I specialise in making natural funeral flowers...these are popular with gardeners, people wanting old fashioned flowers, people wanting a more personal service, people wanting beautiful understated flowers....
I pick flowers and foliage from family gardens if wished and make sheaths of flowers from my garden and other British growers. Like my bouquets they are scented and contain old fashioned and less common varieties of flowers. Most commonly they are finished with raffia but sometimes ribbon. To extend my skills and ideas next week I am going on a natural funeral flower course. I am keen to make and dress willow shapes for funeral tributes....more information and pictures to follow.
This natural floral theme is extended to church flowers for the service either funeral, memorial or celebration of life. I make big urns of flowers and vases of flowers. One of the huge benefits of this type of approach is that the flowers can be taken home by all the guests or incorporated into the service e.g. thrown into the sea or river with thoughts. I have discovered that many floral foam type arrangements are simply placed in the bin at the crematorium.
More recently I have arranged flowers for Mary Goodrich who makes gorgeous funeral teas. Many of you may know Mary when she worked in Nutters delicatessen in Southwold.
Do get in touch if you would like more information.
I love this work...in many ways the most personal of all the work I do.
What have we been up to in the cutting garden? This week I am sowing the next batch of seeds...Scabious, Sweet Peas, Cornflowers, Marigolds. I try to sow three batches of these one in the autumn and then two further sowings in the spring. Also I am planting bulbs in the green....500 Snowdrops are due to arrive from Scotland this week. Snowdrops are definitely best planted in the green, after flowering but whilst they still have leaves, they tend to establish better this way.
I am cutting....
I am collecting Ranunculus and Anemones from another local grower who has large glasshouses. She also has a small orchard and I buy arm fulls of blossom.
Spring is such an exciting time because the cutting garden begins to show all the promise of the year ahead.
I am getting organised for Mother's Day, which is a big day in the floral calendar. I have started picking my own blooms...Hellebores, Narcissus, Daffodils, Hyacinths....then I am collecting foliage from Julie along with her Anemones and if they are ready Ranunculus. Finally Tulips will arrive from Lincolnshire, Narcissus from Scilly Isles and Freesias from Guernsey. I have a limited number of bouquets available and deliver to people around the local area and post boxes of flowers to other areas in the UK mainland. If you would like to order one please contact me as soon as possible, so I can put you on my list.
Creating a seasonal bouquet....As you can see all my bouquets contain lots of seasonal foliage...which at this time of year includes, buds, blossom, catkins etc. This is important in creating a truly seasonal look....using very standard imported mass produced foliage creates a look that is the same all year and tends to make all the bouquets look similar. Sometimes I am asked for foliage only or green bouquets. Then I focus on flowers that are currently available, grown in the UK and as locally as possible. Other than flowers I have grown myself I prefer to buy from small artisan growers who grow flowers on a small scale. They usually grow less common flowers, out doors and naturally. I do buy from medium to larger British growers...my early season Tulips come from Lincolnshire and are grown undercover, hydroponically...in water and my summer Roses come from a grower in Hampshire. Both these growers only have their blooms available seasonally but their season is slightly longer than mine. The Roses are also a better quality than mine as I grow on sandy soil. However most of my flowers come from market garden style growers. This results in less standard flowers which are not available all year and so automatically my bouquets are completely seasonal. Finally I consider colour ....this is more customer specific but some colours are associated with different seasons. I use more red at Christmas and white generally through the winter. Spring favours pastel colours including a little yellow and Autumn is for warm burgundy's and oranges.
As you can see my bouquets are rather different from things you can buy in supermarkets or from on line providers or even traditional florist's shop who buy imported flowers from the Dutch wholesale markets. Unfortunately big business has become involved and so many imported flowers are now available all year. My bouquets are scented, using many old fashioned British grown flowers as well as seasonal foliage and flowers but with contemporary styling. They are truly seasonal and each is unique in that no two are ever the same.
My story in flowers started as a child growing a tiny patch of London Pride Saxifraga...also known as Whimsey or Look Up and Kiss Me! Fast forward to 8 years ago when I started a City and Guilds training in floristry. I qualified as a florist and then to deepen my growing knowledge and skills I trained in horticulture as well. I trained under a WRAGS scheme at Darsham Nurseries and at Somerleyton Hall. Developing a passion for both growing and designing/arranging British garden flowers, I planted a cutting garden. Having become increasingly concerned about where and how flowers are grown, coupled with a love of British grown flowers. and natural styling, I now specialise in growing and using beautiful British grown flowers to make romantic natural designs. for weddings, events, gifts and much more.