Spring/Summer 2011
Weddings Issue
Bouquets: Your Best Accessory
By Stephanie Wu

What flowers will you carry? It depends on the season, and whether you're classic or contemporary.
SPRING: Create a romantic vibe with ranunculus, mini calla lillies and Queen Anne's lace in a pastel palette, or go for the unconventional with striped begonia leaves and patterned orchids in an asymmetric arrangement. Both look stunning against a billowy chiffon dress.
SUMMER: Sunflowers are the perfect outdoor-wedding choice, especially when paired with black-eyed Susans and button mums for additional color and texture. Or, incorporate seasonal strawberries and exotic flowers like the white-topped pitcher for a fresh twist.
FALL: The warm colors of autumn are best evoked with either traditional garden roses in a variety of hues (which hold up beautifully in cool weather despite their perceived delicacy) or, for a bit of edge, textured scabiosa pods and light-brown cymbidium orchids.
WINTER: Keep an all-white bouquet interesting with a mix of flowers, like lisianthus, nerines, and phalaenopsis orchids. For something that truly stands out against your white dress, velvetlike coxcomb and lotus pods are sophisticated and will last all day — even if you're getting married in the snow.          


Spring 2011
New York Weddings

"It's very important to find a florist you can trust and then leave some of the decisions to her.
A good florist always knows best."

Sandra Taurina, Creative Director at Florisity
How did you get into the flower business?
I grew up with flowers. I come from Latvia, and my grandmother had a farm - she grew peonies, roses, hyacinths, tulips. When I was small, I would pick the flowers and put them together, and my grandmother would show me all the little tricks.
What tricks are you into right now?
I always like English garden roses with beautiful fabric around the stems. And I like added elements like scabies pods or raspberries and blackberries. Those are very cute right now.
If I have a limited budget, what should my priorities be?
Definitely the bridal bouquet and the boutonniere - you have to have those. The bouquet doesn't necessarily have to be a lot of flowers, though; it can be very simple. Some brides want a huge bouquet even though they're very small themselves, which looks ridiculous. Next is probably the centerpieces, if you're having a reception. But it doesn't have to be this big, lush arrangement; you could do little bud vases.
And it wouldn't look cheap?
No, it all depends on how you set it up. Of course, you can make it look bad, but if you choose the right size of bases - maybe using different heights - and you choose the right flowers, like peonies, hydrangeas, or roses, it can look really beautiful.
Do you have more people asking for organic and fair-trade flowers these days?
It's more like we educated them about it. They say, "Oh, I want this and this," and then we become teachers: "Why don't you do this instead?"
What are your favorite color schemes?
It depends on the season and the availability of the flowers. In the spring, blush, yellows — cheerful things. In the summer, you can add blues, like hydrangeas. Fall is earth tones, and winter could be silvery. But white and green is the most elegant and always will be. I think it works all year.
Do you get many oddball requests?
[Laughs] We try to forget those. No, actually, I'm open-minded. If someone comes in and tells me to put candles in her bouquets, I would say, "Sure, no problem." We had a groom who loved ginger, and the bride asked if we could do something with it. When you picture ginger, you think, like Oh my God, no, it's so ugly and wrinkly. But we took ginger root and twisted it around with burgundy calla lilies, and it looked fantastic. I love those kinds of requests. It makes your creative mind work.
And then your beautiful creation gets tossed over the bride's shoulder and dies.
[Laughs] Oh, you just let it go. You know it's going to be in the picture, and it's going to be remembered. It's painful to watch the flowers get bruised and worn out, but you also feel happy it's done. As long as everything is done perfectly, I really don't mind.
Photograph: Jacqui Hurst/Alamy (Swatches)


June 30, 2010
Home & Garden
Takashimaya Florist Resurfaces as Florisity
By Elaine Louie

Fans of Takashimaya's now-defunct flower shop, take note: While Takashimaya closed last month, the florist, with its remarkable pale pink English roses, double-petaled Dutch tulips and stems of baby crab apples, is still in existence, operating as a shop called Florisity in the Flatiron district. What distinguishes Florisity from some other top florists is its aesthetic. "It's a little bit Asian, with unusual materials," said Sandra Taurina, the creative director. The flowers are arranged as they were at Takashimaya — by color tones, on a 12-foot-long, 1,000-year-old walnut table. In each color group, the display is stepped, with the shortest-stemmed flowers in front and the longest-stemmed behind, to show off each flower.