These Hello Vendor profiles have turned into a bit of a Hello May staple since our launch last October and we couldn’t be happier about it. You see, these profiles afford us the pleasure of introducing you, our reader (and bride or groom to-be) to the many talented souls that make up the Australian wedding industry.
It’s a chance to come face to face with the people behind the brand, the kind humans who make it their business to make your day every bit as quirky, romantic, glamorous or relaxed as you want it to be. One such vendor, new on the scene in Sydney, is florist Sasha from Poppies & Amber. Sasha is exactly what you want in a florist, she is sweet natured, friendly and knowledgeable. We were delighted to have Rachel Kara (a rather excellent wedding photographer) take Sasha’s portrait above and even luckier to have had the opportunity to fire a few questions Sasha’s way. Let’s dive right in shall we…
Tell us a bit about your background… I studied early childhood education and taught in primary school for a few years. It was fun being a teacher, especially being around kids, but I’ve always been more of an artistic person and it felt like the job didn’t suit me. When I moved to Sydney, I thought it was the perfect time to have a career-change and pursue what I’m most passionate about. I took a commercial course in floristry then started my own business.
Did you always want to be a florist, how did you fall into the flower making game? I’ve always been fascinated with flowers. Flowers and weddings are two things that I was very fond of growing up. When I was a little girl, I talked to my friends for hours and hours about our dream wedding. I’d sketch how I envision different weddings – from the gowns to be worn down to the flowers to be used. It was fun and never grew tired of it! People always came to me when they needed help with their big day. I also arranged flowers for some of my friends’ weddings. I dreamt of becoming a wedding planner or an event stylist, but the thought of being a florist never really crossed my mind. Things changed when I took a course in floristry. It didn’t take long for me to realise that I’ve completely fallen in love with flowers and that it is the path I wanted to pursue.
What is your favourite thing to do with flowers? I love making loose arrangements that somehow celebrate the beauty, lushness and abundance of nature.
Heading into the cooler months what are the best flowers to use for autumn/winter weddings? My autumn & winter favourites are magnolia branches, and blossoms. They are perfect in creating a bare woodland look, which I think is perfect for the season. Jewel-coloured orchids or structural Australian natives would also be a good choice too.
What can brides and grooms a like expect from Poppies & Amber? Right from the beginning, when couples inquire, I always take into consideration how they have envisioned their wedding and help them throughout by sharing ideas and giving suggestions on what can really work for their style and budget. We understand that meaningful weddings aren’t just about flowers or decor, but we love to help make an already special occasion extra beautiful for our couples.
You have popped together a gorgeous shoot for us, what was the inspiration behind the shoot below? The theme of the shoot is “romantic bohemian”. I took a lot of inspiration from who I think I am as a floral designer. We did the photo shoot at my family’s holiday place back in the Philippines we call “Alas-as Hills”. It’s a place very close to my heart. My family spent so much time planting beautiful exotic plants and trees there, and it turned out to be a wild but charming place. I have so many of wonderful childhood memories of Alas-as. My cousins and I used to pick wild flowers and make little posies and pretend we were brides. Now that I have settled in Sydney and started a career as a wedding florist, I think it’s nice to just go back to our little “forest” and do a shoot that showcases my style and what I love to do. After all, it is the place where my floral dreams began. Most of the furniture pieces, props and chinaware I used for the shoot have been with our family for many years!
How did you come up with the Poppies & Amber name? I bought a bunch of poppies one day and arranged them in my favourite amber –coloured vase. I liked how it turned out. The cheeriness of poppies had a whimsical contrast to the classic looking vase. I did a quick post about in on my blog and came up with the title Poppies and Amber. The name kind of grew on me. When I was thinking of a business name (which was one of the hardest things ever!) I had a few other names in mind but I guess I kept on going back to the name Poppies and Amber. I feel connected to it.
Your favourite flower? My favourite flower changes all the time but I think I will settle on hellebore’s for a while. I’m in love with its soft and delicate look.
Got a random piece of floral trivia you would like to share? Cut tulips still grow taller in vases!