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Christmas Tree Decorating that Breaks the Internet

If you, like me, like a good ‘theme’ to things, then Christmas is probably no different. I must confess though, in my current stage of life (3 kids under 5) over the last few years I have stuck with the same theme out of a combination of laziness and practicality. Despite the burning desire to change the colours, I have resisted, telling myself that this year is probably the last year that I will have to decorate a non traditional tree.

Over the last five years I have done what most families do; that is, either choose to have a non traditional Christmas tree decoration, OR, for the traditionalists, erect a fence-like structure around the parameter of your Christmas tree.

I have created a hanging wooden tree, made from various lengths of wooden slats, hung together to create a triangular Christmas tree silhouette and this has appeased me both practically as well as aesthetically. This  hangs in an alcove at the entrance of our home, away from little hands that seem absolutely determined to pull everything out and down, only to throw it all on the floor….for me to stand on.

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Like many other cash savvy mums out there I keep my eye on decorator ideas from many of the big retailers. And I have to say, non rival what Kmart have on offer.

Mums from all over the country post pictures of their trees sourcing wisdom from the crowd for their decorating dilemmas. Others post pictures for others to take inspiration from, and of course to garner the envy and appreciation that only social media ‘likes’ and comments can give you.

The one that really seemed to impress  this year was Tammy Sims’ black Christmas tree dressed head to toe in a slowly changing rainbow. Using a combination of store bought decorations as well as D.I.Y baubles that she glued and glittered herself, she was able to create a truly eye catching, creative tree.

Tammy Sims' Rainbow Christmas Tree

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Images via Kmart Mums of Australia Facebook Page

The South Australia mum of three has scored over 6.1K ‘likes’ on the Kmart Mums of Australia’s Facebook page with her creation inspired by the ‘Yes’ vote.

“It seemed appropriate in celebration of the yes vote,” she explained.

Not everyone puts as much thought and consideration into the theme they will use to decorate their Christmas tree. Depending on your family, perhaps you have a box of precious baubles that have special memories attached to them, and they are lovingly hung each and every year.

Or perhaps you prefer less of the clutter that tends to comes with Christmas? If that sounds like you, then Kmart has another option that might fit the bill.

It’s not a fresh Christmas tree. It’s not even green. But Kmart’s stacking Christmas tree is both space saving and chic.

Part of the appeal of the Stacking tree is it’s neutral colour palette and simple Scandi style, however many creative people out there have used the shelf style tree pieces to create colourful compositions to suit their themes for the year.

Jacqueline Bertucci's metallic tree hack
Jacqueline Bertucci’s metallic tree hack
Sam Dawson decided to steer clear of glitzy baubles and instead created a neutral colour palette with light and texture
Sam Dawson decided to steer clear of glitzy baubles and instead created a neutral colour palette with light and texture
Louise Martin's take- with and without the lights illuminated.
Louise Martin’s take- with and without the lights illuminated.

So whether you choose to decorate a fresh or artificial tree, fill a vase with dried branches, or can decorate your home with festive fresh flowers you have endless opportunities to extend yourself creatively….and, if all else fails, know that we do it for you! Check out our Christmas range for inspiration!

Fwf x

Featured image; by Sofia Katariina 

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Christmas Fun to Start at Once!

With the start of December upon us, it is a great time to begin enjoying some more social activities, and the City of Sydney really turns it on, with some great (and often FREE) activities that you can enjoy throughout the month leading up to Christmas.

This time of the year is notoriously busy of course, but many of these activities are great group activities that will help you get into the spirit of Christmas whilst socialising as well.

DID YOU KNOW that according to the ABS (Australian Bureau of Statistics) nearly 25% of Aussie homes, and occupied by a single person? I find that pretty astounding. Nearly one quarter of our population lives alone, so the beginning of the festive season could also spell the beginning of feelings of loneliness and disconnectedness for those flying solo.

It is easy at this time of year to be consumed by our own lives and all the business that comes with the silly season. Often those who are lonely withdraw further, not wanting to burden others with their problems. Dropping in small thoughtful gifts to neighbours, can help combat feelings of isolation in those who have no family or friends around them- Check out our Christmas gift range if you need some inspiration. Now is also a great time to extend the invitation to people you suspect may be lonely. Keep plans open and informal- after all, the more the merrier!

Some of the sights throughout the city provide a base for creating a fantastic treasure hunt activity, or could provide entertainment between a festive pub crawl. How fun would that be? With so many amazing venues throughout the city, what a fun way to spend an afternoon or weekend with a group of friends.

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Image; Swarovski Christmas Tree at the QVB via What’s On

There is plenty to do and see in the city, so starting somewhere central makes sense. The QVB building is always dressed to impress at Christmas time, and with the Swarovski crystal Christmas tree taking centre stage, it is certainly worth a look. With Town Hall station basically underneath as well as many bus routes passing by, it is easily accessible. Then head toward Hyde Park.

PUB CRAWL SUGGESTION; RAMBLIN RASCAL TAVERN

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Image; David Jones flagship store on Elizabeth Street, Sydney

At the flagship David Jones Stores on Elizabeth Street you will find the big retailer’s take on Christmas modeled in each window display. This is always a nice thing to do with the kids- and this year features very cute gingerbread characters. The David Jones windows are beautiful to look at during the day, but are also gorgeous at night, with the displays illuminated once the sun goes down.

PUB CRAWL SUGGESTION; RABBIT HOLE BAR AND DINING

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Image; Martin Place Christmas Tree via The Salvos

The Christmas tree in Martin Place is already in place, and the lights are on, shining the way throughout the city. Each night leading up to Christmas, choirs will be at Martin Place caroling. With a train station near by at Martin Place this makes another great meeting point. Light projections are also on site here every night to see.

If you fancy a little sweet treat to keep your energy levels up, The GPO pop up dessert bar is set up at No 1 Martin Place offering a range of gelato, housemade sweets, cakes, coffee, cold beverages and savoury options.

PUB CRAWL SUGGESTION; GPO BAR

Image; Boulevarde of Lights

Head down through Pitt Street Mall though the Boulevarde of Light; a Christmas forest installation with nearly 80,000 white lights shining down on you. On Thursday, Saturday and Sunday evenings caroling choirs will also be performing here from 6-8pm. Check out what Choirs are coming to perform right here.

PUB CRAWL SUGGESTION; PALMER AND CO

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Image; Child Mags

Swing by St Mary’s Cathedral which will be putting on a Light Show again this year, with the sweet singing voices of a choir to accompany the show from 7.30pm every evening. There will be food options on site for those with grumbling bellies.

PUB CRAWL SUGGESTION; OPERA BAR

Circular Quay is a great destination to finish your city tour. For locals and tourists alike, it is a picturesque place to sit down and rest your weary bones, and grab something to eat or drink. After all isn’t that all part of getting into the Christmas spirit- eat, drink and be merry!

Fwf x

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NEWS IN: Christmas Decorating Believed to Make You Happier

Did you know there are LESS than 5 weeks til Christmas? If you are anything like me, hearing that fact gives you a little pang in your belly, aware of all the things you need to do and organise.  Despite knowing that I am so far completely unprepared, even coming up with a list seems to premature. How could it be almost the end of another year???!!

I’ve always grown up in a house that does not begin Christmas decorating until December 1st. My mother’s birthday is in the last week of November, so she feels incredibly put out if there are any reference to Christmas before we have celebrated her day. Much to her annoyance, the shopping centres begin Christmas decorating usually sometime in October. Is it just me, or does it seem to be happening earlier every year?

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Image; Decoist

WELL, according to new research by psychologist Steve McKeown, people who begin decorating for Christmas earlier are happier. McKeown says; “In a world full of stress and anxiety people like to associate to things that make them happy and Christmas decorations evoke those strong feelings of the childhood,”

Ever heard that saying ‘like a kid on Christmas’? Well, according to McKeown, decorating for Christmas stirs up all those warm and fuzzy feelings we felt as children….all those wonderful feelings of anticipation and excitement. Christmas decorations work as visual cues, creating a nostalgic pathway back to those feelings.

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Image via Crave Online

It is not all happy news though- according to McKeown, hanging up the decorations early can be to relive happy memories from your past, BUT it can also be to over compensate for past neglect. Decorating the house early is also a tool that people use to appear more friendly or social. A study published in the Journal of Environmental Psychology, suggests there is a link between decorating your home for the festive season and seeming more open and social to your neighbours.

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Image via Little Lewes
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Image; Country Cupboard Cookies

So what kind of festive activities does your family undertake? Do you bake gingerbread houses or shortbread? Do you create your own wreaths for the door or table? Do you create interesting advent calendars for the family? There is tonnes of inspiration on Facebook craft pages, Instagram and Pinterest if you fancy trying something new. And family favourite Kmart brings the goods at affordable prices if you fancy getting creative.

As always, Florist with Flowers offer a gorgeous array of Christmas themed decorative items for your home-check them out here. Fresh floral wreath arrangements can be ordered for your door or table. Poinsettia plants and miniature Christmas trees are sure to make an appearance in store in the coming weeks.

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Christmas tends to be a very busy time socially and it is often difficult to choose gifts for people who you only know professionally, or perhaps for people who really seem to have everything they need. Fresh flowers or plants are always well received, and we can create an arrangement to suit any colour scheme or styling.

So on that note, I encourage you to start decorating now even if it goes against your whole being…after all, apparently it is good for you!

Fwf x

 

 

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YES! Same Sex Weddings on the Horizon

“Yes, Yes, Yes!

“What a fabulous day to be an Australian, because in this survey the Australian people have declared overwhelmingly Australia is ready for marriage equality.”

Bill Shorten

Well, if yesterday’s result is anything to go by, as florists, life is about to get a little bit more exciting! For anyone in the wedding industry potentially there are going to be new clients. Servicing any wedding is an honour that we should appreciate. Being chosen to be part of any couple’s BIG DAY is the highest compliment….and the highest level of pressure. Getting it right matters. Exceeding expectations matters.

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Image; Mr Cook Florist

Yesterday, it was revealed that 61.6% of Australians who participated in the $122 million voluntary postal vote for same-sex marriage. Almost 13 million responses were counted.

At this stage, the Australian public has showed their support for same-sex marriage, however it is not legalised as yet.

“I feel for young people who had their relationships questioned in a way which I wouldn’t have thought we would see ever again, but nonetheless what this marriage survey shows is that unconditional love always has the last word.” Bill Shorten said.  He believes that same-sex marriage should be legalised as quickly as possible. “Today we celebrate, tomorrow we legislate,” he said.

Malcolm Turnbull has committed to getting the bill passed through the senate so that same-sex marriage will actually be legalised by Christmas.  “They voted yes for fairness, yes for commitment, yes for love. And now it is up to us here in the parliament of Australia to get on with it, to get on with the job the Australian people have tasked us to do and get this done this year before Christmas,” Mr Turnbull said.

There are still some hurdles to overcome, still some issues to iron out with the bill….whichever bill that is they decide to go with, or amend. Some believe that the bill should include religious protections that allow cake bakers, or even us florists to deny our services for a wedding if it is against our own convictions. Liberal MP Kevin Andrews also believes that a gay baker should be free to deny making a cake for a heterosexual wedding, or a Jewish baker objecting to make a cake for an Islamic wedding and vice versa.  This is ‘compromise’ suggested to keep everyone happy, and if that is what it takes to work.

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Image; Sophie Monk Instagram

“There is a sense that, whether one agrees with it or not, this is a reasonable thing to do and that is reflected by the result,”

-MP Kevin Andrews.

So I wonder what the first high profile same sex marriages in Australia are going to look like? Are they going to be a kaleidoscope of rainbow colours, celebrating gay pride with no apologies? Are they going to be demure and romantic, using soft colour palettes and being quiet in their celebration?

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Our talented designers can make every wedding wish come true with inspired ideas and creative concepts. If you are after a general price guide and pretty pictures to look at head on over to check out our wedding work here.

We must remember the vote was by no means unanimous,not everyone is happy. However it is important to remember that we all had the opportunity to cast our vote and have our say….

The crowd has spoken…now we just have to get on with it, showing each other respect along the way.

Fwf x

 

 

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Eco Chic- Natural Materials Making Responsible Products

We all seem to be developing more of a social conscience, or at least that is the way it seems. Products are popping up everywhere claiming to be more environmentally friendly, using renewable resources, and providing various new business opportunities.

As the first world gets richer though, it is encouraging to see that some of the wealth and opportunities are trickling down, utilising resources that can be found in some of the poorest regions of the world.

Did you know many products that we use in a commercial florist are sourced internationally these days? In some ways this is sad as money is going off shore, however it is largely due to the cost of wages in Australia. The truth is, if we were to grow them here, the price would probably end up so high, no one would buy them. Buying from overseas is also influenced by the difference in climate; what they are able to grow, that perhaps we can’t. Most of our  orchids, anthuriums and tropical foliage (like cordyline or palm leaves) comes from South Eastern Asian countries and Mauritius.

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Image; Monkey ladder vine via Project Noah
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Image; Kiwi Vine via Dried Decor
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Image; Bamboo via Better Homes and Gardens

We use several types of vines and canes in floristry, but some of these natural materials also make fantastic decor, and due to the nature in which they grow, they make eco-friendly choices.

Rattan is closely related to the palm plants, and considered a liana (or vine) rather than a true wood. As it is a climber, it’s texture is flexible and malleable, whilst still incredibly strong, making it an ideal material to weave furniture from. It is a rapid grower, with the ability to grow up to 30 metres tall however does not have the strength to grow alone, instead using the structure of other neighbouring plants to hold onto in order to reach higher. Rattan is generally confined to South East Asia, with 70% of the world’s rattan throughout Indonesia. The rest is sprinkled throughout the Phillipines, Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Bangladesh. Given that rattan is grown throughout some of the poorest regions of the world, it is able to provide a sustainable income to those who need it most.

Rattan grows in between other trees in forests, and as a result, those forests have since been protected from logging to allow the rattan to be grown. It also grows in floodplains which were otherwise unused, which in turn encourages animals to create habitats, and increase animal populations.

Rattan is solid, and therefore incredibly strong, in fact it is almost impossible to break. Bamboo on the other hand, is hollow, but it is still incredibly strong. Ever been to a third world country and witnessed the construction of a new building? Bamboo scaffolding is still used today.

Bamboo is hard and straight making it harder to manipulate. Generally pieces are placed parallel to each other, and the design of the furniture usually tend to be more simplistic.

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Image; Cane furniture is durable and stylish via Naturally cane
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Image via Grand in Road
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Image; Vintage Rattan Furniture via TEDXUMKC

Bamboo is another rapidly growing material that is being utilised in furniture design and other decorator items. Both rattan and bamboo are fast growing tropical plants, making them an ideal income source for those populating the developing countries in which they grow. Often bamboo and rattan are used together in furniture; making the framework from bamboo and utilising the flexible rattan pieces around the joins of the hard straight bamboo pieces.

Many of the furniture styles that were favoured in the 1950’s, 60’s and 70’s are making a comeback. This is largely because the furniture is durable, eco-friendly, light weight and attractive.Despite being able to create plastic furniture, the trend to make more eco-friendly choices is catching as we strive to reduce the amount of landfill and live more sustainably.

 Fwf x

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Wonderful Waratahs

Over the past few weeks my Instagram feed has been flooded with beautiful specimens of native Waratahs. Waratah flowers only have a reasonably short season, generally beginning sometime in October and continuing throughout the month of November, so essentially they are currently in their prime. The blooms are available in stunning reds, as well as pink tones, white, creams and lemon.

Waratah (Telopea Speciosissima)
Image ; Alexandra Simpson via National Parks Waratah (Telopea Speciosissima)

Telopea speciosissima, the most well known of the Waratah species, was named the floral emblem of New South Wales on 24 October 1962 after being used for many years informally. Telopea, derived from the Greek word ‘telopos’ means ‘seen from afar’ and refers to the fact that the rich red flowers could be seen from a distance. Speciosissima, is from a Latin word meaning ‘most beautiful’. Waratah was actually the Aboriginal name for the species. The Waratah was said to be popular with the Aboriginal people thanks to the rich nectar they would sip from the flowers.

Telopea is an Eastern Australian genus. The Waratah is part of the Proteaceae family, a family which also includes Grevillea, Banksia, Macadamia and Hakea. These plants are predominately found throughout Australia and South Africa. The defining feature of those within the Proteaceae family is the inflorescence;  very large, brightly coloured and showy, and consisting of many small flowers densely packed into a compact head or spike. The Waratah certainly fits the bill, with it’s rounded head full of compact flowers which generally measure 7-10 cm in diameter. The long woody stems are adorned with dark green, long and leathery leaves.

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Image; Pink Waratahs- East Coast Wildflowers

The Waratah makes a fantastic cut flower as it is long lasting, has a lovely long, straight stem, and a large, eye catching  bloom. The Waratah also has very little scent so makes a good choice for those who suffer from allergies.

Did you know that cutting Waratahs from the bush is an offence? These days many native wildflowers are protected, however, some twenty years ago it is estimated that as much as 90% of the Waratahs sold at Flemington Markets were bush picked.

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Image via Pinterest

Waratahs are generally sold per stem and the price will be determined by both the quality of the inflorescence, and the length of the stem. Like many other wild flowers, Waratahs are a tree. Therefore it is understandable that it takes quite some time for a tree to grow and produce a decent crop- approximately 3-5 years in fact! When you conosder that for a moment, it’s a substantial amount of time to wait to collect on your investment. Add to that the fact that Waratah cannot simply be planted and then forgotten, even more so. The Waratah does require a level of maintenance, as well as insecticide management and water throughout the drier months. It has also been known to have problems with Borers. For flowers like lilies, or gerberas you are only looking at 12-16 weeks for a yield- that equates to 3- 4 crops a year!

Waratahs are certainly a spectacular bloom endemic to our homeland and with only weeks left in their season, you’ll need to be quick to enjoy them this year! We also offer lovely native arrangements like the Wild Native Box which makes a gorgeous gift. Check it out here!

Fwf x

 

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Summer Rain

You’d have to be blind not to see that something is going on with the weather…. And not just this year, for years things have been changing. This winter has been one of the driest on record, and if you have a look around you, you could be forgiven for thinking that grass was supposed to be brown. I mean, it’s the norm now right?

So whilst we have all been praying for rain for the last few months, experts believe our wish is about to be granted….in a much bigger way perhaps than we had intended. At this stage BoM suggests there is approximately a 50% chance of this weather event becoming a reality, however this is DOUBLE the normal risk.

What weather event am I referring to?

The Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) are currently on La Nina watch. La Nina, or “the little girl” is the positive phase of the ENSO (El Nino Southern Oscillation) and occurs less often than El Nino’s or “the little boy”. It brings about heavy rainfall in Northern and Eastern Australia, and cooler-than-average sea surface temperatures in the central and eastern tropical Pacific Ocean.  El Nino’s effect, on the other hand, is that Australia’s weather conditions become drier than normal.

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Photo: AFP/Queensland Police Service

For all us lucky ones who live on the East coast, La Nina threatens to wash out our summer; bringing heavy rainfall, flooding, and even the possibility of cyclones.

Over the last couple of weeks, Queensland regions have already suffered through some torrential rain, severe thunderstorms, hail, tornadoes and flooding. The Authorities from the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries are still assessing the situation, however it is set to spill into millions of dollars worth of damage. Some areas are still cut off due to flood waters. Dr Watkins, manager of climate prediction service at BoM told Fairfax Media that La Nina’s were usually evident from autumn or winter, unlike this year: “It’s quite unusual to be so late in the year.”

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On the upside all this talk of rain is easing the threat of a potentially devastating bushfire season but it is important not to become complacent. After an incredibly dry winter,  there is plenty of fire fuel, the soil is dry, and any rain that we have, quickly evaporates with the soaring temperatures. “With continuing high temperatures, dry soils and drying out vegetation, the fire risk is still quite high. We will need to assess that as we go through the event.” Dr Watkins continued.

What does this all mean for the flower industry? Well…we all know that we need rain for things to grow, but believe it or not, too much rain can spoil all the beauties in the garden. As we are now in peak wedding season, heavy rainfall threatens to damage any varieties that are grown outside such as many garden variety roses. However rainfall can damage sheltered stock when the flowers begin to form mildew. This is most obvious on the outer petals, but unfortunately the whole bloom can begin to rot from within. Garden roses like David Austin roses can often show the effect of rainfall.

In the past whole crops have been known to be destroyed by heavy rainfall or hail. Obviously this will influence prices in the marketplace- as the supply declines, but the demand remains the same, prices will soar.

High temperatures also influence the vase life of flowers. Be sure to keep vases of fresh cut flowers away from direct sunlight and draughts. Clean the vase and change the water regularly. Remove spent flowers as ethylene emitted from deteriorating flowers  will cause new blooms to age more quickly.

Throughout the warmer months choose your cut flowers wisely. For longevity Native and Tropical blooms are best- they are made for this weather.  English garden flowers will struggle to last in the hot and humid conditions, so be mindful that as gorgeous as they are, they will only be enjoyed for short periods.

Choose wisely flower lovers 🌱🌼🌹🌷🌺🌻 😍

Fwf x

 

 

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Sweet Baby’s Breath

When I started my career in floristry many moons ago, I watched my mentors cringe at the mention of many flowers that I had grown up admiring throughout the 80’s and 90’s. I was new to the industry and of course I was wide eyed and so easily impressed by the artistry that seemed so effortless to them. I was also easily influenced and quickly learnt how to turn my nose up too.

They knew what colours worked together, so while I fumbled through the flower stand daily ‘experimenting’ with different combinations, or following the rules I had learnt via TAFE, they were busy creating colour schemes which were far more sophisticated, and upon first looks, appeared to break all the rules I had been adhering to.

There were blooms that were favoured- premium type blooms that need not beg for attention….as soon as they were unpacked there was a fight on to see who could gobble them up the quickest. The divine garden roses, or peonies were among them, along with anything especially seasonal like daphne, lilac, or lily of the valley, or if something was a particularly unique colour, or especially beautiful quality.

Other flowers were unpacked with an air of distaste and dissatisfaction….flowers that were seen as outdated, or daggy, out of fashion and lacking the finesse that was required in the work we were aiming to create. For someone new to the industry I sometimes couldn’t follow why something was snarled at one week, and adored the next. As time went on and I gained experience in the industry I began to understand how rapidly fashions changed and also how if a beautiful version of something came in, the way it was viewed changed too. What do I mean? Run of the mill Baby’s Breath is a prime example. The standard bunches can look rather ratty BUT a premium variety Gyposophila like ‘Million Stars’ has many more tiny flowers closer together then regular babies breath. The result is that with so many more tiny white blooms along the stems, it looks brighter and seems fuller in appearance.

Baby’s breath lost favour for so many years, but has seen a rise in popularity in recent times. These days though, Baby’s Breath is being used as a feature flower rather than a filler flower being mixed with other flowers in arrangements. Now, premium varieties of the flower are used alone.

Baby’s Breath is soft, delicate, feminine, light weight, white….so it is no surprise that it makes an ideal wedding flower. As it is available with long stems which are branched in appearance, you are able to create wide spread arrangements that are light weight to hold. Large centrepiece arrangements can look impressive, yet still delicate and ‘floaty’, almost cloud-like in appearance.

Baby’s Breath has been a popular addition to weddings over the years, usually with other flowers, but check out the way you can use this simple bloom for weddings and event all alone.

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Image via Pinterest
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Image; Flowers by Twisted Willow via Wedding Chicks

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Image; Whimsical Wonderland Weddings
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Tall centrepieces by Maria from Simply Flowers
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Image; Bella Blooms Studio via Etsy
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Image; Elle Pupa via The Wedding Pin
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Image; Boho Weddings via Thinkstock
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Image; Pinterest
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Image; Brooke Courtney via My Wedding

When I began my training, I was told that anyone could make something look beautiful with amazing flowers, but it took someone truly talented to make something beautiful out of ‘ugly’ ingredients. Never underestimate what a good florist can do….

Fwf x

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Random Floral Acts of Kindness

Have you heard of people doing random acts of kindness or paying it forward? For many, a small, random act spurs them on in a way they had never considered before, and I’ve got to say, it certainly seems like a lovely change from the incredibly selfish and self centred lives we live in the world today. Some have been delighted when they go to pay a restaurant bill only to find another patron has already taken care of it. Perhaps the person in front of you in the coffee line has paid for your order before you have made it. You are really only limited by your imagination….and your wallet 😜

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Lonely Bouquet by Fleuropean

In 2015, Petal It Forward began; an initiative started by the Society of American Florists. The idea was to brighten someone’s day with a random act of kindness, receiving a bouquet of flowers. This year, 2 years on, the event took place on Wednesday 11th October, covering 50 states, and over 300 cities according to the website.

During the event, lucky recipients received two bouquets- one for themselves and one to give away or ‘petal forward’. And anyone could be lucky enough- the bouquets are given randomly to people walking along the street, doing their groceries or playing in the park.

“It lets people know how much flowers can make a difference in someone’s day,” Linda Hursa from Angel’s Trumpet Flowers and Gifts said.

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A lonely bouquet

And these guys aren’t alone; there are others creating positive karma all over the world. The Lonely Bouquet allows flower lovers, and do-gooders alike to create a bouquet that they ‘abandon’ somewhere. This lonely bouquet could be left anywhere; a park bench, a library, even at a bus stop…somewhere it will be found with a simple note explaining it’s intent.

The original concept could be lost amidst a treasure hunt of sorts if you openly advertise where you place them, so the best idea (I think) is to simply abandon the bunch somewhere where it will be found and enjoyed. Add a small note to the bunch with whatever sentiment you like- but basically the idea is that your good deed will be enjoyed so much that it will inspire the recipient to go ahead and do the same.

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Lonely Bouquet Note

Florists have been doing a version of this for years- taking the leftover blooms from events and turning them into lovely box arrangements or posies and delivering them to retirement villages and nursing homes to bring a bit of joy.

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Via Upworthy -Repeat Roses was born when owner Grove decided that there had to be a better use for the arrangements that were simply being thrown away after a wedding. Now, they are rearranged into beautiful displays for the elderly to enjoy.

There have been several recent studies by Rutgers and Harvard that show that flowers have a profoundly positive effect on a person’s sense of well being. Flowers have been shown to improve your mood- ask any florist! 76% of people agree that having flowers around you in your home or office positively affects the mood. The SAF also conducted their own study that showed that 88% of people who were given flowers felt happier, and 80% of people receiving flowers felt happier. So based on figures like that, this whole concept really sounds like a recipe for success doesn’t it!!??

Flowers are often given at sad times, in the face of tragedy, and for this reason alone, the concept of being given flowers for no reason at all is beautiful. 92% of women think that getting flowers ‘just because’ is the best reason EVER, and 75% of men agree! We have gorgeous fresh flower arrangements and bouquets for all occasions, including “just because”. Or if you fancy doing your own random act of kindness we have beautiful bunches of market fresh flowers available everyday. Why not spread a little love today…

Fwf x

Feature image: fleuropean

 

 

 

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It’s Never Too Late To CREATE!

“Creativity is intelligence having fun”Albert Einstein

Some people are street smart, others are book smart, and some other people are smart in a way that many are envious of…they are creative. Creative people have a unique way of looking at the world, and at looking at problems….coming up with solutions that others could not contemplate.

A 91 year old Czech woman has spent the last 30 odd years beautifying a small village, turning it into her own art gallery by hand painting flowers over the facade of the houses. It looks like Louka, a small town of only about 70 people in the Czech Republic, is set to become the next village famous simply for being charming and beautiful. Anežka (Agnes) Kašpárková, paints the window and door frames of the houses throughout spring and summer, slowly covering her hometown in her ultramarine designs. After working for years in agriculture, cultivating plants to support her family,  Agnes turned to painting about 30 years ago having being mentored by Manakova, a local women. When she passed away Agnes decided to continue her work. She uses bright blue paints which contrast the white walls of the Moravian homes. Creating intricate designs free hand, without drafting, her inspiration is from the traditional Southern Czech (Moravian) artworks. The chapel enjoys an annual touch up each May, when the artist spends 10 days decorating the freshly whitewashed chapel walls.

Why does she do it? “I am an Artist. I just enjoy it and I want to help.” Agnes says. “I’m just doing what I like,” she adds, humbly. “I try to help decorate the world a bit.”

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Image by Obec Louka via Bored Panda
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Image by Obec Louka via Bored Panda. Agnes seen here painstakingly painting the floral motifs
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Image by Obec Louka via Bored Panda. “I am an Artist. I just enjoy it and I want to help.”

It is not the first time something like this has been done….do you remember the little Polish village that is also adorned with flowers?

Zalipie, in Poland was just an isolated small town; bleak and somewhat forgotten. The smoke blackened huts of the village provided the local housewives with the appropriate inspiration. Initially, the women began painting the houses to disguise the black and sooty scars left by the smoke filtering out from the stoves. The women would hide the spots of soot within the intricate flower designs; a unique floral motif designed for each house, therein transforming the village into a kaleidoscope of colour and creativity. Gradually the designs began to make their way onto the outside of the houses, allowing the world to see the colour and intricacies. The quaint village has now become one of southern Poland’s best kept treasures, bringing visitors to the once quiet town.

As modern cooking methods improved, the need for these designs was lost however the town has kept them and continued to adorn any structure they can with the colourful designs; houses, bridges, chicken coop….there are no limits.

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Zalipie, Poland- a quaint village adorned with unique floral motifs designed and executed by the town’s housewives
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Image; Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland
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Intricate designs. Just look at the detail in each of the flowers and leaves. Image ; Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland

Beautifying the world around you brings a sense of calm and contentment. But more than that, Agnes reminds us that it is never too late to do something that you love, and be guided by the creativity within.

Not everyone has the option of painting a whole village, but a vaseful of fresh cut flowers or a lush indoor plant can beautify your little world. Check out what we have online via the links, or come in store to say ‘Hi’.

Fwf x

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