Janice and Holm- August 19, 2012

On a beautiful, sunny, warm day in Campbell, the adorable couple Janice and Holm tied the knot at the lovely Ainsley House.  I was so lucky to be apart of their big day and had so much fun putting their flower arrangements together.

I met with them a little over a month before they got married, on a referral from Miranda at Divine Affairs Events.  They weren't very sure about a theme, but they knew that they wanted dark pink, red and orange in their flowers.  We went through many pictures and talked about likes and dislikes and finally came up with a game plan.

For her bouquet, I used a bouquet holder wrapped in gold angel hair and white beaded wire.  I used roses, orchids and dahlia's to add color and texture to the bouquet.

For the groom's boutonniere I used rolled orange rose petals and wrapped the stem with the same angel hair and bead wire to match his beautiful bride.

For the bridesmaid, I did a smaller version of the brides without the orchids.  Instead of bead wire, I used red decorative wire.

The groomsmen and fathers got rolled orange and red petals with the same wrap as the bridesmaids.

The mothers of the bride and groom got a shoulder corsage with a pink rose and orange alstromeria.  The wrap matched the brides bouquet.

The flower girls got matching baskets with a sheer orange ribbon and angel hair handle.  

For the ceremony, we did aisle runners out of moss cones,  and three arbor pieces with orange fabric draped in a "v" shape.  The flowers used were roses in pink, red and orange, alstromeria, gerbera dasies, calla lillies and celosia.

 They also had a cocktail hour following the ceremony before the guests headed to the reception site.  I designed two tall buffet pieces and small cocktail table designs  Flowers used for these designs were orange and pink dahlias, pink, orange and red roses, and three call lilies as a crown.  The vases for the buffet were tall black Eiffel Tower vases and the cocktail tables used clear square vases with red stones.

On to the reception!  One of the things Janice requested is that we use potted plants in the pieces.  Most of their guests were from out of town, but the few that were from the area, she wanted to have them take home a plant arrangement that they could remember forever.  She also really liked a centerpiece that had a tall manzanita branch surrounded by flowers at the base.  After much, thought, I developed this design:

Using potted plants as well as cut flowers, I was able to create the look she wanted and have something for her guests to take home.  I am really happy with the way that they turned out and I received many rave reviews from the bride and other guests.  Maybe using potted plants is going to be the trend in 2013!  It really does look nice and is a great gift for guests!

All in all, it was a very successful, beautiful event!  Congratulations to the newly-weds!  


So much to little time

As some of you know, I have been planning my own wedding for the past few months.  As of yesterday, it is 2 months exactly until the big day and boy have I learned a lot about the planning process:

Here are just a few tips that I've learned that may help you while planning your special day:

#1:  Now you may think that I am just trying to promote myself by saying this, but really, hire a wedding planner!  They will help you make up your mind on certain things that you can't choose between, keep reminding you what needs to be done and give you tips on how to do it so you aren't overwhelmed.  They can keep track of all the vendors you hire and the contracts you gather, and they will help make the day of a breeze.  I did not hire a planner because of funds, but thankfully I have a fantastic friend who will be helping me on the day of!  She's been keeping me on track and reminding me of things I need to do as well as keeping me sane!

#2:  Just because you can bring in everything on your own does not mean it will be cheaper!  I love my wedding venue, really I do, but the fact that it is a privately owned home has meant that the rentals are more than I expected!  We have had to rent chairs, tables, coffee pots, glassware, and so much more and this has definitely raised the price!

#3:  DIY crafts are fun, but if you are like me, you go over board on the personal touches.  Try keeping the crafts to a minimum and remember that not everything requires you to make things from scratch!  Look on or Pinterest for vendors that sell those things you think you can make on your own!

Hope these tips helped you and sorry for the lack of posts lately!  Its been a busy couple of weeks!  Keep your eyes peeled for a sneak peak of the August wedding I will be putting together with a color scheme of red, orange and pink!  The centerpieces will have potted plants incorporated into them!!!

A 30th Anniversary party

Last weekend, I put together a small gathering to celebrate my parents 30th wedding anniversary.  We had the party in our back yard, and of course it was the hottest day of the summer so far!

Some tips for planning a back yard gathering like this:

Think of lighting:  We had small chinese lanterns strung across the patio ceiling.  It created a nice mood lighting that wasn't too harsh and gave off just the right amount of light.  We also surrounded the patio with tiki torches and lit them later in the evening.  This kept the mosquitoes away and provided more mood lighting.

Recreating moments:  My parents got married in a church that didn't allow dancing so they never got a "first dance" as a married couple.  I quizzed them on a few of their favorite songs and announced a dance for them.  This is a great way to get other people moving at the party and a sweet way to recreate a moment from the couples wedding.  I also ordered a small wedding cake from a local bakery and had their original cake topper on the cake which of course, they shoved in each other's face just like 30 years ago!

  A few other ideas include reciting their vows, having the best man or maid of honor make a toast and of course having their wedding scrapbook out for the guests to enjoy!

Making new moments:  I decided to take a cue from modern weddings and created a "photo booth" area that had props and costumes for guests to enjoy.  I also attached photo's of my parents to the drape back ground for guests to look at.

Finding the right caterer:  I had the biggest problem with this.  I wanted something small and more finger foods than dinner foods so I decided that Whole Foods would be a great option.  However, they were impossible to get a hold of and had no way to leave messages.  If you decide to go with Whole Foods catering, make sure to call them weeks in advance!  Also, you'd be surprised how many smaller restaurants that you go to often cater events as well.  I ended up using a local Mediterranean restaurant and the food was amazing!

It was a very successful party and a great memory for my parents!  Here are some pictures for you to enjoy!

A teaser of the photo shoot

On June 5th, I was lucky enough to participate in a promotional photo shoot at the Nimitz Mansion on Treasure Island.  The photos from the shoot aren't ready yet, but I took some of the designs for my personal records.

The color themes were pinks, yellows, browns and navy blue accents.  The entire shoot had a very vintage feeling to it.

I used bouquet holders for each of the bouquets to ensure they stayed fresh and had a water source.  I know you are probably thinking, "A bouquet holder?  You mean one of those ugly plastic things?"  Well yes I do!  In my last post, I talked about the usefulness of the bouquet holder.  They keep the flowers hydrated which in turn, keeps the bouquets fresher, longer.

Each holder was custom designed to cover up the plastic.  This gave each bouquet a unique feel that accented nicely with the design itself.

Boutonniere with orchids, Star of Bethlehem and crystal accents.  The crystal button, is a piece of antique costume jewelry.

A beautiful brides bouquet with a wire color, peony's, orchids, Star of Bethlehem, Queen Anne's Lace and calla lilies.  I was just told that this bouquet lasted an entire week without putting any extra water in the holder.  

Crystal pin used for handle decoration.

Sweet heart table decor with Queen Anne's Lace, a peony as a focal, Star of Bethlehem and hanging amaranthus.

Bouquet handle in a sparkle ribbon.

This bouquet has Veronica, lisianthus, delphinium and hydrangea.

A big thank you to Brenda Bennett and Kim Wodarczyk for their help on this project.  I couldn't have done it without you!  An another big shout out to Chyna Darner of Chyna Darner Photography and Miranda Meisenbach of Divne Affairs and Event Design for putting on the shoot.  Check back in a few weeks for photo's from the actual shoot!

Rene van Rems

Recently, I attended a workshop hosted by Mt. Eden Floral, taught by the talented and entertaining Rene van Rems hosted by Mt. Eden

Due to my schedule, I've never been able to go to a workshop like this outside of school.  After today, I plan to go to as many as my bank account will allow!

The workshop focused on bridal bouquets and how to make a fashionable bouquet using bouquet holders.  Yes, I said bouquet holders!  Those plastic, tacky looking things from the 80s.  Most bride's look once at them and say, "No way!", but I'm here to tell you, "Yes way!"

There are so many products in the floral world that can make these holders look classy, sassy and most importantly, fashionable.  You can still get the hand-tied look using the bouquet holders, but the flowers will stay fresher a lot longer than a regular hand tied bouquet.  When you are talking to your florist about your bouquet, make sure to ask them about bouquet holders and see what they can do with them, you will be surprised!

In next few weeks, you will get to see a few different styles that I worked on for a photo shoot in San Francisco.  They turned out lovely and highlighted the designer gowns that our model wore.  Check back next Monday for photos of the designs and the shoot!

Taylor and Bryce

It's amazing to me how the internet can connect people.  A good friend of mine responded to a Craigs List advertisement for a work-out buddy.  The two of them started working out together and became good friends.  A few months ago my friend introduced me to Taylor and her fiancĂ©.  When she discovered that I was a florist, she asked me if I would drive up to Yuba City and do bouquets and boutonnieres for her wedding.  I agreed and we started the planning.

For the fathers, I rolled petals from the Cabaret roses and used the cream garden rose buds.

The groomsmen boutonnieres had a cream bud with purple accents and monkey tail fern.

The grooms boutonniere was a mixture of the first two with a rolled Cabaret rose petal, monkey tail fern and cream garden rose.  For an added touch, Taylor had me put a locket on the boutonniere that belonged to Bryce's mother

The bridesmaids bouquet had mostly creams with hints of peach and a bright coral peony that really made the bouquet pop.  In each of the bouquets, there was a small photo frame of each girl with her spouse on their wedding day.  A very special touch for the special girls in Taylors life.

In the brides bouquet, I used peach garden roses, peach hydrangea, a white peony's and the beautiful Cabaret rose.  A collar of Dusty Miller surrounded the bouquet and gave it an antique feel.  There were small clusters of purple statice as a remembrance for the grooms mother who passed away.

It was definitely a challenge to get all the flowers up to Yuba City.  A few of them didn't make it and I had to take the bouquets apart in my car and fix them up a bit.  I think they turned out nicely and I loved the colors!  I did learn a lot, and have since learned some techniques I could have used from the great Rene van Rems which I will share with all you brides to be in next weeks blog post!  Until then, a big congratulations to newly-weds Taylor and Bryce Barrow!

*A big thank you to Kim Wodarczyk for her help!*


A fond farewell to CSM horticulture program

On May 19th, the floral classes at CSM put on a breathtaking farewell party for CSMs horticulture department.   Past and present students as well as several instructors and designers in the area came to gather to "walk down memory lane" and say goodbye to the program that changed many lives.

The students, as their final project for class, had to design table top arrangements, buffet arrangements and decorative pieces to liven up the party.  A documentary was shown in the planetarium and given to the archives of the college, slideshows were entertaining guests with the many memories they held and photos of designs and all the instructors for the program were scattered throughout the event.

Here are just a few pictures of the party and the designs featured:

Designed by former instructor Lois Wallace

Design by former student Diane Sinawi

Designed by former instructor Lois Wallace

Design by instructor Lin Bowie

Designed by instructor Yoshiko Williams

Designed by instructor Yoshiko Williams

Design by instructor Dianna Vigil

Designers for this piece included Kim and Annette Wodarczyk, Jen Hull  and Vicki Wilson.  Sorry if I forgot to mention anyone!

Design by Liane Benedict
Top of Liane's design

Bottom of Liane's design

Design by Joyce Bartell

Designed by Angela Kasidiaris

Design by Angela Kasidiaris

The next series of designs were created by Emma Soloveychik, Brenda Bennett, and Angela Kasidiaris

Design by Kim Moore

Design by Kim Wodarczyk

Design by Annette Wodarczyk

With so many designs and student designers, I could only remember a few designs and which designer created the piece.  So sorry to any of my talented, amazing classmates I forgot!