And the Winner is…

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…Us! On the 28th of March this year some of the biggest names in the wedding industry made their way to the Gold Coast for the announcement of the Australian Bridal Industry Academy Designer of Dreams awards, and we’re thrilled to announce that we were named as Top 5 finalists in the floral design category!

The ABIA Designer of Dreams awards were based on feedback from 102,983 newlyweds and were awarded to wedding businesses who’d been consistently rated as excellent for each of the past four years. Newlyweds were asked to evaluate their suppliers on the quality of product, quality of service, value for money and attitude of staff, which are all things that we consider vitally important to our business. JMF came in fifth nationally and first in New South Wales, which is a huge honour.

After seventeen years in the business and ten focussing solely on weddings, it can be easy to lose focus, but receiving accolades like this, especially when they’re based on real-world feedback from our brides, is a huge reminder that what we do is valuable. The fact that it reflects four years of hard work makes it even more special and proves that our success isn’t based on short-term trends.

We’d like to congratulate all the other winners and finalists across all categories. We’re in some very esteemed company in what, at times, can be a very challenging industry.

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Meet our team: Bel

The Jade Mcintosh team is ever-growing and evolving. Today we meet the newest member of our crew: lovely Bel.

Photo: Little Black Bow Photography

Photo: Little Black Bow Photography

Bel is a recently-graduated junior florist who’s been working with JMF for the past few months. Her enthusiasm for flowers and every aspect of the business is infectious and we love love love having her around. Bel adores a good terrible dad joke and enjoys listening to true crime podcasts and reading thrillers. While she loves flowers she’s also building her collection of indoor plants – rumour has it she’s slowly turning her bedroom into a jungle…

What’s are your favourite flowers? Favourite flower season?
My favourite season would probably be spring just because of the sheer variety of flowers we get to experience. It’s exciting when you see spring flowers appearing at market, because it makes you realise we’re heading out of winter and warmer days are on the way! My list of favourite flowers is ever-growing but some that have always stuck with me are flannel flower, tulips, and kangaroo paw.

Whats your most memorable wedding you’ve been apart of while working here?
My favourite wedding to work on was Megan’s wedding at Mindaribba house in November last year. Megan was so lovely and hands-on with her reception set up. We had a fun challenge installing the hanging garland from the roof, but once it was up it was really rewarding.

Photo: JMF Team

Photo: JMF Team

What do you enjoy most about being apart of the JMF team?
One of my favourite things about working at JMF is our workspace. it’s inspiring and creative, it really reflects the JMF style and the personalitly of our team and the Wedding Collective, you kind of get immersed in this boho wedding wonderland everytime you come to work, it’s pretty awesome.

Meet Our Team: Ewa

Photo by Little Black Bow Photography

Photo by Little Black Bow Photography

Ewa is one half of our superstar admin and social media team. She loves cake, coffee, Survivor, and her two boys (sometimes in that order). When she’s not answering emails and ordering flowers, she’s writing her first novel.

What’s are your favourite flowers? Favourite flower season?
I had a winter wedding so I have a real soft spot for winter weddings, and winter flowers. Poppies, anemones, hellebores, blushing brides – flowers that are a bit unusual and striking.

What’s the most memorable wedding you’ve been a part of since you’ve been working here?
I’m usually behind the desk instead of out there setting up weddings, so my most memorable weddings are the ones we get great photos back from. Teresa and Tyler’s wedding from last year is a definite favourite, and recently we got back some photos from Gemma and Mark’s wedding in August, and Gemma looked so, so happy in every single shot. It’s hard to go past that kind of pure joy.

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photo by matts photography.com.au

 

What do you enjoy most about being part of the JMF team?
It’s such an amazing, fun, supportive group of women. Everyone’s always willing to pitch in and help each other out and work together. Plus I spend my days surrounded by flowers and pretty things and looking at gorgeous photos of gorgeous people – what could be better?

Meet the team: Laura

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas but there’s time for you to meet one more member of our team before the silly season kicks into full gear…

Photo: Little Black Bow Photography

Photo: Little Black Bow Photography

Meet Laura. She’s our fearless admin and social media leader: always there when we need a spreadsheet, a schedule or just a good pun. Laura loves camping, cheese – she could survive solely on grazing platters – and, of course, cake. Her biggest secret? She’s got a bit of a black thumb – she might work for a florist, but at home she can’t even keep a succulent alive. Shhhh…

What’s are your favourite flowers? Favourite flower season?
I honestly don’t have a favourite season – they all have their highlights! love Billy Buttons, blushing brides, sea holly, paper daisies, waratahs, succulents and lavender. Is that too many favourites?

Whats your most memorable wedding you’ve been apart of while working here?
My favourite so far would have to be Amanda & Kirt’s wedding back in April – just stunning. But just last week we received photos back from Amanda & Jonathan’s October wedding and they were absolutely beautiful. I couldn’t help but smile at every photo!

Photo: Liz Ham Photography

Photo: Liz Ham Photography

Photo: The Robertson's Photography

Photo: The Robertson’s Photography

 

What do you enjoy most about being apart of the JMF team?
I love working with such a strong, capable bunch of girls. Always supportive, super creative and best of all – always good for a laugh.

Meet The Team: Bec

Photo: Little Black Bow Photography

Photo: Little Black Bow Photography

In our ongoing quest to come out from behind the foliage, the Jade McIntosh Flowers team are introducing themselves to you, one by one. Next up: Fabulous florist Bec!

Bec has been with Jade McIntosh Flowers for five years. She loves her two beautiful baby (or not-so-baby) boys, everything vintage, and – of course – cake (…there may be a theme here). She loves to travel and has visited every continent except Antarctica… which is on the list.

What’s are your favourite flowers? Favourite flower season?

Photo: JMF team

Photo: JMF team

This is the meanest question to ask a florist – choosing your favourite flower is like choosing between your babies!

Winter has to be one of my favourite flower seasons, because… Poppies – need I say more? Well, I will – just so happy and bright and they literally “pop”! Nature at its finest and happiest. But then there’s hydrangea, the prettiest and most elegant of the summer blooms. Soft and full, but not too showy. A perfect wedding flower.

Whats your most memorable wedding you’ve been apart of while working here?

My most memorable wedding whilst working at Jade McIntosh Flowers has to be Sharnee and Jason at Wynwood Estate back in 2013. The wedding was Gatsby themed, with floral chandeliers, a huge floral and foliage installation and a plethora of succulents in every colour all over the tables and in a succulent curtain behind the bridal table. It was a full team effort to get it all ready and the bride and groom were the loveliest and most in love couple ever. They were planning to keep all the succulents and plant them in the garden after they returned from their wedding. Their own little garden of love, started on their wedding day!

Another one that sticks in my mind was the bride that squealed and hugged me BEFORE I had even opened the van and cried with delight when I handed her bouquet over. Her 6-year-old flower girl demanded her flower crown be put on immediately because she loved it so much and I left with her floating around the accommodation with the biggest smile on her face, practicing her fairy moves ready for the ceremony. THAT is why I love my job!

Photo: Kate aBeckett Photography

Photo: Kate aBeckett Photography

What do you enjoy most about being apart of the JMF team?
The best bit about being a part of the Jade McIntosh Flowers Team is being a part of our little flower family. Coming to work every day in a place where quirkiness and passion are embraced and encouraged makes for a really fun and rewarding job. We all really care about our brides and grooms and seeing everything come together on their wedding day makes the effort and energy all worth it. For me, it beats my old office job – hands down.

Happy Birthday to Jade Mcintosh Flowers!

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November 15th marks the 17th anniversary of the opening of my first florist shop and the birth of Jade Mcintosh Flowers. I’ve never missed honouring the day, whether with a celebratory dinner or just a quiet moment reflecting on the importance of the day. It’s important – both personally and professionally – to stop and note the milestones I’ve passed as the business has grown and evolved. Every passing year clarifies my values as a businesswoman and employer, the strength of the team I’ve put together to make all of this a reality, and why I choose to make weddings my focus.

I’m definitely proud of successfully making it this far. I remember all the pain and sacrifices I’ve made over the years along with some failures that I almost wish I could forget – but honestly I’d rather remember them and try to find the positive in every setback.

As many of you know, I started off with retail shops, before choosing to shift my focus to weddings and functions ten years ago. This was a huge change and I’m still so glad I made it!

In some ways this is much harder work than running a retail shop, but I believe that the biggest challenges produce the biggest rainbows. No matter how stressful a week we’re having, how many hours my team has worked and how many thorny roses we’ve handled, a smile, the tears of joy and lovely comments about a bride’s beautiful bouquet make it all worthwhile.

Looking back through old Portfolios, it strikes me how different running a business was in those early days. There was no Facebook, and digital photography was a novelty. If people wanted to see examples of my work they had to come into the shop to look through a book! We did have a website but it was very basic – now it’s much easier to reach out to potential brides.

Some pages out of my early portfolios

Some pages out of my early portfolios

In our business-driven world, its all to often to hear floristry undermined and seen as something anyone can do, just playing with flowers, but I’m always reminded of a quote by Albert Einstein: “creativity is intelligence having fun.” We’ve got that written on the door of the coolroom in our warehouse and it’s a good reminder.

Of course, it’s 2016 so no anniversary would be complete without a selection of embarrassing photos from the long-distant past. Here are a few shots from my first shop and some early wedding flowers – back when gerberas and oriental lillies were the height of floral design. Enjoy!

Early bouquets

Early bouquets

Some early wedding work

Some early wedding work

Meet Our Team: Bernadette

We’re deep in Wedding Season so our days are full of bouquets and buttonholes, and our nights are full of… dreams about bouquets and buttonholes. It’s a wonderful time of year, but we’re still finding time to introduce ourselves to you. This time: The talented Miss Bernadette.

Bernie has been at Jade McIntosh Flowers for a year and she’s just about to take a break to have her second beautiful bub. Bernie likes poring over interior design magazines, pizza and the haloumi toastie from Ground Up Espresso here in Carrington.

What’s your fave flower season and a few of your fave flowers?

Spring! So many beautiful colours and flowers available. My favourite flower list grows every week… I love ranunculus, it comes in so many colours and looks great from start to end. Love peonies too, they are around for such a short time and I think that’s why they are so loved. My love for natives has grown since working with Jade – King protea, kangaroo paw, waratah – such interesting colours and textures. And I love all the berries – hypericum, berzelia, privet.

Whats your most memorable wedding you’ve been a part of while working here?

 

Don’t make me choose! Sam and Scott’s wedding at Peppers Creek was beautiful and Sam was such a happy, vivacious bride. The colour palette she chose of magentas, pinks and purple looked great with the brass from Love & Protect. Installations are also always memorable – the grapevine heart in the peppers creek fireplace looked great.

I loved the wooden and floral geometric chandeliers at The Sebel for Gemma and Mark, made by even sweeter by the fact they were made by Mark’s dad.

What do you enjoy most about being a part of the JMF team?

Again, it’s so hard to choose! Getting to be a part of someone’s wedding day is pretty special. It feels like a real privilege to see not just the bride and groom but the whole family on their big day – showing bride’s their bouquets, pinning on buttonholes – it’s actually the best job in the world! Working with beautiful flowers and amazing ladies is also pretty awesome.

Meet Our Team: Jade Mcintosh

Spring flower season is well underway and the team at Jade McIntosh Flowers are loving it! We’re a small, tight-knit crew of flower-lovers who are dedicated to making every wedding we work on as wonderful as possible. If you’ve ever been curious about the faces behind the flowers, we’re introducing ourselves, one by one. First up: our fearless leader Jade. 

124a8523-2Jade started Jade McIntosh Flowers over ten years ago and it’s her creativity and passion that keeps the business going. She’s a chai-a-colic and as well as flowers, she loves cake, dogs, changing her house around… and more flowers!

What’s your favourite flower season?
Autumn and early spring. I love lots of foliages, berries, budding branches and blossom. I’ll always cut these to have at home – big bunches of wattle and blossom.
Jonquils, daphne, daffodils and forget-me-nots always remind me of my grandmother’s garden where the jonquils and daffodils would grow up through the lawn. When my Grandfather grew older and the family would help mow the lawn, I’d always be cranky about how inconsiderate they were to mow straight over them!! They were way too practical-minded!

What are your favourite flowers?
That’s too hard a question but at the moment I love poppies, blushing brides, anemones – I’ll stop there, or this could be a very long list!

Photo: JMF Team

Photo: JMF Team

What’s your most memorable wedding?
Again too hard but Amanda and Tom’s recent wedding at Bistro Molines will always be remembered. It was a long day with an early morning start up in Mount View – I got to see the sun rise and set for this wedding! It was so cold and Amanda was so sweet offering me a cup of tea when I arrived. Getting a hug and a kiss from both the bride and groom to show their gratitude at the end of the reception made my day! It was exactly as they’d hoped. Their tables had stunning flowering magnolia branches – quite a few guests came to me during pack down with the hope of taking some home on the bus (until they realised how awkward that might be…)

Photo: JMF Team

Photo: JMF Team

What do you love most about Jade McIntosh Flowers?
We are a tight-knit little team. Everyone involved in the business truly understand what’s important and we are honest, transparent and passionate in the way we emphasise the emotion and beauty of a wedding day through our flowers and styling. I also love our behind-the-scenes impromtu mothers group, cake occasions or passionate rants when balance is needed.

2016: The Story So Far…

We don’t know how it happened but somehow we’ve found ourselves halfway through 2016! It always happens – we’re so busy during the first few months of the year that they seem to go by in the blink of an eye and by the time we’ve recovered it’s July and we’re getting ready to do it all again as spring gets closer and closer. But before we dive headfirst back into wedding season, this is the perfect time to have a look back at some of our favourite weddings so far this year…

Something Blue

We loved the sky blue colour scheme running through Astrid and Keith’s wedding. We took the opportunity to source some blue hydrangea and complemented it with cream and blush David Austen roses, white freesias and gardenia foliage.
The ceremony and reception flowers also featured pale blue delphinium, white dahlias, buddlea and baby’s breath. So pretty!

Books & Blooms

Every now and then there’s a wedding that really stands out. Theresa and Tyler’s Pepper’s Creek wedding had so many little things that we just loved! From the hardback editions of classic books on each table, to the koala-topped cheese cake to the cutest flower girl and pageboy we’ve ever seen, everything about this wedding made us smile.
We loved creating Theresa’s bouquet of magenta, burgundy and blush pink, complemented with plenty of gum foliage for an organic, unstructured look. Theresa wore magenta and blush pink David Austin roses in her hair, and Tyler’s buttonhole puts a country twist on a traditional white rose.
The reception tables were decorated with posies of magenta and blush pink in hessian-bound mason jars, and, as usual, we loved the opportunity to decorate the famous Pepper’s Creek fireplace.

Country Romance

When people say ‘floral installations’ most people think of big, bold features that dominate everything around them. Anne and Nick’s ceremony featured a much more subtle floral installation that just highlighted the fairytale prettiness of Bistro Molines.
The table flowers were equally restrained – clusters of mason jars in a range of sizes, some wrapped with hessian and jute, filled with posies of cream, white, peach, mauve, soft green and pops of brighter colour.
Anne’s bouquet was a free-flowing arrangement of lavender, roses, flowering pink sedum, mauve freesia and white lisianthus with lots of foliage and texture.
This was such a pretty, romantic country-style wedding, and we loved being a part of it.

Pompom Love

We love rustic, country-style weddings, and they’re definitely our specialty, but it’s always fun to do something completely different. Wanda and Ivan’s flowers were a bold, modern twist on traditional styling. We worked with a very strong palette of white and green, and focussed on strong shapes and textures and highlighting individual stems. White hydrangea, pompom chrysanthemums, trix and freesias all combined to make a big impact.

A striking combination of textures and shapes

A striking combination of textures and shapes

Less is more

Less is more

Pompom chrysanthemums - delightful!

Pompom chrysanthemums – delightful!

An Autumn Day

Nicole and Dane’s rustic country-glam wedding at Circa was another favourite. The bouquets featured open columbian roses, white lisianthus, snowberry, tuber roses, laurel foliage and touches of copper beech – just perfect for an autumn day!

Nicole also had a swing which we adorned with lots of vine and julia roses. We love weddings where the personalities of the bride and groom really shine through and this was definitely one of those.

So far 2016 has been a great year for the team here are JMF, and we’d like to thank all of you for being a part of it. We’re looking forward to seeing what the next six months brings us – let’s hope for lots of beautiful, fresh flowers and some sunshine!

Wonderful Winter Weddings

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photo: Ben Adams

Winter is well and truly here and as usual that means it’s a little bit quieter than usual here at Jade Mcintosh Flowers. It makes sense – winter is more about curling up in front of a fire with a good book and a hot chocolate than party frocks and garden ceremonies… and it’s an undeniable fact that wedding gowns aren’t usually designed with Hunter Valley winters in mind.

That said, we love winter weddings. There’s usually something creative and quirky about them, and because most venues and suppliers are quieter everyone’s a little bit more laid back and can take a little more time to get the details right without the stress of too many other weddings to worry about. While you should always book well in advance to get a particular venue or supplier that you love, winter is usually a bit more flexible and a lot of weddings have a more spontaneous pop-up feel.

And, of course, there are the flowers! Spring steals the floral limelight but winter is a wonderland – and a lot more colourful than you might think! Sweet pea, cymbidium orchids, dutch peonies, proteas, poppies, anemone and ranunculus are just some of the flowers coming into season over the next couple of months. We can’t wait!

So grab a hot chocolate (or a glass of red) and warm up with a look back at some of our favourite winter weddings from the past couple of years…

Candice and Ben’s August wedding last year has to be one of our favourites – and judging from the response we get every time we share these photos, we’re not alone!

Candice’s bouquet features peach ranunculus, jonquils, blush sweet pea and columbian roses with sprigs of mini-gum throughout, and she wears a crown of more roses, sweet pea, blushing bride proteas, baby’s breath and jasmine vine.

The warm peach, ivory and dusty green carried over into their reception flowers, with extra pops of colour like this pink ranunculus on the cake.

Georgie and Chris’s winter wedding is another of our favourites. We love the bold purples of Georgie’s bouquet of tulips, freesia, sweet pea and white anemone.

Even the sun couldn’t stay away!

Megan and Glenn’s wedding is so brimming with colour if we hadn’t been there and felt the chill in the air ourselves, we wouldn’t have believed it was August either.

www.jademcintoshflowers.com.au bec essery photography megan and glenn just married

photo: Bec Essery

www.jademcintoshflowers.com.au bec essery photography megan and glenn bqts closeup

photo: Bec Essery

Megan’s natural stem posy featured orange pinwheels, pink anemones, ranunculus, poppies, jonquils, scabosia seedpods and succulents. Lime cymbidium orchids also made an appearance in the bridesmaid bouquets.

The great thing about colour is that it doesn’t take much to make a big impact. We filled small jars with bright and eclectic posies grouped throughout Mindaribba House.

photo: Bec Essery

photo: Bec Essery

photo: Bec Essery

DIY Sunshine… so long as you stay out of the pool!

One of our favourite winter weddings would have to be this one from 2014. Mercedes and James didn’t get as lucky as some of our other winter couples with the weather but they refused to let the cold get them down. Mercedes even came prepared in pink gumboots and a cute jacket.

Mercedes’ bouquet was a wild and unstructured gathering of peonies, sweet pea, anemone, blushing brides, pink feather tulips, ranunculus and poppies, among plenty of foliage and trailing vine. We also had fun with the ribboning with longer pieces nearly down to the ground.

www.jademcintoshflowers.com.au ben adams photography Mer and James  bqt closeup2

photo: Ben Adams

www.jademcintoshflowers.com.au ben adams photography Mer and James  bqt 4

photo: Ben Adams

www.jademcintoshflowers.com.au ben adams photography Mer and James  crown 2

photo: Ben Adams

When it came to the reception Mercedes and James embraced the wintery weather and went for lots of warm brass and candlelight – and of course flowers! Muse Restaurant has never looked so inviting.

photo: ben Adams

photo: Ben Adams

photo: Ben Adams