Arranged with all-local Pacific Northwest blooms, I love this sweet centerpiece that I made at a design workshop with Tammy Myers of First and Bloom last summer (c) Missy Palacol Photography
A perfect patriotic floral combo! (c) Missy Palacol Photography
Maybe the palette seems a little cheezy to you, but ever since I created American Flowers Week in 2015, I have been on the lookout for fantastic ingredients that add up to beautiful (and anything but cheezy) Red-White-and-Blue floral arrangements and bouquets.
Nothing says “proud” and “homegrown” better than recreating our American flag’s true colors in a vase, right?
Another view and a snap of me with my American Flowers Week-inspired beauties (c) Missy Palacol Photography
That fun, al fresco-style event took place a month or so after American Flowers Week (June 28-July 4) but clearly the stars and stripes were top-of-mind because I didn’t hesitate about the palette when Tammy offered me an entire rainbow of botanicals from which to choose.
MORE RED-WHITE-AND-BLUE FLORALS
I’ve been playing with reds & maroons, whites & creams, blues & indigos — across the botanical spectrum — for the past three years, and now I’m really getting excited about our next American Flowers Week campaign. It’s coming up in just five weeks, so I hope these images inspire you to create your own Independence Day bouquets. Please share them at our Slow Flowers Community Page on Facebook!
All-American flowers, grown in Oregon at Charles Little & Co.
A child’s table, painted delphinium blue by a vintage dealer, is my perfect podium for this bouquet.
A July 4, 2015 Mason jar bouquet featuring ‘Checkers,’ a favorite dahlia from Jello Mold Farm.
Enjoy these glorious red-white-and-blue flowers, picked just in time for American Flowers Week.
The U.K.’s most important wholesale floral hub launched BFW in 2013 as a low-budget, social media-driven “annual celebration of seasonal, locally-grown flowers and foliage united the U.K. cut flower industry and sparking public and media interest in where our flowers come from.” It has become a popular and successful campaign to promote British flowers — and floral designers.
By the time we had finished sipping from our steaming mugs of tea in the Market’s employee break room, I was thinking to myself: “I should start American Flowers Week.”
Helen and her colleagues were immensely helpful and supportive. I returned to the U.S. in late May 2015 inspired by the BFW model, equipped with Helen’s suggestions and resources, and by the end of June, I introduced American Flowers Week.
It seems entirely fitting that our week coincides with Independence Day, July 4th. Not only do these dates provide a patriotic hook on which to hang AFW, the timing is perfect because there are local flowers growing on farms in all 50 U.S. states, Alaska included, in late June and early July. And, as one wholesale floral manager suggested: “It’s otherwise a down time in floral, so we love having a new event to help promote flowers.”
The initial grass-roots endeavor enjoyed 400,000 social media impressions during the 2015 campaign.
In 2016, we added beautiful collateral material, a free USA floral coloring map that participating florists and flower farmers could download and share with customers, and even red-white-and-blue stickers used by florists, flower farmers and retailers to label their AFW bouquets. Impressions on social media hit 1.3 million last year.
This year’s campaign graphic features Floral Fashion by Amy Kunkel-Patterson of Gather Design Co., photography by Anna Peters, and graphic design by Jenny Diaz — read the entire story tomorrow!
I can’t wait to see what we’ll reach for 2017. This is Day Two of American Flowers Week and we’ve already hit 2.0 million impressions on Twitter & Instagram alone! That’s radical! Love how the Slow Flowers Tribe is helping make American Flowers Week a *trending topic!
For 2017, I’ve borrowed yet another page from British Flowers Week. BFW selects five iconic U.K.-grown flowers and pairs each with a high-profile florist or design team to produce installations and vignettes. The press and online media devour these images — and of course, the publication of them creates a buzz about British flowers and the farmers and florists who supply them.
Slow Flowers, which presents AFW, has commissioned five floral-inspired fashion shoots depicting iconic American grown blooms. The designers who contributed their creativity and artistic talents teamed up with generous flower farms that donated stems straight from their fields and greenhouses.
The goal? To showcase domestic and seasonal flowers in a new and engaging way — and to show how inventiveness and ingenuity, along with American grown flowers, produce beautiful results.
Upcoming: For the next 5 days — through July 4th — I’ll post the story of each Floral Fashion, with insights from its designer, as well as flower farmers who provided the botanicals incorporated in each wearable style.
Yes, you read that right: 401,637 Impressions on Instagram & Twitter alone for #americanflowersweek!
From boutique growers to the country’s largest flower farms; from studio florists to grocery stores and wholesalers, too, we celebrated American Flowers Week as a grass roots education, promotion and advocacy campaign to highlight our nation’s flowers and foliage — and to raise awareness among consumers, the media and policymakers about supporting domestic flowers!
On Twitter and Instagram alone, mentions of #americanflowersweek generated more than 400k impressions in one month.
That’s pretty exciting for what was a mere idea six weeks ago!
Huge thanks to our top participants – without their intentional involvement and embrace of American Flowers Week, we would never have created so much beautiful buzz about this grassroots campaign.
Top post honors go to Farmgirl Flowers of San Francisco and Los Angeles for generating more than 3,500 likes on Instagram with a special “firecracker” bouquet promotion designed just for American Flowers Week. You rocked it, Farmgirl Team (cute bike messenger model, too!).
Others whose posts generated lots of engagement include Bare Mt. Farm, a boutique flower farm in Oregon’s Willamette Valley, with a dazzling photo of peachy trumpet snapdragons
Verbena Flowers & Trimmings of Roseville, Calif. Mom Karen Plarisan and daughter Karly Sahr posted a charming American flowers week bouquet they grew and designed with the “support your local farmer” message.
Betany Coffland of Chloris Floral in Sonoma County, posted a romantic bouquet that wowed with the American Flowers Week message.
April Lemly of Portland’s Kamama Flowers was our most frequent and active participant. It’s so great to have a Slowflowers.com florist who is also a gifted graphic designer, right?
April’s engagement was followed closely by Sarah and Steve Pabody of Triple Wren Farms, of Lynden, Washington. All together, the metrics are super impressive!
Here are some other fun stats to share:
Thank you to everyone who participated! Let me know if you have ideas for American Flowers Week, 2016!
I’ll be looking for many advisors — designers, flower farmers, wholesalers and sponsors to help us move this campaign to the next level!
Love showing off my garden’s best hydrangeas for American Flowers Week!
July has arrived and American Flowers Week is in full swing! Hundreds of posts featuring the flowers and foliage grown here in the U.S.A. on domestic farms are appearing across social media — as so many proudly share their homegrown blooms.
We’ll compile a summary of these amazing “shares” at week’s end.
Suffice it to say, I’m overwhelmed with the level of participation for such a grassroots project.
From Farms to Wholesalers; from Design Studios to Grocery Floral Departments – it’s inspiring to see that so many fans of American Grown Flowers are taking photos of their local and seasonal blooms and tagging those images with #americanflowersweek to show allegiance to American Grown Flowers.
I’m waving the Thank You flag to each and every one of you!
A child’s table, painted Delphinium blue by a vintage dealer, is my perfect podium for this bouquet.
Hydrangeas, light and dark blue; red yarrow; white feverfew; white gooseneck loosestrife; and green raspberry foliage add up to a star-spangled bouquet.
Even though I had a major lens failure on my camera this week — the worst possible week to be without my camera — I was determined to share today’s bouquet with you.
Thankfully, between iPhone shots and a borrowed point-and-shoot, I captured the essence of a red-white-and-blue hand-tied bouquet that I created earlier today.
The dark and light blue-toned hydrangeas are straight from my Seattle garden.
I cut them late last night and left them outdoors in a bucket of water to cool off until dawn. It has been in the mid-80s this week, so hydrangeas aren’t wildly happy about the climate. But that overnight soak was ideal to revive these lovelies.
A couple of my local flower farmer friends grew the other patriotic-hued ingredients in this bouquet:
From All My Thyme (flower farmer Dawn Severin), red yarrow and white feverfew – both cheerfully yellow centered.
From Jello Mold Farm (flower farmers Diane Szukovathy and Dennis Westphall), the gooseneck loosestrife and the raspberry foliage.
The 2015 American Flowers Week Logo
Inspired by the “ribbon” motif that artist Jean Zaputil used to “tie” the charming bouquet on our American Flowers Week logo, I shopped for flag-themed ribbon at Packaging Specialtyin Seattle. This bold red-and-white striped grosgrain caught my eye and yards of it finish off this bouquet.
There’s still three more days of American Flowers Week – and you’re invited to join in! Post your photos and share the #americanflowersweek tag.
All-American flowers, grown in Oregon at Charles Little & Co.
Today’s the day! We’re kicking off American Flowers Week and you’re invited to participate!
What: American Flowers Week is a week-long celebration of domestic flowers, created to raise consumer awareness and unite America’s flower farmers with the U.S. floral industry.
When: The inaugural American Flowers Week takes place June 29-July 4, 2015. In future years, the campaign will always encompass Independence Day.
Who: Everyone in the American floriculture industry is invited to participate, including flower farmers, floral wholesalers, floral designers, retailers and floral enthusiasts.
Where: In all 50 States. Please visit Slowflowers.com to find flower farmers and floral designers, as well as wholesalers and online sources for American Grown Flowers.
Why: At a time when 80 percent of the flowers sold in the U.S. are imported, we believe this is the essential moment to focus attention on the beauty, quality, sustainability and economic impact of American-grown flowers.
How: Get involved! Use the resources provided here at Americanflowersweek.com.
Enjoy these glorious red-white-and-blue flowers, picked just in time for American Flowers Week.
If you haven’t joined in, there is plenty of time to get involved. The easiest thing you can do is to make a red-white-and-blue bouquet using all American-grown, local and seasonal blooms. Please post that photo on your social sites and tag #americanflowersweek.
This effort will grow from a small idea in 2015 into a significant annual event in the future. By adding your voice (and creativity) to American Flowers Week, you’re helping to sing the praises of our homegrown blooms.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Debra Prinzing
SLOWFLOWERS.COM LAUNCHES AMERICAN FLOWERS WEEK
Set for June 29-July 4, 2015, Debra Prinzing’s SLOWFLOWERS.COM kicks off inaugural campaign to promote American flowers and foliage
SEATTLE, WA (June 25, 2015) – Slowflowers.com, the comprehensive online resource that connects consumers with local, seasonal and sustainable flowers, announced today the first “American Flowers Week.”
Slowflowers.com creator Debra Prinzing has organized a week-long celebration of domestic flowers to raise consumer awareness and unite America’s flower farmers with the U.S. floral industry.
“At a time when 80 percent of the flowers sold in the U.S. are imported, I believe the moment is right to focus attention on the beauty, quality, sustainability and economic impact of American-grown flowers,” she said.
Prinzing announced the project’s launch on June 24, 2015, during the one-hundredth episode of the “Slow Flowers Podcast,” which she produces and hosts. She credited as her inspiration the successful “British Flowers Week,” a similar campaign launched by London’s New Covent Garden Flower Market in 2013.
“The goal of American Flowers Week is to engage the public, policymakers and the media in a conversation about the origins of our flowers,” Prinzing said. “This advocacy effort is intentionally timed to coincide with America’s Independence Day on July 4th, providing florists, retailers, wholesalers and flower farmers a patriotic opportunity to promote American grown flowers.”
American Flowers Week supporters can find more information and resources at a newly-launched web site – americanflowersweek.com. Downloadable fact sheets, infographics and the 2015 American Flowers Week logo are available for growers and florists to use for their own marketing and promotion efforts.
Participants are encouraged to use the social media hash-tag #Americanflowersweek to help spread the word about this campaign across all platforms.
“I want American Flowers Week to be accessible and inclusive for everyone in the American floral industry – for those growing and designing from Alabama to Wyoming and every state in between,” Prinzing said. “The campaign highlights the amazing diversity of domestic flowers available to the trade, to retailers and to the consumer.”
About Debra Prinzing: Slowflowers.com founder Debra Prinzing is a Seattle-based outdoor-living expert who writes and lectures on gardens and home design. She is the leading advocate for a sustainable and local approach to floral design and is credited with popularizing the term “Slow Flowers.” Debra is the author of 10 books including Slow Flowers and The 50 Mile Bouquet (both by St. Lynn’s Press) and she is the producer/host of the weekly “Slow Flowers Podcast with Debra Prinzing,” found on ITunes and debraprinzing.com.
We couldn’t be more thrilled to unveil the very special American Flowers Week logo, a visual expression of flower farming, floral design and Americana.
Slowflowers.com commissioned the artwork from Iowa illustrator Jean Zaputil.
After asking Jean to create a logo for American Flowers Week, she had this to say:
I woke up at 5 a.m. and ideas popped into my head. The first one was a bunch of beautifully painted flowers tied with an Americana ribbon.
The results of Jean’s creativity achieve all that we wished for!
Please visit our download pageto use and share on your own Social Platforms, Web site or Marketing Material. Don’t forget to use #AmericanFlowersWeek to help us track impressions as we raise awareness for American-grown flowers!
To commemorate the 100th episode of the Slow Flowers Podcast, we’re launching a very cool and I believe significant week-long education and outreach campaign that will kick off Monday, June 29th and run through Saturday, July 4th.
Inspired by British Flowers Week, which was the subject of two podcast episodes earlier this month, the Slow Flowers Podcast and the Slowflowers.com online directory present AMERICAN FLOWERS WEEK.
Since this is our first year, American Flowers Week will rely on grassroots efforts of everyone who hears about it to spread the news. In future years, we expect to bring more partners into the campaign and spread the news widely throughout the media, industry, and at the consumer level. Please join me – as I always say – in the conversation and in the creative community.