I recently had the pleasure of being asked to design some floral headpieces for a showcase of urban chic collections from local Gold Coast and Brisbane designers and retailers hosted at Cloudland by Fashion TV, AICD and Aqua Angels productions.
The only problem was – when I got the spec, I nearly fell over!
Why? Because the specs for these fresh floral headpieces stated that there were to be NO flowers as the organizers of the event were going for an edgy urban chic look to match the opulent artsy and exclusive look the venue had.
In the end though, I did sneak a few blooms in there – I just couldn’t resist!
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How My Students Helped Inspire My Designs
I will have to take you back to my classes to share my inspiration with you…….
In the weeks leading up to the fashion parade my students had their “landscape” class.
In this class we may only use half a dozen roses placed nice and tight to the base of the design and the rest of the design is to be created through feature pieces, foliage-twigs, bark, drift wood, shells, whatever inspires. My students have one week to collect weird and wonderful natural items and I am always amazed at what everyone comes in with!! Boxes full of nature’s goodies!
The reason I do this class is so that my students look outside the lines of the traditional A-frame design, open their minds and learn to how to make a design flow naturally. It helps to get their eye into line when you come back to the traditional design, as then they can then see the flow, that pattern that makes a design look comfortable and work.
Anyways back to the headpiece inspiration…….
In this class the girls had brought in a box full of discarded palm tree “berry fronds” all gnarly, curled, dried out and fabulous.
It just happened that one of these pieces had the perfect-looking headband at the base, leading to silly play of placing the frond on my head, which in turn lead to fantastic inspiration for the upcoming “Cloudland” fashion parade!
The Designs Are Already There In Nature – You Just Have To “See” Them
I snipped and wired, converting this huge dried frond into a most wonderful and very stable headpiece to be worn on the runway. From here on in, it was easy – creativity flowed and I could “see” the designs by just looking at a piece of bark or a cluster of flowers.
I created a pair of floral glasses – from thick wired and tightly taped tea-tree. Draped berries and parafilmed twisted willow to stand tall.
I used flowers in mass, blocked colors to create and bring through that hint of “tropics” without giving a florally look to these “urban chic” designs. I know the specs said no flowers, however by blocking the colors it helped me to create interesting shapes and feature pieces.
108 Outfits, Including 36 Floral Headpieces – In 30 Minutes!
I created a set of roughly 36 pieces, and so the first 3 sets of the fashion parade could run smoothly, my assistants than retrieved the headpieces from the models/dressers after each set and returned them to me backstage. There I was set up with a large table of sticks twigs, bark, feature foliage, moss, pins and parafilm and I cut them apart, re-made and sent them out for another run, refreshed and ready to go!!
There were 108 outfits in total, in approx 30 minutes. I managed to send out every set I needed, too. You can see me at work and my set up on location the you tube clip from fashion TV
Design Specs I received for the AICD / Cloudland / fashion TV parade:
- Urban Chic to the tropics
- Bold strong colors and Edgy Designs
- NO flowers
- Feature foliage
Notes: Cloudland has long been termed an Urban Oasis, set amongst the leaves of 5000 plants, with a retractable glass roof, and spectacular bars.
Click the thumbnails below to explore the full gallery:
Julia-Rose specialises in flowers for weddings, events, runway & advertising campaigns. She’s been featured in Gold Coast Wedding Magazine, The Courier Mail, The Sun, ABC news & Fashion TV. Julia also teaches floristry at the Gold Coast TAFE and writes for various floral publications. Her love of flowers stems from a childhood spent playing in her grandmother’s garden, spending hours hidden inside the cavernous branches of the beautiful hydrangea.
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