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Tuesday, January, 14, 2014  |  Floral & Event Designers
Meet Susanne Hatwood of The Blue Carrot
Happy Tuesday Guys...it's "Meet the Designer" series today and stopping by the cafe is a new favorite of mine, say hello to the lovely and talented Susanne Hatwood of The Blue Carrot....I met Susanne via Instagram a couple of weeks ago and I have to share with you, I feel like I've known her for years and that we actually have tea and girl chat every night...yes, she's just that cool!!...and she's an AMAZING floral designer!  I ADORE her work and get this, Susanne initially started her business as a vegetable garden, selling products at the garden gate and that it evolved from a row of sweet peas into a full blown flower obsession......lucky for us, right!!

And get this, Susanne has only been designing wedding flowers for two seasons....She ROCKS!!  I'm so happy to have her stop by the cafe and share a little bit of her "floral world" with us today, oh yeah, I totally forgot to tell you that Susanne is from the U.K.....yes, we are going international today with our series.....Enjoy!! 



Susanne Hatwood

TBC: What’s a typical day like for you?

SH: There isn't a typical day for me, that's what I love about my job. If I have a wedding to prepare, I'm usually driving around picking up flowers from different growers, my wholesaler or my own and friends' gardens. Any day I'm not hunting for materials or spending in my workshop, you find me in my little walled garden.

TBC:  What wedding "trend" would you like to see disappear? 

SH:  I think you asked the wrong person for that. I'm probably one of the most untrendy people around. And I think every trend has its place. What I don't like is people, doing stuff because it's trendy and not because they really like it.

 

bridal bouquet

TBC:  How would you describe your client?

SH: My clients are usually super relaxed, creative and open minded.

TBC: Where do you find inspiration?

SH:  That's a cliché, but I find inspiration everywhere.....nature....art....dance and music.

bridesmaids

TBC: Name one of your favorite “vendor” sources that you just can’t do without.

SH:  
I've made a few great relationships with local small scale growers. I wouldn't wanted to do what I'm doing without the fantastic material they and my own garden provide. I'm buying a lot of props and containers from vintage fairs, junk shops and carboot sales.

TBC: Describe your design style.

SH:  My style is very natural and a bit wild. I like an arrangement that has movement. The most exciting thing I find, is to combine blowsy, super opulent blooms with a bit of scruffy or unexpected material. A beautiful garden rose looks even more romantic next to a twig or some grasses. I find flower arranging very similar to cooking. You need a good balance of different flavours to get a spectacular dish.



 

bride and groom

Peony bouquet

TBC: To date, what has been the highlight of your career?

SH:  It's not one particular highlight, more like lots of super exciting bits on the way. Each time I hand over a bouquet and I see a genuine expression of joy, that leaves me on a complete high.

TBC: What was your “big break”?

SH: You could say that having an article about The Blue Carrot in You Magazine ( a national, British weekend supplement ) was kind of a break through, as all of a sudden even the locals knew what I was actually up to all day. But for me, it's more the feedback I get. I find it so amazing, that there are people out there, that really love my style.

bride and her bouquet

floral crown

TBC:  What advice would you give to upcoming floral designers?

SH:  Be prepared to work hard, never stop learning and make time to play with flowers. But most important, don't see other designers as a threat or competition. It's so much better to be open and sharing.
 
TBC: When I’m designing, I love to light my candles and play “old school” music. Do you have a ritual that you like to do when designing?

SH:  When I'm designing, I feel like a child again, completely in the moment, forgetting everything around me. It really makes me happy. I love listening to music and I have a very odd taste. I love Charles Aznavour, Billy Holiday, Nick Drake, Al Green, ELO, Paloma Faith and Mozart.

dahlia bouquet

TBC: What’s your favorite part about weddings when it comes to the florals?

SH:  The bridal bouquet is usually my favourite, but sometimes something unexpected turns out to excite me the most. Like really quirky buttonholes or a little kid's flower crown.

TBC: Describe a “wedding weekend and how many additional staff do you hire?
 
SHFor a Saturday wedding, I start racing around to source the best flowers and materials possible on the Wednesday. I love having everything ready and prepped for a designing day on Friday. Usually picking from my own garden takes up a lot of time on the Thursday.

So far, I have only hired extra help a few times. Just someone to help on the Friday or to come with me on the Saturday to set things up. But I must admit that I'm a proper control freak and that I'm finding it hard to give up responsibility. I really like to collaborate with another designer for a big wedding. It's great to share the whole process with someone equally flower obsessed.



peony and poppy bouquet

TBC: If you had to make a career change, what would you do?

SH:  It took me so many career changes to finally find this one - I think that's where I'm happiest. Even when I'm retiring to my little small holding, I can't see myself being without flowers.

peony centerpieces

TBC: Finish this statement: A bride’s bouquet should reflect……

SH:  Her personality!


TBC: Describe your personal style…what are your favorite stores to shop at? Personal as in your fashion style or your home.

SH:  I like odd things. Our house is a complete mix of old and new. My favourite shops are vintage and junk shops. My personal style is leaning towards the comfy side the older I get.


TBC: Just for fun:

Do you prefer tea or coffee?

SH:  Coffee

TBC: Do you prefer blogs or magazines?

SH:  Blogs. That's how my love for flowers begun. Following Saipua and Studio Choo on the internet.

TBC: Chocolate or Vanilla?

SH:  Chocolate

TBC:  And, I have to ask…what’s your favorite flower?

SHI love garden roses, ranunculus and peonies of course, but my true favourites are the little sidekicks that makes these leading ladies look good: cowparsley, foxgloves, vines, herbs like basil and willow herb, jasmine and cosmos and so many more.


Susanne, thank you SO much for stopping by the cafe today...we adore you and love your gorgeous florals...guys head over to The Blue Carrot to see more of Susanne's beautiful designs...xoxo
 
Photo Credits:

Susanne's image captured by
Paul Debois
Floral Images 1-3 captured by Modern Vintage Wedding Photography
Floral Image 4 captured by  Navyblur Photography
Floral Image 5 captured by Lucy Turnbull Photography
Floral Images 6-12 captured by Sarah Falugo


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