This week saw the launch of my ‘Floral Masterclasses’ with an event held at Amberley Castle, a medieval castle nestled among the South Downs which is now a luxury hotel and fine dining establishment, which frequently holds events such as; Chocolate tasting (YES, CHOCOLATE TASTING!!!), Champagne tasting (sign me up for that one too!) and Christmas Wreath Making… hosted by the fabulously famous florist Claire Denman (ME).
The Flower shop, Pulborough has been supplying flowers for Amberley Castle for over three years now and our natural, country style and quality fits in beautifully with the hotel’s look and values, so I was absolutely delighted when I was asked to host a flower arranging morning.
Those of you who know me, will appreciate that I’m quite shy and retiring, the proverbial wallflower, that finds public speaking difficult, OR quite the opposite!!!
When I feel passionate about something, I can’t help but enthuse others, I want them to know as much as I do about the subject, the ingredients and the care that goes into creating something stunning and deeply personal .
When it comes to presentation skills, imagine a cross between Nigella Lawson and Dawn French in an episode of ‘Sultry Chocolate Desserts‘.
While my Nigella-side delicately caresses each stem will an almost unnatural obsession , talking slowly and softly about how to tell when a flower is at it’s optimum freshness, my Dawn French-side is frantically stripping off leaves and throwing them around like confetti at a wedding.
I must say that I thoroughly enjoyed my time at Amberley Castle, the guests were charming, enthusiastic and keen to learn. Each member of the group was given a number of points which they could use to select their choice of main flower, secondary flower and foliage. Then after a fabulous demonstration of spiralling by yours truly (Nigella-French), everyone produced a hand-tie which was not only beautiful but personal to themselves.
Everyone left happy and proud of their creations. The only people left confused were the domestic staff, who couldn’t quite understand how one florist could create such a mess. The room looked like a group of giant leaf eating caterpillars had been tucking into a first-class feast and I’ve heard that almost a week later they are still finding leaves all over their beautiful dining room.
If you would like a quick insight into making your own hand-tie then hop over to our Facebook page video