Florists of the future
Words by Kelsey Lee Jones
Photos by Rachel Warne
Celebrating the beauty, mystery and rejuvenating qualities of nature.
Blooming out of the heart of Berlin is Mary Lennox, a studio specialising in bespoke flower styling and botanical set design, founded by Ruby Barber. Its name is inspired by the protagonist of Frances Hodgson Burnett’s novel The Secret Garden, a story which celebrates nature’s most mysterious depths—by chance, Ruby’s first studio also found itself on the corner of Mary and Lennox Streets in Sydney, Australia. Mary Lennox experiments are a mix of romantic and wild, other times minimal and modern, moving from large-scale installations to intimate set designs for clients such as Gucci, Lufthansa, Villeroy & Boch and Berlin Atonal Festival.
Wild and wonderful ways with flowers.
In Santa Monica, Los Angeles you’ll find the floral design studio ISA ISA. Founded by thirty-year-old Sophie Moreno-Bunge, and named after her two Argentine grandmothers – both Isabel. Moreno-Bunge brings a style together using only spare amounts of flowers, loose hang-gatherings of popping wild blooms and willowy picks. She likes to make use of local flora, such as LA’s trumpet vine, unripened lemons on the branch, smoke bush, and magnolia—she’s also fond of glossy anthuriums, curly alliums, soft purple petals, poppies and pansies too. In 2016 she became an artist in residence at the Villa Lena Art Foundation in Tuscany, where she created foraged arrangements for their inspired hotel, many fashion clients have since found themselves drawn to her beautifully scrappy combinations.
The difference between a weed and a flower is judgement.
Amy Merrick is a floral designer, writer and stylist based in Brooklyn NYC. She creates tablescapes of flowers, foliage, fruits and branches and likes to forage materials from her surroundings. Although Merrick most often appeals to a country-inspired, wildflower style, it was one of her most recent projects that stood out as something brand new and perhaps unseen before in the world of floral arranging. She was asked to work with cannabis leaves in combination with flowers for a project commissioned for Broccoli Magazine. Proof that you can create wonderful bouquets with all sorts of unlikely leaves.
Fjura means flower.
Based out of London and founded by Australian Simone Gooch. Fjura floral offerings are all about sculptural romanticism with clean, crisp, minimal, and pop colours too—as well as the beauty in the awkward, compositions of drooping poppies or unexpected anthurium and orchid arrangements. Gooch also works on large-scale arrangements for clients such as Gucci, Louis Vuitton Christian Louboutin, Erdem and Nicholas Kirkwood. If you like her style, you can take a ready-made posy for yourself – now available to buy through the gardening retail website and journal The Garden Edit.
Floral spectacles for the fashion world.
Mark Colle – owner of Baltimore Bloemen – is an original flower boy, working as a florist since the age of 15. Though he works out of a humbly sized shop in Antwerp, he’s often been put next to the likes of Thierry Boutemy and Daniel Ost, as a Belgian master florist and creator of enchanting flower installations. His name is big on the fashion scene too. Known as the friend and longtime collaborator of Raf Simons. Their relationship began at Raf’s first Dior collection five years ago, where Colle transformed rooms of a Parisian hotel into a labyrinth of blue delphiniums, yellow laburnums, orchids, peonies, and dahlia blossoms. Recent clients include Philip Lim, Proenza Schouler, Adidas, amongst many more.
A bookworm and an earthworm became the perfect match.
“Flowers are the best, books are also the best”, says Terri Chandler and Katie Smyth, two Londoners (from Ireland) and founders of Worm. They believe that combining a book and bunch and sending them to someone because they are special, makes them feel just that. Thoughtful combinations come together based on what is shared about the recipients’ personality and what they love, and bunches change daily as Worm pick out what they think looks most beautiful at the market that morning. Hand-gathered assemblies are usually put together using seasonal wildflowers and foliage that reminds them of home, such as fennel flowers, eucalyptus or nigella.