picture of a Settee draped with cushions and fabric to illustrate printed fabric

Thanks to three Kendal based businesses working together for the first time, brides have a new way to preserve their wedding bouquets. The women behind the collaboration are Kendal based floral designers, “The Floralistas”, fabric designers and upholsters, “Cable & Blake” and eco printer and artist, “Deborah Dawn”. It’s the first time they’ve worked together providing brides with a new way to remember their flowers from their special day.

The women behind the idea, ‘Petal * Wool * Print’, believe their product is an industry first. A selection of foliage and flowers are steamed onto Herdwick cloth leaving a dye that makes a unique botanical print. The 1 metre by 1.5 metre wool fabric, from the fleece of one the UK’s most iconic mountain sheep, can be used a wall-hanging, or a cover for a cushion, lampshade or footstool. It’s taken eco printer and artist Deborah Dawn a year to research and refine because of the complex nature of working with Herdwick wool and natural dyes. Deborah’s had to experiment with how seasons, leaf type and the PH of the water impact on plants and how they react with the wool.



“The idea to create a bouquet that could be preserved in some form was something I’d thought about for some time,” explains Ashley Holden, “partly because it seems such a shame to see precious blooms so lovingly tended and grown, through the seasons, enjoyed for just one day. Also, brides often ask for ways to preserve their bouquets. “Our business, The Floralistas, is founded on strong sustainable principles. Composting is a fitting end for many of our floral designs, but a bridal bouquet carries such strong emotions and memories, so the compost bin didn’t seem the right ending for them,” continues Ashley. “Roll on one year and an off the cuff comment to Rachel of Cable and Blake, whilst delivering her fortnightly shop flowers, sparked the idea. We were hosting a workshop at our studio with Deb of Leaf Print and that’s how we came together to work on this.

So here we are, three female founded Cumbrian businesses creating something unique for newlyweds. It’s sustainable, champions rites of passage for families and tells a story through an artisan hand-crafted product that can be passed on for generations to come,” says Ashley. Both the product, and the technique used to transfer real plant colours and shapes onto the wool, is very different to standard options for preserving bridal bouquets. They include drying, by pressing, air or freeze-drying, as well as setting blooms in resin and silicone gel. Other keep-sake options are painting or photographing bouquets.

Anyone interested in finding out more can email The Floralistas on hello@thefloralistas.co.uk. Prices start from £225, minus the flowers.