0British Flowers Week 2014 at New Covent Garden Flower Market

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I hope you had a lovely weekend. With the beautiful weather, it’s really starting to feel that summer is here…a time when British cut flowers are in abundance. Homegrown blooms are enjoying a real resurgence in interest. And today, I wanted to share with you news about British Flowers Week 2014 at New Covent Garden Flower Market in London, which is a week-long celebration of British cut flowers and foliage.

It starts next Monday, 16th June and the Market team will be there on the Monday from 4am-10am to mark its launch. They’ll be handing out brand new British Flowers Charts, which identify which varieties of British flowers are in season at what time of year.  They’ll also have delicious British strawberries and cream on hand.  Plus you’ll have the chance to win a bottle of British bubbly! You’ll find the team on the stand next to Coffee Break.

So, what else is happening during the week? Well, specially invited florists from flower businesses in the South East have been commissioned to create an exquisite series of inspirational designs using the Best of British summer flowers, foliage and plants from the Market. The designs, flowers and creators will be revealed during the week on the New Covent Garden Flower Market website. I’m really looking forward to see which florists are involved this year and to see their beautiful arrangements. Here are some photos of last year’s British Flower Week stunning designs created by Shane Connolly, Scarlet & Violet and Rebel Rebel.

Shane Connolly – Foliage

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Scarlet & Violet – Peonies

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Rebel Rebel – Delphiniums

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Also during the week, florists from around the country will be invited to send in photos of their floral designs using British flowers and foliage for a photographic competition. Images will be posted on the New Covent Garden Flower Market website and the winner will be announced on Friday, 20th June. If you’d like to follow tweets during British Flowers Week on Twitter, the hashtag is #BritishFlowersWeek.

(Images : Helen Jermyn / New Covent Garden Flower Market)

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2Flowerona Links: With pressed flowers, photoshoots & a scooter…

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I hope you’re having a lovely weekend. Here’s this week’s round-up of fabulous floral links…

General

Weddings

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Flowerona Blog Posts

Video

Wonderful wedding flower designs created by Gorgeous and Green for a photoshoot for Ceremony magazine.

Gorgeous And Green: Ceremony Magazine Photo Shoot from Corduroy Media on Vimeo.

So, I hope you’re inspired and have enjoyed this week’s links. Have a wonderful Sunday!

(Images: 1. Clare West Photography, 2. Kimbry Studios Photography)

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0A visit to an RHS Secret Garden Sunday in London…

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Last Sunday, I had such a lovely afternoon at an RHS Secret Garden Sunday in London. They’re a series of RHS shows, held on the first Sunday of the month. With a really lovely ‘village fair’ like atmosphere, there were lots of stalls, pretty bunting, craft workshops and a live folk band, plus a cordoned off, by straw bales, area for children to play. There were also expert talks on everything from ‘Edible flowers’ to ‘Simple veg growing’. Simply Roses were there with beautiful flower arrangements, potted rose plants, garden tools and accessories.

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And there were stunning ‘Magical Mystery Tour’ peonies on Evolution Plants‘ stall. 

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Here are some more photos of the various plant stalls…

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I loved the succulents at Blueleaf Plants‘, especially the living frame which you can hang on a wall…

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…plus there were beautiful plants at Todd’s Botanics and wonderful air plants by Just Airplants. There were apples aplenty…

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…and wonderful wooden spoons by Dragan Wood Art, which I couldn’t resist!

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Gardening books were available at the RHS Shop…

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…and here’s a folk band entertaining the visitors.

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Southbank Mosaics had free drop-in workshops, where you could make mosaic plant pots or tiles for your garden. They were extremely popular!

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And Pompom Quarterly magazine had a wooly workshop, where you could crochet flowers.

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I adore illustrator and printmaker Hannah McVicar‘s work and I couldn’t resist including this close-up of her stunning work, which was hung as the backdrop to the event.

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I highly recommend visiting a future RHS Secret Garden Sunday. There was such a lovely buzz and the event really does appeal to all age groups. The next one is on Sunday, 6th July and it takes place at the RHS Lindley Hall, Vincent Square, London, SW1P 2PE from 10am-4pm. You’ll be able to learn how to arrange flowers and make your own terrarium, plus listen to a garden poet read his magical garden poetry inside a poetry tent! For more details, simply visit the RHS website. The next dates after July are August 3rd, September 7th and November 2nd. Why not pop a date in the diary today?

(Images : Rona Wheeldon for Flowerona)

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1Flowerona Tips: New Creative Tools in Instagram announced this week

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Today, I’m starting a brand new weekly blog post series called Flowerona Tips. I’ll be sharing hints and tips, primarily for florists, that I hope you’ll find useful.

First off, some exciting news about the Instagram app, which was announced this week. They’ve launched a new range of creative tools, which enable you to enhance a photo before posting it. For example, not only have they given you a way to brighten up your images, but also increase saturation, warmth and contrast, etc. Plus, you now have the option to vary the filter intensity. You can see a ‘before & after’ example above.

How to you use the new creative tools: When you go to select a filter, you’ll see a new spanner/wrench icon. Tap on it and you’ll find a range of photo editing tools ready for you to explore. They include Adjust, Brightness, Contrast, Warmth, Saturation, Highlights, Shadows, Vignette and Sharpen. By moving the button on the bar, you can increase or decrease the effect.

How to adjust the filter intensity: Simply double tap on a filter icon to adjust the intensity. Then move the button on the bar.

I hope you’ve found my first Flowerona Tips post useful. I’d love to hear your feedback…

P.S. You may like to read this blog post which I featured on Flowerona last year – Six fabulous UK florists and their beautiful Instagram images…

P.P.S. I’ve started putting bitesize #FloweronaTips daily on Twitter too!

(Images : Rona Wheeldon for Flowerona)

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4Florist Friday: Interview with Frida Lejonmark-Haynes & Sophia Hodson of Frida & Sophia Floral Design

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It’s Florist Friday and today I’m really delighted to feature an interview with Frida Lejonmark-Haynes and Sophia Hodson of Frida & Sophia Floral Design. I’ve been admiring their work for some time now and back in April, they kindly asked me if I’d like to be a guest instagrammer on their Instagram account. Now, it’s the ladies turn to be in the spotlight…!

Could you tell us what prompted you to become florists?

We both decided to become florists for very different reasons. Frida as a young girl used to read a Swedish alphabet book, which had a different flower for each letter. Her favourite was ‘P’ for Peony. The picture of the little girl in her summerhouse resting on the peony leaf used to make Frida wish she could be that girl. She also used to pick wild flowers in the Swedish countryside and set up a pretend florist stall for her mum and friends to play shop.

I, Sophia, on the other hand, had worked in the events industry until I started a family, and I was after a change in career that I could work around home and family life. My father had been very ill and it prompted me to go and see a medium. (I’d always been skeptical.) The medium spoke mostly about the past and current situations in my life, but then turned her attention to the future. She said she could see me in the creative industry, working with old-fashioned flowers, as that’s what my grandfather had loved. It had never occurred to me until that point, but it gave me the idea to become a florist. So, a few weeks later, I was booked onto a Floristry Diploma course at the local adult education centre. Whether I was always destined or she’d just put the idea in my head, I’ll never know.  But I’ve never looked back.

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Could you tell us how your floristry careers have progressed?

After meeting at college whilst studying for our Diploma in Floristry, we became good friends and started off one Christmas making wreaths for a local farmers market. This then progressed to friends’ weddings and then word of mouth started to spread. We still do the occasional vintage wedding fair, but we find photoshoots are a great way of reaching out to potential clients. We love working on photoshoots, it gives us free rein creativity, which we thrive on.

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When did you start your business and where are you based?

We started Frida & Sophia Floral Design in December 2010. Our workshop is in Tenterden in Kent.

What kind of floristry services do you offer?

As we’re freelance florists, our main service is wedding flowers. We love meeting with the couples and getting to know them. When we deliver the flowers and the bride starts crying because you’ve produced something that overwhelms her, you know you’ve done a good job! That’s a very rewarding part of being a wedding florist.

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Where do you get inspiration for your floral designs?

Our inspiration comes from nature and romance. Frida is Swedish and I’m English, so I think there’s also some cross Nordic/English mix going on there somewhere…

How would you describe your style?

Our style is bohemian and alternative. It’s relaxed with an imperfection, which gives a unique and elegant style.

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What are your plans for the remainder of 2014?

We have a busy remainder to 2014…lots of weddings and a couple of wedding fairs thrown in towards the end of the year.

What are your favourite flowers?

For me it’s easy…it would have to be a rose, particularly the garden roses which often have a beautiful scent. Frida found this question more difficult. For her, it would have to be sweet peas, poppies, delphiniums, lily of the valley and lilac…she loves them all!

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Thank you so much to Frida and Sophia for all their help in compiling today’s blog post. Do pop over to the Frida & Sophia Floral Design website to see more of their wonderful designs!

Social Media

To keep up-to-date with their news, here’s where you can find them on social media:

Facebook: Frida & Sophia Floral Design
Twitter: Frida & Sophia Floral Design
Pinterest: Frida & Sophia Floral Design
Instagram: Frida & Sophia Floral Design
Blog: Frida & Sophia Floral Design

P.S. Look out later for a brand new blog post series starting today!

(Images: Rebecca Douglas Photography – 1., 11., 12. & 14. / Kerry Ann Duffy Photography - 2., 3. & 4.)

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