Tulipina Austria

I am always in search of doing something outside the box and stepping away from my comfort zone, so when the time came for one of my annual winter workshops, I thought "how amazing would it be if we embraced winter and went somewhere magical - with an old-world charm and snowy landscape". Given that I love Austria, and had contacts there, I decided to do a workshop high up in the Austrian Alps. I have to admit, the very notion of getting people and flowers all the way to the Alps in the heart of winter was very scary. Nevertheless, I had already announced it and gotten the ball rolling, so there was no going back.

 Bischoferalm Chalet / Jose Villa

Bischoferalm Chalet / Jose Villa

 Kiana teaching / Jose Villa

Kiana teaching / Jose Villa

In my world, there really is no room for failure. I "go big or go home". I asked the wonderful Jose Villa to come and photograph the workshop, and he was gracious enough to agree and accompany me on this crazy endeavor. Additionally, Natasja Sadi agreed to join us and show the attendees (and me) how she creates her amazing sugar flowers. Tatyana Kochnova made us some beautiful custom gowns in Saint Petersburg and had them sent over, and Gabrielle Hurwitz was able to bring some other lovely gowns from (different makers).

 Klara with ranunculus / Jose Villa

Klara with ranunculus / Jose Villa

 Klara with headpiece in bath / Jose Villa

Klara with headpiece in bath / Jose Villa

 Sugar flowers by Natasja Sadi / Jose Villa

Sugar flowers by Natasja Sadi / Jose Villa

Natalia Khlopova was able to secure us a lovely chalet - Bischoferalm - high in the mountains via a single lane road, which Franz (the owner) had to cart us up and down multiple times per day.

With the chalet full with attendees, i, along with my family and Jose Villa, stayed at an amazing castle (Schloss Matzen) - a true fairy tale adventure.

 Castle Schloss Matzen / Jose Villa

Castle Schloss Matzen / Jose Villa

Finally, Joost at Florabundance really hooked us up with the most beautiful Dutch flowers direct from Holland, delivered in myriad boxes by a very alpine FedEx driver.

The snow fell thickly and frequently, and it couldn't have been more magical - a true dream-come-true workshop.

 Klara at Castle Schloss Matzen / Jose Villa

Klara at Castle Schloss Matzen / Jose Villa

 Table setting at chalet Bischoferalm / Jose Villa

Table setting at chalet Bischoferalm / Jose Villa

Credits:

Floral Design and Styling: @tulipinadesign

Photography: @josevilla

Event Coordination: @event.austria

Cinematography: @studio_moments

Hair + Makeup: @adrianah.bridal

Model: @klara_vizar

Gown Styling: @gabriellehurwitz

Veils: @hushedcommotion and @daphnenewmandesign

Cake and Sugar Flowers: @cakeatelieramsterdam

Floral Hat: @hushedcommotion with @cakeatelieramsterdam

Flowers: @florabundanceinc

Welcome Illustrations: @amandagomesdesign

Jewelry: @jenniferbehr

Rings: @heidigibsondesigns

Wedding Dresses (Blue, Blush Ruffles): @tatyanakochnova

Wedding Dresses: (High Neck from Day One) @christoscostarellos via @spinabride

Wedding Dresses (Short, Long Sleeves): @chanamarelus via @spinabride

Tulipina Victoria

Over the past few years I have hosted many floral design workshops around the world, and I've come to the conclusion that I want these classes to be more than just about learning the art of floral design. At their core, they are about a uniquely beautiful experience getting to know like minded people - often in wonderful locations, with lovely muses (both flowers and models), new friends made, new portfolio images, and new skills learned. Ultimately, what I hope that people walk away with is an overwhelming sense that they can achieve more than they might have imagined coming in.

For all international workshops, we do an editorial shoot on day two, and creating a gorgeous editorial has to have the right photographer. Corbin Gurkin is more than just a photographer, she is a scene creator and harnesser, wringing light out of darkness and capturing beauty in a way that few can accomplish. She is, in a word, a rarity. I love it when I get to work with Corbin, and we brainstorm ideas and bring the best out in each other in a very effortless sort of way. Plus, she'll go to the ends of the earth to get the shot. 

For this particular workshop in Victoria,  I asked Corbin if she had anything in particular that she had been wanting to do, and she said that she had been wanting to shoot some "pattern on pattern”. I loved the idea, and so we decided to pick some monochromatic color themes for the flowers, ultimately creating four different vignettes. 

I will readily admit, as gorgeous as Victoria was, it was not easy for me to pull it off, as acquiring flowers was a bit of nightmare. While there are some lovely locally grown varieties, most flowers are imported, and tend to be very expensive. To achieve the style and abundance that goes into one of my workshops, I ended up picking up gorgeous ranunculus and anemones from Erin at Floret Flower Farm in Washington, ordering from New York and California, visiting local flower shops and nurseries, and smuggling flowers in my suitcase. There were some import issues, and half of the shipment arrived on the morning of the first day of the workshop, which was a bit stressful. However, in the end, it all came together beautifully. That said, I couldn’t have pulled it off without a couple of key people - Polina from Studio Floretta in Vancouver for hours and hours of preparation and assistance, and Vanessa of Verbena Floral Design in Victoria for amazing support during the class and for acquiring a bunch of local varieties to fill out the floral beauty.

The venue: Villa Marco Polo

I visited this gorgeous little villa about 10 years ago with my husband for a babymoon, and had a lovely time, so when the time came to pick a venue, there was no other consideration to be had. The villa and gardens are beautiful - ornate and lush. We had the workshop in the garden, but did most of our editorial shooting inside. If you have the chance to visit Victoria, I highly recommend it - and it is sure to be the penultimate bed and breakfast experience for you - with Diana and Alex, the innkeepers, taking care of you just as they did our eclectic group.

In the end, there were 22 of us at the most beautiful venue, with perfect weather and flowers, delicious food and even a sweet little baby boy (Corbin’s baby Emerson) to keep us all entertained. I couldn't have asked for a better outcome - as these images will surely show!

 Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

 Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

My demo arrangement in red.

 Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Beautiful student work.

 Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

More beautiful student work.

 Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

My statement piece demo.

 Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Beautiful Marco Polo Inn.

 Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Maybelle Imasa can do no wrong.

 Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

My demo bouquet.

 Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Every room at the Inn tells a different story.

 Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Beautiful student work by Polina of Studio Floretta.

 Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Gorgeous Claire with Clematis Montana.

 Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Kiana Underwood / tulipina.com | Photography: Corbin Gurkin / corbingurkin.com

Credits:

Floral Styling and Design: @tulipinadesign
Photography: @corbingurkin
Event Coordination: @studio_floretta
Paper Goods/Calligraphy: @maybelleimasa
Fashion: 

Event Rentals/Furniture: @whiteeventstudio
HMUA: @makeupbydespina
Model: @claire_mccann for @option_models
Venue: @villamarcopoloinn