Armas Koehler of MODA Botanica graciously took time to answer questions about what inspires their award winning, contemporary floral designs, mistakes to avoid when arranging flowers at home and flower design trends to watch for in 2013.
Be sure and check out the slideshow for more examples of MODA Botanica's floral designs.
What three words would you use to describe your signature floral design style?
Bespoke. Structured. Contemporary.
How has the floral design business changed from when you first started in 1998?
The traditional cash and carry type of flower shops are continuing to struggle for market share so we are seeing more growth in custom design studios like ours that focus almost exclusively on events.
If you could back to 2008 when Moda Botanica was created and give yourself one piece of advice, what would it be?
Stolen from a fortune cookie: “We are here to create, not merely survive.”
How did your studies at Sogetsu Ikebana influence your floral design aesthetic?
The emphasis on line and space has taught me to view each flower and material individually and how to present them in the best possible way. Sogetsu is also a modern school of Ikebana that is often very bold and incorporates unconventional materials which are elements that I like to include in my designs.
Moda Botanica is a collaborative venture; what valuable insights have you learned from collaborating?
It is incredibly helpful to have different points of view to provide feedback and to help refine ideas. Being able to start with the seed of an idea and explore the possibilities from another perspective will end with a stronger and more appealing product.
What makes for a successful collaboration?
Learning each other’s strengths, knowing when to push and when to pull back, and delegating tasks for both the short and long term.
What are some common mistakes people make when selecting and arranging flowers?
When arranging flowers for your own home there really isn’t a right or wrong way as long as you are happy with the end result. That being said, probably the most common problem is not having the appropriate container or vase for the type of flowers that have been chosen. It can also be more difficult to combine different types of materials for a novice designer, so sticking to one type of flower will often provide a more satisfactory result.
What flower design trends can we look for in 2013?
While I think we will see a continuation of the current predominant trends of rustic and vintage styles, I predict that we will see an added element of luxury to these themes. The overall look will be one of casual elegance, expect to see antique crystal and silver vessels replacing the now ubiquitous Mason jars and milkglass, and the flowers themselves will be designed in an opulent yet organic style.
Where is your current inspiration coming from?
Inspiration is one of those things that seems to come from everywhere and nowhere all at once. Urban architecture, art, and nature all play a large part in how I view the world and approach design. Of course the materials themselves are the most inspirational thing that a floral designer has: the curve of a stem, shape and color of a flower, or texture of a surface are all things that will help to guide the direction of a composition.
What are three things you cannot live without?
Coffee, cable ties, and a sharp cutting tool.
What does being brave mean to you?
Committing to an idea, putting it out there, and then moving on to the next thing.
Where can my readers find you online?
Of course we have a website www.modabotanica.com and in the realm of social media we are most active on Instagram @moda_botanica .