Australian Flower Festival – 2017

The inaugural Australian Flower Festival was held at TAFE Queensland, South Bank campus on Monday, 18 September

2017 and was received enthusiastically by the 300-strong visiting crowd of florists, wholesalers, allied traders and members of the public. Co-hosted by the Flower Association and TAFE Queensland, the festival delivered targetted information on business management and new technologies and also featured lively demonstrations of professional and student floristry.

Here is my account of the 2017 AUSTRALIAN FLOWER FESTIVAL 

Holy Guacamole, wowzers …and what a day!!! Filled to brim with glorious flowers and big smiles.

I say what a day, but actually it was a whirlwind of a 24 hours for me. It started with a group build on the busy streets of South Brisbane. Buckets and buckets…and buckets of flowers arrived ready to take their place on a towering industrial structure. Heavy with impressive hard lined metal shapes and imposing concrete, standing tall and ready for us to adorn. Perfectly industrial and Contrasting to our bright, soft flowers, in the most brilliant artistic way.

Well it actually all started when I did a little call out on my facebook page for a ‘bunch’ of ladies. Florists, Students, flower lovers alike, to come play with flowers. Inspiring the next generation of florists and put a smile on passers by faces. All for the love of creation and flowers. Amazingly I had 30 amazing ladies turn up ready to create, with tools in hand!

After running through all the essential (but a little boring) OH & S we finally got our little hands on those flowers, the ones that had been eyeing us off from a distance while we signed paper work. I split the girls into 5 teams and gave them a section of panelling each and let them create while I conducted their magic, it was a symphony of floral design. The ladies grabbed their flowers without any discussion amongst teams and magically it worked out beautifully as if in tune. We started with a brilliant yellow palette of gerbera and ranunculus from team one, which merged seamlessly with team twos orange, hot pinks to pale pinks, as if the steps in tones were planned, or orchestrated if you will. We then rambled back through to team threes masses of ruffled white and hot pink oriental lilies, eriostemon and gorgeous little piccolos, finishing off with team fours brilliant reds and oranges. Then last but not least team five whipped up a gorgeous pink white and green palette from left overs. Every design bleed through to the next with masses of rambling kiwi vine.

Be still my beating heart.

The girls were super dooper pooper awesome! Working from 4.30pm through till 9pm building in the dark and inspiring each other as they went along. And lucky little ol’ me got to over see and play with them all. #Spoilt

And that was just the beginning of it all…….

The next day I built a spectacular fantasy filled floral gown, overflowing with an abundance of brilliant bright flowers and masses of lush greenery. The type of thing Disney movies are made of, or in my case, think “Mad hatter tea party’ ‘Alice in Wonderland’ magic.

I woke up at a ridiculous hour (as us florists do to create our magic) I was actually suppose to rise at a ridiculous-er hour, (is that a word?) but could not drag my sorry butt out of bed. However the Make up artist, Model and photographer tapped on my hotel door leaving me to answer in my pyjamas with wild bed hair and a guilty overslept look.

The girls did their thang, getting gorgeous on. (insert fashionista street slang for the last comment) while I showered, then started weaving, stitching and attaching of greenery. Mum helped us all, yes I dragged my dear old mum along, as you do. My fingers couldn’t bare anymore, Mum had to cut the slack for me by helping with the greenery attachments. Dear mum.

Next the flowers, all those darling little gorgeous flowers (supplied by Redlands) got to join the party, threaded in one by one, bringing to life this glorious gown.

After many, many….many hours of building I dropped the gown on my little farm trolley, so farm that I think it had chicken foot prints in concrete on it? But anywho back to the story. We dropped the gown on the trolley and we all headed down the streets of Brisbane…down hill, flower gown trolley, peak hour…as you do.


We arrived at the FLOWER FESTIVAL, first thing we seen was that gorgeous creation by my fabby little flower group last night, amongst much more flower industry goodness.

My team and I found a little spot in the garden and set ourselves up. Shane from the FAQI had the pleasure of dropping our model into the gown and the team proceeding to Play, adorning her with MORE flowers. Lashing and lashings of colourful, perfumed goodness. Mini roses, Piccolos, Ranunculus, in brilliant bright tones.

 People gathered and watched us, Others walked past us smiling from ear to ear! What an amazing thing to see! Imagine it, casually walking down the street and battabing a GOWN OF FLOWERS! Instant Smile Maker. They took videos, photos, wanted hugs and asked to stand next to our lady and have their photo taken. Fun was had by all. We laughed, inspired and created.


 Last but not least I did a little demonstration, well not really. I just whipped a headset on, stood on the “Inspiration stage” where flowers lovers, students and florists fired questions at me. So much fun. I was lucky enough to get many a hug, handshake and smile again……oh and a fabulous little round of applause, totally not spruiked by me at all of course.

And there you have it. As I said to start with “What a Day”!!!

#DropsMic #Flower&Out

Julia Rose xx

Before we get to the Photos I just want to give CREDITS & THANKS to all the amazing creatives who bought this floral installation to life

Floral Designer Names:
Tamika Scott, Kylie Facey, Claire Bell, Melanie Carter, Candice Jade Cowden, Evelyn Julie Watson-Murphy, Elizabeth Hare, Monique Schiffermuller, Emma Adin, Dena Clark, Mariya Todorova, Stacey White, Beck Sanders, Allie James-McMastor, Katinia Young, Phuong Vo, Natalie Foley, Savannah, Dichens-Kilpadi, Jessica Verney.
Instagram Handles:
@misskairichan @evelynjulie9 @denaclark3 @eswhit @reebokahh @katanialee @ivy.parasol
The Candice creative
Sincere thanks to the sponsors for making the event possible:
And last but not LEAST my little team of creatives 
Photographer: Angie Branch
Make up: Vanessa Suzette – Instagram @vanessasuzette_makeup
Model: Gabrielle Lennon – Instagram @gabbylennon

…..And then there was the Fresh Flower Gown and Head piece ………

Create. Fun. Flower festival. Group build. Flowers. Florists. Designers. Students. Growers. Gerbera. Lilies. Orchids. Chrysanthemum. Orientals. Gum. Magnolia. Monsteria.

Suspended florals. Creative community. Inspirational. Inspire the city. Brisbane. Southbank. Tafe. Music. Food. Love.

Fresh Floral Gown. Art. Media. Campaign. Gown of Flowers. Floral Headpiece. Flower crown. Creation.