Prairie Chic Wedding


 

As a proper Chicago girl, I’ve been raised to revere Jens Jensen, the Scandinavian landscape architect who designed so many of the city’s treasures- Garfield Park, Columbus Park, the fern room at the Garfield Park conservatory. His ethos of celebrating the prairie’s own native loveliness, working with the native landscape rather than against it, was one which I followed in designing this remarkable wedding, ( that, and Kate’s Moss’s wedding in Southrop in the Cotswalds of course!) I suggested that the bride and groom exchange vows beneath the natural canopy of two ancient willows whose boughs were intertwined. We then constructed two, 20ft “hedges” of foraged cattails to create what looked almost like a naturally occurring path from around the pond and neighboring swales, with plenty of frothy delphinium, queen annes laces and fragrant lime basil from our farm. As the the wind moved though them guests were treated to wafts of delicious fragrance…

Fall Wedding at the Chicago Club

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Some weddings fall together effortlessly, and this was one of them. With every passing year, my business attracts lovelier and lovelier clientele and this gorgeous bride was no exception to this happy trend. She chose the Chicago Club in part due to the mega glorious new roof top they’ve unveiled with stunning, supervillain views of the city, and her palette of champagne with touches of merlot, cappuccino and aubergine was perfection. For a wild, gestural look on the tables, we employed Japanese anemone, Cafe au lait dahlias and Caucasian scabiosa from our farm, as well as fruited quince branches, foraged sumac and boughs of pistachio.

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Eau de lime basil

saad sample close up

lambs ear at the farm

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Our farm’s theme this year is fragrance, we are growing lime basil, chocolate and pineapple mint, lavender and the like. I like to bring old fashions back in floral design whenever possible, and these days people rarely encounter scented flowers. There is no aromatic luxury quite like working out there after a heavy rain, the wind kicking up wafts of tuberose, wild sweet pea and chocolate cosmos! The bouquet pictured below is wildly fragrant with grape hyacinth, cheerfulness jonquils and muscari…

frontal blue and yellow bouquet

saad sample

blue and yellow bouquet

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Notes from the Flower Field

paws and rose of sharon

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centerpiece lilac and orange

Midsummer is here and we are dividing our days between hyper-manicured floral photo shoots and the wild imperfection of our flower farm.  Sunstroke can be mildly exciting but today I had my first, “let’s-find-the-car-keys-in-the-field-day”.  Thank goodness that game only lasted 15 minutes!  We’ve begun battling pests organically and I applied my first super batch of compost tea today…hopefully the insects will find the fragrance an unappealing as I do.

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up close rose of sharon

sosque and lilac orance cp