Thursday, April 29, 2010 and GRN Events Presents: Something Green Eco Event for the Bride

We recently had the opportunity to showcase some more eco-sustainable floral designs at Mon Amie Bridal Salon in Costa Mesa during an intimate Something Green Eco-Bridal Faire. Admittedly, it is more challenging to create eco-friendly designs because we have to push beyond the norm and innovate. But we are so excited to show you some of the design components we incorporated.
Before we begin, I just want to state that all the flowers used are Veri-flora certified meaning they were sustainably grown with the exception of the hydrangeas and ti leaves. (Here's the post that discusses Veri-flora.) Where and how the flowers are grown is a key component to Green design.

Let's start with this large arrangement.
Because it is so tall, this can be used as a ceremony altar piece or aisle decor. You can even opt to have these as centerpieces for the guest tables at the reception. Better yet, use them in the ceremony and have then transferred to the reception - a great way to recycle an arrangement. There are two main components to this design that make it Green (aside from how they were grown).
The first component is inside the glassware. You're probably thinking that we threw in some type of crystal or broken glass (which is what everyone at the bridal faire guessed). But its just crushed cellophane that we recycled from various packaging.
Second, although you can't see it, the designing mechanic is not floral foam but watermelon. Yep, we used the watermelon. And you know what? It worked very well!

Moving on to our sample centerpiece:
We just can't get enough of the deconstructed ti-leaves so we decided to showcase this idea from Grandiflora again. Except this time, we used a square vase and arranged the accordian'd leaves into four squares with crushed cellophane and broken glass underneath. And as you can see, no floral foam was necessary.
We also re-used the center stem of the ti leaf for added design flair.

Our Head Table spread consisted of food safe containers so that they can be reused much more purposefully.
But if you're gonna go with food-safe, go with elegant pieces like champagne flutes and cognac glasses. Another element to keep in mind are organic candles made from products like beeswax or soy.

Here are some beautiful eco-chic bouquets from our vintage collection:
At a quick glance, the stems look like they are wrapped in ribbon. Rather, we used leaves to mimic ribbon by creating loops and wrapping the stems.

The boutonniere display is one of my favorite touches in eco-design detail.
Instead of using those plastic corsage boxes, we used a reusable wooden container and broken glass. The stems were also wrapped in leaves just like the bouquets were.

If you have any other ideas in ways we can incorporate more green practices into our design, we would love to hear about them. Just leave a comment below to further the discussion!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Wish Upon A Wedding Southern California Launch Party at Seven Degrees in Laguna Beach

I just can't seem to get enough of this organization. If you missed my previous posts on Wish Upon A Wedding, here's a short recap. Wish Upon a Wedding is a non-profit dedicated to granting wedding wishes to couples facing terminal illness. It has been amazing watching the rapid growth of WUW. The founding chapter (in the Bay Area) just opened in January of this year and there has been an overwhelming response across the globe from vendors in the event industry wanting to be a part of such an amazing cause. To date, there are 19 chapters that have either already formed or are currently forming, not to mention the continual stream of other locations waiting to open their doors to couples in need.

The WUW Northern California chapter just granted their first wish to this very deserving couple - Christian and Rehanna. All you need to do is take a few minutes to check out this video by Kristen Bliss to see their love story and you'll catch a glimpse of just what Wish Upon A Wedding is all about.

Wondering who's the founder of this fab organization? Her name is Liz Guthrie. This organization would not have been possible without her vision and passion for couples like Christian and Rehanna. And it was such a treat for me to finally meet her in person.

So, it was with great enthusiasm and pleasure that I was able attend the WUW Southern California Launch Party at Seven Degrees in Laguna Beach.
And I promise that this was an A-list event of fantastic Southern California event industry professionals. Approximately 20 vendors sponsored this event and they did a beautiful job pulling all the details together. Just to name a few, check out these photos.

Furniture - Lounge Appeal:

Cake and Cake Pops - Raise the Cake:

Candy Station - Candee by Sandee:

A little fried catering - The Fry Girl:

Entertainment - Blue Skies Events:

Linens - Designer Specialty Linens
Florals - Heavenly Blooms Floral Design

Thanks for an amazing evening Wish Upon A Wedding Southern California!

P.S. - If you want to see professional photos from the launch party, go to this blog post from One Love Photography.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Happy Earth Day!

In commemoration of this special day, we have added a very eco-friendly component to our marketing material.
Wondering what's so special?
That red heart is plantable seeded paper.
Toss it under some dirt, add water and it will grow flowers!

Happy Earth Day!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Floral Foam is Not Biodegradable

Of the many challenges floral design firms face in making steps towards environmental sustainability, floral foam's inability to biodegrade is a major hurdle that needs to be overcome. For those of you who are unfamiliar with floral foam, its that green, spongy stuff that we stick flowers into. And its a ton of fun to squish with your fingers. Here's a picture that I borrowed off of the Oasis Floral Foam website just in case you need a visual.

This product is a key component is creating great design. The floral foam allows us to make arrangements in ways that is not possible in a conventional vase or container while keeping the flowers well hydrated. So, it was very disheartening for me when I learned that it is made of plastic and is not biodegradable. My thoughts went right back to waste-land...or should I say waste-island...sitting in the middle of our ocean.

So, what are my options? I've searched for biodegradable foam but it has not been developed yet. If you're reading this and you have the means to invent it, do it. You'll be rich and I'll buy from you. Actually, I found one company all the out in the UK called Val Spicer but it seems they aren't serving the US yet and the product selection is very limited. Give it more time, I'm sure I'll eventually be able to have access to this revolutionary product.

In the meantime, we've come up with a solution that we are testing right now. Want to know what it is? Okay, fine. I'll tell you.


Yep, watermelon. It is the closest natural ingredient that is similar to the texture of floral foam - porous enough to insert floral stems and wet enough to keep the thirsty flowers happy.

I'll keep you posted on the results of this watermelon-foam.
If it passes all the tests, we'll be making the switch from floral foam to fruit.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Earth Day - April 22, 2010

Join the world in celebration of Earth Day on April 22, 2010.
Check out this website for more info on how you can help.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Trina Turk

Trina Turk recently made a personal appearance at her store in Fashion Island (Newport Beach, CA) and we LOVED this arrangement we made for the event so much, we decided to showcase it here.

Gotta hand it to mother nature with these gorgeous orange anthuriums!





Happy Friday!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

VeriFlora Certified Flowers

Did you know that not all flowers are grown equally?
Its true.
Flowers are farmed just like any other 'grow-able' commodity but farming practices can vary from location to location. And depending on the growers, their farming practices can prove to be more gentle or harsh on the environment. So, how do we know if the flowers that end up in our homes are sustainably grown? It's not like the flower can talk. But there's a certification that does the talking for our blooming beauties - VeriFlora. This program focuses on environmental accountability with three key areas of sustainability: 1) Environmental, 2) Social and Economic, and 3) Product Integrity.

Pretty spiffy, eh? Just be sure to ask if your flowers are VeriFlora certified.

But wait...are all flower varieties available with VeriFlora certification?
Unfortunately, no. Admittedly, this is one point of design contention that we have come across and its a big issue. However, this does not mean that the art of design needs to be sacrificed just because we can't get a particular variety. Keep you're eye out for the next post featuring VeriFlora flowers and what we did when we couldn't get the variety we wanted.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Wish Upon A Wedding Southern California Launch Party

Wish Upon a Wedding's Southern California chapter will be hosting a launch party on April 22. Here are the details and be sure to check out their website and Facebook fanpage!

Wish Upon a Wedding Southern California Launch Party
Thursday April 22, 2010
6:30 PM to 10:00 PM
@ Seven Degrees 891 Laguna Canyon Rd Laguna Beach, CA 92651
Cocktail Style Event

Open to Event Industry Professionals
Email by April 12 to RSVP

Monday, April 5, 2010

Starbucks' Recycled Tumblers

Did you know that Starbucks not only sells tumblers made from post-consumer recycled materials, they also reward customers for bringing in their own cup?
You get 10 cents off of your purchase each time you bring in your own mug!
Thank you Starbucks!