Flower House Mexico 2018

In November, I had the pleasure of participating in Flower House Mexico, a charity event to benefit patients at Mexico City’s Instituto Nacional di Cancerologia. Organized by a wonderful group of women in Mexico, and fashioned after Flower House Detroit (where an abandoned house was transformed into a floral wonderland), several US-based designers (including myself) came down to Mexico City to bring our individual inspiration to a series of spaces at an abandoned apartment complex.

Committing to a project like this was a big leap for me, as it meant being away from home and family for a week, as well as blocking my schedule and declining business - which is always a difficult decision. However, when organizer Pili asked me to participate, and explained how the money raised was going to help cancer patients with no ability to afford treatment on their own, I truly felt that it was something important, both for the recipients, and for me. Sometimes it’s hard to take the time to give back, but when done, always well worth it!

In the end, the US design team consisted of myself, Ariella Chezar, Nicolette Owen (Nicolette Camille), Jill Rizzo (Studio Choo East), and Studio Mondine. Each of us had a designated apartment within the complex, and a set of students who had paid for the learning experience. Essentially, it was a massive, intensive workshop, but where all of the proceeds went to charity. In all, nearly $30,000 was raised for the charity, which is helping countless cancer patients with treatment. The images below are of my space and students, but I encourage you to check out the other designer’s Instagram feeds and websites for their images and experiences as well.

I was excited to have this apartment assigned to me, as I was excited to have the tiles in the hallway which led to a beautiful turquoise bathroom.

I was excited to have this apartment assigned to me, as I was excited to have the tiles in the hallway which led to a beautiful turquoise bathroom.

This basket was lined with chicken wire and then filled with whatever carnations I could get my hands on. With many thanks to my wonderful students who arranged all of the flowers within.

This basket was lined with chicken wire and then filled with whatever carnations I could get my hands on. With many thanks to my wonderful students who arranged all of the flowers within.

We built a series of floral chandeliers. Here is lovely  Paulina  at work in one of our rooms.

We built a series of floral chandeliers. Here is lovely Paulina at work in one of our rooms.

Mexico wouldn’t be Mexico without marigolds and bright, bold colors. Lovely  Marianna  and our wonderful house chef  Coco  brought me all of the citrus for this color filled installation in one of the rooms.

Mexico wouldn’t be Mexico without marigolds and bright, bold colors. Lovely Marianna and our wonderful house chef Coco brought me all of the citrus for this color filled installation in one of the rooms.

Students at work on the chandeliers!

Students at work on the chandeliers!

Team lunches every day at the apartments.

Team lunches every day at the apartments.

My demonstration bouquet during the initial teaching portion of the event, prior to everyone breaking into groups and working on the installations.

My demonstration bouquet during the initial teaching portion of the event, prior to everyone breaking into groups and working on the installations.

Another room in our apartment. I love gladiolus, and there were an abundance of them at the flower market, which was amazing!

Another room in our apartment. I love gladiolus, and there were an abundance of them at the flower market, which was amazing!

Image credits: Corbin Gurkin