'Flowers are love's truest language' . . . Park Benjamin

I began this Blog to share beautiful photos, inspirational thoughts and maybe a tidbit or two that you will want to pass onto to someone else. No one does 'pretty' better than Mother Nature .... Welcome and I hope you stop in often!

A Day in the Life of A Dreamer

My photo
PA, United States
I have always been a 'dreamer' and I think that is the most important quality a person can have in order to be creative. It allows me to view things from all sorts of angles. Whenever I would design for a wedding/special event I made myself 'think like a photographer' and in my mind's eye I wanted to be able to showcase various colors, elements & textures. At the end of 2012 I closed the doors to my Floral Studio and began pursuing new horizons. Flowers and plants have been a part of my life since I was a child and helped my Dad in the garden. Seeds have always fascinated me and one day I will share my 'Lesson Of the Bean' story with you! My other passion is creating beautiful food to share with family and friends -- I have always said that food and flowers go together. For now, I would like this Blog to be a collection of Pretty things that this Dreamer would like to share with all of you!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

The Adventures of Rose Bush

Margot Shaw is an editor for Flower Magazine and now her 'misadventures' have been compiled into this great little book that follows Margot as she travel the country spreading the 'joy of Flowers'. If you are a subscriber to Flower Magazine you have no doubt read her column which is always like the icing on a great cupcake and if you haven't then feel free to visit Flower's website at www.flowermag.com to read her latest 'adventure'!!! Enjoy

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

December Peonies

Trying to make 'dreams come true' are one of the best parts of creating Wedding Flowers!!! Earlier this month I had the request from one of my brides for Peonies in her Winter Bouquet. The photo she had seen was in a Spring/Summer issue of a Bridal Magazine but these were her favorite flowers and they just had to be a part of her special day!!!

I knew the moment that I received the shipment of Peonies from Kennicott Brothers that these Hot Pink 'Felix' Peonies were going to be PERFECT!!!

Someone once said that 'the eyes are the portals of the soul' -- as soon as I walked into the room to present this bouquet to my bride I saw the sparkle of glee in her eyes and once again simple flowers worked their 'magic' to write another happily ever after to this Love Story!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

The Legend of the Christmas Rose

Legend has it that there was a poor little shepherdess named Madelon who came to see the baby Jesus. She watched as the Magi presented their royal gifts and began to cry because she had nothing of worth to give to Jesus. One of the Angels saw her tears falling into the snow. The Angel put her arm around Madelon and stooped down to gently brush the snow aside where Madelon's tears had fallen and to Madelon's amazement there were the most beautiful Pink tipped Christmas Roses! Madelon gathered them up and now had the PERFECT give for the Christ Child!
Wishing all of you the magic and blessings of Christmas!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

November Weddings

So far November has been 'weather friendly' for Weddings and Events . . the sun has been shining, sky is blue and clear, the air is crisp (as it should be) and everything is still aglow as we march into November!!!!

These great bouquets were designed for a Wedding last weekend - Full of texture and color -- the Mini-Calla lilies and Orange Spray Roses are like a Flaming Torch of color, the touch of velvet in the dark Red 'Hocus Pocus' Roses, soft plumes of Autumn grasses and those great hypericum berries bursting out in sun kissed yellow and burgundy just continue to provide a feast for the senses that only happens in this glorious season of Autumn!!! Happy Fall Ya All!!!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Top Hats & Lace

The Jim Thorpe Historical Society is such a dynamic group of individuals who are focused on preserving the history of their little mountainside village. This past weekend Jim Thorpe held it's Annual Fall Festival and the Historical Society's fundraiser Ball at the Mauch Chunk Museum and Ballroom. I was lucky enough to be asked to create the centerpieces for this Benefit. Their theme was 'Top Hats & Lace' so I decided to go with it and keep the floral designs in the 'spirit' of things!!!

Out came the ReCreation Top Hat Containers -- so environmentally friendly, gorgeous Red Freedom Roses, Fragrant Lacey White Gilly Flowers (Stock) and a band of Silver Sparkle to add the 'bling' for this night out on the town!

I can't wait to see the photos from this grand Ball because the locals dress up in vintage attire that looks like it is straight out of the Victorian Period.

If you have never been to Jim Thorpe . . you must put it on your list of places to see . . be ready to park the SUV, turn off the Blackberry, Smart Phone and get your walking shoes out because the horse drawn carriages have the right of way on the very narrow streets and alleyways. I can guarantee you that you will fall in love and come back often to visit just to slow down a bit!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

A Perfect 'Blue Mountain' Wedding!

Last Saturday was a chapter out of 'Winnie the Pooh & The Blustery Day' because the winds were gusting at about 30 to 40 mph but that didn't stop Missy & Mike from having the Wedding of their Dreams. I had the pleasure of working with them and was thrilled when they selected Best Buds as their Floral Designer.

Fall is one of my favorite times of year and I love the majestic display of color provided by Mother Nature . . so much 'eye candy' to look at and take in and I didn't even mind hanging from the ladder and blowing in the wind as we zip tied down the 'Liquid Amber' branches on the arbor -- thank goodness for Yoga classes to provide me with balance!!

These photos are compliments of Sabotta Imagery & Photography and were taken by Jeffrey and his team of Photo Artists at the newly renovated Blue Mountain Ski Resort in Palmerton, PA. The panoramic views are captured by these talented professionals and I want to personally thank Jeff for allowing me to share his work with all of you . . I hope you enjoy Missy & Mike's Story!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Dessert Anyone?

The Holidays are right around the corner . . why not add a little Sparkle to your Table Scape . . at Best Buds we love the new 'Glitter Sticks' used to add just a touch of the 'Glam' to this bouquet of 'Tiramisu' Spray Roses . . are you ready for some dessert?

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

How Important Are Sample Designs

Last evening I met with a couple who is planning a large outdoor Wedding in October. . we have been working together for several months orchestrating each component of their big day. Missy and Mike are just a fun couple to be around.
Missy loves flowers . . and a big part of her plans include them . . from the ceremony site .. the aisle and arbor decorations to the centerpieces . . you can just see the joy in her eyes when she describes her vision.
A few weeks ago we were finalizing details and she asked about being able to view the centerpiece samples 'ahead of time' and I actually encourage samples to eliminate any sort of disappointment. Mother Nature can be a little tricky sometimes!!! Flowers do not always arrive in the same shades, sizes, etc. that you may have in mind or you saw in a photo . . so the best way is to see them is 'up close and personal' and that is what we did yesterday during our meeting.
Yes, there is a fee for the sample which includes the cost of the materials used and, of course, the required Sales Tax. I do not charge any labor fees because it is a sample and may need to be re-worked if it does not meet the expectations of my client. Happily I can report that has never happened during a Sample Consultation and last night was no different. Missy beamed, Mike was thrilled and they went home with their designs to share a preview of just some of the floral designs that will be showcased at their Wedding.
To me, no amount of money can take the place of the smiles I see -- they are payment enough. Being able to share the 'power of flowers' with my clients is why I do what I do!
So if you are planning any event . . don't hesitate to check with your Floral Designer about viewing a sample . . it definitely is worthwhile ...just ask Missy & Mike!

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Majesty of Autumn

Most people use calendars to keep track of time but as a Floral Designer, I like to use Flowers . . and you can always tell when Autumn is here because there is no other Season that can burst forth in the majestic colors of Fall!!!

This past weekend I was surrounded by this beauty while I created designs for Kayla and Matt's outdoor Wedding which took place at the picturesque 'Meadows' Event Facility in Hellertown, PA. This venue is surrounded by a stream, stone bridge and mature landscaping which I am sure provided Kelly, from Paula Galante Photography, a feast for her camera lens.

It's true the recent weather has been a wee bit dreary, heavily laden with cloud cover which kept us very moist from the constant 'pop up' showers, but on Saturday, the rain stopped, the warm sunshine burst through and added the 'special effects lighting' to showcase these colorful seasonal bouquets.

What I especially like about this design is the use of three different shades of Asiatic lilies which were an image of perfection blended with berries and preserved Fall leaves.

When you are planning your Fall Event . . don't be shy when it comes to color . . that is what this wonderful Season is all about!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Vineyard Weddings & Events

There is just something about an outdoor late September Wedding that is taking place in the Groom's Vineyard that he had manicured for his bride-to-be to make the perfect backdrop where they would stand facing each other reciting the vows each had written for their special day. It made my heart stir with excitement as I was setting up their event. The day was PERFECT . . . the clear blue sky, warm sunshine, a touch of the crisp cool air & the panoramic view as I gazed out onto row after row of vines that still held their gorgeous clusters of Chardonnay grapes that glistened in the sunlight!
This was Romance at it's finest and I was so happy to be a part of it!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

'Keeping It Simple' With Boutonnieres!

Most of the time when I speak with the 'Grooms-To-Be' about what they want for their button hole flowers . . it's always the same answer . . 'keep it simple'! So that is what we did today for Ryan . . . we kept it simple . . . but it still shows that 'Life Can Be a Bowl Full' of Whatever you want it to be!!!!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Adding A Little 'Fall Color' to Your Bridal Bouquet

This time of year when most think 'Summer is over' but it's too early for all that blazing Autumn Color . . . hmmmmm what to do!!! Here is one of my favorite suggestions . . just add a touch!!! Like the leaves, the colors are just beginning to change so 'POP' in a wee bit to satisfy your Fall craving!!!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Flowers & Candlelight

Some things just naturally go together .... Peanut Butter & Chocolate, Pizza & Beer, Baseball & Hot Dogs and then we have another great union . . .
Flowers & Candlelight the PERFECT duo for any event!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Too Many Tomatoes?

As many of you already know I not only love to design flowers but I am also an avid gardener and cook!!! Well this time of year daily visits to the garden just yields a heavy harvest of tomatoes and like all 'country folks' we take a walk and share with our neighbors and family but the Tomatoes just keep on coming! So what to do with all of these beauties. I am going to share one of the recipes that I created for quick and easy Bruschetta. The first thing you need to get is a great loaf of crusty Italian Bread!!!! Give it a little squeeze to make sure it's FRESH and soft in the middle!!! You know what I mean!!! Slice it about 3/4 of an inch thick. Then I make up an Olive Oil 'concoction' that consists of Grated Parmesan Cheese, Mrs. Dash's Garlic & Herb seasoning and/or Tastefully Simple's Spinach & Herb seasoning. Generously brush your bread on both sides with this, place it on a foil wrapped baking tray and toast it in a 400 degree pre-heated oven until the bread begins to turn golden and crispy. While this is going on . . prepare your tomatoes . . I remove the skin from mine, coarse chop them -- drain off the excess liquid because this will cause your bread to become soggy, add some Olive Oil (about a tablespoon to one cup of tomatoes, give your fresh Basil a coarse chop and add that along with some crushed garlic and a little 'zip' of fresh ground black pepper! When your bread is ready . . remove it from the oven . . . top it with the Bruschetta mixture -- add some chopped fresh Spinach, Mozzarella Cheese -- fresh or shredded, and today I added some great imported Italian Pepperoni -- but you can stop at the cheese or use your own imagination for 'extra' toppers!!! Return your tray to the oven until the cheese melts and your 'Bruschetta Toasts' are sizzling . . then all you need to do is Enjoy!!! Hope you make this and let me know what you think!!!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

It's Always Summer Somewhere

Labor Day Weekend!!! Hard to believe another Summer in our hemisphere has cruised by and is coming to and end. The air smells a wee bit differently & the sun is setting earlier. I treasure the time I get to walk in our woods with our 'Grand Girls'! We pick up fallen twigs that we use as 'Wizard Wands' and watch as the first few leaves dance to the ground like 'Faeries' performing a beautiful ballet.

Then stroll over to our Pumpkin Patch were the vines are heavy with these glorious orange globes of all shapes and sizes!!! They search under the large prickly leaves to find the 'biggest' one in Poppa's Prize Pumpkin Patch!!!

Yes, the last days of Summer are here but I smile and think 'It's Always Summer Somewhere!'

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Unforgettable Bride

There are just some brides you never forget and Liza was one of them. She loved flowers and wanted each of her tables to have a different flower theme. My favorite was the design I created on top of this 'slice' of log she had burned their initials in.

But then there was her bouquet. I loved working with Liza because she was open to all sorts of ideas. I could not wait to present her with the gorgeous waterfall style bouquet that was a fountain of colors that popped with Peacock feather accents!

I would love to share all of the pictures that she sent to me but this Blog would turn into a short story novel. OK, maybe just one more . . .

Her cake was topped with California grown Eufloria Spray Roses and you guessed it . . more feathers. Thanks Liza for allowing me to let my creative juices flow!!!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Red Bridge Events

I love Outdoor events so you can only imagine my excitement when I recently read about a local Lehigh Valley Couple who was opening their 18 acre property to the public by launching their new venture Red Bridge Events. Another reason I am telling you about this new venue is the fact that a portion of their property is powered by Solar Panels -- you know me -- always thinking 'Green'!!!

So if you are looking for an outdoor venue with the charm and appeal of a Country Estate . . check out Red Bridge Events at www.redbridgeevents.com

Capturing a Couple's Vision

This past weekend I had the pleasure of creating designs for Laura and Christian's Wedding. They presented me with their color palette of buttery yellow and kelly green in order to match their attendant dresses which by the way were fashioned out of lovely sheer organza fabric and just screamed 'Summer'!!!
Laura wanted to use decorative Mason Canning Jars but asked me to 'dress them up' so they would be fit for their wedding!
I came up with this design which brought such smiles to their faces this past Friday and made me feel that indeed I had captured their vision. As I told Christian who was present when I was setting up their venue . . I wanted to give them a garden, so my idea was to use the 'Green Trick' Dianthus as a base over the jar to create the illusion of a lush carpet of grass from which the yellow 'Enjoy' Gerberas grown by Rosa Flora in Canada sprung forth surrounded by the 'dancing' Bupleurum and to add the magic of 'Faerie Dust' I spun Oasis Copper Deco wire in the jar and sprinkled a 'kiss' of Oasis Copper Angel Hair Wire on the Dianthus . . This is what I like to bring to my designs in order to make them so personal and unique. Their venue came alive in the glow of these centerpieces that matched perfectly with the napkins!!! Thanks Laura and Christian for allowing me to have the privilege to create something special for your Wedding Day!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

2011 Fall Color Trends

OK like it or not . . . August is here and the Fall Season is knocking at our door!!! So for all you out there who are planning your Fall Events . . I thought I would share some color tips that I have discovered and studied over the past few months. No I am not a fashion designer but let's face it fashion and flowers go hand in hand and if you want to know how to create floral designs . . . well then you need to keep in touch with fashion!!!
Michelle Mospens has a wonderful Blog
http://www.mypersonalartist.com/blog/ and she really is the color expert.

After reading Michelle's Blog, I was happy to see that there is still a 'Vintage' trend and that Mocha has returned to a top favorite along with Orange & some shades of Green!!! Let's face it 'Mother Nature' and Kermit the Frog love Green!!!!

I know I have my personal favorites . . . like Tyrian Purple and Sangria/Brick Red . . oh my mind is racing with ideas!!!! So check out Michelle's Blog and let me know what YOUR favorites are!!!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Zara's Flowers

There are 'star gazers', 'people watchers' and those of us who just want to see the 'flowers'!!!

I was interested to see what Zara Phillips was going to carry on her special day! It turned out to be a European hand-tied bouquet that was created by a London based designer, Paul Thomas, and featured flawless White Calla Lilies, 'Silvery' Dusty Miller foliage and a 'kiss' of blue from Sea Holly also affectionately referred to as 'thistles' ... which by the way is the National Emblem of Scotland and I thought it it was thoughtful to have them included in the design! Zara's bridal attendants carried a mini-version of her bouquet.

The entire look is a very traditional Bridal White with soft blue filtering through . . and I feel it complimented Zara's dress and the entire Wedding Theme beautifully.

OH and I almost forgot these beauties!!!

Gorgeous white clouds of Hydrangeas, Roses and more of those wonderful Blue Sea Holly Thistles!!!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Finding the Right Bouquet

Just like the vegetables in a soup, flowers are all different and that is what makes them so interesting! Some of them are Bright & Bold, Soft & Delicate, Wild & Free and I could go on and on about describing them. I realize that trying to find the right flowers that will fit can sometimes be a daunting task for those who are planning a Wedding, Celebration or Special Event.
There are mountains of Specialty Books, Media, Websites, Blogs, Bridal Expos, etc. all devoted to the subject but how do you know what will work and what won't?
Yes, it's true that many flowers can be obtained 'any time' of the year but what you need to remember is that every flower has a season where they SHINE and are at their very best. When they are 'out of season' the quality may go down and the price will go up.
Also, Flowers behave differently after they are harvested and will be used in floral designs. Some are very hardy and can tolerate a European hand-tied design -- roses, calla lilies, freesias, alstromeria, etc. but then there are those like the great big mop head hydrangeas that will just turn into a limp hankie after a few hours when they are put into a hand-tied bouquet and have no water source.
Any flower can be designed into a bouquet and if done properly you will have picture perfect blooms all day that will be showcased for a lifetime in your photos, videos and memory bank!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Sea Daffodils

They call them 'Sea Daffodils' . . Pancratium maritimum!!! Now those of you who have had the joy of studying Latin as a language (I had 4 years of it -- don't ask) but the great part about having this pearl of knowledge is the fact that English word roots come from a lot of Latin words and the maritimum in the Sea Daffodils 'botanical name' gives it's habitat away . . they grow on sandy beaches but this gorgeous bulb is endangered because of the development of the beaches for the sake of tourism!
I had the good fortune to be gifted a basket full of these wonderful bulbs by my Garden Friend, Mary! I must phone her to let her know that mine have just bloomed . . I wish you could smell their fragrance is ethereal! So if you have the chance and you see these beauties . . pick some up to add to your garden . . the bulbs are not hardy in our Pennsylvania Winters so they must be dug and stored. I am told the bulbs multiply very quickly and I am looking forward to that!!! Must go back out to the porch to get another 'sniff' of these gorgeous blooms while they are still have their morning glow!

Monday, July 25, 2011

A Special Wedding!

Being in the Wedding & Special Events end of the Flower Business may give some the idea that you may not have 'regular repeat customers' and of course, you don't want to be doing Wedding Flowers every so many years because of failed relationships . . that would just be a sad state of affairs.
But, this past weekend I had the pleasure and honor of creating designs for Ashley and Aaron's Wedding that took place at the very beautiful & scenic Penn's Peak in Jim Thorpe, PA. Ashley is the younger sister of Christina whose Wedding I also had the privilege to design for a few years ago.

We met back in January for Ashley's Wedding Consultation and it was so much fun seeing Christina, Ashley, & their Mom, Mary again and to meet Domenica, Aaron's Mom. Working with this great group of ladies planning, creating and then finally seeing the smiles when I walked through the door with their designs was such a special moment and it just reaffirmed why I do what I do . . . it's not just about the beautiful flowers that I get to work with but to see the effects that flowers have on people, to meet such a wonderful group of ladies and to have the floral designs created just for Ashley be a part of their memories for a lifetime!

Congratulations Ashley & Aaron . . . and thank you for allowing Best Buds to be a part of your special day!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Garden Wedding Today!!!

I love Outdoor Events -- they are so romantic especially when they take place in a gorgeous Garden Setting complete with a Gazebo and cobblestone path. Today's event is just that -- it has all the elements a true romantic envisions. Storm clouds are threatening in today's forecast so I am keeping my fingers crossed that the sun will shine for today's bride and groom!