Wild and Woolly

On this competition day we were only allowed to use roses as the flowers but could use any foliage. Since I have a reputation for using an Australian native known commonly as “woolly bush” (Adenanthos sericeus), this would be my first choice of foliage given the class title.

However, woolly bush is very uniform in its appearance and texture, so how could I bring in a “wild element” to incorporate roses and this foliage. Many of you also know that I struggle using rose in my designs – they just don’t appeal to me as a design flower. Yes, individually they are beautiful but I can’t seem to get the right look for my designs with them.

So this competition class was a challenge to combine both my favourite and least favourite plant materials in a design.

The wildest plant material I had on hand was some palm inflorescence that had been weathered into a shape that fitted the space requirements (bonus!). I have attached this to a slice of tree as a base and interlaced some wool felt covered wires and vials. The single red roses are placed in the vials, with the woolly bush interlaced – some in vials, some not as it does not need a water source for the duration of this show.

The placements and direction of the plant material were very important as I needed to enhance the “wild” look of the design. Placements at even spacing and in the same direction/angle would have detracted from the wildness of the palm.

This design placed first.

Judges Comments: Clever interpretation of the title with the plant material in both the wild and woolly categories.
Colour and texture variations are good – larger roses may have enhanced the design impact.

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