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Silvie Koang MAKING BEAUTIFUL FLOWERS WITH SCARLET & VIOLET AND COUVERTURE Tuesday, May 28, 2013 Posted by Bethan Holt, Junior Fashion Editor at Large Given that I come from a family of keen gardeners and flower growers, my proficiency l... 5


Posted by Bethan Holt, Junior Fashion Editor at Large

Given that I come from a family of keen gardeners and flower growers, my proficiency levels when it comes to anything flora and fauna related are pretty dismal. Even the hardiest of plants have been known to wither away under my supposed care. Despite this, I'm obviously not averse to receiving fabulously beautiful floral creations to adorn my flat with. Last week, I had a very fun opportunity to finally gain some flower arranging skills, courtesy of a Chelsea Flower Show collaboration between the lovely Notting Hill boutique Couverture and the fashion industry's favourite florists, Scarlet and Violet.
Vic from Scarlet and Violet takes us through her floristry basics
Having attempted to dash from North East to West London in an impossibly small amount of time, I was not at my most zen when I arrived. But it's funny what five minutes intently watching an expert florist like Scarlet and Violet's Vic Brotherson create an elaborate arrangement can do to induce a sense of blissful calm the likes of which I'm not sure I've ever felt during my working day before. Vic's style- as you may know if you're familiar with Scarlet and Violet's beautiful work- is free, bountiful and not too "done". Her flowers look like she might have scooped them up as she was skipping around a blossoming country garden. Recreating that vibe is harder than she makes it look though.

Armed with a few good tips- including 1. Make sure you vary the heights of all your flowers 2. Don't have any hanging below the height of your vase/ jar- we set to work on creating our own arrangements under Vic's knowledgable supervision. This is where I come a cropper slightly because now should really be the moment when I tell you about the vast array of options which Vic had brought along for us to choose from for our own mini floristry project. Unfortunately, I'm terrible at flower names but I do know that there were plump roses of many colours, the sweetest sweet peas, abundant peonies, sprigs of rosemary amongst the greenery options and much, much more besides.

Our base was a suitably vintage looking kiln jar, a great alternative to a traditional vase. After gathering an armful of options from Vic's display, we set about tinkering with all our various options to make our own displays. Many of the others were far more disciplined than me with my "wild flower meadow" vibe. I still can't really decide whether that was intentional or just a cover for my slightly chaotic attitude. What I do know is that my thirty minutes snipping and twiddling my flowers and greenery were blissful and fun, especially in the sedate surroundings of Couverture's upstairs alcove. Five days later and my flowers are still brightening up my coffee table. They may not be as professional and stunning as one of Vic's works of art, but looking at them feels that little bit more joyful knowing that I had a hand in making them myself. And wouldn't they make a great gift?

Thank you to Couverture for a wonderful floristry class. Do go visit them if you're around Notting Hill.
My finished flowers, slightly obscured by more flowers
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