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Saturday, June 30, 2012

Man & Nature

My house:  the afterparty.  Crows, jays, & squirrels having their way with things..

Flowers for a Late June Wedding

There's a little game I play that perhaps only a florist could appreciate.  It's called Pretend You're Doing a Wedding Using only Flowers from the Yard.  Hence this boutonniere for a late June Wedding.  I used sweet woodruff, which has the faintest scent of vanilla, unripe cherries, and vinca leaves.  And for the bridal bouquet I'd use snow pea vines, greeen ferns,  mock orange and the last of the white foxglove.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Friday Night in Eugene

                         It's been fun.  This coming Friday is the last day of the here today, gone tomorrow
                                                                 pop up flower shop....

              Thanks Deitmar Busse, we stamped over a page from your book Flower Album for
                                                                        this image.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

An Unusual Headpiece for a Wedding

Way back when, let's just say ancient history, I gathered herbs and sold bulk teas and made hair garlands and sold them at Saturday Market in Portland.  One of my favorite vendors there was Cora Hendershot and she was a wheat weaver. I think she did a lot of Renaissance fairs.  I think you know her type.   I still have a piece I bought from her hanging in my house, above my bathtub.
So how fun for me when a link to her page mysteriously showed up on Facebook. ( thumbs up for social media)  Check out  this beautiful traditional Eastern European headpiece that, should you be a bride looking for something a little different (okay a lot different), you can purchase from Cora for about $400.  Apparently, according to tradition,  weaving wheat into hairpieces ensures fertility.  Good to know.  I will put that in my bag of floral tricks.  And while I might be slightly jestful, I do often think of the meaning and symbolism when I arrange flowers, because they always tell a story and sometimes bouquet making even feels like casting a spell or uttering a blessing . And curiously, and admittedly this is un petit peu strange, I always seem to pay special attention to the so called language of flowers when I am working on funeral pieces.   So how do you like that, from weddings to funerals in one blog post? 

photo via Cora Hendershot

 And click here should you like to see Cora's site  wheatgoddess.com where there's an even more beautfiul photo of another wheat weaving headpiece she did.  It just doesn't translate well into blog world.

Monday, June 25, 2012

All About Us

Our party planning friends over at Moxie Events came and interviewed me and Sarah about wedding flowers.  It was actually really fun.  And I usually get a little nervous doing interviews.  Thanks Isabelle Prosser for doing such a fine job and snapping this fun impromptu photo.  Go here and read the interview and find out how we get our wedding mojo going. And click here if you're throwing a big bash and need some help.  The Moxie gals can make it happen for you.  (P.S.  Aren't we a fun looking crew?)  

Sunday, June 24, 2012

New Poppy & Moe Lovefest

 Just in time for summer.  Sabrina came in and restocked all the fabulous, feel so good against the skin, tees from her Poppy & Moe line.
So get thee to the upstairs part of the store and check out all the fun new summer fashion.
Plus the Poppy & Moe folks will be our featured artist for the September Artwalk when they'll be unrolling their new 2012 designs.  Stay tuned.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

I Heart Summer

And summer is all about the bicycle.....some fun jewelry above from Yellow Owl Workshop....

And a little something stylin for your bicycle.....

Friday, June 22, 2012

Rock Star on Premises

Hello All - Chelsea Fuss (she of the great blog Frolic and also the concept behind the Portland blog Urban Weeds) was at the store looking for some props last week.  She was doing a shoot at the Eugene Hotel featuring her 100 plus year old grandmother Grace for Kinfolk Magazine.  We'll let you know when it's out.
In the meantime, I was a little star struck and Chelsea was kind enough to pose for this photo with Becky. And I know you're not supposed to follow superstars around your store and beg for photos.  I just couldn't help myself because Chelsea Fuss really is one of my visual heroes.  I suppose you could say her look is all about the simple life.  And she has styled some shots of "the simple life" that have really seared themselves into my mind. Click here to go to Frolic.  And click here to go to Urban Weeds.  And click here if you want to know more about Kinfolk.  It's a magazine about uncomplicated entertaining and  features lots of fun outdoor dining shots.  And  ssssshhhhhh.....don't tell them but  it's the kind of party giving  we've been doing in Eugene forever.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Best Little Hostess Gift

I kind of have a thing for tea towels lately.  Ever since I noticed that my kitchen towels were raggedy and worn and one of those things that I looked at so often , I didn't even realize how totally scrungy they were.
So  I tossed the old and am replenishing my stock.  This is my new favorite one at the store.  It's from a Canadian artist and has the recipe for Georgia O'Keefe's soda bread that she cooked every day out at Ghost Ranch.  Plus it's packaged in glassine with twine and a charming photo of Georgia.  Perfect for a chef, a bread baker, or an art lover. 
Click here and here to see the other towels I now have at home.And may I say, they are a complete pleasure to use. 

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Let there Be light

And a happy solstice to all. The longest day of the year.  All that light really is something to celebrate !

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Summer Fashion from Johnny Was

Can we say, "It's all about layering?".....beautiful silk top from Johhny Was.....yummy with a turquoise or teal or orange tank underneath or any one of zillion other ways....wear it to a wedding or wear it to the farmer's market.  Johnny Was is such a great dress up or dress down line.

The Month of the Rose -cont'd

Rosebuds for dinner anyone?

                                                 Me, amusing my dinner guest last week.....

Monday, June 18, 2012

Hats Off

Graduation is always such a great time.  Lots of families in town, lots to celebrate and the pressure is off.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Cozy Bedding for a June Morning

 Some photos  from the store for your viewing pleasure on an overcast Wednesday morning....

Sunday, June 10, 2012

My Team

A great big shout out, to my graphic designer, Cathy Simard who has been doing great work for me all these many years at Passionflower. She knows me, she knows the store, I trust her to give me her honest opinion, no holding back, and I pretty much don't know what I would have done without her.
Latest creation from Cathy - a little Passionflower postcard .
We were pretty excited to see this book An Invisible Flower by Yoko Ono from Chronicle. 

Saturday, June 9, 2012

A Little Bit of Flax

We liked it and so we bought it.  And now you can too. Lightweight summer linen polka dot slip and bloomers from Flax out on the racks upstairs at Passionflower. And we'll help you find the just right jewelry piece or two to layer onto this.  Feather earrings?  Zulu grass? Jack Boyd Bronze hoops? Shelley Kaldunski?  Pyrrha pendant?  Lots to choose from.  

Friday, June 8, 2012

Orange & Pink Bridal Bouquets

                       Here's an outtake....Some photos of bridal bouquets that we loved but didn't really love the photo or at least Becky thought it was a wierd juxtaposition.  So we nixed it for now but I still wanted you to see these lovelies.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Celebrating June as the Month of the Rose

                            See what Becky and her sister made from roses they gathered at her Mom's house. 
should you want to fall down a rabbit hole full of visual delight.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Fun Summer Craft Project with Children

Now that the sun's coming out a little more :) here's a fun DIY art project.  They're called cyanotypes or sun prints and they're based on an early photographic process using chemicals on paper.
They couldn't be easier to make  - you just need the right paper (we sell gift packs at the store) and sunlight and water and a little imagination.  Here I placed some plants on the paper and exposed them to sunlight for a couple of minutes.....the timing can be a little tricky.  If you leave it on too long, you'll overexpose the image.  You want to wait until the paper goes light, light blue.


Then you put the paper in a water bath for a couple more minutes......

 At first it might not look like much but let it dry and flatten out the paper.....everything goes a dark cyan blue....hence the name cyanotype....

 I like to write on my pages with a white jellyroll pen that stands out nice and sharp against the blue. 

Here's what the packs of paper look like.

 Click here should you like to go to google images and look at other cyanotypes.  And click here to read about Anna Atkins, one of the earliest photographers who made beautiful cyanotypes of British Algae.  And thanks to Geninne Zlatskis and her great blog for first getting me interested in these.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Give me that Old Time Religion

People, what rock have I been hiding under? Yesterday I went for the first time ever to the Masonic Cemetery on 25th and University.  It is, I think, the most beautiful public garden in all of Eugene.  Indian plum and thimbleberries grow next to paths lined with wild grasses, columbines, oregon grape, and the sweet cicely (whose skinny seedheads provided some lovely anise flavored trailside refreshment). Mix in  gravestones in all stages of decomposition, including some shockingly current ones (like apparently you can still be buried there should you choose to purchase a plot), a crazy crypt or two, plastic flowers, american flags (we are after all just days past Memorial Day), and the best collection of heritage roses I have ever smelled (we are also right on the downside of the peak of rose season) and you'll have some idea of the beauty you might encounter there.  The roses deserve a whole story of their own.  And, despite the fact that people are buried there and there's lots of trails and human activity,  the place has a slightly wild and untouched feeling because they have a pretty interesting no mow policy which you can read about here.    I got to the top and a huge squall hit complete with thunder and lightning.  It poured.  I had the whole place to myself.  It was divine.  This is all by way of saying, I want to encourage all of us to get out to places we've never been to before.  And all the better if it's something you might go past all the time but have never really checked out.  Because beauty hides in the most obvious of places. 
photo lifted from Eugene Masonic Cemetery website.

Playing Dress Up

 Becky is saying, "Come hither and we shall enjoy ourselves immensely frolicking  through the jewelry cases..."

                          "Perhaps these Exstasia  antler earrings handcarved from mammoth ivory?"
                                 It's a big beautiful jewelry world out there.

Monday, June 4, 2012

What's Inspiring Me

It's all about wood at the store these days from Bryan Nash Gill's new book Woodcut....

 to these one of a kind myrtle wood cutting boards made from big thick slabs sustainably harvested and lovingly made by my friend Annie out on the Oregon Coast.

                                 And there's even woodgrain letterpressed onto the box of Tatine Candles!
                          (who I think have the wittiest and most beautiful candle packaging out there)

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Columbine Columbine

Remember that part about how I'm going to start cleaning up and organizing my myriad number of photos? Well my intentions were good when I started but I ended up with this...... a little meditation on the columbine - one of my all time favorite flowers.  Chris brings these from her yard every year and I had to take some home.  And then I remembered this song from the Decemberists which starts like this:

Gentle leaves, gentle leaves
Please array a path for me
The wood's all growing thick and fast around
Columbine, Columbine
Please alert this love of mine
Let him know his Margaret comes along


Saturday, June 2, 2012

It's Been a Long Time Coming

Our Passionflower website is old as the hills - perhaps I'm exaggerating a tad but I will tell you that the home page has a photo of a young girl peering in the window.  See that's her above.  Well a couple of years back she was in the store with her dad and told me, "That's me on your homepage"....I never would have guessed as she had recently graduated high school.  Just to give you some inkling of how ancient the site is!!!!  I have been working for a while on revamping the site.  It's been a somewhat painful project with lots of missteps along the way.  Basically I'm a retailer not a web designer.   But I am pleased to say it's coming together slowly but surely.
Here's a shot to whet your whistle about some of the yumminess to come. 

photo courtesy Thomas Dick for the Passionflower website.

Friday, June 1, 2012

The Best Perfume in the World

If perhaps you were thinking about collecting rosebuds, now would be the time....say if you live in the Willamette Valley (or Bulgaria or any one of a number of places where the roses grow wild and native and lovely).....
You can dry them and string them and smell them and wear them and make potions and lotions and tap into the most ancient of perfumes.....  True pure rose....
Above photo is rosa glauca from my yard - this just an amazingly beautiful foliage plant ......I also love the rosa rugosa which give me big fat, fat buds for stringing.  But I think it is our native rosa nootka that gives the sweetest scent.
And should you like to put yourself into the rose collecting frame of mind,  here's a post from Chelsea Fuss at Frolic about the annual rose festival every June in Bulgaria.