Archive for Flowers Flowers Everywhere

Flowers, Flowers, Everywhere: A flower Girl Explores the Mediterranean, Part 2: “The Pearl of the Adriatic”

Next stop on my Mediterranean adventures: Dubrovnik, Croatia. The Dalmatian coast has a certain allure that encompasses the perfect mix of old-world history and palm-tree paradise—and let me tell you, I was entranced. Dubrovnik, Croatia, dubbed the “Pearl of the Adriatic,” is a city that truly glows in the sunlight with its white marble-lined streets and fanciful baroque architecture. Dubrovnik’s old city walls, complete with moat and drawbridge, enclose the historical maritime city. No longer full of water to keep out invaders, the moat may seem empty to some—but to this flower girl, it’s now much more full of beauty in its modernity. What could be lovelier in a dry moat than a landscaped garden? Surrounding the city walls and scattered among its white marble city, exotic flora abound in this once war-driven gem on the Adriatic Sea.

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Stay tuned for the next post about my Mediterranean travels. To read my first post about the back story on the vacation and my first stop (Venice), click here.

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Flowers, Flowers, Everywhere: A flower Girl Explores the Mediterranean, Part 1: Venice

I’m lucky enough to have a gracious boss who allowed me to take two consecutive weeks off work. My sweet grandmother took me and 8 other grandchildren on a Mediterranean cruise from Venice to Barcelona to instill in us the “wander lust” that she has—and I can tell you, she succeeded victoriously. What I realized after landing in Venice, our first port, is that no matter how many days I am out of the office, my “flower hat” as Margot calls it, is a permanent fixture. It always keeps my ears and eyes open for anything floral… in gardens, fresh arrangements, fashion, or art.  Flowers are everywhere—including the Mediterranean—and on this surreal trip, I couldn’t help but take notice!

Here are some of my favorite floral shots I took in Venice, a romantic maze of lagoons, gondolas, and surprises around every corner.

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Venezia, ti amo.

Stay tuned for floral blog posts about the other fabulous places I visited!

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Flowers, Flowers, Everywhere: flower Reader Meets Helen Dillon

Our former intern, Mary Carpenter, brightened our office and put a smile on our faces this summer, and we were thrilled to discover Mary’s family was equally delightful. Sally Carpenter, Mary’s mother and “flower” cheerleader extraordinaire, recently travelled to Ireland and made a point to seek out the gardens featured in our Spring 2010 issue. Below, Mary tells us about her mother’s experience visiting Helen Dillon’s beautiful gardens.

Being a flight attendant for over 30 years, my mom, Sally, has made a habit of seeing the typical tourist attractions in every city she lands in. So when the spring issue of flower made its debut, she planned her flying schedule accordingly so that she could visit Helen Dillon’s garden.

An avid gardener, my mom eagerly anticipated the flowers she would see in Dublin and the ideas she might bring back to the States. Only a short walk from her hotel, Mom rang the doorbell to Helen’s house and was greeted by her husband, Val, who showed her nothing short of what we might call “Southern hospitality.” They became instant friends and he showed her what he said was the best view of the garden, worthy of a picture from their drawing room. Then, Val led my mother outside to take her on a tour of the garden. She glimpsed over to see Helen Dillon in gardening apparel giving private tours. At one point, Mom went over to her, whisked out her copy of flower and told Helen how she ended up in Dublin.

As Mom’s tour ended and she started to walk home, Val insisted on giving his new friend a ride back, explaining that their dog, Daisy, was at the vet, and it was on the way to the hotel. Mom agreed and found herself sitting in the front seat conversing about the differences between driving in Dublin and America.

After a whirlwind experience of reveling in Helen’s garden, making two unexpected friends, and even meeting the family dog, Mom came back to Atlanta completely inspired and with a slight Irish accent.

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Little Pick-Me-Ups (and a Hint of Things to Come)

Written by: Julie Cole Miller, managing editor

We may be wilting somewhat in this summer heat (101 here in Birmingham, home of our international headquarters), but when Abby returned from her Mediterranean cruise this morning with floral gifts for the staff, we perked up quite a bit. During her trip, our ever-thoughtful girl Friday couldn’t resist the aroma of lavender sachets from Provence and diaphanous cotton scarves from a Florence market. We couldn’t restrain ourselves either when she presented the pretty and aromatic gifts! Look for Abby’s blog posts of her floral adventures in the days to come. Thanks for the pick-me-ups, Abby!

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Petal Pointer: Ring Around the Rosie

Written by: Katherine Perry, publishing assistant

For a recent bridesmaids’ luncheon hosted by our editor-in-chief, I attempted to add a little punch to the punch bowl with a floral ice ring. With a few simple instructions from our ever-creative design editor, Sybil Sylvester, I set out to see if this project was really as foolproof as it sounded. Good news! This project is easy and impactful… and may become my signature party trick.

All you need is a round metal mold, water, and a botanical filler such as roses, impatiens, or mint. I borrowed a mold from Sybil and used pink and white impatiens from the backyard.

Begin by adding water to the mold until it is about 1/3 full.  Give your flowers/herbs a rinse and add some to the thin layer of water.  Place this initial layer in the freezer for a couple of hours until it is completely frozen. Once the first layer has frozen, add more water until the mold is approximately 2/3 full and sprinkle in more of your filler.  Allow this layer to freeze, then add your final layer of water and filler. Freeze overnight.

To remove the ice ring, wrap a hot towel around your mold to loosen the ice and slide the ring into the punch.  And yes, this entire process is just as easy as it sounds!

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Dior Fleurs

Written by: Jordan Staggs, intern

It was flower girl heaven at IHQ Wednesday when we stumbled across Christian Dior’s new fall couture collection, the entirety of which was designed based on—wait for it—flowers.

Designer John Galliano was quoted as saying, “I’m having a floral moment,” when creating the line inspired by Dior’s childhood home and gardens, Les Rhumes.

And what a moment it was. Vibrant colors and floral silhouettes graced the runway set up in the Rodin Museum in Paris, framed by a backdrop of giant parrot tulips that would make even Georgia O’Keefe swoon. The models’ hair wrapped in colored cellophane enriched even more the whimsical idea that each was an elegant upturned bouquet, and Galliano himself appeared bearing a straw hat, as a gardener tending his blossoms.

From daywear projecting the bold colors and shapes of daffodils, tulips, and peonies, to the drop-dead gorgeous black taffeta ball gown hand-painted with yellow pansies, the beauty of the garden was reflected on the runway with every stride. Clearly, Galliano’s latest endeavor is a winner in our book.

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Click the link to view the COMPLETE COLLECTION

All photos via: Style.com
Photo credit: Monica Feudi/ GoRunway.com

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“Flowering” Your Home

via Pottery Barn

I swooned when I stumbled across Pottery Barn’s “Decorating with Flowers” section on their website. I love that they recognize the importance of flowers in interior design to the extent that they devote an entire section of their site to it. Click through it to see some great floral design tips and videos, as well as Pottery Barn’s collection of containers. And do you see their opening line? “Cut flowers are the ultimate decorating accessory…”  We couldn’t agree more.

In fact, when you open your Summer 2010 flower issue, you’ll notice we’ve added a new department called “Outside In.” This department will highlight how different notable interior designers around the country integrate flowers into their living spaces. “Outside In” will be a new fixture in our magazine, and we hope you enjoy the tips and insights from these interior designers about “flowering” your home as much as we do.

Click here to catch a sneak peek of our new department or click here to start having our magazine delivered right to your mailbox. Our summer issue will be available on newsstands in just a couple of weeks!



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