There’s a romantic crispness to the air right now. Night comes earlier and it’s the perfect time to cocoon under warm blankets in candlelit rooms. It’s my favorite season of the year. As the last days of summer disappear, creative souls start bursting at the seams with ideas for their Halloween and Fall displays. I’m not known to be a thematic sort of girl and I don’t “do” holiday specific windows at Apartment 46. However, I’m all for unpredictable and imaginative displays, and I am nearly always designing some take on a cabinet of curiosities. In fact, our whole shop is modeled on what I believe a curious collector’s apartment would feel like.
I’m in love with the idea of “Harvest Decorating” as opposed to Halloween or Thanksgiving specific decor. I’ve never been particularly thematic, and I never really “get” headstones and amputated limbs as decoration.
I can hardly believe it’s “that” time of year again but yes, yes it is indeed! Wedding season snuck up on me in the form of lovely Anel “Nellie” Resendez and her upcoming uber colorful and equally large wedding. While the actual event is still a month away, I’ve been busily testing (and re-testing) color arrangements until I come up with one that I feel suitably embodies her exuberant, creative and fun spirit. Regardless of the outcome, bright pink peonies will be the star flower in that bouquet!
Last week I was out in my garden looking for interesting things to incorporate into my shop arrangements and it occurred to me that I hadn’t really explored my various succulents or other garden greenery beyond the obvious (rosettes wired on a floral stem or long pieces of Jasmine branches) so I grabbed my shears and got to harvesting the weird and the wonderful!
One of the things I most enjoy about floral design is coming up with unexpected arrangements. I have always had a little love affair with the baby artichoke as used in floral design but only recently decided that it is perfectly married to the hydrangea. Combining the two in a striking blue and white Chinese vase and popping in some blue berries and meadow grass made the whole thing feel kind of otherworldly to me. Something I would have on my own mantel or dressing table. I don’t tend to veer toward arrangements that are too soft or feminine. I like them to be weird. That’s really my number one criteria. If it’s pretty and weird, I’m sure to love it.
As usual we’ve been up to loads of creative things – finishing gardens, furniture restoration, art projects, preparing for Miranda’s 16th birthday, attending the Lady Gaga concert, curating for the shop – I have to say, it looks and smells beautiful in our design studio!
I’m not a huge fan of teacups. Giant collections of mismatched china can be beautiful, but since I am not prone to shabby-chic moments, you won’t find any rose-covered dandies in my home. I was inspired to create teacup gardens when I saw something similar at a nursery I love.
You may already know that I do floral arrangements and garden design, but you may not know that a lot of the flowers at the shop come from my organic garden. I still make a weekly trek to the Flower Mart, but only to buy staples and comb the buckets for strange and uncommon blooms.
Last week I got an email from a woman in San Luis Obispo asking if I could do some flowers for her boyfriend, who lives nearby, “just because”. When I asked how she had heard of me she mentioned that she had been in my shop when she was in the area and remembered me. How cool is that? I was happy to be a part of surprising him and hoped to meet her request of designing a tall, elegant, but not feminine arrangement.
You know me, I’m always open about what’s going on at the shop. Everywhere I look another business is closing its doors – from nationwide franchises to locally owned small shops. It’s hard not to feel despair. I feel as if I’m standing on the dock, waiting for the rescue ferry to come and it just hasn’t gotten to me yet. I’m still here and as of this moment I’m still in business.