What does colour mean to you?

It's an age-old question and rare to find a person that hasn’t given it a thought – what is your favourite colour?

We love asking this question as it promotes the most interesting discussions in class and leads nicely into the topic of the Use of Colour in Floristry. Just one of the subjects we look at when we dive into Design and Colour theory in our Career course.

In general people love talking about colour. About how it makes them feel and why their colour is special to them. What becomes evident, every time, is that colour is full of emotion. It is vivid, expressive, powerful and inspirational and just like scent and music, colour can evoke strong memories or associations.

Recently we caught up with two inspirational Sydney florists for whom colour is key in their signature look and asked them about what makes their colour choices so special.

Florist - Tegan O'Brien from The Lillipillian

Signature colours - Bold, rich, eclectic and moody

Why - Emotive and evocative

Instagram - @the.lillipillian

Tegan creates exciting and alluring floral designs for weddings, events and editorial. That celebrate and embrace the uniqueness of the couple, the space and the occasion. Tegan's talent for colour is exciting and intriguing and always an inspiration.

Q. Do your customers come to you with a strong idea of their colour palettes in mind or do you find the majority leave it to you to work your magic around their theme?

It's a mix of both. Majority of clients come to me with a basic idea of the colours they like but are happy for me to develop the palette for them based on the overall theme, venue and vibe etc. Some clients come to me with no idea at all and are happy for me to start from scratch. The rare couple comes in with a very set idea of what they would like and this is what we stick with!

Q. You are a master at creating bold and rich colour stories – what is your starting point of inspiration for the palette?

 A bit of everything really. I always like to find out the theme or vibe of my clients and what suits their personality. The final palette is then based on season and story/theme but we also need to take into consideration the venue or location as these often have so much going on already. We create palettes that suit our couples but don't fight with the space they are in. Our additional styling elements are used to compliment and enhance the flowers rather than take over from them.

Q. The way you work with colour is as much a part of your trademark look as your style and incredible material choices , do you find this is all part of attracting the ‘right’ clients for you?

Absolutely. The majority of clients come to us now after seeing us on Instagram or Hello May as we use this as our portfolio. We also get a lot of clients coming to us from word of mouth or who were guests at other weddings we have worked on. Using social media as our portfolio means we can control what the public is seeing and therefore I only show work that I love and are happy to keep creating. We post in order to attract our 'ideal' client and we do this by colour blocking the feed but showing a really diverse range of palettes that we love to work with. It's taken a long time but we are finally there and have some amazing events and colour palettes coming up this year! It's really amazing now to get feedback that someone saw a photo and instantly recognised that it was us either from the colour palette or style!


Florist - Maddy Falvey from Ellebore

Signature colours - Bright Pastels

Why - Playful and joyful

Instagram - @_ellebore

Maddy creates beautiful bespoke florals for weddings and events. Her clients sometimes come with a colour choice in mind but often they trust Maddy's flair and creativity to come up with something personal, playful and most of all celebratory!

In this stunning outdoor wedding set up at Bendooley estate in Berima, Maddy said "the couple trusted me 100% with not just the chosen flowers, but the colour and also structure set up. I love the neutral toned plinths against the brightness of the hot pinks/corals/oranges. The blue was an addition that always felt right and I’m so glad it worked on the day! I grouped the delphinium for a striking element, rather than spread between all areas of the feature. It’s more impactful this way!"

This Hunter Valley Mantle piece design featured sorbet colours chosen by the couple, however Maddy said "I convinced them that adding that pop of the peach/orange/coral/brighter pink would really enhance the space especially with the colouring of the sandstone bricks. I chose a white/ivory vase for the table flowers to complement the white tablecloth and then a combination of glass/pale pink vases for the mantel to contrast with the strip of wood/wooden lectern/wooden logs."

As a florist colour is without doubt one of our biggest design assets. Creating the perfect colour palette for a wedding or a special celebration is just one of many things' florists can do, to make customers feel special, and know that their product has been personalised just for them.

So, is colour selection inherently natural to a florist or do we have to work at it? The answer is often one or the other but most frequently a bit of both.

One thing is for sure, we all love colour and find it stimulating, inspirational and highly personal.

To find out more about how we teach colour, design and all things floristry join us one of our free information sessions.