Inspirations


Come visit us!
Sunday, December 12 from 2-8pm

Holiday Sale at the Lily Pad
1353 Cambridge Street, Inman Square

Paperwhite Narcissus

Handmade Hats by Apryl

Beautiful little containers with fragrant paperwhites: $10-$30
Apryl’s Hats, Cozy Cowls, and Stylie Fingerless Gloves:* $15-$30

Items are affordable and perfect for gift giving!

Happy holidays and love,

Petalena

**Note: Apryl’s creations are also available on Etsy

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We’re still resting our minds, hands, and feet after this weekend’s wedding with a fantastical woodland theme. The bride had a vision for flowers and design that would evoke stepping into the forest – lots of mosses, ferns, and orchids. We have soooo many photos from this wedding that I’m still going through them and struggling to pick our faves. Since I need a few more days, here is one lovely shot of the small posy bouquets we did for the six bridesmaids:

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Bridesmaids' Posy Bouquets of Fantastical Orchids

It was so completely lovely. More soon….

Photo & Design by Petalena

Apryl & I are bit obsessed right now with teeny tiny phalenopsis orchids – they are divinely small but spectacular in bouquets. And on their own, they are such a precious treat:

Mini Phalenopsis Orchid in Urn

Mini Phalenopsis Orchid in Urn

We’re doing something similar to this for one of our fall brides but we’ll be painting the urns an antique bronze for deeper palette and adding small bits of manzanita to hold flower stem up.

Lady's Slipper Orchids and Mini Phals in the Studio Window

Lady's Slipper Orchids and Mini Phals in the Studio Window

And here, another one of my ‘studio still lifes’ of dramatic lady’s slipper orchids and the miniature phalenopsis orchids in one of our studio windows. Lovely, lovely.

Petalena

Pomanders can be a fun choice for little flower girls walking down the aisle. And as any floral designer can attest, some flowers work better than others. Mini, mini roses are ideal – like these completely adorable ones we used this weekend. Teeny tiny with green and soft ivory at the edges, darkening to pink at the center. Isn’t this adorable? Makes me happy just looking at it!

Adorable Rose Pomander

Adorable Rose Pomander

When we meet with clients and suggest a pomander as one of the many options for a flower girl – we’re often asked, why is it called a pomander? So I’ve finally looked it up and it turns out pomander comes from the French word ‘pomme de ambre’ which translates literally to ‘apple of amber.’

Back in the Middle Ages when there was lots of unfortunate smells and disease, pomanders were used to ward off  such things. They were a mixture of aromatic things like cloves, incense, etc. held in a perforated container that could be carried around one’s neck or waist – as seen in the portrait of a lady below by the painter Pourbus:

An Unknown Lady, Holding a Pomander on a Gold Chain.

An Unknown Lady, Holding a Pomander on a Gold Chain.

Another kind of pomander that dates back to around the 15th century, is an orange embellished with cloves that are tucked into the orange’s peel. This kind of pomander is often part of seasonal Christmas display – but is also a natural air freshener for a home, closet, etc. I still have absolutely no idea how this phrase then became broadened to include flower balls like the one we made above, but it’s still interesting to know the word’s origin!

An orange and clove pomander

An orange and clove pomander

Petalena

We are having the most gorgeous few days in Boston and it’s cause to celebrate! Today I put on one of my favorite spring dresses and met up with two of my friends to go to, guess what? “Art in Bloom” at the Museum of Fine Arts! On these days the flower ladies (young and old!) descend upon the MFA to ponder the connections between the floral arrangements and art work they are paired with.  Some designs are fantastic, some just a bit too foo-foo for me, but the day is a fun one if you love flowers and art!

ctr_image_7705Here are few pictures I took:

Floral Design in the Egyptian Collection at the MFA, Boston

Floral Design in the Egyptian Collection at the MFA, Boston

Floral Demonstration Class

Floral Demonstration Class

Close up of gorgeous burgundy cymbidium orchids and miniature artichokes

Close up of gorgeous burgundy cymbidium orchids and miniature artichokes

Two of my friends in front of a design by Ilex

Two of my friends in front of a design by Ilex

Petalena

A Perfect Tulip

A Perfect Tulip

I love this photo Apryl snapped of an arrangement she did last weekend. When we talk about how our inspiration often comes from Dutch still life paintings – this is what I mean.  This is sort of larger-than-life lushness is what we love about flowers, their impossible beauty. Sigh…

Still Life, 1669 by Maria Oosterwijck, Cincinnati Art Museum.

Still Life, 1669 by Maria Oosterwijck, Cincinnati Art Museum.

Design by Petalena

After our post yesterday featuring a bridal bouquet with beautiful hellebores, I took a peek at the ones I have planted at my house in Boston. Sure enough, such an early spring bloomer, the hellebores are out and in bloom!

Spring hellebores in the garden

Spring hellebores in the garden

It’s just amazing how sturdy these plants are – perfectly comfortable in 30 degree weather, I just adore them!

Another view of the hellebores in the garden

Another view of the hellebores in the garden

Hellebores are also referred to as the “Christmas Rose” or “Lenten Rose” since they really are the highlight of late winter or early spring gardens (depending on where you live). Without a lot of light needs, most gardens have a nice little spot for them with a mix of sun and shade.

We love using the flower in bouquets, they have such a gentle arching habit to their form and the flowers themselves are so lovely and simple.

Apryl and I are both taking a few days off before the busy season begins, but I hope to post a few photos from my travels in Philadelphia and D.C. – the Cherry Blossom Festival is this week. Somehow despite the fact that I visit D.C. 2-3 times year, I’ve never seen the trees in bloom so I am really looking forward to it!

Petalena

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