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Archive for the ‘Events’ Category

5 Easy Steps to Choosing Your Perfect Wedding Flowers

Wednesday, April 29th, 2009

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It’s your perfect day and you want it to go well. How can you ensure your whole wedding is going to run smoothly from start to finish? OK – unfortunately, we can’t tell you that, but what we can tell you are some safe steps in ensuring the floristry side goes well.

Here is a handy list of how you can prepare for your wedding flowers to be perfect on the day.

1) Congratulations! As soon as you have secured a date for the wedding, call or email your selected florists and ensure the date is available. Tips on selecting a florist – firstly, make sure you have seen pictures of their previous weddings and other event work. It is good to gain confidence in a florist, which can also be done by asking what they have done previously – ask about what contracts they fulfill with hotels, offices and restaurants. Generally, if they can supply to a 5 star hotel on a contractual basis, you are safe to assume they can carry out your wedding to meet your precise requirements! Secondly, make sure your florist has experience dealing with your culture of wedding. In Britain, it is generally safe to assume your florist has handled Christian weddings before. But have they handled Persian or Chinese weddings? Best to ask (We have! Amongst several other cultures – Have a look here for our others). You don’t want to spend 3 hours explaining what the Sofreh Aghd is, only to find it’s done wrong!

2) Make sure what your florist charges is good value for money! Especially important in an economic downturn is knowing that your money is going the full mile. Not to blow our own horn here, but for example, we operate from a warehouse instead of a high-street shop. This means we’re not blasting thousands of pounds a year on rental fees – if we were, those fees would inevitably be passed onto you as the customer.

3) You’ll probably have your initial colour schemes in mind – discuss with your florist your chosen colour scheme and particular choice in flowers if you have a specific variety in mind – while most flowers are generally available all year round, it is important to consider the seasonality as this can raise the budget dearly if your selected flowers are out of season. If you’re not sure at all, contact your florist for some advice on the phone or arrange a face to face consultation.

4) Think carefully where you want flowers placed – besides the standard bridal bouquet and buttonholes, there are many aspects to consider – almost every surface can be decorated with flowers and it is up to you (with advice from your florist of course) where you want these to go. The possibilities are limitless – from table centre arrangements, candelabra’s and chair back bouquets, to buffet table displays’ and reception entrance decorations. You can even get everything from your dress and your shoes made in flowers! This is where your budget will start skyrocketing – stay safe and realistic with our guideline downloadable pricelist. It is also important to consider the size of each arrangement as it can vary massively in the minds of different people (for example, our picture at the top has two sizes of table arrangements and also two very different budgets!). Also consider the number of people attending – how many buttonholes and bridesmaids bouquets will you require and how many table arrangements and thank you bouquets will be required?

5) Contact your florist to let them know precisely what types of locations you want to fill (and make sure they can do it in the case of the dress and shoes made with flowers!). This is probably the best time to arrange a face to face meeting with your florist. Here, you can discuss your colour scheme, flower choice and types of floral decorations you require in further depth. The florist should then provide you with a comprehensive quotation. Once you’ve agreed to this you can relax! The florist will take it all from here and contact you if and when necessary.

 

Keukenhof 2009

Wednesday, April 15th, 2009

Celebrating the 60th Anniversary of the World’s Largest Flower Garden


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Spring Tulips in bloom

This spectacular annual event was opened to the public by Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands’ on the 19th March in Lisse, Holland. Keukenhof, known in Dutch as ‘Kitchen-Gardens‘, has been the world’s largest flower garden for the last 50 years running.

This year, Keukenhof is not only celebrating it’s own 60th anniversary, but also the 400th anniversary since English explorer, Henry Hudson, sailing under Dutch authority, landed on the ‘New World’, now known as Manhattan, which led to the founding of New Amsterdam (New York).

The floral tribute to the 400th anniversary is made of more than 53,000 tulips and has been designed to mimic the Statue of Liberty to celebrate ties between the Netherlands’ and the United States.

Hosted in a 77 acre park, an estimated 7,000,000 flower bulbs get planted annually for this two month attraction. Known most famously for its bright tulip displays which are best seen around mid-April, Keukenhof sees over 600 stunning varieties of this particular flower, amongst many others. The best time to visit is now, where you can see almost everything blooming in symphony.

In March, visitors can see the beginning of spring blooms with flowers such as crocus, daffodils and narcissi. By April, tulips begin to blossom and towards the end of April, hyacinths start emerging. Other displays include orchids, Japanese cherry trees, lilies, azaleas, rhododendrons and many more. Growers compete amongst themselves for the most imaginative display in the gardens.

Keukenhof is only 30 minutes away from Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport by bus, so it is no surprise it attracts over 750,000 visitors a year, making it one of Holland’s top tourism attractions for many years. The serene flower garden first opened in 1949 when the mayor of Lisse decided to hold an event that enabled European flower growers to showcase their hybrids and boost the flower export industry, one of the most important exports to Holland.

If you’d like to attend Keukenhof, it is open until 21 May and there are still many events left this season, such as the ‘Biggest Lily show in the World’, Bird of prey displays, the flower parade, traditional costume festival and Orchid Weekend, which is the 8-10th of May.

A royal experience

Thursday, August 7th, 2008

Table arrangement used for the event

We’re very happy and honoured to have been given the chance to decorate a small royal event at end of July, a dinner at the Westbury Hotel, with Prince (and princess) Michael of Kent as guests of honour.

Our part of the job was to create a formal but private atmosphere, befitting the presence of such extinguished individuals. The event was decorated with table arrangements and standing arrangements in four niches.

This was a great experience, where our professional approach was shown in full light. We were very excited and nervous at the same time – expectations were high, but luckily our experience and expertise helped us hit the target dead center.

Chelsea Flower Show 2008

Wednesday, May 21st, 2008

In case you haven’t been informed earlier, the Chelsea Flower Show is happening again. It was opened yesterday, 20 May, and will go on for four days, ending on 24 May. The event is taking place at the Royal Hospital, Chelsea, London SW3. It seems tickets have been sold out online, so you may have to chance it and try to get tickets at the venue.

Here’s just one photo of what can be seen at the show:

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There is plenty of interesting content to enjoy at the show like changing climate studies and garden displays.

Tips for organising a private event

Friday, January 25th, 2008

privateevent.jpgPrivate events are great occasions for strengthening bonds between friends, family, business partners, employees. This very broad category of events allows many different approaches in organising. Whichever way you choose to organise your private event, it’s good to have at least some idea as to what things you need to consider before you delve into the deal. Here are a few things we think are common for any kind of private event.

Pick a topic for the event

What’s the occasion? Are you celebrating someone or something or simply getting together for a good time? It’s good practice to give a private event specific meaning. For example, if you are organising a private event celebrating your parents 50th anniversary, than that should be the main topic, and the center of the event, at least for the first part of it (introductions, toasts, best wishes). After this, the event will take its own course, and transform into a more informal shape.

Make an invitation list

This may seem like an obvious thing to do, but it’s surprising how many times people neglect this very important part of organising a private event. Depending on the intended size of the event and the occasion, you may want to make a selection of guests you will invite to this particular event. If the private event has a more formal character, or it has a business dimension, than picking the right people to invite will help keep the focus on the goal of getting together in the first place.

Event location

What would be the best choice of location for the event? If you are considering your own space, make sure it can indeed accomodate the number of people you plan on inviting. Otherwise, a hired venue may be a better choice (many offer their clients exclusivity – for the right price of course). Make the location easy to get to (with proper instructions), and take into account whether you’d prefer low level exposure towards the public or no exposure at all.

Decorations

Even though you are organising a private event, there is no reason not to make it a bit festive by incorporating appropriate decorations. Floral decorations are always good, as they bring a little life to the space where the event is taking place. As these are details everyone will notice, we advise you hire a professional to do the job. Our services for private event decoration are always at your disposal.

Catering

Food and refreshments are going to be the “background support” for your private event. Make sure you serve food that’s appropriate and that the service is good. These may seem like less important things, but no one forgets a bad taste in their mouth. Probably the best thing is to hire a good catering service, so ask your friends and colleagues for advice.

Entertainment

Are you planning entertainment? Background music can be played from an appropriate sound system, but nothing beats live performance, so if you aim to have some relaxed fun, consider hiring a couple of musicians.

When you’ve covered everything in the planning process, then and only then send out invitations. The last thing you need is to invite everyone, and then run into problems that may not be surpassable at the time.

If you need advice or would like to find out how we can help you make your private event memorable, please don’t hesitate to contact us at any time.

Tips for organising a corporate event

Friday, January 18th, 2008

Event organisation is pretty tricky if you don’t take into consideration some key things. Neglecting to plan in advance is a sure way to create problems. Here are a couple of tips for organising an event that may help you at least a little bit.

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Which type of corporate event are you organising?

There are basically two major types of corporate events – internal (for new employees, retirement parties, recognition for employees’ achievements, seminars, etc.) and external (events for clients and the general public). Depending on the type of event, you may want to consider different approaches in planning them, in order to keep expenses and time investment at an optimal level (ex. external events will most probably require a greater commitment of resources that internal events).

Choosing the venue

The intended size and audience are most likely to influence the choice of venue for the event. Company space may be enough, although choosing an outside venue at an attractive location will probably bring a bit of glamour and excitement to everyone attending. A venue large enough to host a bit more than the intended number of people is always better than to end up in a cramped up space.

Food and beverage

Food and beverage are always important when organising an event. After all, all social networking, chatting, discussions, toasts, introductions, usually revolve around a nice glass of champagne (or other drinks), and good choice of food will always contribute to the overall success of a corporate event. Make sure all the major beverage categories are available, with options if possible. If alcohol is going to be served, try to cover everyone’s transportation needs by having designated drivers available, or simply rent professional transport services (limos, vans, taxis, buses). Food should probably be a bit on the extravagant side, to give the occasion a special touch, although moderately (not everyone enjoys every kind of food).

Music and entertainment

Probably the best kind of entertainment is a band of professional musicians whose opus will include classical music and jazz (always a great choice). Naturally, if the event is of a more informal type, a more engaging music choice will work as well. It shouldn’t prevent people from mingling and communicating, but should be loud enough to spread some good vibes around the venue.

Publicity and marketing

Is your corporate event something that should be available to the media? Publicity is always good, and corporate events are great opportunities to deliver a message to the public through the media. Marketing a corporate event is something that’s necessary in order to attract media attention and general public interest, and should be tended to accordingly. Usually, if a corporate event revolved around an official announcement or figure, designating or hiring a speaker would be a great idea. Good event speakers will help capture everyone’s attention and invoke a positive attitude from everyone attending the event.

Evaluate your corporate event

This is a necessary step – make some markers upon which to evaluate a corporate event. How can you tell an event was successful? Well, by defining what you, as the organiser, wanted to achieve. By evaluating your corporate event, you not only get a picture of how close you came to accomplishing your goal, but also get a clearer picture about mistakes that need to be corrected for the next corporate event.

Event decoration

Probably the most important part of organisation is event decoration. Believe it or not, this is one of the things that attendees will remember the most long after the event has passed. Having appropriate decorations can really help the overall success of a corporate event by bringing an aesthetic dimension to be the background of everything else that will be going on. Flower and plant decorations are usually the best choice as they bring life to the event, and create an atmosphere of serenity. Depending on the topic of the event, the choice of flowers and colours will have a big impact. Even though you will probably have a pretty good idea of what you think your event’s decorations ought to look like, sometimes it’s not a bad idea to consult a professional, at least to get an idea of all the possible options that might work.

We hope these tips will help at least a little bit to organise your next successful corporate event. Oh, and by the way, if you need corporate event decorations, please get in touch with us. We’ve got lots of experience and are always looking forward to a new challenge. Join our list of satisfied clients!