I had my first wedding of the year last weekend - of the beautiful Christina and her now husband Chris, at The Compasses at Pattiswick. I loved the flowers so much and took so many photos which I'm gradually working my way through with editing etc. I took photos of each stage of the designing process so I thought I'd give you a little insight into how I work.
Before I even got to this stage there is the initial communication and consultation, then depending on the bride/wedding there can be many email exchanges and further meetings after this point. In the case of Christina and Chris I met them at the venue about a month before the big day, to have a look round and to take some measurements as they were after garlands and it is important to get these right.
Between our final meeting and the wedding I had to decide which flowers to use - the exciting part. During our initial consultation we discussed some different flowers and I gave Christina an idea of what I would use but I don't tend to confirm the flowers until the very moment that I place the order. This allows me to pick what looks good and is of the best quality at the time of ordering, and I order from a live site so the available flowers changes on a daily basis! I knew I wanted to use red ranunculus as the focal flower - they're not available all year round so it's always nice when you can use something seasonal. I was also looking for a pink rose to go with them and decided on 'upper secret', which may actually be one of my favourite varieties now! You can see a photo of them below. They were a lovely mix of pink and more creamy heads with frilly centres, so it as almost like having two different varieties. I also bought a jasmine plant for the lovely trail in the bride's bouquet, and a shamrock plant which the bride requested in honour of her father who was Irish.
My friend Alana at Petal and Wild was planning a trip to New Covent Garden Flower Market for the Thursday morning the week of the wedding so I jumped at the chance to go with her! At an hours drive to her house in Epping and then another hours drive into central London it's not a trip I'm going to be making often, but it was nice as a special treat! And I got a wrap of the most gorgeous scabious to use in the wedding so it was definitely worth it.
After this I was all ready to get going! I made a start on the Thursday afternoon but I did the majority of the work on the Friday, as with wedding work it all has to be done as late as possible really. It was a lovely sunny day to be working to I propped open the door of the studio and got to work! I like to separate the flowers into separate buckets for each design, so for example there's one for the bride's bouquet, one for each bridesmaid etc... It's a long day when designing wedding flowers with very few breaks but it's so worth it when you see the end result, and especially when you see the bride's reaction!
The morning of the wedding is all about the final touches - ribboning the bouquets and buttonholes, cutting the stems to size and loading the van. And then of course moving everything up from my workshop (if you've visited my studio then you'll know how long my garden is, and it seems like an extra long distance when you're up and down, up and down transporting flowers!) There was even time for a quick wash of the van thanks to my amazing father who actually seems to enjoy washing cars!
And then it was off to the venue I went! Stay tuned for photos of the wedding and some of the beautiful bride herself that she kindly sent to me. Their photographer is Matt Wing who has photographed one of my weddings before and he does some amazing work, so I'm really looking forward to seeing the professional photos.
I don't want to give too much away until I've finalised all the photos so here's the same sneak peek photos I've posted on social media!