The Autumn and Winter are wonderful seasons for flowers. We can have such lovely weather in the Autumn with wonderful golden light which reflects so well off the richer colours. Rosie recommends introducing the deeper colours such as purples, oranges, deep pinks, reds and mixing them with softer peaches, creams and lime greens. It is such a lovely time for a florist to be able to use more unusual materials, too, with Harvest time and Halloween. Rosie likes to use rose hips, snowberries, wheat and dried lavender as well including fruits. Hydrangeas are still very popular and they are at their best in the Autumn as well as delphiniums, grasses, amaranthus and the first of the anemones. She likes to use natural materials as containers too. Big baskets filled with autumnal leaves and blowsy dahlias in their wonderful bright rich colours look so good for ceremonies whether in a church or a barn venue. Slate and wood slabs in the middle of dining tables covered in fruit, candles and jam jars of mixed roses and wheat look divine with a hessian runner across the table. This style particularly suits the long tables which are coming back into fashion.
Bridal bouquets should also reflect the season, being arranged in a more casual, just gathered, style and include berries along with the now wonderful selection of David Austin roses available, anemones and hydrangea heads. Thick headdresses of ivy, berries, wheat, spray roses and hydrangea petals suit the harvest theme too – whether for a bride without a veil or for her bridesmaids.
As the days shorten and the frosts start to appear, many flowers and foliages disappear from the markets and our thoughts turn to Christmas. This time of year is getting more and more popular as there is something magical about the cold frosty days, twinkly lights, and the special holiday. Rosie loves to use bare twigs of birch and willow, the dramatic amaryllis massed in tall glass vases with bunches of trailing ivy flowing out and tight bunches of deep red roses. Also the first of the spring flowers appear now such as paperwhites and hyacinth with their heady scents. They are perfect for tied bunches on chairs or in little glass jars up steps to a grand entrance interspersed with candles in little glass lanterns.
All white flowers such as anemones, narcissi, ranunculus and tulips, with silvery grey foliage and berries, look divine for a Winter wedding. And a ring of flowers around a glass storm lantern makes a stunning centrepiece with a simple ring of ivy tied onto the backs of chairs or maybe as pew ends. There must be loads of candles, whether in lanterns or simple tea lights, to create that magical atmosphere and even when just mixed with evergreens such as ivy, eucalyptus and spruces in a church, especially during Advent, it can be all that is needed to give a perfect wintry look.