Vanilla Storm

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December has arrived.  How in god’s name did that happen?  One minute it’s all Summer weddings, tents, fields, light and wiltage worries.  On the plus side, it means I get to down tools, and take off to some far flung place, points for those who can guess where this is.

It was kind of magical, the moment you notice the snow falling.  And obviously as a city bird, I did keep thinking ‘if only I had a bow saw, that tree would look wonderful dressed’.  Although I can guarantee there was no tree rustling.  No I will be going to my local nursery for that.

Should you consider for one moment that this trip was all hygge, it wasn’t.  The moment I reversed onto the grass verge to get the car stuck went down well.  The smell of burning rubber will stay with me for quite some time.  Followed by the dawning realisation that there’s no phone signal so how on earth can I call the recovery people.  Yes, lets walk in the rain for three miles, half of which was up a very very steep hill.  Good for the heart all that cardiovascular stuff you know.    Yes, one of those holiday moments where you think you’ll look back and laugh.  I’m just not there yet.

And one final pearl of wisdom imparted by me ‘you won’t need your winter coat’.  Oops.

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Something Blue

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And Red, and Orange, and Pink…  Lets just pick one flower, the Dahlia and make it the most colourful of weddings.  Perfect for an early Autumn day.  In the prettiest of chapels.  Dunham Massey in Cheshire if you’re wondering.  Followed by a fabulous party at the village hall.

It’s nice to have a couple of professional shots thrown in, with thanks to On Love and Photography.


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In my heart it’s Summer

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Blimey it’s a gloomy day out there.  The footwear is stepping up into winter mode, which means two pairs of wellies, and a pair of cross country running shoes in rotation. I have yet to find a comfortable pair of wellies, and the running shoes make for very damp feet.  It’s a muddy time of year for the dog walkers of the world.

Lets focus on the beauty, and ignore feet and mud. This wasn’t a wedding.  It was a silver wedding.  I like to keep with tradition* so obviously there’s tons of silver in these designs.  The roses were scented.   A heady nose nuzzling scent that makes you stop midway between the venue and the car park just for last sniff.  And those nerine’s simply stunning.

And I’m just back from a lovely outing to meet with one of next year’s bride’s who’s going for full on wild flowers mixed with cottage garden blooms.  It may be winter out there, but in my heart it’s summer.


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Lights, Camera…

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Action!  To say I’m thrilled with these photos is perhaps an understatement.  In order to beat the gloom of a late October early morning I cracked open the professional soft box lighting.  OK, the lights have been in my possession for a few years now, but I rarely had the chance (time) to plug them in.

The results suggest they will perhaps over the winter become a permanent fixture.  Now, back to the flowers and what a recipe.  Spray garden roses four different varieties, dahlias Le Chat Noir and Café Au Lait, heather, poplus, pepperberries, rosehips, mixed with homegrown foliages, dusty miller, jasmine, geranium, elderberry and cornus.  All for a slick city wedding on a grey day.

And what a week, which included flowers for the Chinese President’s visit to Manchester and lots of wedding bookings for May and June.  Trips to venues planned including Falcon Manor in Yorkshire. Exciting times ahead.

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Dance like nobody is watching

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Thinking outside the box. It’s a well worn phrase, no? But what if I said let your mind wander.  And see where it takes you?  Time to think for me is one of life’s pleasures. As a creative soul, I find it hard to focus on the everyday because I generally have a head filled with pretty.  Take this wedding for instance.   I just wondered if there was more to a candelabra.  Works out there is.

What if I used three, and took off the arms. And went to B&Q and bought some wood (note to self make sure if has a barcode!) and cable ties.  What did I do without cable ties?  How about using the world’s supply of moss.  Many couples have very simple colour palettes.  But this was the party to rival all others, so had a riot.  Purple, pink, yellow, red, white and green to match the pom poms.  You know it’s a good do when you turn up the following morning and the candles are still lit!

In other news, there’s a whole host of talented florists collaborating on this feature.  I was pretty thrilled to be included.  Some very sound advice on wedding flowers, great stuff for anyone planning a wedding.  Enjoy.

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Colour match

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Sometimes in this game you feel like a celebrity.  Obviously that’s no bad thing. I mean how many people turn up for work to be asked ‘come on pose for a picture’.  Crikey give me some warning, I’m usually up at the crack of dawn and make-up is the last thing on my mind.  One of the bridesmaids said she couldn’t imagine a lovelier job than delivering flowers to people on their wedding day.  And put that way she’s got a point.

The bride was thrilled the hydrangea which perfectly matched her manicure.  Which means she got lucky, for all the will in the world, attempting to colour match hydrangea can make you go a little crazy.  So I generally say there are no guarantees, after all we are dealing with nature.  But these were home grown so I could pretty much cherry pick the best ones to suit.

And I have as yet to master photographing the darkest of dahlias.  They just have a habit of receding into the background.  Apparently I need to meter for the dark ones, but then the light ones will start to look like a blob and there’s no detail.  It’s a compromise.  I’ll live with it.


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Music Hall Magic

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DSC_0112I will simply say these photos do not do this wedding justice.  It was INCREDIBLE.  Incredible couple too.   The ceremony took place at Ordsall Hall in Manchester.  Stunning place, steeped in history, the house was first recorded in 1177 (that’s a year, not a typo).  And for some reason I always have to ask if it’s ok to bang in a few nails in that Tudor door, just to get a reaction.  The people here are great though.  Pretty laid back, although it was no to nails.

The flower theme was loosely blue and yellow, with a little Scottish thistle, via South Africa with the proteas.  Flower lists were endless, delphiniums, agapanthus, clematis, mimosa, grevillia, olive, eremerus, leucospernum, eryngium, cornflower, ferns, bridal proteas, honesty, jasmine… and for the bride slipper orchids.  It was all about the texture.  To be honest when isn’t it?!

And then off to the Deaf Institute.  Another super cool venue, come music hall with lovely people.  And only a few flights of stairs, several thousand times. On a very hot day.  Florists don’t sweat, they just glow.


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