We’ve definitely had our fair share of rain lately –but on the bright side, it must mean that Mother Nature is very happy and will continue to grace our great city with beautiful, healthy flowers. We’re willing to deal with a little shower here and there if it means we get to witness all of spring’s gorgeous blooms!

Liuna Station recently caught up with Paula Verrecchia, Owner/Operator of La Fiora Floral and Event Décor to talk all things floral.

Check out our interview below to find out about the latest flower trends, tips for couples on a tight budget and one of the most extravagant flower requests Paula has ever received.

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LS: How did you get started in the floral and event décor business?

PV: What started out as a love of flowers and making things pretty for family functions turned into a 20+ year adventure –A passion that continues to give me butterflies of excitement every time. Whether it be a gorgeous bouquet designed exquisitely for one of our lovely brides or the long awaited arrival of a box filled with imported fabrics for our stunning backdrops and head tables. Every event is a personal challenge to make one more beautiful and memorable then the next.

LS: Tell us a little bit about La Fiora.

PV: La Fiora provides a very personal and customized service. Each couple is treated as though they are my only clients. Each consultation promises a wonderful and knowledgeable experience. From the perfect flower choices for a bridal bouquet and reception to discussing budget and logistics of the day. Strong and loyal relationships with reputable suppliers from around the world partnered with La Fiora’s amazing design team makes us one of the most respected and sought out in the Hamilton, Burlington, Toronto and surrounding areas.

LS: What kind of trends are you seeing in the flower industry right now?

PV: The trend right now is very “organic” earthy colored florals and layers of textured greens. From Dusty Miller and Bruna berries to layers of seeded eucalyptus, Israeli ruscus and wax flower. All come together to create a soft, gorgeous and natural look. Not so much bling in the bouquets and more in the way of feminine mixed with rustic ribbon wrapped handles.

LS: What is your personal favorite flower and why?

PV: My personal favorite flower is the “Peony” –Such a fantastic statement flower. Its scent is so gentle and its beautiful, lush and robust form makes a stunning over the top bouquet. This timeless, elegant flower is only available locally for a small window of time in mid spring and very early summer. This fancy bloom makes for a very special and unique choice.

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LS: What tips do you have for couples who are looking to incorporate flowers into their wedding on a tight budget?

PV: “Less is more.” When designing on a conservative budget I always tell my couple to focus on the most important areas: The bride’s bouquet and the head table. When designing the bouquets and we find ourselves over the budget we take a little off each girl’s bouquet and before we know it we are back on track, rarely needing to touch the bride’s design. In the reception all eyes are on the head table area so taking a little from each guest table may be all we need to do, leaving our head table on budget and on point. Using two or three big beautiful blooms like Casablanca Lilies, a peony floating in an elegant little compote or a gorgeous stem of an English rose in a simple blown glass vase, a few votive candles equals eye candy on a budget! Use the girl’s bouquets in beautiful rental vases and a couple dozen votive candles and your head table is taken care of. Budget? What budget?

LS: From where do you draw your inspirations for your arrangements?

PV: I draw my inspirations for my floral designing from my clients. Each event is as unique as the clients I am working with. Some clients are the uptown crystal, all white ballroom type. Others are the organic, natural, soft candle light, harvest table runners of seeded eucalyptus and ivy type. It’s all in the details. Each event is a treat and an adventure!

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LS: What is the most unique or extravagant flower related request you’ve ever received?

PV: One of the most unique and extravagant flower related request we have ever been involved in was for a small intimate wedding. The couple were getting married in the bride’s parent’s home. A request for an all-white heavenly scented flower. “Something rarely seen” was the request. That was easy, I thought to myself. A fresh gorgeous Gardenia, of course! Hundreds of beautiful blooms fresh from California flown in just for the event, designed within hours of the festivities. An amazing, challenging and very successful experience, to say the least.

LS: What is your favorite part about being in the business of floral and event décor?

PV: My most favorite part of being in this wonderful business is the reaction of the bride when she sees her bouquet the morning off and when the couple walk into their venue with all the candles lit and their head table dressed to the nine’s –fit for a king and queen. I love to wait and walk them around the room after spending hours turning a room full of tables and chairs into a dream come true. An enchanting place filled with flowers, candles and gorgeous textured fabrics just waiting for them and their guests. Nothing like it!! It’s what keeps me in this crazy, emotional, beautiful business.

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We’d like to thank Paula at La Fiora Floral and Event Décor for her wonderful insight and expertise.

Stay tuned for weekly blog updates and make sure to follow us on social media as we deliver fresh, new content to inspire, excite and assist as you plan your dream event. From all of us at Liuna Station, thank you for following along!