Spring Portfolio Workshop

A proper blog post is on the way but I couldn't wait to share some photos from my recent portfolio workshop! A group of such amazing and warm florists gathered in my Kent studio to learn the wedding business and get some truly amazing images for all of their portfolios. 

Come and join me for the next one in August! You will create a bouquet, table centrepiece and large installation piece. Importantly ALL of your items will be professionally photographed with a model and then sent to you for you to use as you please. I've been on too many workshops myself where the photographer seemed to be mainly there for the workshop host - I'm determined for my courses to be different.

Huge thanks to Imogen Xiana for the photos and Ellie Gill for makeup. Imogen uses film and knows how to capture flowers like no one else! Ellie is local to me in Tunbridge Wells and she uses only natural products to work her magic! xx

Links to the amazing florists who attended here:
Kate - Greens Farm Flowers
Lucy - Lucy The Flower Hunter
Nicola - Flowers by Eve
Cristina - La Fiorista
Anth - Corner of Grace
Carol - Painterly and Blooms
Amy - Amy Weller
Kay - Kay Nott

Flowers by Amy

Flowers by Amy

Flowers by Anth

Flowers by Anth

Kent wedding flowers luxury course Jennifer Pinder
Flower bomb installation by Anth, Cristina and Carol

Flower bomb installation by Anth, Cristina and Carol

Arch installation by Lucy and Amy

Arch installation by Lucy and Amy

Kent wedding flowers luxury course Jennifer Pinder
Flowers by Lucy

Flowers by Lucy

Chandelier by Anth, Cristina and Carol

Chandelier by Anth, Cristina and Carol

Kent wedding flowers luxury course Jennifer Pinder
Kent wedding flowers luxury course Jennifer Pinder
Meadow Installation by Nicola, Kay and Kate

Meadow Installation by Nicola, Kay and Kate

Flowers by Kate

Flowers by Kate

Kent wedding flowers luxury course Jennifer Pinder
Flowers by Nicola

Flowers by Nicola

Flowers by Kay

Flowers by Kay

TableArrangements-JennPinderWorkshopbyImogenXiana-4.jpg
Kent wedding flowers luxury course Jennifer Pinder
Kent wedding flowers luxury course Jennifer Pinder
Flowers by me

Flowers by me

Kent wedding flowers luxury course Jennifer Pinder
Thank you for coming everyone! xxxx

Thank you for coming everyone! xxxx

Kent wedding flowers luxury course Jennifer Pinder
Kent wedding flowers luxury course Jennifer Pinder

Jay Archer & Friends visit us in Kent

When I heard that Jay Archer was looking for a flowery day out for her and her two main sidekicks (Mand and Mel) I was thrilled to invite her to the Jennifer Pinder studio. After the initial excited high of the dates being confirmed I was hit with a rather big problem... 'What on earth can you do to entertain 3 of the most experienced florists you have ever met?!'

I decided to think outside the box - this wasn't going to be a workshop in the usual sense!

To make the workshop really stand out for the girls I decided to give them TOTAL freedom to create something completely unique. I laid out all of my weird and wonderful props and told them that rather than thinking about colour or seasons the arrangement's focus should be a message. Something important to each of them.

Have you ever tried to channel an emotion while you work? Try it, I often think of my couples when I make bridal bouquets and it is amazing the subtle influence it really can have on my work.

Anyway... to the arrangements. When not influenced by a teacher their own unique styles and background training really came through. Mel teaches floristry and her classic look and attention to detail shines through. Mands just loves nature and wanted to create something playful and interactive - she kept asking for weird and wonderful things so I had no idea what on earth she was planning in her corner of the workshop! Jay is known for her natural and abundant style and for creating showstopper installations. The message behind Jay's arrangement was simple - 'changes for 2017'. Mand madea totally original arrangement for her godchildren - it span around, it contained felted animals hiding under the flowers and fruit to eat! Mel created an arrangement based on childhood memories with her mum in the garden.

In the afternoon I demo'd a bouquet and then the girls made their own. With stunning results of course!

We had lunch at a local pub (the Rock). It was a really fun day of catching up and playing with flowers without any pressure. Matilda also enjoyed being the centre of attention :) I to would like to thank Jay, Mands and Mel for coming to deepest Kent to spend the day with me. Jay has been an inspiring figure in my floristry journey and so it was an honour to host her!

p.s. You can read more about a course I did with Jay here.

Images by Jo Ellen (the good ones! A few are from my phone) x

p.s. Sorry for these pictures of you all grinning but I loved them too much! x

A small proportion of the props...

Thank you so much for coming Jay, Mands & Mel!

Sunny Workshop Day (and British Flowers Ruling the Roost Once More!)

What a beautiful week we are having! Perfect timing for my workshop on Monday - we even managed lunch in the sun! Which was a relief as it may have distracted from the rather burnt savoury tart I attempted for the first time... Hmmmm next time I should probably start cooking before 9pm the night before.

We were utterly spoiled for choice with British blooms. In fact everything below is British except the roses, tweedia and butterfly ranunculus. This week I got lots of lovely bits from my local grower, Turissa, and also a couple of boxes from both Pratley's and Flowers by Clowance. Look at the size of those tulips and ranunculus! And of course everyone had the pick of what they wanted from my garden.

This week we had an interesting mix of attendees which meant there were all sorts of different angles of the flower world to chat about:
 Lovely Helen, who is a very talented floristry teacher and has been in flowers since she was 16 (lucky thing!)
Sarah, who is an amazing grower and florist from West London (thank you for the seed tips!)
Jane, who has a background in interior design and is just starting out in flowery land
And, last but not least, Vicki who has been flower arranging for yonks as a hobby and blew me away with her wild urn in the afternoon.

Thank you for coming everyone, do keep in touch!

 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling

Spring 2017: British Flowers are BACK

I am feeling super excited as I have just done my first wedding of the year using all British flowers (piccies to follow) and on Monday we will be doing our first workshop of the year where we can also go all British. Yippee. It is official - Spring is here and gorgeous homegrown stuff is back on the menu.

Instagram keen beans may remember me talking about a neighbour who had recently set up as a grower and so I thought I would post some pics of her amazing progress since January. Yes, all this has been set up since JANUARY. I failed to take a picture of her polytunnel but will do on my next trip. I thought it would be helpful to share these pics because I am getting more and more into growing and Turissa's set up is so spot on. It is really encouraging to see someone making something from scratch and so I will keep you updated on her progress. Follow her on instagram here.

These beds all have labels of what is due to arrive soon - I can't wait!

These beds all have labels of what is due to arrive soon - I can't wait!

 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
 Flowers from Kent florist Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling
Ahh Dahlia corner... To be continued

Ahh Dahlia corner... To be continued

 Processed with VSCO with f2 preset
I will post an 'after' pic when the sweet pea wall is in bloom. Be still my beating heart!

I will post an 'after' pic when the sweet pea wall is in bloom. Be still my beating heart!

In other British flower news... The Wood anenomes are out in all their glory at the moment. I went on a little photography expedition to a wood packed with them. So, so beautiful.

Wood anenome by kent wedding flowers florist Jennifer Pinder
Wood anenomes in Kent by wedding florist Jennifer Pinder
wood anenomes by Kent florist Jennifer Pinder
Wild primroses in Kent by florist Jennifer Pinder

Flowers and Friends: The pros and cons of being a florist

A post not about wedding flowers in Kent for once!

A couple of weeks ago it was my best friend's 30th and another friend wandered off into a beautiful Brighton Wood for an engagement shoot with a guy who I have known since I was 11. I mean I remember him discovering John Mayer and singing along to Jack Johnson with me (who I discovered, naturally).

'Playing' with Leftovers

One of the absolute BEST things about being a florist is having leftovers to play with. It is difficult to give yourself the time to make the most of them and have a proper 'play' sometimes. I try to do it as much as I can but if there are leftovers after installing a massive wedding then sometimes sleep takes priority I'm afraid...

'Playing' with flowers is an, umm, interesting phrase. It can be a tad grating to hear my job summed up as 'playing with flowers' because actually it is very hard work. Back breaking in some cases (more on that from me soon). A day of flowering is basically like being at the gym all day (sadly I don't look like I spend all day in the gym!). And then there are constant emails flooding in which I can only really sit down to one day a week. This isn't a moan, I'm so happy to be on my feet most of the time and not stuck behind a desk! But 'playing with flowers' is a bit misleading as there is a lot of lugging around buckets of water.

The Pros

So why do I do it? Because actually when I am left with the flowers and my camera it does feel like 'playing'. I love it. And the more I do the more I fall in love with it. I could make more money doing countless other things but I'm afraid I have found my 'thing' now and the flowers are stuck with me come what may. On the Saturday morning I made these bouquets it was sunny, I snipped some bits and bobs from my garden and went to work, music playing with occasional breaks to throw Matilda's ball. Free to create whatever I wanted with my lovely friends in mind.

And so for Kate and her engagement shoot: a quirky bouquet filled with darkness and light. She has plenty of time for something more traditional and pastel at her beautiful upcoming wedding! A touch of eucalyptus, as I know that will be one of her key features, and romantic roses. The brightest white hellebores and the darkest plum scabious and ranunculus. Lots of texture and special ingredients.

For Sophie, something cheerful and Springy. Pale yellow daffs, sunny ranunculus and contrasting ruffled pink ranunculus. A quick handover before a Brixton night out on the town with way too much to drink! Keeping it simple for Sophs because I love her and just wanted to give her something to make her smile! She has been a huge cheerleader for my business since day one.

How lucky I am to be able to have these ingredients on hand to create beautiful things like this for neighbours and friends when I have the chance.

The Cons

But it would be disingenuous not to mention the hardest thing about floristry, well for me anyway, which also relates to friends... I work most weekends. I'm at an age (30 gahhhhh) where people are getting married and I have had to turn down invites to weddings far more times than I would have liked. I probably do see my friends as much as I would with another job, but it is much harder work - often I will drop into something in the evening after a 4am start. A long day!

Overall it is worth it and I am happier than I have ever been. My old friends are so wonderful and encouraging (you know who you are) and I have met new friends on this flowery journey too (you also know who you are). Hopefully this is a little window into the realities of balancing work ('play') with real play. Possible, but you need to be determined and have supportive and understanding friends!

For Kate and Sophie (and Camel). Love to you all xxx

Kent wedding flowers
kent wedding flowers by florist Jennifer Pinder quirky bouquet
Wedding flowers Kent by florist Jennifer Pinder
Kent wedding flowers Jennifer Pinder
Original wedding bouquet by knet wedding flowers florist Jennifer Pinder
Image by Simon Fazackarley www.fazackarley.com

Image by Simon Fazackarley www.fazackarley.com

Image by Simon Fazackarley www.fazackarley.com

Image by Simon Fazackarley www.fazackarley.com

Kent wedding flowers unusual spring bride
Kent Wedding Flowers a Spring bouquet by Florist Jennifer Pinder yellow purple
Kent Wedding flowers purple and yellow spring bouquet by Jennifer Pinder

Oh and this mini urn went to my newly preggo friend. We are all getting a bit too grown up for my liking... But wow she is going to make the most amazing mum xx

Wedding Flowers Kent by Kent Florist Jennifer Pinder
Wedding Flowers Kent by Florist Jennifer Pinder