There are plenty of lovely flowers available even in the coldest time of the year in Maine, thanks to the New England Flower Exchange. The centerpiece in the photo above was created exclusively with blooms from the flower market. Spectacular Italian ranunculus, garden roses, lisianthus, stock, astrantia, parrot tulips, veronica, queen Anne's lace, sea holly, tuberose and more. Sustainable domestic growers are part of this mix, along with a few more exotic locales.
Our studio favors seasonal and local blooms, so this list will concentrate on what is more typical this time of year. These days, even peonies are becoming available for a price during times of the year when they are out of "season." If you are planning a winter wedding in Maine, here are some great choices for you!
Amaryllis, Calla Lily, Lily-Asiatic, Lily-Oriental, Narcissus, Orchid, Rose, Stock, Hellebore, Tuberose, Astrantia, Lisianthus, Tulip, Queen Anne's Lace, Veronica, Ranunculus, Anemone, Sea Holly, Bulbs, Quince, Pussy Willow, Forsythia, Plum, Witch Hazel, Ferns, Winterberry, Holly, Magnolia, Camellia, Clematis, Cyclamen, Iris, Acacia Fernleaf and many more interesting greens.
Gathering at Henry & Marty Restaurant and The Brunswick Inn, a group of both rugged and fun loving Maine wedding professionals joined talents this week during a timeless wedding inspiration photo shoot here in Brunswick. At times, the models and photographers braced the sub zero temperatures to capture photos outdoors. It's clear that Leigh & Nadra, of Nadra Photography are passionate about doing whatever it takes to get that great photo. Models, Izzi Mickunas and Felipe Gunter matched their enthusiasm!
The collaboration had been in the works for several months and was a project that New Venture's Maine had awarded a mini- grant for marketing to Ione Floral Design during late 2017. The timeless wedding theme was choreographed between the two venues. Very much like a real wedding, the group started early in the morning at The Brunswick Inn to begin typical wedding day preparation. Kim Doll styled the bride's hair in an elegant vintage inspired updo with fresh flowers. An extraordinary bridal gown was on loan from Andreas's Bridal in Portland, along with a dashing tuxedo for the groom.
Meanwhile, Ione Floral Design was at Henry & Marty Restaurant creating tablescapes. With linens, dishes and table props from the personal collection of Kate Hodgkins and Hatch on Maine, the setting was serene in whites and grays to compliment the lush florals. Garden roses, Italian ranunculus, french tulips, tuberose, stock, queen Anne's lace, astrantia, rosemary and acacia fernleaf comprised some of the winter blooms selected for the centerpieces and bridal bouquet. With the color palette of blush, white, green and copper accented with mercury glass compotes. Hand dyed silk ribbons were specially ordered from Tono & Company to add luxury to the bridal bouquet.
The finishing touch was the arrival of a scrumptious (yes, we ate it later!) three tiered wedding cake provided by Wildflours Gluten Free Bakery. Decorated with blush cabbage roses and sprigs of rosemary, the cake fit the timeless theme perfectly. When the wedding party arrived at Henry & Marty's, the sun was still in the sky but starting to set for the day. Lighting the many candles and candelabras, the room was a glow with a warmth that illuminated artist John Bisbees' background mural. Prosecco toasts made a fitting ending to this glorious day of creative collaboration!
Ione Floral Design would like to thank the following for sharing both talents and resources to create a truly inspiring photo shoot:
Nadra Photography, Henry & Marty Restaurant & Catering, The Brunswick Inn, Andrea's Bridal, Wildflours Gluten Free Bakery, Kim Doll, Izzi Mickunas, Felipe Gunter, Kate Hodgkins, Hatch on Maine. Thank you!!!
Your wedding flowers say so much about you. Captured in photographs, they define a moment in time that endures for the ages. Choosing flowers that speak your heart is very personal. With hundreds of choices available it can feel overwhelming! So where do you begin?
Start with colors- Before you do anything else, decide which colors will be part of your wedding design. Consider pairing flowers with same colors to create an elegant tone on tone effect or make a statement with a vibrant mix of opposite colors. With your color palette now in hand, the flower adventure begins.
Select your focus flower- This often will be a flower that is a personal favorite or nostalgic. The choices are many but a few standouts include peonies, garden roses, dahlias, tulips, anemones, ranunculus, sweetpeas, sunflowers and hydrangeas. This starting point will help guide future decisions. Remain flexible at this point. Some flowers may not be available at certain times of the year. Your florist will be your best resource for alternative ideas.
Embrace Seasonal and Local- For the most variety and freshest blooms, choosing seasonal flowers is a great way to go. Taking this idea one step further and embracing flowers grown locally offers unparalleled fragrance, texture and possibilities. When you travel to a destination such as Maine for it's natural beauty, the flowers growing in that region offer the ideal compliment. The slow flower movement has nurtured flower farms across the country making it possible to find gorgeous domestic blooms most of the year.
Define your style- Elegant, Romantic, Classic, Boho, Woodsy, Eclectic, Vintage, Modern, Country, Fine Art, Whimsical and many more. Gather photos that capture this feeling. Start putting together your own personal mood board. Pinterest is amazing for capturing images and putting them together to share. Please note that sometimes inspiration photos are altered with filters for artistic expression. The flower colors in some photos are not really in nature but they look incredible! Just keep this in mind when you begin talking with your floral designer.
Find your floral designer/florist- Begin your search to find a flower soul mate with a person that resonates with you and understands your vision. There are many options. Be sure to explore the many floral designers now creating from home studios rather than traditional brick and mortar shops. This new breed of floral designers often specialize in wedding and event floral design and can provide a custom approach.
Relax and enjoy the process- Flowers are unpredictable by nature. Sometimes there is a crop failure or a late bloom. Adapting a relaxed approach that embraces the unexpected will allow your floral designer to gather the most incredible blooms for you. This flexibility is essential and will reward you with less stress and more time to enjoy the process of planning your wedding. Enjoy!
New Ventures Maine is an incredible organization. I'd like to say how grateful I am to this organization whose sole mission is "helping Maine people succeed in the changing economy and achieve economic security."
I first started working with micro business specialist, Jenn Dobransky for business planning during the first stages of starting my business. Her early input was invaluable. When she reached out this fall and encouraged me to compete in the New Ventures Marketing Mini-Grant Pitch, I was excited to present our marketing project. When I learned we had won the Midcoast award, I was overjoyed!
There were many other people that shared their time and energy with New Ventures Maine for this generous grant. A partial list includes the panel of judges: Karry Kane- Norway Savings, Jamie Logan- Department of Economic & Community, State of Maine, David Hill- Maine Small Business Development Center & Coastal Enterprise, Inc. and Alyra Donisvitch-New Ventures Maine. And of course, Jenn Dobransky-New Ventures Maine.
This month, Ione Floral Design will be fulfilling a marketing dream, collaborating with other wedding vendors on an inspiration timeless wedding photo shoot. We will be sharing more details about the project as we get closer to the event. We just wanted to say thank you to New Ventures Maine for believing in our little flower studio!
Photo Credit: Christophe Zydek|Model: Izzi Mickunas
Garden Roses at The New England Flower Exchange in Chelsea, Massachusetts
With the first snow in Maine this past week-end, I was feeling the need to see flowers. Lots of flowers! Taking a road trip to Chelsea, Massachusetts, to visit The New England Flower Exchange felt like the remedy.
Waking up in the dark at 4 a.m. to arrive outside of Boston before traffic seemed like a good plan. I was surprised to be in a little traffic jam right outside of the city at 6:15! Next time, I'll leave at 3 to arrive just when the doors open at 5.
Pulling into the parking lot, I could see that I was already late! Dolly after dolly rolled down the ramp and filled the vans of local florists and floral designers. Hoping they had left a few flowers for me, I entered the building and could see they had barely made a dent. With 10 vendors selling gorgeous flowers, there were plenty for everyone.
Strolling through the heady blooms was lifting my spirit. Aromatherapy to the max! As I snapped a few pictures to bring home for inspiration for a January photo shoot, I was met by equally lovely vendors at the market. So many friendly people. One gentleman told me that he has worked the market for 37 years! I would imagine it's a wonderful job.
Returning to Maine, I am filled with ideas and feel so fortunate to live close enough to travel to this wonderful resource during the winter months when our local flower farms are enjoying a winter's rest!
Sometimes there is magic in the air. On a foggy day in July, a group of artists gathered with Ione Floral Design for an inspiration fine art wedding shoot at a seaside location in Maine. The atmosphere alone was special that day. After delivering the bouquets to our three models, Gabriella Rai'anne, Anora Morton and Izzi Mickunas, I enjoyed watching from the sidelines.
Model and stylist for this shoot, Izzi Mickunas started off with the idea of expressing the mood of the Renaissance with a Goddess kind of feeling. From this inspiration the bouquets would play off the painting, "Birth of Venus." Our three models seemed to embody the spirit of that painting. When the photographers, Hank Caiazzo, Christophe Zydek and Bridget Conlogue started snapping photos, I could see that everyone was really enjoying the collaboration. The resulting photos captured the moment.
This week, Real Maine Wedding Magazine shared with us that one of the photo images by Christophe Zydek, (pictured above with Gabriella) would be published in the January 2018 issue. This came as a wonderful surprise to us all. We are excited other brides will have a chance to enjoy the photo in the magazine and perhaps inspire ideas for their own wedding!
I am grateful to have met some wonderfully creative people that day and made some new friends. Thank you Izzi for bringing us all together!
Photo Credits: (Top) Christophe Zydek, (Middle) Hank Caiazzo (Bottom) Christophe Zydek