designs from well respected national and international floral designers, too. I love to learn from the world of floristry at large and think it’s important to keep up with the latest trends and developments.

A recent visit to B J Richards Nurseries with the Academy of Floral Art was an interesting window on the delicate process of flower-growing, vital to the final quality and freshness of our floral work. Senior Richards gave us so much history on the family business it was fascinating to hear.

BJ Richards Nurseries

Also this month, of course, it was the Chelsea Flower Show.  Every year there’s a competition to find the RHS Florist of the Year which we all watch with interest wondering if we will know the winner. This year, talented South West floral designer Amanda Randall (based in Tavistock) won a Gold for her entry. Congratulations, Amanda!

Last, but not least, back to my own designs. From this Thursday, H. Samuel in St Austell will be running a special wedding promotion. Some of my floral wedding work will be on display alongside the gorgeous bridal jewellery, so brides-to-be, mothers of the brides or grooms, please pop in if you’re passing and pick up a leaflet – and watch this space for a photo of one of my new  wedding designs.