Saturday, July 30, 2011

a bee in my bonnet

We're in the process of making a few changes at Bow Street Flowers. Years ago, I had a great designer named Larry who described my urge to move things around : "she's got a bee in her bonnet and we'll have to make this work!" Much to Gillian's chagrin, we entered into our bi annual furniture shift. We purchased a new design table: a German Oak drafting table that had been altered to lay flat. It's square-ish and much better than the 'kitchen island we were using.
Not an easy project: we had to move the rabbits to make room for the old table, we moved my desk to the front of the shop for bride consults.

Then we moved the behemoth counter. It's ten feet long and weighs a ton. This created a new entrance to the back of the shop that's more centered.

These photos are backwards from the text. Does anyone know why Blogger is piling up the images? o, Blogger......

I bought an old white wicker chair with an ugly floral cushion from the Cambridge Antique Market. We painted it black and I found some black and white striped linen at Gather Here on Broadway (if you're in Boston, check this place out - they sell hard- to- find Liberty of London fabric ).

The last project is still in the works. We're painting the old green etagere black and we're putting it in the window. Photos on Monday!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Willowdale redux

While the main house was well cared for at Willowdale, the outbuildings had a charm of their own.

These remind me of the old stables located at the corner of Market St and Western Ave in Brighton. I'll have to take photos of them.

Little changes here at the shop. Photos tomorrow!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Yves Piaget on Performance Enhancing Drugs

She comes into the market all year long, but in the summer, she's pumped up for the Tour de France! (No names mentioned).

She looks a bit carniverous even, but the scent is as 'rose' as it ever gets!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Tip for Brides Part 2 Shy Brides

How I love to meet with new brides!  Big wedding, small wedding, City Hall wedding:  each bride who visits is inviting me through a doorway into their imagination where the most extraordinary planning unfolds onto the table.  I'm often in awe.

My work is helping them translate their vision into their Big Day. It is never boring, rarely frustrating and the process never ceases to excite me.

There is, however, one choice a bride makes that is so personal, I used to automatically defer to their wishes. Once, I was this bride.  But now, I charge right in against the Diminuative Bouquet.

Shy brides don't want to be the center of attention.  I understand.  Years ago, I felt like this too.  But I look at my pictures now and wonder why I didn't think about the time when I wasn't going to be so shy or that my daughter in law would look at my tiny bouquet and ask 'why so small'?
Bouquets should be 'to scale'.  If you're just five feet tall, you shouldn't carry a a Palm Tree sized arrangement.  If your six feet tall, a small clutch of chamomile is going to fade into the gown unless you're also wearing it as a necklace and a circlet and a bracelet.

The Solution for Shy Brides?  Carry a 'delicate' bouquet.  An eight inch diameter bouquet doesn't have to look like a bowling ball.  There are crushy looking garden roses, grasses in the summer, berries in the Fall, fragile looking but hardy lisianthus and beautiful foliage.  The bouquet will be light weight but will stand the test of time in your wedding photos.

And you Bold Brides?  Name it and we'll do it!!! (but no Palm Trees, please).

Smallish bouquet of roses and Mokara orchids. (8 ")

Delicate bouquet of hydrangea and peonies. (8")

Garden roses and autumn clemetis.  ( o.k.! 10 ")

Monday, July 25, 2011

Bringing coals to Newcastle

More hydrangea to bring to your house, Jane!!  Added some grape to break the monotony.

I've got a bumper crop this year!! Grapes AND Hydrangea.  Can't wait to visit everybody else's house!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

A wedding among the trees

The venue was in Topsfield, home of the first Agricultural Fair in America.  The fastest way there from Boston is Route 1 north.  At two a.m. Saturday morning, a Tanker truck flipped over and shut down both sides of the highway. Fuel from the truck travelled down a stream and a few miles away, exploded in a neighborhood.  Tragic!   This meant a detour. Actually, it meant a double detour as the second choice was also backed up as a result of the accident.
This is what it looked like on the third option:

We arrived a half hour later than scheduled, but had plenty of time to set up.

This is Willowdale.  We've never done flowers here before.  We loved it!

This is the kitchen wing.  The barbeque was smoking!

The tent was hung with hot pink, orange and lime green lanterns.

The adjacent ceremony site was slowly moving into the shade.

The Bride's Grandmother was from Kansas and wheat and sunflowers were an important element in the design of the flowers.

Craspedia, wheat and grasses for the chairs.

The ceremony pieces were designed with olive, sea star fern, large poppy pods, Dill, fern and wheat.

It was hot, hot, hot and the Bride had chosen hot, hot, hot colors.

One Brave Bridesmaid left the air conditioned house to walk "the walk" in preparation of the ceremony. She graciously posed for a photo.

Didn't bother to crop out our tools and buckets. o. well.  Isn't she pretty!

And then we left.  The clear part of Route 1 and the rolling hills of Topsfield.

A drive past the Fair Grounds. 

Went back today to pick up pedestals.  Thought about the poor truck driver and all the folks affected by the accident on Route 1.  Grateful to be able to enjoy this day.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Under the sea at the MFA

Marlowe, my dear friend and fellow California transplant met me at the MFA yesterday to submerge into the Chihuly Sea and take a gander at the new American Wing.  I'd been inspired by Steve at An Urban Cottage to see the show before it moved on.    

We COULD be looking up at these, but we're looking down.

NOW we're looking up at an amazing three panel ceiling layered with glass shapes.  The only representational piece is the little putti.

This might be my favorite 'vase' in the Chihuly exhibit.

The theme of the whole day turned out to be Glass.

This is in the Arts and Crafts section of the New Wing.  The fishbowl has been made three dimensional
with a layering of clear white swirling glass.. didn't catch it well here.

Covet, covet, covet!!!

And last, but not least is a figure I found when we stopped afterward at the Cambridge Antigues Market.  I was allowed to take this piece home.

But she'd look great in a case at the museum! Love the dog.

All in all, it was definitely a Steve kind of day.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The Lone Ranger Grazing

Petals is our only boy in the shop right now.  He and Violet are affectionate visitors, but not bonded.  He has the run of the front of the shop, but stomps in frustration when he can't come into the back when the other rabbits have their time out.
He loves rose leaves.  The girls are content to graze on the floor, but Petals helps himself to the fresh leaves in the buckets.  We let him. Unless he can reach the flowers and then he's cut off!!!

"I smell roses"!

"Here they are"!

"Yum! any apple left"?

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


Hot, hot today!  I'm on vacation and safe inside for now and making another Blog post attempt.

Last week's frustration was Queen Anne's Lace or the lack of it in the Flower Market.  Foraging is one of my favorite pastimes and that's what one does when the vendors tell you "it's too hot and wet for it" or
"it's a bad time of year for it".  Really?  So what's that growing along my front fence?  and on the side of the road?  Good news?  It's FREE!

And here's what we needed it for:

The Whittemore Robbins House in Arlington is right next to the Town Hall and is also adjacent to a hidden surprise.  There's a beautiful pool surrounded by perennials with a waterfall tucked into a little wood.  The ceremony was here, reception in a tent and cocktails in the main house.

Gillian's off to New York for the rest of the week.  I'm going to hang out here and finally visit the new American wing at the MFA, try to see Cave of Forgotten Dreams, and put away my winter clothes.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Tuesday's Bouquet of the Day

Doing Bridal bouquet mock-ups all this week.  Here' number 1.

Miranda garden roses, clematis, oregano flowers, yarrow, hydrangea, dusty miller.

Monday, July 4, 2011

dog blog

Many friends have asked us if we're going to be adding another dog to our family.  Since we've had three at one time, I can understand this question. And since I'm a dog nut, it would make sense.

Here are some photos of dogs of friends, dogs I imagine in my life, dogs I admire. Inanimate dogs. They'll have to do for now.

Briard at Coolidge Corner

Julie's Tulip 'boning' around at Julie's shop, Pod

Sweet Emily, a South African Ridgeback who lives with my best friend Toni in California.

Visitor next door smelling the flowers

Blossom posing

Mt. Auburn Cemetary

The Greeters at the shop!

Happy Fourth of July everyone!  Back to business as usual tomorrow.