HFS – Floral Art Exhibition

In my review blog of The Harrogate Spring Flower show I promised you a post on the ‘Floral Art’ exhibition from the floral marquee and here it is! However before we get started let me just make a couple of things clear. All the opinions are my own and I do NOT proclaim to be an expert in the slightest!

But I do proclaim to have good taste so we will move on! 😉

As you enter the floral marquee it was seriously like walking into a fashion show or runway for Vogue! There were these funky fresh displays of creative and elegant couture all made from flowers and foliage from head pieces to footwear. The only thing missing was Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell.

Who would have thought wearing a cabbage could be so glamourous? My favourite had to be the Vivienne Westwood inspired display not only to be patriotic but because I’m a sucker for Dr.Martens, I live in them on the allotment and in everyday life – The ones on display were a black patent with a union jack flag toe and adorned with blue and white freesias and red and white chrysanths. But each of the gowns were brilliant and very inventive.

Sally Brass – Cutting Edge & Northallerton stole the show in the Category for ‘Musical Miscellany’ winning not only 1st place but the gold rosette for ‘Best In Show’ and it’s no surprise why, this piece was truly spectacular! How I interpreted the award winning display was like a whimsical fairy woodland ball, where as the music played the flowers and notes danced together and came to life! A wonderfully balanced piece with soft finishes and warming colours from plum Calla lillies and coral Roses, violet clematis and corkscrew hazel intermingled around musical sheet scrolls and woven wicker musical notes – just something you would usually only see in a fairy tale – utterly gorgeous!

I really have no idea how the judges can possibly decide or make their decisions? There is so much beauty and so much detail and the passion that has gone into every piece. It’s also so easy to miss the tiniest creative idea!

I was totally over whelmed by the beauty and creativity these artists had brought forward and each one being a totally different vision. From categories with large bold designs to the tiniest miniature designs.

I enjoyed the entries in the ‘Jack Frost’ category – I think mainly after being inspired by the wonderful photography skills of bloggers like Andrew – Gardens, Weeds & Words I looked deeper and found so much beauty in the murky depths of winter this year.  So this category I found very appealing! I think with this category less is more as often winter is just bare, simplistic stillness and the artists have captured this wonderfully. These were my favourite entries, with first place going to (pic 2) Susan Waereing – Ulverston & District from the judges.

There were more entries representing the HortCouture theme under the category ‘Waist Not Want Not’ such an interesting use of materials to create these stunning corsets. My favourite differed from the judges choice for 1st place as I thought 3rd place was the best in this category and it’s actually something I think I would consider wearing myself. Anyone else fancy parading around in a wheat sheaf corset waistcoat? Just me then? OK – moving on!

Floral Bonnets up next – this category was represented by florist colleges and again so much effort went into creating these spectacular displays. Bishop Burton College was the overall winner with a Gold award. Sadly Shipley college where I study for my RHS Horticulture Level 2 only came away with a silver, but even that’s commendable.

As we wondered around the marquee some more, we came across the category for ‘Sewing Bee’ and this time Shipley College’s Ruth Hall got 1st place for her stunning entry. A vibrant and cleverly styled piece. A vase filled with buttons, reels of cotton and stitched leaves it had the wow factor and even had little fuzzy bees too!

Are you ready to know what my favourites were from the whole Floral Art Exhibition?

My 2nd place favourite was a stunning entry in the ‘Encased’ category by Jane Burns who also got 1st place from the judges too.  It was so delicate yet strong and a magnificent use of colour. Rusted metal work, pinecones, twisted hazel and felt with delicately placed orchids, it was just stunning.

My choice of 1st place goes to Sally Brass in the ‘Make Do And Mend’ category. This piece actually received 2nd place from the judges – with a comment saying  “A little more weight at the bottom would have created a better balance” which I can see where they are coming from. However for me this design was perfect!


I love the cleverly combined colours of mustard yellows (LOVE mustard), oranges, greens and blues was just lovely. The wooden buttons gave a whimsical feel along with the cotton reels and lamp shades that were wonderfully balanced on wooden branches, which brought the display to life. The soft textures introduced by the Panicum and Craspedia just sealed the deal for me this was my 1st place overall entry!

I think it’s also safe to say that Sally Brass maybe my new favourite floral artist. She is one very talented lady taking away some incredible awards from the judges!

Which was your favourite display from the Floral Art Exhibition? Let me know with a comment below!

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Brightest Blessings,

Bo x