There are a number of new floral stylists producing wild, messy arrangements to make the reception halls and wedding tents of Sydney feel alive, rather than stiff and manicured. Here are five of the most inspired wedding and event florists you can hire.
Sophia Kaplan Plants & Flowers
Kaplan was exposed to a range of flowers and plants when she worked in Paris, Berlin and Rome. Back in Australia she enjoys picking wildflowers, and using blooms she’s found in her bunches to create something one-off. Kaplan specialises in romantic and minimalist arrangements, but likes to include something a little unexpected, such as berries or herbs for a food-crazed client, or a hanging pitcher plant that adds depth and texture to the bouquet.
Kamisha Refalo often buys local natives, and grows her own flowers at her home in Newcastle. She loves letting the natural shape of the flowers dictate her arrangements, and this shows in her floral crowns and custom-made Christmas wreaths – the leaves and blooms clamber around each other as if they grew that way. Clients often request “messy” bouquets and Refalo loves creating arrangements that have real life in them.
Jardine Botanic Floral Styling
Jardine Hansen lives in the Blue Mountains, where she grows cold-climate plants such as columbines that are too delicate to transport. She studies horticulture, and applies that knowledge of how plants grow to her design, so her arrangements are often inspired by the gardens they’re picked from. Hansen might start with a beautiful branch from her garden and use the unstructured wood to build a textural arrangement with pastel petals and lush greens, or mix vines and wildflowers to make a room feel like a beautifully out-of-control greenhouse.
Once a fashion-accessory designer, Jessica Hartigan now applies her skills to her work as a florist. She specialises in working with softer flowers, such as roses and peonies, as well as plants that drape, such as jasmine and other vines. Her arrangements often include interesting materials such as cotton branches, or tiny little blooms that can only be seen if you look closely. Hartigan says she doesn’t think like a traditionally trained florist, and the storyboards she creates in consultation with her clients suggest that’s not a bad thing.
If you need a stylist who can pull off big, sweeping arrangements, Myra Perez is your dream florist. Her styling works especially well in intimate wedding settings, where she creates unstructured arrangements that bring nature into a space. Perez says she likes her bouquets to look, “juicy and chunky”, and when you see the blocks of bright colour and oversized blooms in her work, you can see what she’s talking about. Perez especially loves using orchids to make things look a little more luxe, and over summer you can expect to see her using more chocolate cosmos, a small, burgundy flower that smells just like chocolate.