My mother was Dutch, and an artist. Dutch was my first language. Growing up we spent a lot of time in Holland with all my mother’s friends from Art School. Looking back, there is no question that being around all of this played an important role in my love of color and beauty, and my pursuit of making a living through creativity. As often as I have been to Holland, I’d never been to Aalsmeer, the wholesale flower auction, and so when Flower School New York invited me as a guest teacher on their tour last year, I jumped at the chance. Wow. I was totally blown away by the flowers. I mean eight different kinds of fritillaria! And the hunkiest, crunchiest, chunkiest tulips I have ever seen. What a thrill.
We started our morning at Aalsmeer where I chose flowers in two palettes and had to restrain myself from scooping up every luscious bundle in sight. I chose a punchy orange and green palette (I have never, ever seen orange parrot tulips as amazing as these were) and a dustier, quieter, mauvy, maroon and green palette. After the market we had yummy Dutch pancakes and then headed back to the hotel to arrange the flowers. Heaven!