Miranda Priestly may not have thought that spring florals were particularly ground breaking, however the creative set on the London flower scene are pushing the perennial boundaries to create arrangements that are notably exquisite. With florals quite literally breaking out of their vases and popping up everywhere including the spring/summer shows (400,000 delphiniums encasing the Dior show anyone?!) flowers are once again at the forefront of fashion; and what better time to get educated about these botanic beauties than just before Mothers Day, she deserves the best after all..For the start of my floral journey I started off with a bit of an education; I’ve always been quite safe in regards to my taste in flowers, with pastel shades and stark whites being my preferred taste, it’s a style I haven’t really strayed from, however I felt like it was time to adopt a more broad taste in my bouquets and try sometime new. Ripe blooms in varied shades rather than a single colour can change the feel of a room; and small but unusual posies are the perfect gift for your beloved mother to celebrate her. As of late, one of my main inspirations was the eclectic arrangements at The Rows Spring 16 presentation at a chateau in France; small but perfectly unusual, they were the perfect accompaniment to their draped chiffon pieces and vintage influences, so when I decided to delve deeper into this world of floral creations I chose to find something a little bit different – something that will create a striking focal point in the home and show your mother you put in that little bit of extra effort.So to make your life that little bit easier (I’m nice like that) I’ve narrowed it down to my favourite floral designers in London that can help you in creating the perfect arrangement for Mothers Day or just a beautiful bouquet for your home.
Firstly I headed down to Clapham Flowers to meet with Madeline for a quick lesson on what you should be looking out for for something different this Mothers Day. What Clapham Flowers does exceptionally well is to put the unexpected together, thus creating refreshingly beautiful bouquets that are ethereal and compellingly unconventional, small but perfectly formed. Typical spring time blooms for Mothers Day include hyacinths, tulips and daffodils, all in season and all great spring time flowers however if you’re looking for something different, a hand tied bouquet of not so typical flowers will catch the eye. A great thing about smaller florists is that they’ll take the time to explain what’s in your arrangement and allow you to create something that is personal and one of a kind. Plucking stems from all around the shop, we decided on a small arrangement staring with Mimosa (they’re the pretty yellow ones that create the soft halo around the outside) – they’re also the main heart note of Jo Malone’s new fragrance, the Mimosa & Cardamom Cologne, the great thing about these unusual stems is that they have a warming subtle scent and the colour really pops amongst paler shades. A small posy of these would look great tied in raffia, or five or 6 in small glass jars down the centre of a table for a charming centrepiece.Another unusual choice is the Wax flower (they’re the small tight clusters of purple), these little stems have a sweet almond and lemon fragrance, which is perfect for a spring bouquet and the subtle colour was perfect to juxtapose the vibrant yellow. To throw something even more unexpected Madeline suggested the Veronika Flowers; tall narrow spikes of tiny purple flowers, they add an interesting architectural shape to an arrangement.
One of my favourite flowers are peonies – I love the delicate nature of both the colour and shape, however much to my dismay they’re not in season around this time of year (and as I was meant to be trying something different) a pretty alternative are Ranunculus – small floating flower heads on thin stems, they’re like the younger more delicate sister of the peony and look great when mixed with other wild flowers. Ranunculus actually symbolise charm, and should you have given someone a bunch in victorian times, it basically meant you were saying that they have many charms…could anything be more appropriate for Mothers Day?When they were all brought together and hand tied by Madeline, the result was a perfectly formed delicate posy of wild blooms that are perfectly unusual. I chose to display mine in a clear glass column vase to let the flowers stand out against my white walls, however you could channel The Row and choose to display yours in vintage crystal jugs or bowls for a truly unique display. If you’re entertaining, smaller multiple versions of the arrangement, all in different antique vessels, mixed in with dinner candles and votives would create a magical display for a special occasion or if it’s just for one evening, allow them to stand on their own so you can admire the beauty of a hand tied arrangement.
If you’re looking for something even less conventional and even more avant garde then you might want to look to Simone Gooch of Fjura (Fjura means flower in Maltese) – starting off in Sydney and then later relocating to London, Gooch has been featured in Vogue and is known for creating everything from bouquets to installations that break the boundaries as far as blossoms. She’s the pick for the fashion pack, creating floral installations from everyone from Chanel to Hermes, minimalism is the key to her stunning arrangements. In her interview with Vogue she says ‘The fastest way to create a stunning arrangement? A great vase. “Choose a smaller neck so that you don’t need a lot to fill it,” she says. “A beautiful container has always been an interest of mine—you just need one stem and it looks gorgeous.”One of my all time favourites is Nikki Tibbles Wild at Heart – you’ll probably know them best as the in-house florist at Liberty, because you’ve no doubt strolled past and instagrammed a picture (we’re all guilty of it) or stared in awe at the delicate bouquets upon entrance to one of London’s most beloved stores. The great thing about their creations is the mix of elegant design and a contemporary edge – probably why they seem so at home in Liberty. They start right at the delicate posies you see on the store front to large floral installations. My favourite for Mothers Day is the Island Bouquet, a delicate mix packed full with white anemones, pastel roses, pastel spray roses, white ranunculus and ammi – the perfect all round bouquet. Alternatively pick up one of their smaller bunches in tiny glass vases as a charming accompaniment to another gift.
The last thing to think about, is the not so small decision of the vessel that will contain your floral creations – now it may not seem like a life or death situation but the vase that you choose to house your bouquet can really change the mood of the flowers themselves, and the room. With a wild flower bouquet, antique style vases made from crystal or cut glass will always lend themselves well, as they look charming and match the delicate nature of the flowers however modern avant garde creations will look equally as great in something from a previous era. My three favourites at the moment are this Ralph Lauren Home Small Marion Vase which would perfectly house a grand bouquet and make a stunning centrepiece. This Wedgwood Barlaston Pashmina Lidded Vase is an unusual choice but would look amazing with simple white blooms and classic greenery and this Kartell Green Jelly Vase will pop against the vivid colour of your flowers and make a real statement.
Special thanks to the lovely ladies at Clapham Flowers.