Two iconic hotels – two cool styles

Last week I stayed overnight at the Bel-Aire Hotel and attended functions at the Beverly Hills Hotel. Wow, amazing flowers and botany. The two hotels couldn’t be any more different. Both iconic but both defining different ‘atmospheres’ and tones.

The Bel-Aire was quiet and serene (see photo of real swans floating on pond at front desk). It had a very exclusive vibe and when you walk over the old covered bridge to the lobby you can smell the scent of real wood fire burning. Nice. The landscaping is so beautiful.Although this hotel had just undergone a 3-4 year remodel you can see that they respected the traditional flora and fauna that existed and made minimal changes. You can see by the size of the California Sycamore and the ferns in a few of the pics that these guys have been around for a long, long time.

The Beverly Hills Hotel did not disappoint. Very different from the Bel-Aire but equally interesting. The energy when you walked up the red carpet into the lobby was vibrant and very cool. You almost feel famous just because you’re there! Almost;)

All floral statements were very grand, opulent and showy unlike the understated vibe of the Bel-Aire. The flowers were amazing. I can’t imagine how many people and how much time go into these arrangements.

The photos aren’t great but I did my best trying not to take too long snapping the shots so I didn’t look like the corny tourist!

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Class this week – Pave design, wreath and topiary

We had a full class yesterday. 3 new designs. None of them are my favorites but it was really interesting to do the different styles.

Wreath – Roses, with wax flower, daisy poms and carnations

Pave Design – Roses, daisy poms, spider mums and galax leaves

Topiary – Daisies, daisy poms, spray roses and wax flower

Sustainable Floristry

In floristry, sustainable design is just approaching the horizon and unfortunately, is not practiced by most designers.  Because floral design is driven by aesthetics and cost, sustainable practices are not yet perceived to be a mainstream consumer demand.  To complicate things, the supply chain is structured in such a way that product information and knowledge is refined and disseminated based on aesthetics and cost, not on grower information and product management. Even when a designer has the best of intentions, it is sometimes difficult to gather enough information to truly know if a product is sustainable. In an interview last year, I remember being asked if a rose sold in London is more sustainable if it is grown in a local green house or if it is grown in Kenya and shipped to London via the Dutch flower markets. This of course was a trick question because it is probably…

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Practices of Sustainable Designers

Sustainable Floristry

In floristry, sustainable design is just approaching the horizon and unfortunately, is not practiced by most designers.  Because floral design is driven by aesthetics and cost, sustainable practices are not yet perceived to be a mainstream consumer demand.  To complicate things, the supply chain is structured in such a way that product information and knowledge is refined and disseminated based on aesthetics and cost, not on grower information and product management. Even when a designer has the best of intentions, it is sometimes difficult to gather enough information to truly know if a product is sustainable. In an interview last year, I remember being asked if a rose sold in London is more sustainable if it is grown in a local green house or if it is grown in Kenya and shipped to London via the Dutch flower markets. This of course was a trick question because it is probably…

View original post 1,404 more words

Tropical arrangement

I attempted to do a tropical arrangement the other day. It was a bit tricky because the stems of most tropicals are pretty tough and weigh alot. It is hard to get the stems to stay in the right places. I used a whole lot of shells and less flowers than I had originally planned and it worked. The good news with tropical arrangements is that they last for so long.

I added some raffia and a folded tea leaf at top of arrangement for more visual effect.