Monday, August 18, 2014

A Perfect Day for Head Wreaths at Butterbee Farm

butterbee-butterbee-0032By Carling A. W. Elder

On Saturday, July 26th, I began my day at Butterbee Farm. While the dew still lingered on the earth at my feet, I prepared to guide some ladies through the fun of designing a Midsummer Head Wreath. With the help of my talented and cheerful partners; Laura Beth Resnick, Farmer and Owner of Butterbee Farm, Krystal Masson, Owner of Esther&Harper - Vintage Rentals and Interiors, and Stacy Bauer, Owner of Stacy Bauer Photography and Local Color Flowers Designer, we set up for the class and got ready to begin!

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Our class guests were a delightful mix of excited, adventurous, kind, and flower-loving women. As they sipped Basil Lemonade out of Esther&Harper’s delicate crystal cups, and snacked on Sweet William Shortbread, I had the pleasure of meeting each one of them. Their enthusiasm for the farm and the class was infectious, and made me feel extremely lucky that meeting new people is a central part of life at Local Color Flowers.


After sharing a brief history of Head Wreaths and Floral Crowns (did you know Head Wreaths started being worn at weddings in Ancient China?), I turned the floor over to the owner of our gorgeous venue, Laura Beth. Laura Beth then led us all on an informative and interactive tour of her farm. Stopping at different flower beds, Laura Beth let us touch, smell, even taste, and harvest flowers for our Head Wreaths. She also told us about her farming practices and plans for the future of Butterbee. After the tour, traipsing back to the work tables with handfuls of just-harvested flowers to use in our designs, I thought you really can’t get more farm-to-vase than this!


Once we went through the basics of making a Head Wreath, my “students” dove into making their own designs. Some ladies chose bold, bright colors, while others opted for more subtle, muted tones. One of the best things about making a Head Wreath, especially when it’s for yourself, is that there really is no wrong or right way to do it. At it’s core, all you really have to do to make an awesome Head Wreath is to have a blast playing with flowers, and to make something that you love, which I believe all of our guests did!



By the end of the class, each guest wore a stunning Head Wreath atop their head. Posing while Stacy took their portrait, each guest looked happy and beautiful wearing their creation. The variation among the Head Wreaths perfectly reflected the designer’s personality and style. I loved seeing the different details each person chose, from ribbon color to how they positioned the wreath on their head. All were perfect.



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This design class was Local Color Flowers’ first ever design class at one of our grower’s farms, a dream of Ellen’s for many years. As I admired the Head Wreaths of our guests and looked out over this vibrant flower farm, I felt the joy of a dream fulfilled settle over me. I couldn’t believe that just a few months ago, I had stood in this exact same spot and looked out this same field, resting empty and barren. Now, just like the Head Wreaths we had made, this farm and this dream had come to full circle, brimming with flowers and life.

I couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful morning.

To see all the gorgeous photos from our Head Wreath Class taken by the amazing Stacy Bauer of Stacy Bauer Photography, check out our Flickr page.

Friday, August 1, 2014

You Deserve A Bouquet Today: Water Wheel Trash Interceptor

By Carling Elder

butterbee-butterbee-0032You know how you often you hear a story of someone making a positive change to your city and think, “That’s awesome!” but never actually thank or acknowledge them because you assume someone else will?

Here at Local Color Flowers, we are making it our responsibility to thank the individuals who are making positive changes to Baltimore by re-launching our “You Deserve a Bouquet Today” giveway. We know the work these individuals are doing is never easy, and yet they carry on; their dedication affecting work and play in Baltimore in very meaningful ways.With our favorite medium - locally grown flowers, we hope to let these people know just how grateful we are for their contributions to our city, and to share some LoCoFlo love along the way!

Our first bouquet giveaway was to John Kellett, inventor of the Water Wheel Trash Interceptor. If you haven’t see this Water Wheel, get down to the Baltimore harbor! Floating in the water, the Water Wheel looks like a giant sea creature with a glistening white shell, and solar-panel bug eyes. It’s definitely eye-catching, and as John said, a major attraction for both tourists and Baltimoreans alike. Much cooler looking than a harbor full of trash! 

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The Water Wheel works by pulling trash out of the water with a leaf rake. The trash then moves onto a conveyor belt, from which it is dropped into a dumpster. Best part is, the Water Wheel is powered by the renewable energy of the water current, and solar panels! For more information and videos, visit  Facebook (just make sure you have plenty of time - it’s fascinating!).

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The best part of giving flowers to John, was actually meeting him, and hearing his story of the Water Wheel’s inception. When John met us at the Water Wheel, speeding up on his motor boat, he told us how the Wheel began. He told us that he worked down in the harbor for years, and each day would walk across the bridge connecting Pier 5 to Harbor East. John said that each day he felt disgusted by the amount of debris he saw floating the water. He stated that he would also hear tourists commenting on how gross the water looked, and said he often felt saddened that a harbor full of trash was often visitors’ first impression of Baltimore.

Something had to change, and John made it his mission to invent a solution to this trash problem. The Water Wheel has already received international press and recognition.

As we handed John his flowers, carefully reaching out over the water, we thought that there are few people more deserving of recognition than John! What this Water Wheel has done for the harbor already is amazing, and it’s only in the beginning of its journey!