Have you heard about the big flower events happening in Michigan this fall? In November, hundreds of flower farmers will flock to Grand Rapids for the Association of Specialty Cut Flower Growers National Conference (read more in my “Lets meet in Michigan” post). But before that, another big floral design event will be taking place in the mitten state. Starting on October 11th, floral designers from across the country will descend into motor city for lectures, workshops and other activities as part of the new Detroit Flower Week.
The driving force behind Detroit Flower Week is Lisa Waud who also created Flower House, a project that brought together floral designers who worked in teams to transform an abandoned house into a temporary floral art installation–all with seasonal, U.S.-grown flowers. I interviewed Lisa about Flower House last year, and decided to ask her back so she could share more about her latest big project.
Photo by Heather Saunders
Erin: It’s great to chat with you again, Lisa. I’d love to learn more about the origins of Detroit Flower Week. Is it a direct outgrowth of the Flower House project ? How exactly did it all come about?
Lisa: Detroit Flower Week IS a project inspired by Flower House. There was such an immense force of collaboration and creativity during the installation and exhibition–and I have longed to revisit that feeling. My initial idea was to throw a one year anniversary party to bring everyone back and give us more time to get to know one another when we weren’t working under a deadline to fill a house with flowers. I originally was shying away from any structured conference, inspired by #39 on Bruce Mau’s An Incomplete Manifesto of Growth (that I think many of your readers will enjoy!) but, since it seems that I don’t do anything small, the idea of having a flower house anniversary party grew into an entire week of lectures, workshops, conversations, and meals.
The incredible reception of the Flower House project worldwide (that’s still surreal to say!) had given me the confidence to reach out to designers and artists I’ve been enamoured with for years, and to hear them say they’ll join us for DFW in October. It is just too exciting!
Photo by Heather Saunders
Erin: It sounds great, Lisa. Ok, give me a quick snapshot of what’s on the schedule and what participants can expect.
Lisa: Detroit Flower Week kicks off Tuesday, October 11th and we will have the wildly talented and creative Maurice Harris of Bloom and Plume in L.A. sharing his story with us, followed by Flower House photographer Heather Saunders’ book launch party. We’ll celebrate her achievement and dance to motown together.
Wednesday through Friday, we’ll enjoy four presentations daily in the main space of the gorgeous, historic jam handy building in detroit’s new center neighborhood. Purchasing a day pass will get your readers into all of those, the botanical marketplace (a curated store featuring local and handmade items), the pop-up red hook coffee shop, and food truck court. There are also up to four workshops to choose from each day–Joseph Massie’s large-scale installation workshop, design workshops with Francoise Weeks, Lewis Miller, Susan Mcleary, Jill Rizzo of Studio Choo, Emily Katz’ macrame, and our local friends alchemy slow living’s “to smell a rose” and Louise “Ouizi” Chen’s floral painting. Makes me want to clone myself a hundred times to be everywhere at once! The workshops are ticketed and priced seperately, and require a day pass for entry.
Saturday, we move to the midtown neighborhood into the Detroit Public Library, who has opened their doors to us wholeheartedly. We’ll have three lectures that day, including mine on the Flower House Project, which I have not given in Detroit! I am sure it will be an emotional and beautiful recounting.
Then, that evening, we are hosting an unprecedented dinner. 250 guests will dine in the breathtakingly beautiful Adam Strohm Hall under a canopy of florals of Joseph Massie’s design while enjoying a five course meal from hot local chefs. More information on all of these events is available on the Detroit Flower Week website.
Erin: Thanks for sharing more about this exciting event, Lisa. And thanks also for offering Floret readers with a special discount code of 15% off any day pass or a week pass to attend Detroit Flower Week.
To take advantage of this offer, enter FLORETFRIEND at checkout and you’ll receive the special Detroit Flower Week day pass discount.
Lisa is also generously providing TWO (2) full WEEK PASSES for one lucky Floret blog reader and a friend to attend Detroit Flower Week. Enter no later than Monday October 3 at 10 p.m. PST for your chance to win. I’ll pick a winner and post it here. Good luck!
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