Enjoying the occasion rather than looking for photo opportunities meant that this is the only photo, and a rather belated one at that, of the wedding flowers in action on Saturday – too late to remedy the situation by the time I realised! When I have access to other photos perhaps I can post an update?
All went well, apart from showers immediately after the service which restricted photos and a few minor issues which we shall keep to ourselves but which didn’t detract from the Bride’s Big Day. It was a lovely day all round and the Happy Couple are clearly besotted with each other. Thank you so much to my blogging friends for all the best wishes expressed for both Younger Daughter and myself on the occasion, and especially to Anna of Green Tapestry who sent an e-card the day before when I was deep in the throes of flower preparation. Your kind thoughts were both encouraging and supportive – and very much appreciated. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience, learned such a lot from it, and would do it again if asked. So, this is how it went:
Firstly, on Thursday I brought down the folding picnic table from the loft and laid out labelled containers for all the different elements, along with approximate cutting lists. To wrap the stems of the bride and bridesmaids’ posies I plaited together red, white and blue embroidery thread – far more effective and practical than any ribbon would be.
Florist’s foam was recycled and cut to fit the Poppet’s basket (sourced through eBay), surrounded by a plastic liner and holes punched into the foam with a wooden kebab skewer to take the muscari that were to fill the basket. By counting the holes I knew before cutting began that as many as 60 heads of muscari were needed!
Cutting began in earnest on Friday morning, starting in true IOVOM foraging style, with periwinkle growing amongst car park planting at the centre where I have my regular swims. I was just leaving the car park with my wet swimming stuff and periwinkle haul when the bright red leaves of Photinia caught my eye and I stopped to snip some of those too. I had asked about the periwinkle earlier in the week but the Photinia was technically an ill-gotten gain and I will mention it out of courtesy when I am next there, not they will be in the least bit bothered!
With unavoidable distractions it was lunchtime before everything was picked and production could begin…
… and with further distractions it was into the evening before everything was prepared:
The buttonholes were similar to those practised earlier, but included red anemone buds for the Groom and his three Best Men and blue buds for Groom’s father and Bride’s father and stepfather, all with a sprig of photinia for added redness. Sadly the red buds were slightly too immature to open fully and indeed it was the anemones in all the buttonholes and posies that were the first to flag in a warm room without water.
The red, white and blue required for the two grown up bridesmaids’ posies came from red anemones, wild garlic and blubells with the same foliage as used previously – uncinia, luzula, pittisporum, honeysuckle and peony all such a great asset – and the posies were wrapped with their 6os ‘mod’ coloured ties on the morning of the wedding itself.
I was pleased to be able to include all three colours of anemone in Younger Daughter’s posy, alongside Narcissus ‘Bridal Crown’ (with its wonderful fragrance) and a single sprig of white sweet pea, all grown specifically for the wedding, and which were joined by foraged periwinkle with its pretty foliage, bluebells and three ‘Uncle Tom’ tulips which were just coming into flower for their second season. Foliage was as in the bridesmaids’ posies but with the addition of glossy red Photinia sprigs.
Over the next few days the clear-up will begin with pots of anemones planted out and others displaced from the cutting beds, along with the narcissi and an excessive quantity of muscari, to leave room for the summer and autumn residents. In the medium term, however, there will be a bias towards red, white and blue in my vases firstly with the anemones and then, once they get their act together, the sweet peas and tulips specifically grown for the wedding. What colours will be in your vases today, I wonder? I certainly look forward to seeing a different colour palette in many of them, but please share them with us, whatever the colour, by leaving the usual links.
* you can read the Wedding Sonnet here, or by clicking on the ‘In the Kitchen’ tab above