I am am a strong believer that sometimes you just have to put things into the universe and good things will come. It was a very very cold, drab and grey winter day. I looked outside and decided that I needed to escape. As a long shot, I posted a story on Instagram saying “If you bring me somewhere warm, I will teach flowers.” And…my dream came true. Jimena of Floweriize messaged me that very night and, a week later the flights were booked.
Mexico City is a magical place. Magical (needed to say it twice.) Upon arriving, Jimena took me around the city centre where we roamed ancient cathedrals and visited Azetec ruins. We bought beautiful candles which were covered in hand sculpted wax flowers and drank mezcal cocktails.
The next day we travelled to Teotihuacan which translates to ‘the place where men become gods.’ We hiked to the top of the pyramid of the sun, admiring the beautiful landscape and studied ancient murals .
Finally it was time to start sourcing product for our workshop and styled shoot. In Mexico, a lot of the foliage is very heavy which makes it difficult to create our signature, airy garden inspired arrangements. This being said, it is crucial to stop at the nursaries to source trailing vines such as jasmine and bougainvillea. Close to the market lies the canals of Xochimilco. At the canals you can rent beautiful hand painted boats by the hour and glide through the canals. If you really want to have a party, you can even attach multiple boats together and invite all of your friends. Throughout the canals, smaller boats pass by and sell you barbecue or cervezas. You can also hop on and off to visit greenhouses.
And at last, it was time for our styled shoot. Jimena spent weeks sourcing items that were Mexican and authentic… yet classy and upscaled. Pottery, hand blown glass, sculpted candles, tropical fruits and woven tapestries were a must. The dress was provided by Atelier Nupcial and the model was a dear friend of Jimena. The photographers were Kary and Tae of The Times We Have. They were some of the most amazing people I have met in a long time. We spent a few days together (with their cutest baby Luca) where we wined, barbecued and strolled through parks (visiting Castillo de Chapultepec *must see*.) They became close friends and we would talk a lot about our creative process and what inspires us.
The Mexican flower market is an experience all on it’s own. Half food market, half flower market it is once place where you need a local to guide you through. The funniest thing about it is that the flowers that excited me most were the ones that the Mexicans considered “weeds”.
Saturday rolled around and it was go time. Our workshop was taught at an incredible art gallery/pizza joint/skatepark called Pizza Del Perro Negro . Upstairs in the gallery space, thirteen attendees from Mexico and the U.S joined as we went through our design process. The workshop began with me going through how I construct centrepieces and then attendees took a stab at their own. We were so lucky to have hundreds of garden roses from Floreandmore. Attendees then styled their centrepieces in a Dutch Masters style using curated props and imported velvets. We finally took a break for a delicious lunch from the pizza bar below then, it was time for Jimena and I to co-teach a bridal bouquet 101. Although our styles compliment each other and are similar, our design processes are completely different. Consequently, it allowed students to take what inspired them from both of our processes and create their own process. Finally, a beautiful model then took their bouquets to the unfinished and raw part of the venue to model them amongst a cherry blossom installation.
After the workshop was completed (and a big meal was had) it was time to hit up a Raggaton bar. We danced the night away with a bottle of mezcal in celebration of such a successful week.
I absolutely cannot wait to go back, whether it is for a workshop or destination wedding. Another huge shoutout and some serious love to my girl Jimena of Floweriize for not only being the most amazing host, lady boss and creative but for being an overall awesome human.