Posts Tagged “Floral Perspective”

The 2015 Mayesh Design Star Is…

2015 Mayesh Design Star

First I want to thank Patience, Beth and Tony for all of their hard work this past year! Starting off with a whirlwind shooting schedule and then working to promote your videos, we are so thankful for having the opportunity to work with such great professionals! I know you all have been anxiously awaiting the results.

With that said, our 2015 Mayesh Design Star is Beth O’Reilly AIFD!! Congratulations Beth!

For being selected, Beth’s grand prize consists of:

  • Floral industry related trip that includes: air, transportation, and hotel accommodations for two (2) for multiple days & nights depending on show/workshop. Prize value will be up to $4000.
  • 2015 video series host
  • Videos created and hosted by winning host designer will be posted on dedicated page on
  • Winning designer host will have a bio page on
  • Monthly promotion of video via e-blast, blog, and social media
  • Link to winners website

Patience and Tony – it was a pleasure working with you both and thank you a million times over for all that you gave!

I know Beth has a bunch of ideas for next year, but we want to hear from you … is there anything you would love to see in Beth’s videos next year? Share with us in your comments below!  And don’t forget, if you want to watch all of the videos from this past year, you can find them here

Floral Perspective: Modern Thanksgiving Design with Jodi Duncan AIFD

You have had 9 months to figure out if you are #TeamPatience, #TeamBeth, or #TeamTony.  With so many fabulous floral design videos, who do you think will be our next Mayesh Design Star?  We are crunching the numbers now and will reveal the winner very soon.  Stay tuned!!

To hold you over and since we missed Jodi Duncan, we invited her back for our November edition of the Floral Perspective series. Last year Jodi showed us an abundance of Thanksgiving goodness. This year she has taken a more sleek and modern approach. This design is simple yet sophisticated and packs a lot of punch and is perfect for dressing any holiday table.

Featured product: Flame calla lilies, wheat and pincushion protea.

Hard goods: Modern container from UCI, Oasis UGlu strips, Oasis silver metallic wire, Lehner Wolle³ flower wool and UCI gems.


Floral Perspective: Vertical Floral Armature with Tony Medlock AIFD

In his last installment as a Mayesh Design Star Finalist, Tony Medlock AIFD shows us how to build an armature out of contorted hazelnut branches. Without using a water source he builds impact by plugging in long lasting flowers and other product that will dry nicely over time. This armature is built to last… at least for a little while.

If you are #TeamTony, this is your last chance to support him by watching his video during the month of October!  And stay tuned, as next month our 2015 Mayesh Design Star winner will be announced!


Floral Perspective: Autumn Floral Feast with Beth O’Reilly AIFD

In her last installment of the 2014 Mayesh Design Star Contest series, Beth O’Reilly AIFD TMF shows us how to make a structural arrangement using stacked Oasis foam disks inside a beautiful container from UCI’s Current collection. This arrangement is perfect for an entry way of a fall wedding, food tables, or even corporate events. The added element of fruit really gives it an organic and fresh vibe; not only does it look delicious, but it can be a useful vessel for flowers!

If you are #TeamBeth, this is your last chance to support her by watching her video during the month of September!

Featured product: Green Goddess calla lilies, calla lily foliage, coral dahlias, green hydrangea, maple leaves, coral coxcomb, rose hips, kiwi vine, grapes, apples and papaya.

Floral Perspective: Mill Stone & Pallets with Patience Pickner AIFD, PFCI

In her last installment for the 2014 Mayesh Design Star Contest, Patience will show us how to create a rustic design using pallets, Mill Stone containers from UCI and elements taken from nature. This design would work great at any event!

Featured product: liatris, ruscus, Miricle roses, pincushion protea and green thistle.

Hard goods: Mill Stone containers from UCI, Oasis blocks, moss, pheasant feathers, deer antlers, pallets and angle iron.

If you are #TeamPatience, this is your last chance to support her by watching her video during the month of August!


Interview: Tony Medlock AIFD


If I could narrow down the reasons why designers throw their hats into the Mayesh Design Star contest to just one, I would say it is because they want to give back to their industry and Tony fits the bill!  He is truly passionate about floral design and has a drive to give back and inspire others around him – his floral extracurricular activities attest to that.  Please read on to get to know this month’s Mayesh Design Star finalist, Mr. Tony Medlock AIFD!

If you are #TeamTony, please be sure to watch this month’s video and stay tuned for his final installment in October!


When did you realize this was the career for you?

After only being in the retail floral industry for 4 months it was Feb 15th. We had received I would call less than great advice from the previous ownership and had boxes and boxes of roses left over. It was a total disaster, or it seemed so at the time. On the 16th, I knew I wanted to get back to the flower shop and start designing again and that has never changed. That was in 1997.


Why do you want to be the next Mayesh Design Star?

I love to share what I’ve learned over the years with others, this is another way to do that. Also, I’ve been a Mayesh customer for over 10 years and believe in the company and want to let others know about the amazing quality, customer service and that if it’s growing anywhere in the world, Mayesh can get it for you.


Tell us a little about your floral extracurricular activities?

Hats I have worn:

Past President of AZ State Florist’s Association
Past President of Teleflora AZ Unit
Past President of SW Region AIFD
AIFD Student competition committee
Things I bled for:

Designer for Fiesta Parade Floats for 6 years at Tournament of Roses Parade, Was a Team Leader for 4 years.
Designer at Philadelphia Flower Show, with Schaffer Designs winning Best in Show, Best use of Flower, and the Orchid award.
1998 AZ State Designer of the year
2000 Inducted into AIFD
2005 Inducted into PFCI
2006 Inducted into AAF
2004-2008 SAF Design Team (2 years as leader of team)
2012 SAF Vase Off Challenge Winner
Hats I’m wearing:

Currently serving 2nd year as the Chair for AIFD Industry Partners
SAF Retail Council member
AIFD SW Region Board of Directors
AIFD SW Region co-chair of PR/Marketing Committee
Advisor at Metro Tech High Schools Floral Design Program.


How would you describe your design style?

clean and structured.


What or who inspires you?

Architecture and Nature. I like the lines and geometry of buildings. The beauty of nature is a constant source of inspiration for me.


What floral tool can you not live without?

Other than a knife, just a simple pair of needle nose wire cutters. So much you can do with them.


If you had to pick just one (I know it is nearly impossible) what would be your favorite flower and why?

Heliconia! It makes a statement and has so many different sizes, varieties and colors, it’s very versatile.


Tell us a short floral story. Have you ever had a strange floral request? Created something wonderful out of a sticky situation? Have you ever felt like MacGyver and used your mad floral skills in a non-floral situation?

Strange requests: There was a contest and the winner would be a Phoenix Suns Cheerleader if she won. We created a $1,000 arrangement and delivered it to her door, when we heard the cheers from inside we rang the doorbell and delivered the arrangement.

Was decorating a clients home for the holidays, which would be published in Phoenix Home and Garden Magazine. On day 3 of the 6 day install, she walked by and said “Wouldn’t it be cute to have a life size Santa sitting at our Grand Piano?” We built from the ground up and installed 24 hours later.

Best or Worst Ever: Client walks into the shop late on a Tuesday afternoon and wants a basket for $100 of carnations because he was in trouble. While we were working on creating this large arrangement we asked what happened. We could smell and tell that he had been drinking. Turns out he went out on Friday to a bachelor party and was finally now on his way home. Never heard how that worked out for him.


What trends do you see emerging within our industry?

Less retail florists in the US will continue. The large will get larger and the small will get smaller. Big box stores and mass market will continue to effect retail florists. Event companies also will continue to increase their presence in larger markets. Designers need to showcase high quality floristry and floral art to make a difference.


What is your best piece of advice for new comers into the floral industry?

There are less design programs, but go to every one you can. Also, get involved any way you can. It could be joining the board of your state association or volunteering next time a designer comes to your area. I still offer to help out designers when they are going to a program in my area, and learn something every time. You can take a piece from here and a trick from there and create your own idea, design or creative piece of floral art.



How can our viewers connect with you?

Floral Perspective: Hot Tropics with Tony Medlock

In his second installment as a Mayesh Design Star Finalist, Tony Medlock AIFD shows us a cool way to use tropical flowers during our hot summer months. He will also show us a neat technique in weaving lily grass that will make this design pop! Repetition is the key in making a large impact with this sizzling design!

Featured product: Lily grass, ginger, king protea, hanging amaranthus, Rosa viburnum berry and bamboo.

Hard goods:  Oasis bullion wire, UCI flame container.


Interview: Beth O’Reilly AIFD, TMF


A brand new mother to a darling little boy, an amazing floral artist, and one of our Mayesh Design Star Finalists this year, Beth O’Reilly AIFD, TMF really shines!  I’m excited to give an insider scoop into another one of our finalists.  I always learn something new with each interview, and this one does not disappoint.

If you are #TeamBeth, please be sure to watch this month’s video and stay tuned for her final installment in September!


When did you realize this was the career for you?

I realized this was my calling when I went back to school in 1999 for my art degree. I had been working in a shop for about seven years, taking a break from school here and there…but when I went back to finish my degree, I was very serious and still a little undecided as to what discipline in art that I wanted to focus on. It only took one sculpture class for me to realize that what I had been doing with flowers all along was just another form of sculpture. In fact, I often used floral mechanics on many of my pieces and still do. I fell in love with mixed media sculpture and even had a few professional showings, but in the end I always went back to flowers as my media of choice. I became very passionate about bringing floral design to the high art status and set out to do a series of sculptural floral works that brought me a lot of joy and satisfaction. My goal with these fine art sculptures was to bring to the viewer a new experience of the natural world. I wanted them to experience flowers in a way that they had never imagined and in doing so I wanted the public to see floral art as a viable form of high art, albeit ephemeral. The fact that it withers and dies and is only a temporary installation makes it all the more meaningful. The most notable sculptural installation that I have done is entitled the “Circle of Life” and I believe it captures the essence of what I believe my mission is as a floral artist. It was created as part of a national AIFD stage program and is what I like to call Floral Street Art. It’s a short documentary film. The concept was to create a floral sculpture and install it at various locations around the city of Austin and capture people’s reactions to it. My team and I had no idea what we would encounter and the end result is something that is quite dear to my heart (watch video below). I hope to bring more installations like this to the public, it is where my true artistic passion lies.


Why do you want to be the next Mayesh Design Star?

I think that now, more than ever, it is important to share professional knowledge about floristry to fellow florists. Being the next Mayesh Design Star will provide me with the opportunity to not only expose others to the amazing products and services Mayesh has to offer, but it would be a journey that I would love to embark on for the sake of other floral designers. I see so many trends in our industry and some of them can be pretty scary. From grocery store competition, to the ever so popular loosely gathered and poorly designed Pinterest inspired designs, and the young designers that come into the industry not knowing what to expect….. I think I have a great deal of creativity and knowledge to offer in the hopes of elevating our stature from mere tradesman to professional, accredited, highly skilled designers. It is so important for the future of floristry. We learn from each other and it’s important to share it with others. I love developing new ideas, tips and tricks, re-discovering varieties, and putting together projects that others can take bits and pieces of to make it their own. Should I be chosen as the next Mayesh Design Star, sparking new ideas and giving other designers the confidence to take these ideas and run with them is my ultimate goal.


Tell us a little about your floral extracurricular activities?

On a local, grassroots level I have spent a lot of time volunteering in the community exposing people to the joy and positive impact that flowers and design can have on individuals. I have always seen my job as a florist as a very important one, after all…we get to touch people’s lives at some of the most important times and sharing that gift with others has always been very fulfilling to me. I have given design workshops to the local Boys and Girls Club, which was awesome to watch children take to floristry with such enthusiasm. I have also presented and taught classes to local garden clubs and I am always impressed with their organization and dedication to the botanical world. I am an active member of The Texas State Florists’ Association, a past Teleflora Unit Treasurer, and I served on the American Institute of Floral Designer’s South Central Board for many years, eventually becoming President of the region. I garden at home and I also love to get involved in social media with other florists. I belong to several social media groups that talk publicly and privately about our industry and help each other in business, design and other related issues. It’s great to have a community of individuals to call upon for professional advice and there are so many florists out there willing to help and share with each other.


How would you describe your design style?

My design style varies from architectural, soft and romantic, contemporary and edgy, to organic and rustic. I think it’s important to have a well-rounded repertoire of design styles but above all the most important thing in any design style is that it follow the principles and elements of design. As long a composition follows these rules (and yes you can break the rules once you have mastered them) than any design style becomes inarguably masterful…..but if I had to pick just one style that I couldn’t live without it would be sculptural design, of course!


What or who inspires you?

Nature is my biggest teacher and inspiration. I get inspired by things like double headed mutant tulips or the changing colors of the leaves in the fall. I love to watch how things grow and I try mimic Mother Nature in unexpected ways. As far as people that inspire me….Andy Goldsworthy, a British Sculptor who became known for his environmental site specific sculptures using only natural materials. His work made a huge impression on me in my 20’s. Daniel Ost, an amazing floral artist whose work is also very site specific and totally amazing gave me a vision of what it meant to be a master of floristry. Hitomi Gilliam for providing not only wonderful floral design inspiration but for starting a dialogue about floral artistry in the U.S. on an unprecedented level. She is the first modern designer I ever heard speak about flowers as if she were a museum curator or art historian, a much needed dialogue, especially for young florists to hear. I am always inspired when she talks! My mentor and teacher Coby Neal who I worked with side by side for almost 20 years, learning a great deal from being pushed to my limits by as well as Michelle Perry-White who has taught me how to survive in the world of product development and trend development working in China. Without these influences, I would definitely not be the person I am today.


What floral tool can you not live without?

Definitely my knife. A good, sharp floral knife. It not only provides protection and peace of mind when tossed at the bottom of my purse, I can do so many things with it on the fly if I need to make an impromptu design. I can carve foam, cut stems, and even use it to curl floral wire. I am not so much a clipper/cutter designer because I love the feel of my knife in my hand. It’s quicker, easier and more precise than any other tool I have ever tried. Love my knife.


If you had to pick just one (I know it is nearly impossible) what would be your favorite flower and why?

Orchids, hands down! It is hard to pick just one…but since orchids come in so many varieties and colors it is one flower I would always choose to work with. Phalo’s, Dendrob’s, Vanda’s, Mokara’s, Lady Slipper’s, Cymbid’s, Butterfly’s, Oncidiums…yummy….it doesn’t get much better than that! They are the Queen of flowers, no doubt. They usually have a long life span once cut, they are great for gluing and hold up really well, and there are so many ways they can be used in a design….it’s endless. I have much love for the orchid.


Tell us a short floral story. Have you ever had a strange floral request? Created something wonderful out of a sticky situation? Have you ever felt like MacGyver and used your mad floral skills in a non-floral situation?

In my career I have had many strange requests. We used to joke at the shop that you never knew what you were going to get when you opened the doors and started answering the phone! A few situations that come to mind would be creating an impromptu floral display (just minutes before guests started arriving) at a super upscale wedding reception where the towering 8 tier cake fell right before our eyes. We saved the day with flowers and no one knew the better. The chef was still able to serve the cake. Another time we carved a 5 foot fish and covered it with lush blooms for a sushi station at the McNay Museum of Art in San Antonio. I can also remember many occasions riding in the bed of my pick-up truck precariously holding on to some monstrous floral creation to an install. What we must have looked like riding down the road? And then there’s the client who always wanted floating pool arrangements in the middle of winter and I would have to brave the frigid waters to install them properly. It never ceases to amaze me the lengths that we go to…all for the LOVE of floral design!


What trends do you see emerging within our industry?

I see a trend, especially in event work of florists taking on larger roles and becoming “event designers”. This is an important difference between just being the florist and actually creating the design and flow of the event alongside the event planners. Many event designer florists are even starting to carry their own collection of props and rental items…above and beyond what is needed for just the floral décor. I think this is a smart step for anyone basing the majority of their business on weddings and events. I feel like “event designers” are important shoes for us to step into, especially in demanding more respect for our knowledge and craft. If we do not step up to the plate and fill this need, someone else will and the florist will be left at the bottom of the totem pole just following directions and making arrangements instead of actually taking part in important design decisions that we are perfectly capable of. As far as specific floral trends…..this year the trends are already in full swing. Romantic styles with French influences, muted blush tones, gold accented vessels, the continuation of the emergence of the Steampunk trend that has been growing in popularity over the last few years and the Radiant Orchid color palette (Patone’s color of the year), as well as a trend I call Salvaged Elegance where everyday items are repurposed in new ways to display floral and other decor. One of the biggest trends that I am eager to see take hold is a movement away from gold accents to Rose Gold. I think we will begin to see this in vessels, paint colors, and accents of all kinds. It’s a very soft metallic that is in between the champagne gold and soft coppers. The most exciting thing about trends is looking forward to the future and not only forecasting trends but creating them. We are all capable of creating trends within our communities, shops and clientele. The challenge is having the courage to come up with clever ideas and promote them in ways that the general public can relate to. My hope is that florists take more of an active role in actually creating trends instead of following the ones pinned on Pinterest. While DIY has it’s place in the heart and minds of the public, it is up to us to come up with options where they need to hire professional to execute them….again elevating design and upping the bar.


What is your best piece of advice for new comers into the floral industry?

Just be a sponge and absorb all the knowledge you can. Take advantage of educational opportunities, head the advice of elders in the floral community, become a great business person as well as a designer and always try to uphold high standards in floral design. Don’t give your services away or sell than for lower than market value….this hurts the industry as a whole and it will also give the designer a name for being inexpensive and that is a category you don’t want to be stuck in. I think it is important for them to realize that there are many ways to accomplish their goals and that learning is an endless process. They will never and should never come to a point in their career where they feel they “know it all”. Being able to take constructive criticism and use it to their advantage is important. Also, if they find a community of like-minded florists, there is strength in numbers…so embrace those communities and don’t be afraid to add your knowledge and ideas into the melting pot.

How can our viewers connect with you?


Floral Perspective: Outside the Vase with Beth O’Reilly AIFD

In her second installment as a Mayesh Design Star Finalist, Beth  O’Reilly shows us a new way of thinking outside the box by designing outside the vase! This is a great design technique for hotel lobbies and corporate accounts. This design is all about the structure with pops of beautiful foliage and of course, the star of the show, the Gloriosa Lily!


Product featured: Hala leaves, gloriosa lily, hydrangea, hanging amaranthus, anthurium and pleated aspidistra aka accordion leaves.

Hard goods: White cylinder containers from UCI, wire collar from Oasis, aluminum wire from oasis, midelino sticks from Oasis, wool wire from Accent Decor and mitsumata branches from Accent Decor.


Interview: Patience Pickner AIFD PFCI SDCF

I interviewed all of our Mayesh Design Star Finalists so that you may get to know them a bit better.  Patience is first up, and I have to say that I really enjoyed her interview.  I mean, how many times do you get to read about panties relating to wedding flowers?!  Patience is a breath of fresh air, and like our other 2 finalists, she is truly inspirational.  If you are #TeamPatience, please be sure to watch this month’s video and stay tuned for her final installment in August!


When did you realize this was the career for you?

Well, I’ve always been artistic….painting, drawing, etc… But my sweet daddy told me “you cant make a living being an artist”, so I went to school for nursing for 3 seconds, where I was shocked to discover that I had EVERY disease we learned about, even testicular cancer!!!!  Soooo, when a struggling shop came up for sale in my town I purchased it, fell in love with designing and the rest is history… dad, you were wrong, but I love you anyway!!! EmojiEmojiEmojiEmojiEmoji


Why do you want to be the next Mayesh Design Star?

I love doing design programs, it’s half “paying it forward” for all those that helped me get to where I am, and half loving being on stage and presenting.  While I’ve been blessed to be asked to do lots of programs throughout the Midwest, I would love to get my name out to the rest of the country as well and Mayesh Design Star is definitely a great way to do that.  Plus, I get to work with all those AWESOME BLOSSOMS!!!


Tell us a little about your floral extracurricular activities?

hmmmmm… lets see…. I’m currently the President for the South Dakota Floral Association.  I’m past president for Teleflora Minndakota board.  I was excited and honored when I was given a position on the North Central AIFD board and asked to be on Tim Farrells AIFD national board. I was super excited to be asked to be on the Fitz Design Team recently – all that gorgeous bling is SO MUCH FUN!!!! I will travel great distances to get to see an educational event or take part in any learning experience to better my designing skills. I work with local FFA students to prepare them for state. I love to mentor up and coming designers and I am EXTREMELY excited to say I recently launched my new website,– a fun place to share my love of flowers, and my passion for the floral industry.  I have started a blog on there as well as a gallery, which is tons of fun!! Team Florgasm includes myself and Ace Berry TMF, and we are currently searching for a third equally passionate, equally insane member for out design team.  Lots of fun, check it out and of course, if you are in need of an incredibly fun design team, well give us a call!!! Emoji


How would you describe your design style?

Probably organic with a bit of ADD.  I often say its pretty hard for me to design without a branch or moss covered rock or something from the outdoors… But having said that, my fave design style is formal linear.  I love simple monobotanical/monochromatic designs, yet I adore yummy, lush over-the-top Victorian inspired bouquets.  So IDK, is ECLECTIC a design style?!?!?!


What or who inspires you?

Pat Gustaf, he was/is my mentor – sweet, talented, kind.  Pat took me under his wing 17 years ago, welcomed me into SDFA, and we’ve been the best of friends ever since!  Jim Johnson, I find his passion and enthusiasm for flowers absolutely endearing!! Tim Farrell – simply stated, the NICEST man in the industry! I look up to him in so many ways, but especially how he is as an educator – kind, encouraging, and an amazing man! Gerry Toh – he mentored my when I was studying for AIFD.  I love his style of presenting and love his humor.  Kevin, Marie, Hitomi, Jodi – so many super amazing people in our industry!!!


What floral tool can you not live without?

Ummmm…. hellloooooo… Pink Teleflora knife!!!


If you had to pick just one (I know it is nearly impossible) what would be your favorite flower and why?

I CANT!! I’ve been asked this question many times.  I love too many – peony, tulips, stock, garden roses, fun seasonal flowers.  Right now I’m addicted to eryngium thistle…yum!!


Tell us a short floral story. Have you ever had a strange floral request? Created something wonderful out of a sticky situation? Have you ever felt like MacGyver and used your mad floral skills in a non-floral situation?

hmmmm. Probably the funniest thing that’s happened to me was the bride who brought me in a pair of lace panties in a zip loc baggie.  She handed them to me and said, this is the EXACT color of my wedding, she wanted all roses, and they had to be that EXACT color of coral. This was many years ago and to this day I still shudder when I see Peekaboo roses!! My poor salesman didn’t know what to do when he received that color swatch!! Anyhow it ended up being a gorgeous wedding, to this day, the biggest I’ve ever done – nothing but thousands of coral roses.  I think brides are the ones with the most unusual requests and who wants to tell those sweet ladies no – not this girl!!

Then there was the time a family came in with their loved ones ashes and wanted them inside latex balloons so they could release them up to heaven after the services.  I quickly learned as I was breathing in Mr. X and soon sweeping him off the floor that ashes aren’t really ashes at all, but shards of bone that are sharp and pop helium balloons.

I’m not very Mac Gyver-ey…I really don’t even like to pump my own gas…(don’t judge….I do…but I don’t like it! )  but living in the middle of no where.. I feel I can make  some pretty cool designs with very little.  I definitely can throw down with what’s in my cooler!


What trends do you see emerging within our industry?

Funny you should ask!! I just wrote about this on my Florgasm blog.  I find it interesting that with every trend out there, there seems to be an opposing trend.  Anyhow, there’s lots going on in our wonderful industry but one of the most interesting to me is the whole field to table/bohemian/pinterest-ey trend.  Very organic, just picked looks – “un-arranged”, uncommon flowers, lots of unique “fillers”.  Anemone, and ranunculus, fragrance is important, garden roses, stock, sweet pea and herbs…. vintage inspired, loose,  low centerpieces in old  china, mercury glass compotes… unusual earthy containers. Just as the floral community at first loved to hate and then accepted and then embraced Martha….. the same is developing with Pinterest…….but please….enough with the burlap and baby’s breath!!! EmojiEmojiEmoji


What is your best piece of advice for new comers into the floral industry?

That’s such an easy question for me to answer!! Never stop learning!!! Don’t be afraid to charge for your artistry!! Take every single opportunity you can to learn about this wonderful industry we are in!!!


How can our viewers connect with you?

Please friend me on Facebook!!!  Like myFlorgasm page on facebook.  Follow my blog  I love all  my floral friends, they are my second family!! I may slightly biased, but  I think florists are soooooo cool!!!!


Go Top