Passionate Valentine blooms

A dramatic winter bride's bouquet

Interesting Valentine’s Day fact: The tradition of giving flowers to loved ones on Valentine’s Day started in the 17th century when King Charles II of Sweden popularised “the language of flowers”, which then caught on throughout Europe.

The most traditional type of flower for Valentine’s Day became the rose because of it’s association with the Greek goddess of love, Aphrodite. Red roses signify passion.

Red roses are beautiful but I like them most when I combine them with other flowers. I think this creation is so much more romantic than a bouquet of long-stem red roses it almost hurts (in a good way).

In shades of crimson, dusky pink and inky black, this is a ‘Wuthering Heights’ bouquet if ever there was one. Packed with wildness and texture and full of romance and drama.

The final flourish is the black eyelash lace ribbon wrapped around the stems.

Now all you need is Heathcliffe to send it to you.


Fave bouquets 2018

2018 was quite the year for favourite bouquets and there many that were difficult to part with!  Although the colour palettes varied, many of my Brides gravitated towards unstructured loose, loveliness with natural green for that freshly-picked-from-the-garden look I absolutely love.

Take a peek at which floral creations I most fell in love with and tell me your very favourite in the comments!

Garden-style rose bouquet
Lush peony bouquet
Coral and blush bouquet
Dreamy bouquet

Fave bouquets 2019

So I really don’t write enough here because here’s my list of top 2019 bouquets, which is only a couple of posts away from my top 2018 bouquets. Honestly, things get SO hectic in the summer months that January and February are really the only time I get the chance.

Anyway! Here’s my favourites from 2019.

We had a lot of lilac weddings this year and I think this was my favourite lilac bouquet because of the stunning Cafe au Last dahlias. Autumn brides, you may not have peonies, but when you can have blooms like these, there’s nothing to complain about!

I love a bright and bold colour palette and this bouquet makes my heart sing. I think it was my most liked post on Pinterest over the summer too, which just goes to show that a lot of people agree with me.

In November I had the great pleasure of creating Dutch Master style flowers for a wedding in Eynsham Hall. I fell head over heals with the colour palette of burgundy, red, peach and that indescribable tawny colour provided by Cafe Latte roses.

Finally, from a gorgeous wedding at Aynhoe Park in May, this modern country garden style bouquet with peonies, roses, scabious, cosmos, astrantia, veronica and honeysuckle. As Christian Dior once famously said “After women, flowers are the most divine creations”.

Instaworthy 2 – Hanging flowers

If you’ve been mooching around Pinterest or Instagram looking for ideas for your wedding flowers, you won’t have missed all the gorgeous hanging flowers.  It’s such a fabulous way to create an instant wow factor and massive visual impact that it’s not surprising so many couples are asking for them now.  The Foxgloves and Roses team has created a fair few of them, each of them completely bespoke, so that they suit both the couple’s style and the venue itself.  Here are some of them.  Which do you like the most?

Created for an boho-style summer party at The Perch in Binsey, Oxford, this upside-down hanging flower creation really set the scene for the occasion.

The picture below goes to show just how different a wedding venue can look depending on how it is decorated. It’s of another hanging flower installation at The Perch.  This time the theme was ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ and the installation in based on hoops of foliage and gorgeous white paper star lanterns.

Hanging hoops of foliage at The Perch Oxford

For a winter wedding reception in a private barn we created a stunning three metre long hanging flower installation with white and blush flowers and trailing winter greenery.  Along the underside we hung jam jars with candles so that in the evening there would be little twinkles of light.

For an Anglo-Indian wedding at Rousham House, with a colourful, tropical theme, we created a fabulous 20 metre long hanging rope of flowers.  The rope was covered in tropical leaves and bright flowers hung from colourful ribbon.  It truly was a show-stopper!

Hanging globes are another take on the hanging flowers concept.  This one was created for a wedding with a wild hedgerow theme.  It made it’s first appearance outside the Church and then made an encore suspended above the tables in the marquee.

Sometimes it’s possible to create hanging flowers by make floral additions the chandeliers and this is something we often do for weddings at Ardington House.

Hanging flowers are such a modern, different and creative way to incorporate flowers into wedding styling.  You’re only limited by your imagination and your florists’ head for heights!


Choosing your wedding’s colours? Here’s 7 top tips.

The colour scheme you chose for your wedding will set the scene for the entire day. Not to mention that it will be immortalised forever in all your wedding photographs. So no pressure there then.  Here are my seven expert tips for getting it right.

Number one: The flowers.  If you have your heart set on a favourite flower like blue nigella, coral peonies or yellow sunflowers, use them as a starting point for putting together your wedding colour palette.  It doesn’t have to be the dominant colour in your palette, maybe use it as an accent colour, the key thing is not to choose something like the bridesmaids’ dresses and then realise it doesn’t work with the colour of your favourite bloom.

Number two: The venue. This is a big one. Don’t decide your wedding colour scheme without considering your venue.  If there’s a distinctive colour in the decor, play to it, don’t try to compete with it.  If it’s a dark venue with panelled wood walls or soft lighting, dark coloured flowers will recede – although that can totally work if you are trying to create an opulent, dramatic look. Take a look at the curtains, carpets and walls – is there anything there that will clash with or swamp your colour palette?  Is there anything there you can use for inspiration?

If your wedding reception is going to be in a marquee, avoid all-white flower arrangements (unless there’s plenty of green too) because they’ll merge into the background.  If you’re getting married when your venue’s Christmas decorations are going to be up, it’s a good idea to ask what they’re planning and what colours they will be.

Number three: The mood. Think about the mood you’re trying to create for your wedding and then use the colour palette to paint the scene for you.  Is it lavish and intimate (dark jewel colours)?  Is it joyful and informal (bright colours)?  Is it romantic and chic (soft blush shades)?

Number four: The season. You could decide to be in tune with the time of the year that you’re getting wed.  If it’s in the autumn, plum and berry tones are fabulous.  If it’s spring, you may be inspired by the colours of tulips.  If your wedding day is in the winter, perhaps silvery frosts or deep, warm, rich colours will be your starting point.

Number five: The clothes. If your Groom planning on wearing the family tartan and it’s green and yellow, bear that in mind before you set your heart on a pastel colour scheme.  And remember to consider your Bridesmaids’ colouring before you pick out a dress colour that doesn’t suit them. Everyone needs to look lovely in the photographs (and feel happy in what they are wearing).

Number six: Look to what you love. Colour fashions are great for inspiration, but like all fashions they come and go.  As always, it’s best to chose something that you love and that you feel is your own. Take a look at your favourite clothes, and remind yourself, what colours do I love to wear? What colours have I painted my walls? What colours make me feel good?

Number seven: Get some help. Call on the experience of your floral designer or wedding planner to help you decide on your perfect colour palette.  We’re full of inspiration that can help create a look that’s perfect for you and suggest colour combinations and contrasts that you may not have thought of.


Instaworthy 1 – Floral wreaths

If you’re busy day dreaming about the perfect florals for your big day you’re probably spending a lot of time swooning at images on Pinterest and Instagram. So, I thought I’d help out with a series of posts on instaworthy flower inspirations.

Floral wreaths are first on my list. They’re the perfect way dress up the entrance door or gate that leads to your wedding. They make a gorgeous way to welcome guests and also hint at the floral styling everyone can expect to see throughout the rest of the day.

Heart-shaped wreaths are a romantic twist on circular ones, although I also like the symbolism of a circle, which represents eternity (which is why we exchange wedding rings). Depending on your wedding’s style and venue, the wreath can be as simple as twisted twigs and foliage or more extravagant florist foam shapes covered with beautiful blooms.  Which would you choose?


She wore flowers in her hair

rose and tom-1052

I totally adore flower crowns, they are so romantic and goddess-like. Really shouldn’t every woman wear flowers in her hair at least once and if not on her wedding day then when?

Take a little look around Pinterest and you’ll find them everywhere and in all different styles. Full and blowsy, delicate and ethereal, all the way around, tiara-like, colourful, muted. I love them all and always enjoy designing and creating them for my brides, each one is a work of art. They are so personal to each bride and how she wants to look and feel on her wedding day.

Flower crowns are also popular accessories at summer festivals where they are synonymous with festival fashion in a way that harks back to the flower love of sixties’ hippies..

I run flower crown sessions for hen parties, so if you’re planning yours, give me a shout. You’ll have fun and, when you’re finished, you’ll be a glorious gaggle of goddesses!




Clouds of peonies


Is there anything lovelier than a cloud of peonies? Lush, fluffy, romantic and totally captivating, it’s no wonder peonies are the flower most asked for by my brides. However, these gorgeous blooms have a short season – late April through to the end of June – so if they are a must for you, plan your wedding date accordingly.

The dark secret no-one ever tells you about peonies is just how stubborn they can be. Often they arrive from the wholesaler in bright, hard green little buds. Days of coaxing then ensue to make sure those buds open up into beautiful, full, heart-singing blooms. Want to know the best way to make that happen? Bash those little buds hard on a table. Seems like a cruel way to treat such a beauty doesn’t it? But it helps open the hard green outer sepals like a charm. Many a florist has lost sleep over these darlings but they are so worth it!




A word about buttonholes

You know the thing about buttonholes is that they needn’t be boring. Just because your average groom isn’t really interested in what’s pinned to his lapel – within reason of course – doesn’t mean they should be overlooked. Hey, they’re going to feature in many of your wedding photos after all. In this florist’s opinion, buttonholes can be fabulous if you just sprinkle a little creativity in their direction.

One of my favourite ways to treat a buttonhole is the mix-matchy style of buttonhole creation. Of course, for many more formal weddings these wouldn’t really hit the spot, but for a boho or rustic style weddings, the more informal style of buttonhole suits the occasion perfectly. Stick to a colour palette, yes, by all means, as it can help to pull the look together, but why not have a little fun and see what happens.

These buttonholes were created for a boho wedding at the achingly cool The Asylum in Peckham. The bride and her bridesmaids carried lush, loose unstructured green foliage only bouquets, trimmed with cobalt blue sequin ribbon, and the guests wore these rainbow coloured buttonholes tied with bright twine.  I particularly loved the orange alstromeria – it was just the most perfect shade. Hurrah for non-boring buttonholes.





rose and tom-0650

Give a wedding florist a blank slate and you get genuine creativity and swoonable flowery beauty. That doesn’t always mean the biggest budget. With big budget weddings I get to have fun (and sleepless nights) creating large arrangements like hanging flower installations, but it can be the small budget weddings where the Bride is open to ideas about flower and colour combinations that can result in real beauty.

When it suits the couple and their wedding I always enjoy being bold with colour and textures. Bold florals offer a wonderful contrast between the Bride’s dress and white table linen – and white marquee interiors. Their bright aliveness also brings sense of joy to the wedding.

For Rose’s wedding flowers the inspiration came from the beautiful coral, orange, and pink clouds in a mesmerising mid-summer sunset at the end of a hot day. Because Rose and Tom’s big day was 21 June – summer solstice – that seemed particularly pertinent to their wedding.   The fact that Rose cleverly chose ivory lace dresses for her bridesmaids too made the look of the three of them holding their bouquets look incredible.

The bouquets were created with stunning coral peonies, pinky coral roses, pink peonies, white spray roses, coral spray roses, chamomile, phlox, astrantia pink sweetpeas, white snapdragons, blue nepeta, alchemilla mollis and thlasspi. And the result was totally swoonable.

As Elizabeth Gilbert says in her book “Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear” “A creative life is an amplified life. It’s a bigger life, a happier life, an expanded life, and a hell of a lot more interesting life. Living in this manner—continually and stubbornly bringing forth the jewels that are hidden within you—is a fine art, in and of itself.”