March 2011 - Connie Bartlett
"Words to Amuse and Inspire" was the title of Connie Bartlet's demonstration when she visited us as our demonstrator for March.
After a few carefully chosen words on diets, Connie produced her Auntie Margaret's old fashioned cake stand. She made three placements for this consisting of round arrangements of an assortment of small leaved " fussy" foliage to suit the Victorian period of the cake stand. The colour scheme of her flowers for this arrangement were purple, pink and white including the beautiful pink "Aqua" rose, white veronica and purple freesia. You can see this arrangement to the right of Connie in the photograph and the "cakes" certainly look good enough to eat.
Whilst arranging the flowers, Connie told us something about her background and how she had been inspired by many things she had seen on a trip to Canada when she was a teenager, amongst them going to see "Gone with the Wind" at a drive-in cinema. It was this film which inspired her next arrangement (also in the accompanying photograph). Rising from a skirt of fern and aspidistra leaves interspersed with pittisporum and arum italicum was dogwood, fountain grass and red “Grand Prix” roses in a tiered arrangement - this was Connie's tribute to the heroine of the film, Scarlett O'Hara.
During the next two arrangements, Connie revealed some of the techniques she has acquired at ‘Northern Lights’, the local contemporary flower club of which she is currently President. In the first of these arrangements she used a black perspex cube which was tied with silver ribbon to look like a present. In the space between the ribbon in each corner of the cube different flowers or foliage were placed - a glossy dark laurel went into one corner contrasting with the fluffiness of the fountain grass in another part of the design. Fuscia pink mini gerbera provided a dramatic clash with the shiny black cube and the arrangement was then placed on a mirror with tealights which showed it off perfectly. Connie then added another cube at a higher level to complement the first one.
We were "inspired and amused" throughout the evening and Connie left us with the following quote to think about: "Nothing great is ever achieved without enthusiasm" and she certainly has a huge enthusiasm and joy of flower arranging which she shared with us.