After growing up in Chicago and earning a degree from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Cornelia moved to Manhattan. She then began working in floral and event design with leaders in the field. Legendary event design firm Avi Adler (now also David Stark Design and Production) appointed Cornelia as a primary floral consultant in 1999. There, Cornelia relished the experience of working on events noted for their originality and lavishness. In 2006 she moved home to Chicago and founded Cornelia McNamara Flowers.
Her unique vision was recognized when, in 2009, she was one of six people to be interviewed for the position of Chief White House Florist. Her experiences at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue left her inspired to raise the bar for both inventive design and social responsibility in her business.
Cornelia’s opulent style has been endorsed by Vogue, Martha Stewart Weddings, Traditional Home and Chicago Magazine among others. Her company has won numerous awards including the Editor’s Choice award from Bride’s Magazine.
Cornelia employs urban flower farming as a means to drawdown climate change, but also because of the joy it brings. Her studio is a thoroughfare for some of the best flowers in the world, many of them grown on our own city farm.
Inspired by the past, her company looks to the future as they work in concert with the natural world.
Working, lecturing and teaching in the U.S and internationally, her life and work are filled with sharing the beauty evidenced in nature through designing celebrated events.
Ways To Reach Me
"Cornelia McNamara Flowers is a throwback to how things used to be done...attentive, focused and distinctive. Cornelia's talent is truly beyond comparison. She is gifted at understanding the core of her clients and their events which leads to highly personal results that are often unusual and unexpected in the very best way. I have had the pleasure of working with Cornelia and her team on multiple projects, large and small, and it has always been a fantastic, creative and supremely fun experience." - Stephanie McKean
"We are big fans of Cornelia's work."  -Darcey Miller,  Editor-at-large Martha Stewart Weddings