We finally made it. Today is officially the first day of spring; the temperatures are getting warmer, the sun is setting later and there are oodles of gorgeous flowers on every corner.
We're obsessed with north west London-based florist Scarlet & Violet. A fave amongst A-listers like Kate Moss (they provided the flowers for Kate's wedding to Jamie Hince), Scarlet & Violet are renowned for their wild, romantic pieces that are worlds apart from the overly-styled arrangements we're used to. We've worked with Scarlet & Violet on shoots and events and have found ourselves falling hard for their stunning creations.
We waded through the bunches of flowers and greenery at Scarlet & Violet to find founder Vic Brotherson. Read on to see out what inspires her and her tips for keeping that bouquet blooming beautiful...
What inspired you to found Scarlet & Violet?
I set up Scarlet & Violet primarily as a workshop and a space for me to step back and take time to work with flowers after a busy few years. It soon became apparent though that what started as a little space needed to grow to cater to all the people that came in and so I gradually took on more people to help me and we’ve grown into what we are today. I think now we have a great balance of being a local flower shop, and are able to do weddings and events for bigger clients as well.
How did you establish that distinct style that Scarlet & Violet is known for?
Strangely our style came from trying to make bouquets in a less expensive way, so whereas we’d usually use threes or fives of a certain flower, I went to using one and arranging them in a more loose, informal way, as they would naturally grow in a garden. Instinctive is a good word to describe what we do, arranging the flowers and colours to create something that instinctively looks great to whoever on the team is making it, using a variety of textures and colours.
Do you find yourself drawing inspiration from outside sources, like fashion or art?
We’re primarily inspired by the briefs from our clients. Every brief is different whether it's to use specific flowers or colours. Obviously fashion is a very integral part of what we do so we have to listen to the briefs from those clients and work to them. Budgets are also important, we try and cater to everyone's budget - we love the challenge of creating a beautiful bouquet for £10 or £15 as much as we do the freedom and variety of choice that a bigger budget allows.
What are your must-have flowers and colours for this spring? Do you notice there being particular trends for flowers or hues?
I really love orange, especially at the moment in Ranunculus. Poppies are also in season at the moment which are beautiful as well as lime Fritileria. There is a general moving away from pink and we get asked more and more for peaches and ice cream tones and generally more interesting colour combinations, that are a bit off-beat.
What are your tips and tricks for looking after flowers to keep them looking lovely and fresh for longer?
Be careful what you buy, make sure the flowers are as fresh as possible as these will last the longest. We go to the market every morning to try and get the freshest flowers possible. Make sure your flowers always have plenty of water and replenish it every few days. If they flowers start to look sad, it is always worth re-cutting the stems to keep them going for longer.
You prefer working with British flowers when creating your beautiful pieces. Do you have a favourite, quintessentially British flower?
We are so lucky to have great British flower varieties and we always try and work with British flowers wherever possible and when the seasons dictate. Particular favourites of mine are Foxgloves and Scabious.