Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Autumn Flower Workshop

Here are Helen, Annie, Jessie and Ann at the end of the flower workshop with their wonderful bouquets presented in Meadowsweet gift boxes. This blog tells the story of what they made and how they did it. The story is told mainly in pictures. Jessie (second from the right) took the photos so you won`t see her again! Here is how it all started – the calm before the storm on a lovely sunny day in Sheffield in late October. The flowers and foliage in the buckets are the ingredients we used – gorgeous, seasonal English flowers.
Here I am showing everyone how to get to grips with foliage, and here they are preparing their pittosporum and eucalyptus (what a lovely smell).
Our task was to make a magnificent bouquet using groups of flowers. This is quite a difficult challenge, especially as most of the group had never done any flower arranging before. The first stage was to make six individual posies made of grouped flowers and foliage. The first posy was made with these fantastic delphiniums standing tall in their pomp! Here is everyone sorting out their flowers and a close up of Annie deep in concentration.
Next we made posies of chrysanthemums and of red dahlias. The red dahlias were especially striking. Again, you can see everyone working on their dahlias and then Annie doing a great job.
The next posies were made of alstroemeria – first pink and then white. Here is Ann calmly considering her developing posy, followed by a close up of the lovely white alstroemeria with a piece of cinerea eucalyptus.
The final posy was made with vibrant pink roses. Here is Helen putting hers together, followed by a close-up of the roses (everything and everyone was so obligingly photogenic – flowers and participants!).
The next stage was to get ready for constructing the bouquet. First you can see all six posies completed and resting in the bucket; and then all the posies set up on the table ready for action.
Then the last ingredients – string for tying the bouquet, parvifolia eucalyptus to add a soft edge to the bouquet and the final icing on the cake – these exquisite kaffir lilies to add as a final touch.
OK – hold the delphiniums firmly in your left hand.
And now start to add posies in a spiral…easy!
Have you ever seen such attentive workshop participants before?
Anne’s got it….beautiful.
And so have Annie and Helen.
Perhaps a bit of a tweak needed here….
And finally, all the bouquets are complete. Just look at what everyone has achieved.
The next step was to wrap the bouquets in cellophane and add water so that the flowers stay fresh while they are moved about or presented as a gift. First take some cellophane.
Place your bouquet in the middle.
And wrap it up.
Then pour in the water and place the bouquet in the gift box. Just gorgeous!
Jessie left her bouquet with me and here it is in my sitting room today - 10 days after the end of the workshop. It still looks fresh and vibrant. What a triumph for seasonal English flowers and for the skills of the workshop participants!