As dried flowers are fast becoming a design staple in many households, we have teamed up with Julia from Little Room Blooms to share her journey and passion for sustainability, creative floristry and all things dried flowers.
What inspired you to start Little Room Blooms?
I am an actor (in normal life) and the pandemic ground my industry to a halt. I suddenly had the time to work on an idea I had been playing with and actually bring it to fruition. I’m a big lover of houseplants and had loads in my flat but when I was away filming my lovely flatmates would always fail to keep my green friends alive. I started to invest in everything from dried palm leaves to pampas as a zero maintenance, sustainable plant decor that wouldn’t die whilst I was away. However, I noticed how expensive it is to buy dried flowers and foliage from close to home providers. I realised how often consumers turn to big (and cheap) wholesalers - shipping blooms from far overseas. Often the products are chemically treated, come wrapped in vast amounts of plastic and have a huge carbon footprint. These are all things I wanted to combat so I set up LRB as a more affordable and sustainable way to buy dried flowers and pampas grass. I just love being creative and LRB has been a wonderful way to keep my artistic juices flowing over a life changing twelve months.
What are your inspirations & creative processes when putting an arrangement together?
Inspiration for the bunches is drawn from all aspects of life. I adore art, film, culture and music and I love when something random catches my eye and tempts a thought for the flowers. I often find ideas for new arrangements in the changing colours of the seasons and pieces of art. Above all else I experiment, I love to put on a good disco playlist and create as many different combinations as I can before settling on a selection for a new bunch. This process is also driven by what flowers are in season so it’s exciting that our collections are ever-changing.
How important is sustainability to you and your business?
Sustainability was my number one priority when setting up a small business because I didn’t see the point otherwise. Dried flowers are already a more sustainable option to fresh flowers because they encourage us to consume less by investing in a product that could last years not days. All of our packaging is 100% recyclable and plastic free: our cards are made from recycled pulp, our boxes are recycled cardboard, and even our stickers are made from sugar cane. We mainly use flowers from the UK but as we’ve expanded to offer variations from The Netherlands we have made donations to offset our carbon footprint and are about to start planting trees too. As a small business we are always learning and striving for sustainability.
What are the benefits of buying dried flowers over real ones?
Not only are they a more sustainable option they are a brilliant way to save money too. Our bunches start at just £10 and they can last for years if looked after properly - and you won’t have to buy them twice! Dried flowers don’t need any sunlight so they are a great option for rooms without windows or places you might not frequent so often. They don’t need water so they won’t go mouldy, smell or die on you! They are a dreamy option for busy people that still want a touch of floral flair in their home.
What is your all-time favourite floral arrangement?
Ooh, a very hard question! I have so many favourites. I’d say my current fave is our new Eucalyptus Luxe arrangement. I love that it has so many different elements to it: eucalyptus, fluffy grey pampas, black babla, bunny tails and more. It smells brilliant too because it combines the eucalyptus with dried lavender. In general I am a sucker for our fluffy pampas and love working with it in any colour. It makes such a statement no matter what vase you pop it in.
Do you have any tips for ensuring they look their best for longest?
It really is as simple as 1, 2, 3!
1. Keep them dry.
2. Keep them out of direct sunlight.
3. Keep them in a vase that suits them.
The best way to clean your stems is to gently tip them upside down every few months and shake off any dust that may have built up. You can try this outside with pampas (just avoid those windy days!)
What are your top tips for styling the perfect dried flower arrangement?
• We recommend being as gentle as possible when unwrapping your blooms as they are delicate by nature.
• Choose a vase with a neck wide enough to hold them, you don’t want to break the stems squeezing them in but also don’t want a vase that’s too wide as your stems will look sparse.
• Dried flowers are easily trimmed to suit your vase height but don’t get too scissor happy as varying stem heights look great.
• Feel free to tease off any loose leaves depending on your bunch type.
• Tallest to the back please! Try to work in a triangular shape stacking and weaving varying stems to mix textures and colours.
• Most of our bunches come pre-arranged but you can use our online photo references or just experiment and have fun!
• The great thing about dried flowers is that you can pop them out of the vase and try a new arrangement (or two!) whenever you like!