I don’t fully understand how I got here. I look back over the last three years and its mostly a blur of flower messes, emotional triumphs, flower friends, and an iPhoto library that has lived to tell the tale. I got lucky. Damn lucky actually. This is not to say, that I believe talent has nothing to do with it. Of course it does, but I feel lucky anyway. This year in particular I’ve had some moments where I’ve had to stand back, take a moment and really be grateful that I’m here. Wherever here is physically, but also just being here as a florist doing what I love and making it happen as a career. Working with flowers is an emotional process for me. There is so much careful detail I put into every arrangement, every wedding, every client. I put so much energy and consideration into the ingredients and the way the colors play off one another in their subtleties. When I’m putting those ingredients together, in that moment, I shut my brain off from everything. Everything other than problem solving this thing that’s in front of me, and when it’s finished I’m elated. This instant ability to create beauty with little living things has given me so much joy. There is a lot of satisfaction in a job that requires so much work, so much manual labor that when you’re finished you get this visual of something beautiful so your eyes are satisfied with the beauty. Your body works hard lifting, standing, running, climbing, installing, that in the end your body is also tired, but also satisfied with a hard day’s work. My mind is satisfied because so much of this process is created in my mind for months until those final hours when it comes together, my mind and my reality can finally agree with one another.
Above all that, I’ve learned that working alongside other florists is my favorite part about the job. Getting to stand next to another florist and create and help each other has really been a blessing for me. It’s pushed me, and given me some life long friendships that I’ll cherish for a very long time.
Just this last couple weeks I’ve been in Seattle. Once to help my friends Steve and Jamie of Sinclair and Moore with their grandest production yet. It was absolutely breathtaking and magical in every way a wedding could be. It’s so beautiful to be on the other side and see another creative’s dream come into reality. To see all their work and dreaming come to fruition. To get to share that moment with another florist is a really beautiful thing. Just to know you’ve been a small part in helping their vision come to life is so gratifying. I love these people, and so many of the people I’ve met through them.
In September I had the opportunity to drive up to Jackson Hole for the very first Alere Retreat. The concept of this entire retreat was absolutely what a retreat should be (more on this later). I invited my friend Holly Carslile of Rose Golden Flowers to come collaborate with me on the flowers for the week. She’s such a talented artist, I invited her for that, but she also can make me laugh like no other so I thought the entertainment would be fun too. We arranged open air and were inspired so greatly by the landscape and each other’s work that both of us came away from that week feeling like better florists. We are still talking about how groundbreaking that week was for the both of us.
Early in September we went to Ireland! My husband Curtis got to come along and we invited my sister in law Carlee as well. Curtis drove a large manual van, on the opposite side of the road, for many random errands, flower pickups, garbage dumps, and while we had some stressful moments, he was amazing, helpful and so encouraging the entire week. He’s such a bigger part of this business than he ever gets credit for. I love you Curt. Thanks for always being so willing to help me amongst all of the things that you already work so hard to do for us.
I also got to work with Rebekah from Forage and Fleur, she was such a fun travel and flower buddy. Ann Marie O’Leary drove four hours from Dingle, Ireland and joined the flower party. We literally arranged in the pouring rain, drenched through layers and layers of clothing with smiles on our faces. Both of these women are talented and were so gracious with their time. We got to work together to create a beautiful wedding, and it’s an experience I’m so glad I pushed myself to do. I couldn’t have imagined that week any other way.
To Brenna, my friend and go to flower friend. She’s been there with me through the growing pains. She’s helped me work through things, and she’s seen me at my worst and at my best and loved me despite it all. We’ve become best friends through this flower craziness and I’m so excited to see her business boom. She’s an artist. I mean this girl has art pumping through her veins. She’s so wonderfully creative.
To all the other local friends who are always so eager and willing to help. THANK YOU. I love wedding install days the most because of you.
Just a few weeks ago, Allison of La Fete floral knew I was kind of having a rough weekend. Amongst her own rough month, she knew I needed some foliage for my arrangements that didn’t come in my order. She drove to her mom’s house, clipped some, and it showed up on my porch. This is true flower love. Pictured above is from a recent wedding with the help of Allison of La Fete, Eleanor Mika, Kaylee Young of Flourish, and Melissa Haupt of Mel Haupt Floral.
I don’t have a photo of Madalyn Covey, but I couldn’t finish this post without mentioning her. She’s young and easily the hardest worker I’ve ever seen. She LOVES flowers. It’s so clear to me every single time she gets ready to start building a centerpiece. She takes such care into each decision. She’s wonderful, and I’m so glad I’ve had the opportunity to work with her, I hope we have many more!
While the beauty, and the creating are wonderful, I truly believe it’s the people that surround me that are what make this flower world the best world there is. So many others I haven’t mentioned in this post, but I love just the same. This post could be miles long. Thank you to the people that I’ve met this year, and in the last three years that have helped Tinge get here. I’ve made life long friendships through flowers and for that I am eternally grateful.
This was such a lovely one on one bouquet session with Posies Floral out of Arizona. She traveled up to Utah for the class, and it was such a pleasure! We take joy in both flowers and occasionally cursing at the appropriate moment, oops.
I think teaching has become this thing that feels so natural that it’s always a joyful experience. I find myself vocalizing things I always done subconciously and realizing how my brain works which has been interesting for me.
I love taking the time to help students see things a little differently and maybe through a different perspective. For me, the biggest things I focus on in these classes are dimension and color. They are the two things I focus on most when I’m arranging. It’s been amazing for students like Jamie to see the difference in their work(which was already incredible), and then to see them progress after the class and find their own voice. She is a force to be reckoned with and has all the drive in the world to blow minds with her creativity. I can’t wait to see where her business takes her!
Jami, you are a riot. Come back, let’s make flowers again!
Thanks to Brenna Williams for being a gorgeous model and amazing assistant!
Photography by Ciara Richardson
A few months ago I started a hashtag called #theantiflowercrown. The idea behind the hashtag is to incorporate sweet florals into the hair in ways that aren’t necessarily the traditional flower crown. Here are a few of my favorites from the past couple of years! They feel much more modern, but just as sweet.
Photos in order of post: Ciara Richardson, Ciara Richardson, Megan Robinson, D’Arcy Benincosa, Erich Mcvey, Brit Chudleigh
Photos by Ciara Richardson
It’s hard to believe this shoot was a little over two years ago. It was one of the very first shoots I was able to design with my friend and talent Ciara Richardson. We kept this shoot simple. I love looking back at the colors of this. While my style has evolved a bit, the colors are still very true to how I arrange. I like how the lavender picked up the purple in the acacia, and the the quicksand and hellebore balances out the purple to the white.
This shoot was part of a series of shoots we did monthly called flower of the month, highlighting a seasonal bloom in a unique concept. I miss those days!
Photography by Ciara Richardson
Photography by Ben Christensen
Dress by BHLDN
This was one of my favorite weddings from last year. Shay was the model from one of my very first shoots. She is absolutely a vision. Her and Phil are two of the most beautiful people I’ve ever seen. When she approached me about doing her wedding, she told me she wanted it to be simple and intimate, and a small gathering for family and friends in the mountains. It was exactly the type of wedding I dreamed of being a part of.
It didn’t come without it’s challenges, no running water, electricity, no air conditioning for the flowers. It was a little bit difficult, but worth it for this wonderful couple.
You can find this wedding on the pages of Salt Lake/Park City Bride and Groom Magazine.
Photos by Ciara Richardson
Cake: Tess Comrie of Le Loup
I never thought I would be fortuned with an opportunity like this. The opportunity to teach others who are willing to learn from the knowledge I’ve gained over the last few years of doing flowers. I couldn’t have been more lucky with the girls who signed up. Each and every florist added a dynamic to the group that was uplifting and positive.
We decided to do film & flora back in January. It was an idea Mike had been thinking about for some time. We had both expressed a desire to teach, and felt it would be a really smart idea to bring the florists and photographers together in one workshop. That way, we could cover our costs, but still keep the groups small and intimate, so that a sense of one-on-one time would be still be had. It was nerve-wracking putting it out there. I know workshops are definitely #trending right now so I was a little concerned that people would lose sight of how ours is different.
I know there are amazing workshops out there, many of which I would love to attend myself! The difference with film&flora is that it’s a workshop really centered on learning. Mike and I were both completely open books for our students. We really wanted to share the same knowledge we have gained with our students. We kept our approach “laid back and un-presumptuous” as one student said, and because of that the students felt comfortable in the environment. With only 8 photographers and 6 florists, the groups were small enough that Mike and I were able to give each student one-on-one attention during lessons and instruction so their specific needs could be met.
We also of course wanted it to be beautiful, so having all of the florists create beautiful things for the photographers to shoot was a no brainer. We paired up florists and photographers so that they could build relationships with each other and hopefully get the opportunity to work together again.
One of the best aspects of doing the workshop was working with Rose Story Farm. I’ve been ordering roses from them for years now. They are beautiful and delicate, so to even fathom the idea of teaching among all of these gorgeous roses was beyond anything I could have imagined. The photographers and florists were so appreciative that we held it there. It was such an inspiring and beautiful place.
Another amazing thing was Emily Riggs joining us! She created us the most beautiful custom gowns that fir the workshop theme beautifully. Mike, Emily and I have worked together numerous times and it felt so perfect that she was there too. Her dresses are timeless and breathtaking both in photographs and in person. They have such an ethereal and beautiful movement to them, and they pair so beautifully with florals. We can’t even begin to thank Emily enough for sharing her enormous talent with us!
We are so grateful to all of the vendors who jumped on board and believed in our first workshop, and we hope to join forces with you again! Until next time!
Florals: Tinge Floral and student work
Rentals: Found Rentals
Tabletop: Casa de Perrin
Linens: La Tavola
Venue: Rose Story Farm
Other Flowers: Mayesh Wholesale
Models: Hello Gorgeous Models
Cake: Whisk and Whittle
Paper Goods and Menus: Monvoir Calligraphy
Gowns: Emily Riggs Bridal