RETAIL THERAPY – MY LOCAL FLORIST PLUS a Stylist's 10 secrets for beautiful flowers

Every now and then I would like to share a great retail space or service that I support with my work as an Creative Director, and stylist. Quite often a shoot will require a large table setting, celebration or even when shooting a kitchen video, we often need flowers or some foliage to create atmosphere in the shoot. With this in mind, I look out for the freshest quality and most, 'on trend' flowers and foliage I can find. I am also lucky enough to grow up with a grandmother who was a florist and would create quirky floral arrangements for me as a child. This influence has brought me to think outside the box, and is also handy when selecting and arranging flowers. See my tips below for creating your own.



My first stop for flowers is a little local shop called "Spotted Orchid" in Lane Cove. Owner, Rita has been a welcome addition to the community and has quickly become a true local with friendly faces waving by, to say hi, as she works away in her beautiful shop.

Spotted Orchid is bursting with fresh colourful flowers, plants and succulents are ready for your home or office. The day I stopped by to say hi, there were buckets of tulips in shades of citrus, pale pink roses, classic white orchids standing tall amongst the hot magenta ones, Chrysanthemums and many Australian natives to choose from.




Nothing is too much to ask, Rita creates magnificent arrangements for her customers with enthusiasm and a friendly smile. If you would like a modern arrangement for that cool hipster stylist friend, she can do something with her super succulent collection. And if you need some get well flowers for Granny, she does a sweet fragrant posie. Rita tells me that everything old is new again, hydrangeas which were not so much in vogue have now made a  comeback and the price has has increased as a result.




The front of the shop is distinctive with a wonderful row of vintage ladders, each rung filled with baby succulents for sale. Inside the spotted orchid is an aladdins' cave of bejewelled beauty with an an extensive range of artificial flowers, which look just as good as the real thing. Artificial flowers are on trend at the moment, with corporate customers changing their arrangements monthly, rather than every week. The beauty of the artificial flowers is you can recycle your old flowers or mix them with fresh flowers to create a new look.



Stylist's 10 secrets for beautiful flowers
1. Choose flowers which are in season, good quality and super fresh. Shop locally or head to Sydney Flowers markets.
2. Extend the life of you flowers with floral food and always use cold water in the vase.
3. Think about where the flowers will be displayed. For example a hallway may require a large vase with tall flowers, like gladiolus.
4. Different heights of vases can create drama. If you are creating a centre piece on a dining table, be mindful to keep them low on the table so people can still see and talk across the table.
5. Fill vases half way to the top with water and float flower heads or rose petals for a dramatic effect.
6. Short on time? Buy coloured vases and you won't need to change the water every day.
7. Green foliage is an inexpensive way of decorating your home. Try arching stems of Eucalyptus
8. Use floral oasis foam to help keep you flowers in place in the vase and makes will also make your flowers last longer.
9. Don't forget the cheaper flowers such as Gypsophila or baby's breath, Carnations and Gladiolas can look contemporary, if styled correctly.
10. Pick monochromatic colours in various types of flowers for maximum impact.
#thefreshawards


Contact Rita at Spotted Orchid
ph: 9418 6770
www.spottedorchid.com.au
Words and images by Anne Marie Cummins


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