Early mornings are an unavoidable part of floristry and not one that I always enjoy. The last week has been a blur of alarm clocks, dark mornings, gales, driving and contrasting jobs. Some friends suffered a loss but chose the most beautiful and seasonally appropriate flowers to say goodbye. A bride started her married life carrying autumnal pinks and snowberries.
An early Sunday morning saw Newcastle bathed in the strangest neon orange light and as I headed out to the studio I snapped it in my rear view mirror. In my sleep deprived mind it was kind of a Trans moment. Although rather than a futuristic (for the eighties) car it was my new van.
My new van is like welcoming the future into my work life. In the old van I had, believe it or not, a cassette player. This meant that I was a radio 4 listener in the morning but was forced into my cassette collection once the inevitably cringe-inducing afternoon play started. The cassette collection is limited, meaning that for the last year or so I have had access to The Smiths, The Cure, The Orb and The Future Sound of London. That’s it. So having an ipod port in the new van is something of a novelty. Working alone definitely forces you into actively consuming music and radio. Music, like scent, takes me immediately back to a time and place. In the same way that the smell of lime and coriander will forever remind me of Mexico, the sound of Miles Davis reminds me of Sunday mornings in mum and dad’s house when I was little, the sound of Joni Mitchell is driving to the Lake District in mum’s car, the sound of (specifically) Computer Love is being at a festival in the autumn with Robyn and the man in front of us wearing a pointy tinfoil hat, Graceland is Paddy. In short, this blog is a tribute of sorts, to having music back in the van.
Claire chose pink for her wedding flowers. But as the weather has demonstrated, it’s not summer anymore. Autumn pinks are some of the best though: the hydrangea is no longer baby pink, it becomes more muted, pink snowberries appear for a short time, berried eucalyptus is a dusty matte shade, it was definitely pink but also nodded to the time of year really nicely.
Funerals are difficult. Whenever people come to me to discuss them I always find myself fighting back tears, even if I don’t really know them. In a way, it’s almost more personal than doing wedding flowers because you meet with people at such an emotional and confusing time. The white and green of years gone by is still popular but I love it when people choose colour and warmth. This one was meant to be like autumn - blackberries, hypericum, dahlias, copper blooms and smokebush.