I traveled to Atlanta, Georgia last week for two days of classes at Faith Flowers School & Studio. Laura Iarocci and Victoria Denson are the owners of the Design Studio and Flower School. Below is a picture of the Faith Flowers. Laura just recently moved into this space and it’s absolutely charming!
I’m not even sure where to start in describing my experience in Atlanta except to say that it was exceptional. These classes were exactly what I have been looking for and were worth every single penny I spent! They really were affordable considering all the information, ideas, and hands-on experience we received from our instructor.
About Gudrun Cottenier.
Gudrun Cottenier was our instructor for both days and she flew in from Belgium just for these classes. Gudrun owns the largest and oldest private flower school in Belgium, De Groene Verbeelding Bloemschikschool, and she is an expert when it comes to European Floral Design. She has authored two books, works for a Belgian Food & Flower Magazine, is the first and only female on the Flower Board for the country of Belgium, is a mother, and just simply a lovely person!
We started the day off with Gudrun demonstrating idea after idea of how to implement her philosophy of using “what we have” and “what we find in nature”. She showed us idea after idea of designs we can create using items like coke cans, bark, leaves, recycled bicycle innertubes, branches, logs, etc. I was astounded with what she created from these everyday things. She was kind & patient and took time to give each of us advice and show where we could improve our pieces. She knew just where to put an extra berry or stem of greenery to complete an arrangement and fill in our holes. I loved watching her work!
Here is just a sampling of the ideas she showed us.
1. Gudrun’s idea of recycling coke cans.
2. Gudrun showed us what you could do with two logs & a few flowers…
3. Gudrun recycles items (like toilet paper rolls) and creates napkin rings out of them.
After lunch, we began the hands-on portion of the class. We created garlands out of
leaves. Just regular old leaves. Bags and bags of them. The process took us
almost three hours but they created a very earthy effect that tied in perfectly
with the season.
We designed three low, compact arrangements using Garden roses, spray roses, rosehip, coppertina leaves, pepper berries, holly berries, and chrysanthemums. The arangements were gorgeous!!! Here are a few picture of my finished designs.
Below is a picture of our entire design class along with Gudrun & Laura, as well as their table design showcasing the arrangements we designed that day. I love how full everything is yet it’s low enough to carry on a conversation with other people without blocking everybody’s views.
Once I got back to Greenville, I asked my brother-in-law, who just happens to be an artist, to shoot some pictures for me to capture these beautiful flowers. Here are the results… just think, this could be YOUR Thanksgiving table this year! 🙂
Coming soon, European Christmas Designs with Gudrun Cottenier.