This post is hard to write. Years ago, I did the flowers for a wonderful bride named Stacey; the following year I got to do the flowers for her sister, Shelley. That was in 2003 and 2004. On the porch of the mansion stood a very young and beautiful girl named Sara. She may have been 12 (okay, so she was older), but she certainly was not the marrying age. I jokingly said to her that I would be doing her wedding flowers, she smiled and said, "I am not getting married for years." I in turn said, "Yes, but I will be waiting for you." On Oct. 30th, I got to do the flowers for the third and final daughter of the Black family. When I arrived at Sara's wedding I was moved to tears. Seeing Mrs. Black and my past brides was awesome. I was incredibly honored to design the flowers for all of these girls. Nothing validates the work that you do more than a customer, or in this case a family, that returns to you. BLESSED!!!!

The picture of the bride on the left is Stacey, and the picture on the right shows Shelley on her wedding day. This was all before I even had a digital camera.

The lovely dark haired bridesmaid on the right, is now my bride Sara.

These girls are all seriously amazing, talented, and smart, and they all know what they want. Well maybe not Shelley; she left the designing up to me and her mom. But Sara had a serious vision. I have to say that in addition to the pleasure of creating for a family continuously, there also comes stress. My heart and my thoughts say: "Will it be good enough? Will it be different? Will it be as good as they remember?" You know, all of those sick thoughts an artist has. Sara was pretty adamant about her designs, and she really wanted something different–so different that she had the rest of the family slightly concerned. At one point we literally talked about an all pod and berry bouquet with no flowers.  I was more than willing to go for this, but the rest of the family really wanted to see some flowers. Luckily, Sara did fall in love with the cabbage rose Juliet and our vision became more clear.

One thing did stay consistent she wanted succulents in her bouquet. Guess what, no succulents were to be found with any of my local wholesalers; but being incredibly lucky, I happened to be in NYC the week of her wedding. I found little succulents and purchased them for Sara, and I actually brought the stems home in my suitecase, so her wedding was off to a really good start. I swear sometimes, I really feel like the flower Gods smile down on this place and bless my brides. Honestly it really feels like that!! Could there be someone watching over this place, I am starting to be sure of it!!

Giving her the bouquet was such a pleasure, and when I say the third time is the charm, I mean that literally. I was not happy with the first, or second bouquet I made for Sara; so I went to bed and slept on it. Literally in my sleep I knew what I needed to do in the morning to fix the design. The bouquet flew through my finger tips like magic, and Voilà, as Frenchy would say, we nailed it…

I used grey ostrich feathers, succulents, illsa spray roses, white majolica spray roses, quicksand roses, Juliet cabbage roses that I gathered from two sources, dusty miller, scabiosa pods, crocosmia pods, peach ranunculus, and the finishing touch was the silver brunia and tuberoses that I thought of in the middle of the night. Nice to know my mind is working even when I am sleeping like a baby…I litteraly squealed with delight when I thought to take some of the little silver brunia balls and pierce them with a corsage pin to decorate the stems of the bouquet. SO FREAKING SEXY!!!!!!!

Maids carried loose and airy wispy bouquets that designer Debbie put together. They had quicksand roses, white majolica spray roses, scabiosa pods, crocosmia pods, illsa spray roses and orange unique roses. We had true orange linens at the reception, so we needed to start getting some orange into the wedding, so we hit the maids bouquets with the orange roses.

Many thanks to Kristen Gardner for capturing this wedding so perfectly. I was so glad to have Kristen on the job.

Arrangements were designed in my wooden boxes that I bought at On A Whim Antiques,  I have used them five times already this season, and I just love them. The family made the table numbers…

Sister Stacey designed the seating chart…

and I got to design the tart station.

Huge mason jars full of pumpkins, apples, lemons, and pecans, helped to mark the flavors, as weill as little mini chalkboards. The closed sign was for those guests who were thinking of sneaking a treat to soon.

Happy married life Stacey, Shelley, and Sara, I loved doing your wedding flowers.

With true remorse I left Sara's wedding knowing my job was done with this family. For years, I really honestly knew that the Black family would be back, and I truly was waiting for Sara's wedding. Knowing that all the girls are married is bittersweet. My grandmother told me when, God shuts a door, he opens a window, and I have always believed that.  Just yesterday, a mom with six daughters showed up at my door. The meeting was absolutely crazy because we were all so excited. The conversation was flying from weddings, to big families, to art, to horses, to babies, and then yes, employment. I actually hired one of my brides right in the middle of my consult, in fact I may have actually asked all of them to help me. So tomorrow you will meet the newest member of the Holly Heider Chapple team.  I told you the flower Gods smile down on this place, and yes great things are always flying through my window.



  • Trish Says: (11.09.2010 | 08:22)

    This post is fantastic Holly! And the flowers… gorgeous and so sexy! Blessings for sure!

  • alicia Says: (11.09.2010 | 09:03)

    Absolutely DIVINE bridal bouquet for Sara, I just adore it. The tart station is so adorable!

  • Lauren @ ELD Says: (11.09.2010 | 09:27)

    LOVE LOVE LOVE that bouquet!!! Absolutely GORGEOUS Holly!!!

  • janet Says: (11.09.2010 | 04:12)

    What a beautiful story for such a beautiful wedding!

  • Jeannine @ Small and Chic Says: (12.27.2010 | 06:23)

    I tracked your blog down after seeing that bouquet on a wedding site (Snippet & Ink). It’s stunning! Your entire blog is gorgeous and is giving me some great inspiration. Thank you so much for sharing your work!
    I’m thrilled to know you are in Virginia, though a wee bit too far from me in Charlottesville, I’m afraid. 🙂

  • Says: (03.12.2011 | 03:04)

    this is a beautiful story and gorgeous flowers! thanks for sharing. Inspiration found!

  • Leah MossyCouture Says: (03.06.2013 | 06:18)

    Love! I shared a picture on my blog today.
    here is a link:

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