July. The Story So Far.

After all that effort  we didn’t win the competition after all! Not to worry, it was only a bit of fun and as a rule, I don’t really bother with competitions but as the saying goes, nothing ventured nothing gained and all that! 

I have not had much opportunity to blog of late as we’ve been super busy with lots of weddings and events every week, until this one just gone. So I thought I'd spend a moment looking over a few images I've been sent lately. It's always so nice to take a moment to reflect on recent work we have completed, to see the final details. 

Next week we are back on track with three beautiful events to flower up and so it continues all the way through to the last Bank Holiday in August when I shall be finally taking a proper break and a holiday. The summer just seems to be flying by, before we know it, it will be autumn and I shall be thinking about the ‘C’ word and wreaths (no, I am not even going there)!

I have had some fabulous photos sent through by both photographers and brides of late as well as a few I have taken myself (you will of course spot the latter - the grainy blurry ones).

My working year is punctuated by the seasons, one often overlapping another and the pictures I think you will agree show this so beautifully.

There has been just one issue I've found increasingly difficult to overcome this year and that is my British wholesale supplier sadly went out of business and ceased to reopen after the seasonal winter closure.  Previously they were able to gather from multiple sources across Sussex, Hampshire and Surrey delivering to me the most glorious flowers and foliage, as a result of this closure I find myself driving around collecting smaller quantities from numerous  growers which is proving to be uneconomical and environmentally unsound, each trip can be two hours there and back. I am faced with taking the easier and more economical option of buying a guaranteed quantity of quality Dutch flowers instead. Life throws these curve balls at us and we have to work our way around or through them. I could write about this subject ad infinitum because I whilst love using local flowers,  I do not choose them at any cost.

With this unsolved issue with no resolution in sight, let us focus instead on some of the loveliness TWHFCo has created thus far this spring and summer.

Here are a few images to show and tell about,  I hope you agree we have had some cracking weddings to flower up, I extend my thanks to the A team that is Megan and Saranna working alongside me this spring/summer. Here's a little taste of our summer so far...

 

Jo and her maids. Gorgeousness from last month at Wasing Park and captured by Studio Rouge 

Jo and her maids. Gorgeousness from last month at Wasing Park and captured by Studio Rouge 

Pretty corsages from this June wedding 

Pretty corsages from this June wedding 

I recently taught a one to one workshop, during which we discussed TWHFCo. signature style bouquet. These multi textured bouquets are one of our most popular styles for several reasons: firstly they are not overly large, which in turn means not overpowering for the bride to carry as she makes her way down the aisle and importantly they do not obscure her gorgeous dress.  Some of the Pinterest styled oversized bouquets which feature in many magazines are often viewed by clients here at TWHFCo as a little O.T.T and it is reassuring to know that our signature - not to structured, reasonably tidy but abundant, multi-textured hand ties, remain one of the most popular looks we make (this is one that my workshop co-florist Megan made). 

I recently taught a one to one workshop, during which we discussed TWHFCo. signature style bouquet. These multi textured bouquets are one of our most popular styles for several reasons: firstly they are not overly large, which in turn means not overpowering for the bride to carry as she makes her way down the aisle and importantly they do not obscure her gorgeous dress.  Some of the Pinterest styled oversized bouquets which feature in many magazines are often viewed by clients here at TWHFCo as a little O.T.T and it is reassuring to know that our signature - not to structured, reasonably tidy but abundant, multi-textured hand ties, remain one of the most popular looks we make (this is one that my workshop co-florist Megan made). 

Since making the first of these hanging planks a year ago in June 2016, they have proved to be very popular at Wasing Park.. here's one we made in June 2017 the seasonal combinations are endless.. 

Since making the first of these hanging planks a year ago in June 2016, they have proved to be very popular at Wasing Park.. here's one we made in June 2017 the seasonal combinations are endless.. 

Pretty bridal bouquet for Anya in May. A classic loose, multi textured hand tie with lots of colour, scent and movement.

Pretty bridal bouquet for Anya in May. A classic loose, multi textured hand tie with lots of colour, scent and movement.

We used tall poles along the aisle to flower the church at this gorgeous Hampshire wedding in May, the flowers were then transferred to the tables and placed on top on tall trumpet shaped clear vases. 

We used tall poles along the aisle to flower the church at this gorgeous Hampshire wedding in May, the flowers were then transferred to the tables and placed on top on tall trumpet shaped clear vases. 

Aisles in churches or civil ceremonies always look better with flowers - here at Clock Barn we often tie pretty scented posies on to the chairs, tying them with a ribbon or raffia. Photo credit to Lydia Stamps photography  

Aisles in churches or civil ceremonies always look better with flowers - here at Clock Barn we often tie pretty scented posies on to the chairs, tying them with a ribbon or raffia. Photo credit to Lydia Stamps photography  

The gorgeous  Laura at Clock Barn in May - this was a stunning bouquet very delicate and floaty. 

The gorgeous  Laura at Clock Barn in May - this was a stunning bouquet very delicate and floaty. 

The maids bouquets from Jo and Spencer's wedding in May - I'm hoping we get  to see some gorgeous pro shots of this wedding soon! 

The maids bouquets from Jo and Spencer's wedding in May - I'm hoping we get  to see some gorgeous pro shots of this wedding soon! 

April. when the English sweet peas are grown under glass and we get  some summer scent in earlier than expected, when the tulips are at their best and when all that glitters is actually gold sequins. I do love a bit of magic and sparkle and we combined a loose pastel combination of spring florals with gold sparkly runners for this beautiful wedding at Tithe Barn near Petersfield the flowers were in pretty pale blue Kilner jars. 

April. when the English sweet peas are grown under glass and we get  some summer scent in earlier than expected, when the tulips are at their best and when all that glitters is actually gold sequins. I do love a bit of magic and sparkle and we combined a loose pastel combination of spring florals with gold sparkly runners for this beautiful wedding at Tithe Barn near Petersfield the flowers were in pretty pale blue Kilner jars. 

Glitter & pastels for a wedding... yes please! 

Glitter & pastels for a wedding... yes please! 

One from April Melissa's gorgeous bouquet with lots of spirea and forget me not. Textural and heavenly scented. 

One from April Melissa's gorgeous bouquet with lots of spirea and forget me not. Textural and heavenly scented. 

Vote for The White Horse Flower Company in the Berkshire Muddy Stilettos Awards 2017!

I’m so excited that The White Horse Flower Company has made it into the Finals of the Muddy Stilettos Awards for Berkshire 2017 in the Best Florist category. If you were kind enough to vote for me in the first round, thank you so much. However, all first round votes have now been cancelled out so voting starts again from zero.

Voting in the Finals is open until midday FRIDAY 16 JUNE.

If you would like to vote for The White Horse Flower Company (and I would be delighted if you do!) please click on the logo below.

Thanks so much!

Lindsey

Kind Words. (Just married - April 29 2017).

Linz,

You floral wizard, you are a creator of pure magic! The flowers, centre pieces, button holes, EVERYTHING was absolute perfection. My bouquet and my bridesmaids bouquets were more beautiful than I could ever have imagined, I was completely blown away. 

Thank you, thank you, thank you for making our wedding outstandingly beautiful. I honestly can't express how much I loved every single element you created. 

Lots of love,

Bethan xx

 

Bethan's bouquet. What you cannot appreciate from this image is the scent and movement this bouquet had. From every angle it looked completely different. 

Bethan's bouquet. What you cannot appreciate from this image is the scent and movement this bouquet had. From every angle it looked completely different. 

Mentha Rose stealing the show in this particular bridesmaids bouquet. 

Mentha Rose stealing the show in this particular bridesmaids bouquet. 

Bethan's bridal bouquet. All of spring tied up in silk ribbon. We had discussed using Coral charm peonies - suitably faded (that means a week old to you and me) but I thought La Belle Epoque tulips that I'd watched blooming in the gardens of Little Park flowers these past few weeks were even more suited to the look we were aiming to achieve; the colour was spot on too. Best of all they were British grown jsut down the road from me. 

Bethan's bridal bouquet. All of spring tied up in silk ribbon.

We had discussed using Coral charm peonies - suitably faded (that means a week old to you and me) but I thought La Belle Epoque tulips that I'd watched blooming in the gardens of Little Park flowers these past few weeks were even more suited to the look we were aiming to achieve; the colour was spot on too. Best of all they were British grown jsut down the road from me. 

The ubiqiutous studio floor shot: Six maids bouuqtes, packed in tissue, in a splash of water and ready to be delivered.

The ubiqiutous studio floor shot: Six maids bouuqtes, packed in tissue, in a splash of water and ready to be delivered.

One of nine individual buttonholes. This one has a touch of thistle, brunnia, hen pheasant feather, some tiny dried poppy seed heads and to smidge of Osmanthus (the little grey/white balls).

One of nine individual buttonholes. This one has a touch of thistle, brunnia, hen pheasant feather, some tiny dried poppy seed heads and to smidge of Osmanthus (the little grey/white balls).

One of the six bridesmaids, they were all different but I particularly loved the one huge green and white ranunculus in this bouquet!

One of the six bridesmaids, they were all different but I particularly loved the one huge green and white ranunculus in this bouquet!

Four of the six maids bouquets in my ancient gardening trug. 

Four of the six maids bouquets in my ancient gardening trug. 

The Buttonholes.

The Buttonholes.

Spring: A Season to be cheerful.

Spring heralds the return of my wedding season; a season that properly kicks off in March and which doesn’t stop or slow until December 23rd. I love to look back over previous years and note how early or late the flowers bloomed in my garden as well as arrive in the flower market. This year I see the flowers are blooming later than last by two to three weeks.

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Spring flowers have a luminosity and vibrancy all of their own. The green of new growth has a certain softness to the touch and a vibrancy on the eye. From the cheerfulness of a yellow of daffodil and forsythia, to carpets of aconite and crocus in the garden, spring colours awaken the senses softened only by clouds of pink and white blossom in the trees and hedgerows. 

Blue is a colour I particularly associate with April; bluebell swathed woodlands, pretty muscari in my flower beds or forget-me-nots' growing in every conceivable crevice in the garden. I used to think of these tiny blue dots as weeds but have since embraced this tenacious little flower. Even the little seed podded stems at the very end of their season can create texture in an arrangement.

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There are some flowers which appear timeless, season after season we welcome their return with love and affection such as the aforementioned daffodil, others have grown in popularity. One such newcomer is the hellebore, also known as Lenten Rose they have long been a favourite of mine I particularly admire their bashful downward looking stance. A few years ago they were less widely appreciated as a cut flower and they lent an unusual accent to my bridal bouquets (alas I cannot say the same today)!

Once a virtual unknown on the cut flower circuit, unpopular in part due to their unpredictability and tendency to wilt, hidden in shady corners of our gardens, hellebore s often went unnoticed as the ranunculus and other spring "super models" tulips and narcissus took centre stage. They are currently enjoying a moment of glory amongst florist and horticultural circles with many varieties available with a longer vase life, they are also extremely versatile straddling the foliage-flower boundaries such as the green Argutifolius. There are some twenty varieties to choose from and you will find the plants at every garden centre across the land with a variety for every aspect in the garden, a personal favourite is Helleborus Sternii.

To use in a bouquet or arrangement - cut and scald the stems in boiling water for 20 seconds before using, alternatively cut when the seed sets later in their season. 

   

 

 

I particularly enjoy the fleeting availability of a genuinely seasonal flower; I like how I can look back at one of my bridal bouquets and even if I don't recall exactly who I made it for, I will be able to date it by the season just by looking at the flowers I used.

The window in which seasonal blooms appear is often dictated by the weather: a cold spell will delay, warmer temperatures augment and speed up. Polygonatum (Solomon Seal) and the Fritillaria family are particular favourites of mine but the tiny flowers of Spiraea Arguta "Bridal Wreath" is my current floral muse. Its’ delicate white blossom on the finest filigree branches adds a slightly incongruous awkwardness to my arrangements;  the branches do not bend willingly but remain steadfastly upright if a little contorted; it has an air of frailty I cannot help but admire. This little flower grows in my garden and blossoms around mid-April it has the most fleeting of seasons but I can extend this by buying in from the Dutch flower markets where it is available at least three to four weeks ahead of my own garden offerings.  

 

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A bridal bouquet from April 2016: when the UK poly tunnel grown sweet peas merge with garden bluebells, forget-me-not and spirea.

A bridal bouquet from April 2016: when the UK poly tunnel grown sweet peas merge with garden bluebells, forget-me-not and spirea.