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Philadelphia's most creative floral studio

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 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.

 

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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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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.

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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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

Sullivan Owen for Poseybooth

I don’t know about you, but I LOVE Instagram. Probably because what I do is so easy to communicate through a quick snapshot. It's become my go-to social media outlet and I love the network of peers and friends I’ve discovered because of it. You can see my feed here @sullivan_owen

I found my new friends Poseybooth (@poseybooth) via Instagram. By following them, I discovered that they wanted to have a floral backdrop for their Lovesick Expo booth. Backdrops have turned out to be a specialty of mine, so I reached out to offer some assistance.

The Poseybooth team is a blast to work with and the photos speak to the quality and attention to detail they put into every booth and event. The backdrop was such a hit that Poseybooth is going to add a few versions of it to their already amazing photobooth packages. We’re still working out the details on that, but you should get in touch to book them soon. They’re booking up fast!

Poseybooth is also a founding member of Rabbit Rabbit Crew, a growing collective of awesome wedding professionals. You can read more about the RRC here. All opinions expressed here are my own. I like supporting new talent and so do my clients!

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The lovely ladies of Poseybooth and Rabbit Rabbit Crew

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two out of three of the Love Me Do Photography ladies

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me and my pal Jennie from Love n Fresh trying to look cool but we just look like we're trying not to laugh

 https://vimeo.com/84425610

Wednesday Weddings-Flower Show 2012

This week we're introducing 3 new regular blog features! Today it's Wednesday Weddings where we'll be showing off our Real Weddings along with Wedding Inspiration & Style Shoots for Weddings that we regularly work on.

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This year for the Philadelphia International Flower Show, Sullivan Owen partnered with the Parks and Recreation Department and Starr Events to throw a "Wedding in the Park". We work with Starr Events at the Horticultural Center in Fairmount Park all the time and we love designing weddings in the fabulous event spaces. The Parks team did a phenomenal job of creating the gorgeous reflecting pond flanked on both sides with stunning cherry blossom trees with spaces for our Ceremony and Reception designs.

We worked exclusively with Hawaiian flowers as Hawaii was the theme of this years show. I can't get enough of Ombre and used the vibrant shades of the tropical flowers to their maximum effect. I love creating new ways to display flowers and designed this massive floating chandelier vase. The chandelier was a labor of love and I can't wait to use this again with different color palettes. Enjoy!

Special thanks to Jackie Bayne of Love Shack Photo for these images

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Philadelphia Flower Show 2012

I'm so happy to share a sneak peek of our work for this year's Philadelphia International Flower Show. It was such an honor to be asked to collaborate with the Philadelphia Parks & Recreation Department and Starr Events to throw "A Wedding in the Park".  The team was inspired to share the gorgeous weddings that take place at the Horticulture Center in Fairmount Park. My floral design concepts were directly inspired by this year's theme "Hawaii-Islands of Aloha" . I took a completely modern approach using only tropical flowers and clear acrylic. I'm definitely feeling more tropical weddings this year, color everywhere! We worked on three separate designs. First up is my Dendrobium orchid chandelier. This was true labor of love and a team effort to complete. The chandelier design is functional and holds water so the flowers will stay hydrated. I can't wait to try it with different flowers!

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Here you can see Sammi and I standing over the fountain placing hundreds of orchids into the chandelier. No one fell in fortunately!

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You can't have a wedding without a great ceremony space.

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Finally, the 16 foot floral runner centerpiece. This was so much fun to work on and makes such an unbelievable impact. You can see it all the way across the room.

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I hope you'll check out the show from 3/4-3/11. The experience of being behind the scenes has given me a whole new perspective and there are some truly awesome displays to see this year!

Terrain Bridal Open House

We're so happy to share that we'll be showcasing inspiring new designs at the Terrain Bridal Open House next Thursday March 1st as their preferred floral partner. Terrain will be unveiling their newly redesigned event space and serving up their delicious hors d'oeuvres while we mix, mingle and answer questions.  For all you brides out there who have been wanting to see our work in person, this event is a great opportunity to do so and you'll also get to meet the fabulous Alison Conkin, be dazzled by Two Paperdolls' innovative designs, scope out an apparel preview by BHLDN and sample tasty treats from Coco Love Homemade and our favorite treat tricycle Little Baby's Ice Cream.

We will be unveiling more floral adventures with Terrain in the coming months so stay tuned! See below for RSVP information and we hope to see you there!

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Green Wedding Shoes

I'm so happy to share this stunning photo shoot by Kristy Rice of Momental Designs up on Green Wedding Shoes that Sullivan Owen provided floral design for. It was such a pleasure working with this talented group of professionals right after the New Year. The shoot was styled around Kristy's Trellis Pattern just released by Envelopments. I designed the floral pieces to complement the blooms that inspired Kristy's gorgeous paintings. Click here to see the entire post on Green Wedding Shoes and be sure to watch Birdhouse Productions super cute behind the scenes video!

http://vimeo.com/35472707

Sneak Peek

It just hasn't slowed down around the studio. We've been spreading the holiday cheer all over town with tons of holiday parties, wreath classes, a winter wedding and loads of holiday designs. Things are winding down slowly and we'll be taking a bit of time off for the holidays, something I have never really done before! Holiday means family time and this week T.O. and I got to visit with my Aunt Cheryl & Uncle Richie who were in town to visit Longwood Gardens.

I thought I would share just a sneak peek from our recent shoots. The first two shots were captured by the awesome Lorraine Daley a few weeks ago.

Next up is a behind the scenes shot and a completed shot from a floral hair piece shoot that I put together with some of my favorite local pros. Jillian McGrath on film, April Chatman-Royce on makeup, Brianna on hair and SO on floral, fashion and styling.

I'll be keeping the rest under wraps till the new year when we'll be adding tons of new work to the website and of course shots from all our weddings this year. It's so hard to edit, we've had such an amazing first year this year!

Appleford Open House

Appleford Estate is a gorgeous venue outside of Philadelphia. Starr Events is one of the caterers for Appleford and they recently hosted an Open House to introduce clients to their fabulous food & drink and they invited some of their favorite wedding professionals including Sullivan Owen to attend.

The evening was styled by our great friends Styled Creative, filmed by Cinema Cake and photographed by Sarah DiCicco.  We all had so much fun with Loveleigh Invitations, Little Baby's Ice Cream and Eventions. All florals by Sullivan Owen.

Dahlia Farm

Today Sammi & I were lucky enough to visit an amazing Dahlia farm outside of Philadelphia. We met Jack, the 73 year old farmer of the most sought after Dinner Plate Dahlias on the East Coast. We were picking up dozens of the coveted Cafe au Lait cream dinner plate variety but Jack let us troop around his gorgeously overgrown property to take photos. It was worth getting frizzy hair to take these photos!

Jack only sells his dahlias to one wholesaler in NYC.  He had 3000 stems ready to go up in a truck tomorrow morning and he drives them 3 times a week during the season. Fortunately, he and my wholesaler allowed me to pick them up today! The season is ending, last year he cut the last flowers the first week of November. Getting to visit the farms really gives you a new appreciation for the work and passion that goes into growing such amazing flowers.

Autumn Festival at Terrain

We'll be helping our friends at Terrain celebrate the Autumn harvest this weekend! We'll have bunches & bunches of locally farmed flowers designed in our signature style for sale along with our always elegant vase designs. We'll also be demonstrating how we make our unique and unusual floral crowns & hairpieces.  

Be sure to come by Terrain this Saturday from 12-4 to celebrate this favorite of seasons. See you there!

Special Delivery

Today was a whirlwind of deliveries, here’s some of today’s designs.

Lea, one half of the dynamic duo that mans the very busy front desk at Urban’s corporate headquarters received this gorgeous design from her team mates. She’s always helping us get our deliveries to the right folks around the home office so we were happy to make her an extra special design on her birthday. Happy Birthday Lea!