United By Design, By Joseph Massie

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference - Joseph Massie

Joseph Massie

Last January while at The Chapel Designer & Florabundance Inspirationdal Design Days Event I had the pleasure of meeting Joseph Massie, who had flown in from England. Now I’ve been a fan of Joe’s for quite sometime, really ever since seeing that dress created from Red Rose Petals – you know the one I’m talking about, right? Well, I was quite excited to spend some time with Joe and watch him do his thing —

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference - Joe Massie's Installation

I asked Joe what inspired him to make this art piece –
“It all really started with Holly’s invitation to come out to SB to be a part of the conference. Holly had seen some of my art pieces previously, and we thought it could add a nice twist to the event to have something a little different for the designers. We started brain storming ideas, thinking of themes, and naturally, we were led to thinking about the conference, and ultimately about connection ~ about how we were all coming together for this event, all participating, and how we’re all always learning and developing as we go.

I suggested working with circles ~ symbolic for connection and continuation, and poppies were a natural fit as they can be so different in colour, energy and in what they say, but still they’re all the same flower ~ which fitted really well with our ethos for the work. The poppies also fitted as we were in SB, and although the poppies we used weren’t the actual official state flower, it was a nice touch to work with them ~ a nod to our environment as it were. The wheat weaving technique fitted beautifully with both the poppies and our connection theme ~ and it was also practical to teach based on budget and time restrictions. We needed something that we could build up relatively quickly (as we only had half a day with the participants) but something that everyone could contribute to equally.

If I had to sum it up in a sentence or two, ‘United by Design’ was a true collaboration from every participant who attended the conference. We supplied the original idea and the technical guidance, but frankly this work could not have been constructed by one person alone. It’s a work literally made from connection, equality, growth and contribution, which I feel was reflective of the energy from the group. ”

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference - Joe Massie

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference - Joe Massie

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference - Joe Massie

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference -

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference -

Dana adding more wheat to the design.

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference - Victoria

Victoria wiring on the water tubes to the piece

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference - Poppies

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference - Francoise Weeks

Francoise Weeks peeling back the covering on the poppies

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference - Poppies

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference - Poppy for Joe Massie's Design

My addition to the piece..

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference - Katie Noonan AIFD

Katie Noonan AIFD adding her poppy to the piece

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference -

Kristi adding water to the tubes

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference - Poppy Installation

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference - Poppies

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference - Joe Massie's Poppy Installation

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference - Joseph Massie's art installation with poppies

Florabundance Design Days & Chapel Designers Conference - Joost, Holly & Joe

Joost, Holly & Joe

Contact Information –
Joseph Massie Creative
The Chapel Designers
Florabundance Wholesale

Designing at Detroit Institute of Arts Museum by Sweet Pea Floral Designs

Growing up in Detroit my family attended weekly church services at a gorgeous gothic cathedral on Woodward Avenue one block from the Detroit Institute of Arts . Even then I sensed the respect, awe, and wonder that still surrounds the DIA.   When an opportunity to create floral designs for the DIA presented itself naturally I jumped all over it!!
www.sweetpfloral.com Sweet Pea Floral Design XL floral arrangement for the Detroit Institute of Arts DIA

This is a museum of epic proportions, among the top six collections in the United States with over 100 galleries, a 1,150 seat auditorium, an art reference library and state of the art conservation services laboratory.  Home to Diego Rivera’s Detroit Industry fresco cycle and Vincent van Gogh’s Self Portrait.  It is so easy to get inspired here and so Crazy to think we almost lost it in Detroit’s ongoing bankruptcy saga.  

www.sweetpfloral.com Sweet Pea Floral Design XL floral arrangement for the Detroit Institute of Arts DIA
 I joined the Friends of Art and Flowers in 2012 after a recommendation from a florist friend.  FAF is a group started at the DIA in 1985 for the beautification of the museum.  The ladies and gentlemen who lead this talented group of designers are about the nicest people you could hope to meet and made me feel so welcome right off.  Each week we create 3 designs with a leader for each.  All of the designs in this post were lead by yours truly (and gleefully!!)
www.sweetpfloral.com Sweet Pea Floral Design XL floral arrangement for the Detroit Institute of Arts DIA
The above was designed for last spring’s Elizabeth Sikes Kuhlman Lecture This year the lecture/luncheon will be presented by Jane Godshalk on May 1st.  Jane will represent the United States as one of six international demonstrators at the World Flower Show in Dublin.
www.sweetpfloral.com Sweet Pea Floral Design XL floral arrangement for the Detroit Institute of Arts DIA
When I was getting started with these designs it was terribly intimidating.  They are so much bigger in person then they appear in photos and they take a LOT of flowers to look appropriately full.  On my first ever attempt I was so worried about having it look full enough from the front that I forgot to save flowers to fill in the back and ended up having to start over (oppsie). I guess I share this as my way of encouraging all designers to attempt larger scale work if they haven’t already… you can always take it apart and start over if you don’t love your first try!!
www.sweetpfloral.com Sweet Pea Floral Design XL floral arrangement for the Detroit Institute of Arts DIA
Honestly what might have sold me on joining FAF (besides my friendly team mates) is the huge gorgeous collection of vases they have in the floral design room located in the basement of the museum.  Every week we go in on Monday to clean up last weeks arrangement and drum roll please……… select our vases for this weeks designs from the candy shop which is their vase collection.
www.sweetpfloral.com Sweet Pea Floral Design XL floral arrangement for the Detroit Institute of Arts DIA
Unlike with wedding design I can pick the freshest in season flowers for the museum arrangements and let my imagination go nuts like with the above arrangement, I found the wild sage and various fall grasses and decided to wire up some ribbon to add the illusion of wind blowing the grass…. fun.
www.sweetpfloral.com Sweet Pea Floral Design XL floral arrangement for the Detroit Institute of Arts DIA
The above was an experiment with a gluing technique I learned from Francoise Weeks while in Santa Barbara this January with the Chapel Designers.  Maybe the first design that felt 100% like it belonged in an art museum.  Wasn’t sure how to display it so I just hung it below the weekly design like some sort of weird floral plaque (plaque: n. an ornamental tablet)
www.sweetpfloral.com Sweet Pea Floral Design XL floral arrangement for the Detroit Institute of Arts DIA
I can not think of a better volunteer opportunity and I am so grateful that I joined up and got right to it.  Designing on this large scale has taught me so much about mechanics, movement, texture and reconnected me to the city I loved as a girl.  
www.sweetpfloral.com Sweet Pea Floral Design XL floral arrangement for the Detroit Institute of Arts DIA
It has been a great place to tryout roses I’m considering for use in weddings, get a little kooky with designs that remind you of Dr. Seuss, and meet all kinds of kindred floral spirits.
www.sweetpfloral.com Sweet Pea Floral Design XL floral arrangement for the Detroit Institute of Arts DIA
Can’t wait until I get to roll my sleeves back up and add my little bit of pretty to the giant halls of masterpieces in this Temple of art.

Thank you, Holly, for sharing your story with us. I know I really enjoyed seeing all the pictures of your pretty floral designs, and I’m sure our readers enjoyed them, too. Sounds like a lot of fun getting creative at DIA!

Holly Rutt is the owner of Sweet Pea Floral Design in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

Floral Art Installation by Nicole Cordier

Moderne Classic Designs Nicole Cardier

I had the idea for this installation immediately after my last major floral art show in November of 2012. I am a huge fan of both science and art and thought it’d be neat to combine the two. I’m also really interested in how light affects flowers from a viewpoint perspective, and also exposing people to different forms of beauty and fostering a sense of wonder about the world around them. This particular piece is a wall of white flowers displaying a rainbow created from refracted light. The “wall” was constructed with a rectangular piece of chicken wire- white flowers on one side and water tubes on the other to anchor the flowers in place. The prism used to refract the light was propped on a table level to the “wall of white” and a light was aimed directly at the prism.

It was important for me to select only white flowers to capture the essence of the rainbow, and there was a black sheet draped behind the white wall to create a dramatic contrast.

Flowers used (all white):
Dinnerplate dahlias
Ball dahlias
“Wendy” spray roses
Calla lilies
**all flowers were sourced from the Pacific Northwest region of the US (specifically the states of Oregon and Washington)

Moderne Classic Designs Art Installation

Moderne Classic Designs Art Installation

Moderne Classic Designs Art Installation

The photos were taken by myself and my friend, Heather Stadler. She is a local artist (painter) and floral designer.

I have a small floral design business in Seattle, WA where I specialize in floral art installations and special events. My main intent is to use locally grown flowers. I’ve been designing with flowers since 2001 and feel very lucky to have discovered my passion for art installations. I like the idea of bringing a feeling or an experience to an individual using flowers and botanical products as a medium.

Contact Information:
Nicole Cordier
Moderne Classic Designs
Seattle, WA

A Dress of Flowers by Emily Carter

Being creative for the sake of being creative is so good for the soul, let’s us floral designers push ourselves in our artistic endeavors. Today I am excited to share a project created by Emily Carter Floral Designs!

dress constructed with flowers

I like to think of flowers in various ways. Tools to make a painting come to life. Tools to sculpt with. Tools of nature. All of these ways that flowers can be used inspire me.
For years I have wanted to make a dress out of flowers. I believe this comes from seeing many a many wedding dresses, as we all have working in the industry. It took years to make it come to life for many reasons: seasons of flowers not lining up for what I ideally wanted to use, expense, mechanics of the design, and time to do it. Finally, I found myself thinking of it in the middle of the night and enough was enough. With peony season around the corner I set aside my days of work to create my lovely other child. 150 glue sticks, 2 glue guns, over 24 hours of labor with the flowers, 2 designers, 2 days of constructing the underlining, 8 yds of hardware cloth, over 150 peonies, 500 carnations, 300 roses, 120 astilbe, chocolate ty leafs, fiddleheads, etc.. it is complete. Many thanks to the lovely Sharyn Peavey for shooting this dream and the lovely Rosie (model) for wearing the over 40 lbs of dress for hours on end. Truly like having another child.

dress of flowers

dress made out of flowers

dress designed with flowers

closeup of model wearing flowers

dress made of flowers

dress designed out of flowers

dress made out of flowers

dress created out of flowers

Contact Information:
Emily Carter Floral Designs

Floral Design Inspiration by Francoise Weeks

Francoise Weeks is at it again — creating inspirational, beautiful and extremely artistic floral designs.
Francoise collaborated with her equally artistic photographer friend, Ted Mishima, to create a fabulous photo shoot.
Creating for the sake of creating is so magical for the soul!
I am so thrilled to share these images of her latest work with all of you.

floral mask

floral headdress

floral headdress

floral headdress

floral headdress

floral mask

floral headdress

floral headdress

floral headdress

floral headdress

floral headdress

floral headdress

How to Create a Floral Headdress by Jaclyn Gough

Check out this “How Did You Do That” step-by-step post by Jaclyn Gough of Fort Lauderdale, Florida. She is a very passionate floral designer who loves to create unique and detailed headdresses of flowers.

Step 1: Cut less than a quarter block of Rainbow Foam and place on top of head. Secure foam by pulling a piece of hair from in front of head over the foam and secure with 2 bobby pins.

create a floral headdress

Step 2: Insert Springeri by angling upward from the bottom of foam so it lay’s and cascades nicely against hair to repeat the length of hair. Then choose a mass flower such as Green Trick and insert in front of foam so you are able to gain perspective of how the headdress will look.

create a floral headdress

Step 3: Insert filler flowers such as Yellow Spray Roses, Thistle, Wax Flower and Green Button Mums to fill around foam and to continue to form a balanced head piece. Once your foundation is just about complete, insert 3 Red or your color of choice Carnations as a focal point (the attention grabber).

create a floral headdress

Step 4: Pick up individual stems of Equisetum , insert stem by stem in the top of foam and bend at each node framing the outside of the headdress.

create a floral headdress


create a floral headdress

There are countless ways to create a floral headdress and this is one of many. Most of my pieces are created on my head so I am able to see how it will form to the rest of my physique creating balance, unity and keeping it proportionate. When I was thinking how to create a headdress, I thought of the steps used in making an every day arrangement such as a basket or in a lomey dish. Most start with a piece of foam to fit the base, then foliage and flowers are inserted. So why not create a headdress the same?

My headdress took me less than 10 minutes to create and I let the flowers be my guide. If it feels and looks right and has meaning behind it then you’ve done a good job as an artist, in my opinion.

Contact Information for Vendors participating in the shoot:
Stylist/Floral Designer : Jaclyn Gough
Photographer : Michael D. Colanero
Make Up: Jody Du Priest

Also, Jaclyn created a Sea Nymph / Floral Mermaid design. Jaclyn shows such dedication to her floral craft! These are so creative:
Jaclyn Gough

Jaclyn Gough

Floral Headdresses by Chuck Graham

From 303 Magazine| Photography by Kristen Hatgi | Production, Creative Direction and Hair by Ron Lopez for El Salon| Fashion Styling by Dana Yurglich | Makeup by Renée Atkinson for The Make Up Store | Floral Designer: Chuck Graham

Introducing the artist Loreen of Reenie Rose

A few of my Chicago flower friends, Cori, Alex & Trish, have all been telling me about Reenie Rose for awhile now and I think it’s time we all get to know the artist, Loreen, a little bit better!
She offers a very unique product which I think will appeal to many of us. When we think of bouquet preservation after a wedding the first thing that comes to mind is preserved/dried flowers placed in a glass case – often seen placed on a shelf collecting dust in the home, right?
Well, Loreen has a completely different approach – she turns the memories into beautiful art work in an original, custom designed oil painting! Check out this video of her process:

Reenie Rose from Reenie Rose on Vimeo.

What lead you to create paintings of bridal bouquets?

I was managing an art gallery in Chicago when a family friend, who was a fan of my artwork, approached me about painting “something” for her niece as a wedding gift. After brainstorming a bit, we decided that I would paint the bride’s bouquet since I had always gravitated towards painting natural objects. Upon completion of the painting, we both stood back from it and realized that this painting was more than just a painting….it was an “idea”, and not one that was already discovered. This “idea” grew to be Reenie Rose, a company offering couples an alternative to traditional bridal bouquet preservation.

How long have you been offering this service?

The “idea” that started Reenie Rose was conceived in October 2008. Reenie Rose jumped into the wedding industry with both feet in 2009. The need to preserve the bridal bouquet in a way other than drying it to become a dust collector or sending it off to be put under a glass dome was brought to my attention by many florists and planners who were happy to have this modern alternative to suggest to their wedding clients. I have recently seen my client base embrace my paintings as a group gift option as well. I love this idea of bringing more people on board for a Reenie Rose painting….lots of love in one gift!

Do you have a favorite flower to paint?

I tend to refer to my paintings as “a big kid’s coloring book” and paint them in this manner. What I really love to paint….color. An all white bouquet can be quite stunning, but to paint lots of bright color is heaven! The painting I am currently working on is full of bright colored roses…a perfect combination of color and simplicity!

How long does it typically take for the bride to receive her painting?

After the wedding (and probably the honeymoon) the couple (or gift giver) will be sent a variety of compositions from which to choose their painting. Depending on the size and complexity of the composition the painting will take between 35 to 65 hours and about 3 to 8 weeks. There is a lot of time and care that goes in to each masterpiece. To see this fully illustrated, I highly recommend viewing my new video. If this doesn’t make you want your own painting, I don’t know what will!

Can you tell us where the name Reenie Rose came from?

(answered by Loreen’s mom) Loreen’s name is Loreen Rose Hospodar and as a child (and even now) we called her Reenie so it was the natural choice for the name of her company to be Reenie Rose!

To inquire about pricing and event date availability,
please contact:

Loreen Hospodar

The making of a floral headdress

Ever wonder how these pieces of art are created? Well, I’m sure everyone has a different way of designing them. This is what Crystal did for the piece I wore.
First she cut a piece of chicken wire to the right size and rolled it as to point the cut ends away from my head. I’m all for being creative but could do without chicken wire poking into my scalp! The ‘soft’ side of the wire rested on top of my head. She then took three oasis deco dots (we call them deco dots, looks like their official name is mini-deco holders) and wired those on top of the chicken wire. We needed a place to construct the piece so we taped it onto the top of my ski helmet — which I thought was pretty clever!

Crystal built up the base of the piece and added in the line flowers and some focal flowers.

We added in clematis, anemones and ferns:

The chicken wire piece was pinned into my hair with numerous bobby pins. Once it was in place Crystal and Krista (R.J.’s wife) started adding in more ferns, ivy and flowers around the base and covered up all the mechanics. Yes, it was heavy!

Here’s a photo of us after the shoot – Rachel, Crystal, me and R.J.
Crystal designed the necklace I’m wearing in this shot, she took a beautiful piece of costume jewelry and added a row of orange mambo roses – it was so pretty!

Headdresses – Alicia & Crystal get creative!

I couldn’t let this whole series happen without trying on flowers myself!
I called on a few of my friends and pulled together a fun little shoot. First, my extremely creative floral designer friend Crystal, she designed my headdress and her headdress (we featured her work this past Monday on flirty fleurs). She actually made her piece in the car as I drove us an hour north to Ft Collins for the shoot!! We had such a great time together 🙂
My dear friend Janine did our makeup and I loved what she did for us, thank you Janine!!
R.J. Kern came to mind right away when I thought about which photographer will be excited about the project and appreciate the artistic feel I was looking for and he suggested and introduced us to photographer Rachel Olsen. All came together for a great day of being creative for the sake of being creative.

My beautiful friend, Crystal:

Rachel’s sweet little daughter Brynn wanted to get in on the action:

We had a great day together! R.J. said to me at one point – isn’t it fun to be creative for ourselves?? I gave him an enthusiastic YES!
I’d highly recommend any creative business person to take time off from the job and just play – try something different or unexpected, it’s so refreshing!

Tomorrow I will show some behind the scenes photographs.

The Team:
Creative Design & Styling: Alicia of Bella Fiori & Flirty Fleurs
Floral Design: Crystal Oleskevich
Photography: R.J. Kern & Rachel Olsen Photography
Makeup: Makeup by Janine