In Episode One of our ‘Meet the Expert’ series we talked all about bedding, how to re-create that wonderful hotel bed feel at home, what the phrase ‘thread count’ actually means, and whether you need a mattress topper.
We’re now excited to bring you Episode Two, where we caught up with the Head of Brand and Creative at Bloom & Wild, Sara Gordon to chat everything that flowers.
At MBR HQ, we’re big fans of flowers and plants in the home. Not only can they help bring a room to life, they also help boost your mood, refresh happy memories and come with a whole load of health benefits too. An indoor plant can help remove toxins in the air as well as help improve productivity and alertness, so they go beyond looking beautiful and smelling divine!
Flowers are also one of the easiest and most cost-effective ways to enhance the ambience and character of your room quickly. Bloom & Wild are the UK’s favourite online florist and have a quick and affordable option to send next day letterbox flowers straight through the door with all your other post. Super convenient! They create gorgeous innovative bouquets that change with styles and seasons to ensure only the best flowers are sent. Sara is on a mission to make floristry approachable, modern and innovative and we love her work (and not to mention her dress!).
My Bespoke Room’s Co-Founder, Laura, caught up with Sara in the Sofa.com showroom to find out her top tips on how to keep your flowers looking fresh for longer, what three essential vases everyone should own, how to display flowers on your dining table, plus more loads more expert advice. Read the full interview below...
Q&A with Bloom & Wild
First up, let's start with the company. Tell us Sara, how is Bloom & Wild transforming the florist industry?
“We started Bloom & Wild about four and half years ago. It was a time where there wasn't a brand out there that people loved when it came to sending flowers. There was nobody in the space where you could order on the go, straight from your phone and be really confident in what the recipient was going to get.”
So, how does Bloom & Wild work? How do the flowers get through the recipient's letterbox?
“We have a network of farms, and we ask our farmers to cut the flowers sooner than they otherwise would. The result is that the flowers are closed in their box and we net them with special ‘hair nets’ to protect the heads.
They then get sent through the post and when you receive your flowers all you do is trim the ends so that water can get back into the stem. Next you pop them in some water with the flower food, and within 24 hours they bloom!”
If you're looking to buy fresh flowers for their fragrance, what are the best ones to go for?
“What most people are buying nowadays is Tuberose. The key season for Tuberose is July and August. The fragrance is really beautiful and it’s come back in vogue again. It was really cool in the 70s & 80’s, it had a pause and now Tuberose is back again. We’re using Tuberose in a lot in our bouquet designs because it just adds quite a heady romantic fragrance to a lot of our designs.”
Can you place flowers directly on a window sill?
“You can if your window sill doesn’t have loads of direct sunlight. If it does, what will happen is the sunlight will slowly evaporate all the water out of the stems killing the flowers. The safer option is to keep them out of direct sunlight.”
Dare we ask, what is your view on artificial flowers? Can you mix and match?
“I actually don’t hate artificial flowers! We work with Nikki Tibbles from Wild at Heart and she sells some lovely artificial flowers in her shop.
What they tend to do is mimic branches and things you would find in a forest, or something that looks really wild, so it’s not trying to mimic the actual petals of a daisy, a peony or a rose, those types of fake flowers can look a bit naff.”
What's the best way to display flowers on a dining table?
“There are a few different ways you can do it. If you’re using flowers at a massive dinner party and you’re seating loads of people around a table, use quite low vases or low posy bottles so that people can see each other across the table. If it’s just you in the house and you’re not having people round, then a really tall vase with a mix of flowers and branches and things you can just pluck out of the garden looks really lovely.”
What are your top tips on making flowers last longer?
“If you want to keep your flowers for quite a long time – then change your water every day!
What most people do is they add the flower food, they trim their stems, pop them in water and then leave them for a week. That’s fine, but they’ll last about a week. If you want to extend their life to two, possibly three weeks, then change the water every day. Give them a trim (again) so the water comes back up into the stem, and keep them in a cool space out of direct sunlight. That’s really the best advice!”
What are the three essential vases everyone should own?
“Oliver Bonas always have great vase designs; if you’re picking something up from the high-street that’s my recommendation.
First up, is just a tall slender vase. They're really good if you just go out into the back yard and you want to find branches, or just some bits from the garden and pop them in.
Secondly, is a simple jug, which everyone has at home, some sort of pitcher. You can use it for water, and you can use it for flowers!
And finally, the third is a pickle jar. We sell these with our hand tied bouquets on our website. It’s just got a really nice shape; it nips in at the waist of the bouquet and gives flowers a really beautiful structure. If you have a giant pickle jar at home, then you’re set for life!"
1. Now we're coming into autumn, what flowers are on trend and what should we be looking out for?
We're loving autumnal shades that are on-trend at the moment like rust and mustard tones. You'll find these in celosia, dahlias, goldenrod, chrysanthemum and crocosmia.
2. Are there certain flowers that I should avoid if someone has allergies?
Yes! Flowers that have a high pollen content like goldenrod, chrysanthemums and chamomile are tougher for allergy sufferers. Hydrangeas are a top choice for folks with allergy sensitivities.
3. What type of branches/greenery are best to use in a tall flower display?
For a really textural autumn vibe, we mix kangaroo paw that's a rusty mustard shade with leucadendron and other foliage like ruscus, continus leaves and ferns. Really textural bouquets are very of the moment and feel so unfussy and relaxed - they are beautifully natural as flowers would be!
Sara was interviewed on Sofa.com's Snowdrop Sofa, the Snowdrop is modelled on a classic English design and offers a more refined frame, with a fixed cushion back, which brings elegance and style to any space upon its tall tapered legs. Be sure to check out the live interview above.
Finally, don’t miss out on Episode 3 in our ‘Meet the Expert’ series. Next time we’re talking to Joa Studholme, Colour Curator at Farrow & Ball, to chat about what colours are on trend, the biggest mistakes people make when it comes to paint and whether it’s worth paying more for the premium brand...