Chelsea show winner in Wigtown

Elizabeth Foster with one of her arrangements
Elizabeth Foster with one of her arrangements

Wigtown Flower Circle members and guests gathered in the town’s school assembly hall last Wednesday evening for their Spring meeting and demonstration. Allan Murphie introduced Elizabeth Foster from Kelso, one of the top Scottish Association of Flower Arrangers demonstrator and one of the SAFA team that struck gold in 2013 at Chelsea Flower Show.

As her theme for the evening, Elizabeth had chosen ‘magical journeys’.

Beginning with an arrangement that took all those there on a safari journey to Africa. Elizabeth created the illusion of giraffes nibbling the tree tops using an inspired combination of Astralux leaves, eunonymus, and blue agapanthus with the stunning bird of paradise flower, strelitzia, to mimic the giraffes long necks and delicate features. The arrangement was finished with the masterstroke of massive drinking straws bent in two for the animals’ long legs.

The next journey took the members off on a ‘magical carpet ride’ inspired by the story of Aladdin. Elizabeth had already created her ‘magical carpet’ base and then used her skills to weave onto it pittosporum leaves, some pleated palms, Avalanche peach roses, chocolate ans cream-coloured cymbidium orchids, cream gerbera and ‘Munchkin’ begonias to fill the centreand cover the mechanics and create a design full of Eastern promise.

The ‘magical journey of love’ was next and, onto a base of heart-shaped ivy roots, Elizabeth set to work filling out the other half of the heart outline with fatsia leaves. She then added glorious deep red roses, orange celosia, aspidistra leaves, rolled and pinned, before finishing off with fuchsia coloured gerbera.

The very topical theme of Cinderella’s blue dress was then magically created using arum italica pictum leaves, dark elder leaves, purple dyed mitsomata twigs which glistened with glitter, silver coloured seneccio leaves, purple sage, blue delphiniums, beautiful lilac Blue Moon roses, mauve coloured Moonlight carnations, fuchsia gerberas, purple orchids and mauve spay roses to create a floral symphony in blue. Elizabeth then addded failt lights to the design to represent Cinderalla’s coach to the ball.

Elizabeth finished off the evening’s display with a final magical journey to Japan and the heartbreak of the Vietnam war-based musical ‘Miss Saigon’. Starting with a huge setting sun circle, fronted by sturdy stocks of bamboo, you could almost hear the clatter of the helicopters as Elizabeth added Golden Acer, lemon stock, parrot tulips, pieris, lucospernum, cream gerberas, yellow and red orchids and Sunset roses. The finishing touch was a frond of red amaranthus caudatusl to complete the last of this floral wizard’s creations.

After a hearty round of applause, Elizabeth was thanked by Wigtown Flower Circle convenor Pauline Todd for giving everyone such an enjoyable evening and some inspiration for the future.

At the end of the evening a raffle for Elizabeth’s arrangements raised money for club funds.