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16 March 2012

To fake it or not too..

OK, so I´ve been a florist for 25 years and my passion is fresh flowers, I love the smell of them, the feel of them and designing them. So, over the years when I have been asked whether I can make artificial flower arrangements, I must admit I have been a bit of a snob about it and haughtily replied that I don´t. The world of artificial flowers has changed rather dramatically in my years of being a florist and I have been caught out on a couple of occasions looking at an arrangement in a restaurant or hotel and only realised on closer inspection that actually the flowers were “fake”!

My fresh flower wholesaler, here in Mallorca, now carries a very extensive range of silk flowers and when I was asked at the beginning of this year, by a yacht Chief Steward if I could make up some artificial flower arrangements for their boat, I took a big deep breath and said that I could.
After seeing the incredible, very modern, sailing yacht and taking in the smooth clean lines, black, chrome and polished wood surfaces I began to think of the style arrangements I could design to fit in with the surroundings. Working closely with the Chief Stew we can up with some modern simple designs. Here they are;

Could you possibly be fooled into thinking that they were fresh flower arrangements? The tulips have leaves identical to a natural tulip leaf, not only in shape, but incredibly in texture also. The same with the leaves of the little Rannunculus and their buds.

The mini Anthuriums actually had rather a rubbery texture and would certainly not bruise if touched, like the fresh ones do. This too would make them easy to keep clean with a damp cloth – something I would definitely not recommend with a real Anthuriums! They are certainly a good option for a yacht, travelling around the med in the summer and not knowing for sure where they could obtain fresh flowers at each port that may happen upon and they will not wilt in the hot summer sun.

So, all in all, I have grown as a floral designer and will now extend my portfolio into artificial flowers... They are certainly easier to handle (less likely to break) and the wired stems can be bent into place easily. Finally, of course, they will last forever and I can think of one old lady I once happened upon, who told me that she hated having fresh flowers in the house as she didn´t like seeing things die, who would be happier with this type of arrangement.

As a footnote though, as I write the above I know that, personally, I may like the design of the artificial arrangement, but in time I would get bored of the static form, that never evolved or changed as the blooms opened and, yes, faded – which just gives me another opportunity to start again with a whole new design of a fresh flower arrangement, which is different every single time.

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