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Philadelphia's most creative floral studio

Night at the Museum

In early March, Starr Events and the events team at The Philadelphia Museum of Art planned an evening to show a select group of guests just how great entertaining at the PMA can be. I was honored to be asked to design the evening.

I started my design process with a long visit to the museum. I wandered into a few galleries I had never been in and found a grouping of mixed media pieces from the 60s. This one particular piece was my jumping off point but in my distraction I forgot to get the artist's name!

With my inspiration in hand, I chose a floral palette of traditional Spring pastels toughened up with the addition of copper and plum tones and plenty of texture to keep things interesting.  The vessels all felt like pieces you might find somewhere in the Decorative Objects wing and every guest was able to take a design home at the end of the evening.

statement piece shot in the studio by Sullivan

statement piece shot in the studio by Sullivan

Susan Beard

Susan Beard

Susan Beard

Susan Beard

Susan Beard

Susan Beard

Susan Beard

Susan Beard

Susan Beard

Susan Beard

 

The gorgeous linens from Special Occasions, tableware from Party Rental LTD, dramatic lighting from Eventions Productions, specialty rental furniture from Maggpie Rentals and the perfect paper touches from Two Paperdolls were the perfect complement to the modern Folk Art inspired evening. As with most museum venues, candles and fire are an absolute NO. I decided to dress up my LED candles with hand marbled paper wrappers. This had a ton of impact for such a simple idea!

It's rare that I get to sit down at a table to enjoy the designs I work on but I was a lucky guest too. The meal from the Starr team was spectacularly delicious and sitting in the Great Stair Hall under Saint-Gaudens' Diana getting to know new people was a wonderful experience.

@sullivan_owen on Instagram

@sullivan_owen on Instagram

As one of the preferred floral and event designers for the PMA, I now feel even better informed to design in their wonderful and inspiring spaces. I'm looking forward to the exciting events we have coming up this year starting in May!

Thank you to Starr Events, The Philadelphia Museum of Art and Susan Beard for select photos!

 

Valentine's Day 2016

Here at Sullivan Owen we know there's a lot of pressure around Valentine's Day and we want you to know we're here to help. While we can't tell you if it's the right time to sign that card with "Love" or if you should go away somewhere with a champagne glass shaped hot tub because it's a holiday weekend,  we can send your sweetheart exactly the right flower arrangement-leaving you one less thing to worry about!

We don't know if he or she is "The One" but we do know flowers and everyone's hands down, most favorite color palette that we've ever, ever done is "Champagne" so of course it's back and ready to go for 2016. In addition to the classic "Champagne" palette, we're introducing "Sangria". The "Sangria" palette is a blend of warm peach and blush tones with wine and berry accents. It was tremendously popular last year as a secret menu item so this year we're just putting it out there. A huge variety of vase options and prices are available.

If you're the sweetheart in question hoping we'll deliver you the flowers you really want, make sure your sweetie knows what to get you for Valentine’s by saving the image below and emailing it or use the share button to tweet, post or instagram your favorite palette to them.

Designs start at $100 and delivery is available all around Philly, the surrounding suburbs, and even parts of New Jersey and Delaware. Delivery on Friday February 12 is preferred! Sunday delivery is available but we’re unable to offer times for delivery and someone must be home to receive the flowers so we think Friday might be easier for everyone and kicks off the Valentine’s Day weekend! Make sure to contact us ASAP at 215 964 9790; we sold out early last year and expect to sell out again this year!

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Martha Stewart Weddings

I’m very pleased to announce that Sullivan Owen was named one of Martha Stewart Weddings Top 62 Floral Designers in their Spring issue, out now. It’s always exciting to be acknowledged for your hard work and creativity.

I’m very grateful for our clients, current and past who trusted me and my team to do our own creative, original work for your events and so I say thank you to all of you! 

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Martha-Stewart-Weddings-Cover-Spring-2015

Flower Magazine

I'm very excited to share my feature in Flower Magazine for their regular "Flower Show" story. With Spring as my inspiration, this was one of the most fun shoots I've worked on. It didn't hurt that I got to work with my friend Alison Conklin in my studio with our friend Amanda from Love Me Do shooting some behind the scenes video. Muppet the studio cat supervised of course.

When you're given the option to do anything you want, it's almost overwhelming to decide so I used these designs as opportunity to play with shape, color and vessels that I had been hoping to try or that I hope to do this coming year for clients. I hope you enjoy them!

Photos by Alison Conklin, video by Love Me Do Photography

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https://vimeo.com/119130754

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Sullivan-Owen-FlowerMagazine-ContributorsPage-April-2015

Valentine's Day 2015

Why mess with a good thing? You loved last year's super simple way to make sure you get exactly the flowers you want so we're bringing it back for 2015! We'll be arranging your all time favorite "Champagne" palette and the all new "Marsala" palette in our always interesting assortment of vases for Valentine's Day!  Are you undecided? These two palettes mix very well together and will be completely unique and original. Make sure your sweetie knows what to get you for Valentine's by saving the image and emailing it or use the share button to tweet, post or instagram your favorite palette to them.

Designs start at $100 and delivery is available all around Philly, the surrounding suburbs, and even parts of New Jersey and Delaware. Delivery to your office on Friday February 13 is preferred and you’ll get to show off just how awesome your honey is to all your coworkers! Saturday delivery is available but we're unable to offer times for delivery and someone must be home to receive the flowers so we think Friday might be easier for everyone and kicks off the Valentine's Day weekend! Make sure your sweetheart contacts us ASAP at 215 964 9790; we sold out early last year and expect to sell out again this year!

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Lunch with Martha Stewart

If you ever wondered if a celebrity makes their own Instagram posts, here's proof that Martha Stewart does! I recently had lunch with Martha at her office in New York City during the American Made Summit and Martha took an Instagram of my plate prepared by Pierre Schaedelin. The moment, including the goofy face I'm making,  was captured by fellow lunch guest Justin of Woats in Ft Worth Texas. Thanks for sharing the photo Justin!

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Sullivan-Owen-Martha-Stewart-Lunch-American-Made

Sullivan Owen Holiday 2014

I'm excited to offer so many new ways to help you celebrate the holidays this year. From our adorable mini trees to custom wreaths to our whole home decor services, I've never been more excited for a holiday season! Please get in touch at 215 964 9790 or hello at sullivanowen.com, we can't wait to work with you! Last December my team and some very helpful friends gathered at my home for two snowy, cold days of holiday decorating. I hope you find it as inspiring and fun as we did! Thanks so much to With Love & Embers, Maggpie Vintage Rentals and Whipped Bakeshop for all your hard work.

Happy Holidays! S.O.

 

http://issuu.com/sullivanowen/docs/sullivan_owen_holiday_look_book_201

Martha Stewart Weddings

I'm very happy to share my feature in the Summer issue of Martha Stewart Weddings. Working on this shoot at the end of last summer was a total dream come true and the team I worked with was amazing and made me feel so comfortable. Martha herself even popped into the studio when I was prepping the day before the shoot and complimented the trough design in progress. I had this whole plan for playing it cool if I ran into her but of course that fell out the window when I was face to face with her! The issue is out now through the end of summer, the images below are from the iPad edition.

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SO x Poseybooth + Friends

Poseybooth, Rabbit Rabbit Crew and I recently got together with Love Me Do Photography & Lovely Bride Philly to have some fun and shoot a whole bunch of photos. I'll share photos and Amanda's video of my gown inspired bouquets in the new few weeks but today we're revealing the 3 floral backdrops I designed exclusively for Poseybooth.

Any color combo is possible and there are prices for every budget. To get one for your event is super simple. Just get in touch with the team at Poseybooth to book your booth package and let them know which style you're interested in. They'll take care of the details and we'll make you a fabulous floral photo booth! Bonus points if you can say that 3 times fast.

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Sullivan Owen is HIRING!

*Update* Due to a server issue, all applications received prior to Saturday May 10th were lost. Please ONLY reapply if you applied before Saturday May 10th. Applications received on or after Saturday May 10th have been received. Thank you!

Philadelphia’s most creative and rapidly growing floral design studio is looking to expand its team. There are several opportunities available for the right candidates. We will be accepting resumes via email. We will be conducting interviews quickly and making our hiring decisions fast. Please do NOT call or send additional emails about the open positions. Send a resume and cover letter, with links to your portfolio if applicable, to hello (at) sullivanowen.com.  If you are a good fit, you’ll be contacted for an interview. Unsuccessful applicants will be notified when the positions have been filled. Again, we are a busy delivery studio so please do not call to inquire about the status of your application.

Studio Assistant/Delivery Driver
This is an excellent entry-level opportunity with part-time hours Monday through Friday and the occasional Saturday during wedding season. The position requires approximately 25-28 hours a week, with a schedule of 9am to 2pm during the week and the possibility of some Saturday hours. Ideal candidate must have a valid driver’s license, a clean driving record and be comfortable driving in Philadelphia and the surrounding suburbs. Daily tasks include processing bulk flower orders, order taking, packaging orders for delivery, ringing up sales, sending delivery confirmation emails, completing deliveries as well as light errand running, maintaining the studio, restocking shelves and supplies, and light cleaning. This is NOT a floral design position. The candidate may be considered for training for future design opportunities after a 6-month period should they prove to be a good fit.

Part-time Designer
This is the perfect opportunity for a seasoned floral designer to have a flexible schedule in a creative environment with an hourly rate commensurate with experience. The ideal candidate will have a flexible schedule with some Saturday availability and a strong body of work with a versatile design style. The candidate must demonstrate design skills in a practical demonstration during the interview process. Formal design training from an accredited program is preferred. Projects might include execution of wedding orders, delivery and set-up of weddings, completing daily delivery orders during heavy weeks, and the occasional processing of bulk flower purchases. The position requires approximately 21 hours a week, with a part-time schedule of Wednesday through Friday and occasional Saturday hours during wedding season. Successful candidates will be required to sign a non-compete agreement.

Continuing Education

Sometimes people ask me why I continue to take classes and workshops in floral design. I have always been most drawn to a designer’s process and I learn the most when I can watch them assemble a design in front of me. I’ve taken dozens of classes with florists, some of whom are now my peers. I’ve taken some lesson away from each experience whether it’s a small technical tip or a life changing view of a color or flower that I had previously overlooked.

It’s so easy to fall into a familiar style of design when you do it day in and out but in order for our clients to want something new, we have to show them something new. I’m grateful that earlier this year I was able to take 3 very important classes with designers that I admire and that have informed my career in various ways.

In February, my friend Christian Tortu came to Flower School New York to teach a class that he had never taught before on wedding design. He showed us images of some of his weddings that no one will ever see due to exclusivity or privacy and then we made two designs, a bridal bouquet and centerpiece. The techniques I took away from the day are firmly in my back pocket for future practice as I learn to make his techniques my own. It was a lovely experience and he is truly a wonderful teacher. This was my 6th time studying with Christian and I was inspired in part to write this post because I used a technique he taught me 18 months ago just last week for the first time!

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photos by Flower School NY & Sullivan Owen

In early March, Charles Masson taught his first master class in quite a while at Flower School NY and I was able to attend. A photo of one of Charles’ designs used to hang on the wall at the Tudor City location of Flower School NY and when I went for my very first class I was so charmed by this design. The design was so charming, slightly disheveled and imperfect but clearly thought out and composed. That picture came to symbolize what I wanted to find in myself, my own style of design that blended all these aspects of designers that I admired. Charles was the only master designer at Flower School who was left on my wish list and I was so happy to meet him and make a design reminiscent of that photo I fell in love with 5 years ago.

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photos 1 & 2 Flower School NY, photo 3 Sullivan Owen

In mid March, my friend Jennie and I had a fabulous day studying with Shane Connolly. I’m happy to say that the designer who did the wedding of the Duke & Duchess of Cambridge is completely charming, amazingly talented and incredibly humble. We made a bridal bouquet and centerpiece during the full day class. We  learned so many new techniques and also met some great designers! 

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photos by Flower School NY & Sullivan Owen

It seems like almost every floral studio offers classes these days and while I do think it’s great that there’s so much interest in floral design, as a very experienced “student” one of my biggest takeaways is this: The design that you make in class is to teach you that designer’s technique. That design does not become “yours” just because you put the flowers together. The teacher in fact did the design for you when they chose the flowers, the vase and the skill they wanted to teach. To grow as a designer and to truly learn you must take these techniques and practice them until they become your own. And practice some more. What I admire most about the 3 gentlemen I studied with this year is that their designs are completely original and their own. That is what we should all aspire to as designers.

Real Wedding

Spring has sprung (sort of) here and we’re getting ready for the start of wedding season. One of my favorite venues in Philadelphia is the Horticulture Center in Fairmount Park. We’ve done some amazing weddings at “The Hort” with the Starr Events team so while we’re looking forward to an awesome 2014, it’s nice to look back at Simone & Rich's beautiful wedding from November. Enjoy!
xo,
SO
floral & event design: Sullivan Owen, photos: Darker Shades of Brown, cake: Whipped, venue: Starr Events at the Horticulture Center in Fairmount Park, coordination: Truly You Events

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I was incredibly proud of Simone’s bouquet, sometimes the floral palette just comes together in a way I couldn’t possibly predict and it’s even better than I imagined it!

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The gorgeous cake by Whipped featured edible rose petals we sourced and fresh floral added on site. It was a fun and tasty collaborative process!

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Oscars Inspiration

Right before the Oscars I committed to doing some floral designs inspired by the fashion. I watched all the red carpet coverage and ALL of the eternally long broadcast. I even watched Fashion Police to make sure I didn’t miss anyone. I’m sorry to say that even though I loved some of the movies this year, the fashion left me completely uninspired. Sure, I loved Amy Adams’ earrings and lots of the stars looked really beautiful, but mostly the fashion felt too neutral and too bridal—and, well, I do enough bridal already.

There was only one look that was remotely interesting to me and that was Pharrell. I routinely listen to "Happy" while getting ready in the mornings. T.O. even sings it to our cats! Pharrell's performance was a bright spot in this year's snooze-inducing Oscars ... and at least no one is talking about that Grammys hat anymore!

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PharrellWilliamsOscars2014

Shorts tuxedo by Lanvin, image credit

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Sullivan-Owen-Black-White-Floral-Design-Oscars-2014

Flowers, custom 'pharrell' vase and photo by Sullivan Owen

SO, Anthro and the New Potato

We recently designed a wild Moroccan inspired centerpiece for Anthropologie and the New Potato. You can read more about Danielle and Laura here and shop the products here!Enjoy! SO

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photos courtesy of Anthropolgie

Guest Post on The Styled Bride

Check out my new monthly Tips & Tricks post on The Styled Bride. This month we're talking about the Do's and Don'ts of Pinterest! You can find me on Pinterest here.  Here are a few highlights, check out the full post here...

Do: Organize the details of your big day into separate boards (i.e., Fashion, Décor, Floral, Beauty). It’s ok to keep one master board of your favorites, but a board with 300+ images is going to be hard to sort through with your creatives.

Do: Consider this: Most great designers use Pinterest as a portfolio, so pay attention to how much of the designer’s own work they feature vs. how much they pin from other people. (You’ll quickly be able to tell the trendsetters and tastemakers from the followers.) And do remember that when you work with a creative professional, they should be able to find a way to communicate with you and design for you using their own work and ideas.

Don’t: Assume that every design you see on Pinterest will fit into your budget. Remember that Pinterest is a curated version of a designer’s work, a place where they feature their best images and ones that likely represent a fair amount of editorial shoots or over-the-top designs. 

Don’t: Even if you find the most amazing photo of  ____fill in the blank____, don’t bring it to your designer and ask them to copy it. Truly creative and talented people should be designing for you. Instead of asking us to copy our own work or, even worse, someone else’s, let’s talk about what exactly it is you love about that particular design. It’s our job to interpret that information and create something just for you. The most amazing designs usually result from clients giving us a little inspiration and a lot of trust to do our thing!

And be sure to check out The Styled Bride's gorgeous new website, we have some fabulous weddings in the works together this year!

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Instagram & Waterlogue

It's no secret that I adore Instagram. I've been looking for a way to make my old round up posts feel new and the Waterlogue App is just the thing to mix it up this month. Waterlogue debuted about 10 weeks ago but I saw it making the rounds at the beginning of February and immediately started running images through it's watercolor inspired filters. Not wanting to blow up my feed with 8 million photos people have seen before I've been collecting them for this post.

Waterlogue seems to be the best fit for flowers (yes!), pets and landscape images or architecture. Give it a whirl if you're tired of those Instagram filters. You can follow me and see what we're up to at the studio here: @sullivan_owen
XO,
SO

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Valentine's Day is Friday!

There's still time to order your Valentine the most popular flowers in Philadelphia! Choose your palette below and give us a call at 215 964 9790 or shoot an email to hello at sullivanowen.com and we'll get right back to you during our normal business hours.

See what Philly Mag's The Shoppist had to say about the Easiest Valentine's Day Gift Ever here!

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Here's to a fabulous Valentine's Day! SO

Year Three

Today marks three years since this website went live. Of course Adriene and I were working in the studio three days prior to the site going up but no one knew we were there. So today is the date that I officially count as the business anniversary. Every year I think about throwing a grand party to celebrate. I think that’ll probably have to wait till Year Five; fingers crossed there won’t be a polar vortex in two years.

Year Three was full of ups and downs. Despite some personal challenges and growing pains, I would say that I did some of my best work this year. Year Four is looking fantastic and it’s easy to forget the tough times when things are great, but I’ve learned some valuable lessons in the management of my business in 2013.  They are:

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 (Edited by Bridget our web content controller and general happiness enforcer)

In summation, I’d like to say that despite dealing with vicious copyright infringement, proposal theft and website plagiarism, I’m so happy that our clients continue to allow me and the team to keep doing the best work we can for them. Though we are a talented bunch, part of the reason we continue to develop as designers is because our clients trust us to keep amazing them! Thank you clients!
xo,
SO

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photo of our very first delivery arrangement on February 7, 2011

2 Weeks to Valentine's

Only 2 weeks left till Valentine's Day! It couldn’t be easier to make sure you get the exact flowers you want this Valentine’s Day. We've taken three of your favorite designs and turned them into beautiful floral palettes that we’ll be arranging in our always interesting vase collection. This helps make things easier on your sweetheart, too! Just save and send the image of the flowers you love the most to your special someone and we will take care of all the rest.

Designs start at $100 and delivery is available all around Philly, the surrounding suburbs, and even parts of New Jersey and Delaware. Delivery to your office is preferred because we’ll get your flowers to you earlier in the day and you’ll get to show off just how awesome your honey is! But make sure your sweetheart contacts us ASAP at 215 964 9790; we sold out early last year and expect to do so again this year! 

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Champagne-Palette-Sullivan-Owen-Philadelphia-Florist-2014
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Here's to a fabulous Valentine's Day!
SO

Winter Wedding-Brides Magazine

This stunning winter wedding we designed last January photographed by the amazing Alison Conklin was featured in Brides Magazine. I'm so happy to finally share her amazing photos and the hard work of all the talented vendors that made this wedding so gorgeous. Bridget & Tom celebrated their one year anniversary just yesterday the 26th! Bridget joined the Sullivan Owen team in November working with me and our brides. She'll be writing a few upcoming posts about the process of working with your designer and putting together all the details that make a wedding your own. Enjoy!

photographer: Alison Conklin, event design: The Bride,  Mother of the Bride and Sullivan Owen, floral design: Sullivan Owen, Paper: Loveleigh, Custom Illustration: Meg Hunt, Cake: Tartes fine cakes & pastries, Hair:Zaneta Leszczynska from Studio CL , Makeup:Nives Riddle and Dawn Episcopo , Venue: terrain at Styer's

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