It was scissors at dawn for the cream of young European florists at Tatton Park Flower Show, fighting it out to become the Young European Florist of the Year.
Floristry doesn’t get more cutting edge than this.
Twelve talented contestants, all under 25 were representing their country by creating unique designs in the full view of Tatton Park visitors – no pressure then! Held in a different European country every four years, Eurofleurs is an important stepping stone for the floristry stars of the future.
Hosted by the British Florist Association this is the first time the competition has come to the UK, and when I visited, team GB were doing rather well. We may end up in the bottom five at Eurovision, but when it comes to European floristry we have a much better track record!
Representing Great Britain and hotly tipped to do well is Liverpool florist Joe Massie. He was already ahead of the game by Thursday lunchtime having got top marks in the hand tied section of the competition. He looked confident if a little preoccupied, working on his bridal bouquet, an intricate design based around a circular frame.
It was without doubt a nail biting time for all the contestants involved, especially as they were working in a warm marquee with the fascinated onlookers busy taking photos. They seemed to be coping however – and how heartening to see such amazing talent from these florists, the youngest of which, Kimy Begus Kutin from Slovenia, is only 18.
Outside the BFA’s impressive marquee, in fact at the other end of the showground (not quite sure why it can’t all be in the same place) was the Floral Design Studio. Here, I’m very glad to report was some more fantastic floristry from Interflora members Mark Entwhistle and Lynne Miller from The Black Rose at Knutsford, Cheshire. They had put together an absolutely faultless display which not only won them a Gold medal but very deservedly the accolade of Best Exhibit in the Floral Design Marquee.
Their central stand was on one side monochrome black and white with a table topped with crystal candelabras from which hung huge sprays of pure white Phalaenopsis orchids. The table itself was covered with snowy white peonies and hydrangeas. In contrast, the other side was all rich, velvety reds. Boxes were filled with velvety Black Baccara roses and that you see that the visitors were just itching to reach out and touch them. A well deserved gold and congratulations to all at The Black Rose.
Back across a busy showground to the BFA marquee where the first of the floral catwalks was in full swing.
Dancers from the Liverpool Dance Company, festooned with flowers (of course) were livening up the (rather staid) audience with a routine from the film Moulin Rouge. While this was going on the completed bridal bouquets were taken away to be judged. Fingers crossed for Joe and his team.
I’ve been lucky enough to go to three RHS shows this year and report back on some stunning floristry –Interflora’s Gold medal at Chelsea, and the Eurofleurs at Tatton – all inspiring and I can’t wait to see what’s coming up next year.
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