A Bloom with a Hue
If the title for this post makes me sound like a girl who never entirely got over the 1985 Merchant Ivory version of my favourite E.M Forster novel, or such a big fan of Helena Bonham Carter that I couldn't wait to use this strap line at some stage in my blogging career... well, in all honesty, that wouldn't be entirely unfair. I was once, in my early teens, that girl with a quiff and floral Laura Ashley trousers who wasn't allowed out that much and thus spent much of her time with her nose in books and watching adaptations of not just E.M Forster but even Evelyn Waugh and Jane Austen. I prefer not to see photographs of myself during that particular phase of life, but an evening with Rupert Graves and/or Emma Thompson still fills me with delight and I make no apologies for this.
However, this is not a post about my sheltered upbringing, nor about some questionable fashion choices in the mid 1980s but rather a comment on the fascinating subject of colour psychology as introduced to us by The Brand Stylist, Fiona Humberton at the recent Branding for Florists workshop jointly hosted with Flowerona.
Before the course, Rona pointed me in the direction of Fiona's post entitled "The Absolute Essentials of Colour Psychology", which outlines the four seasonal personalities - each one has their own distinct set of characteristics which in turn should help you to define the intention for your brand. So far, so good. Fall is without doubt my favourite season and the colours I am drawn to are definitely autumnal. However, it quickly became apparent that this is not just about one's favourite colour scheme, it is about personality traits too. For example, Spring is "youthful, lively, fun and bursting with energy". (Hilda, I'm looking at you here...). Summer is graceful, romantic, elegant, delicate and muted. Apparently, florists and other creatives are often Summer personalities. They like grey muted tones too - a quick look at my Instagram reveals flowers more often than not photographed against a background of Farrow and Ball shades. Adding to that my love of ethereal heroines floating around in Merchant Ivory films, I conclude I must be a Summer personality before I head off to Brixton East for our workshop. Between you and me, I really wanted to be Autumn. Darn.
However, good news. After a few rounds of questions to the group I am pronounced to be an Autumn personality (with a bit of late Summer). My passion for nature and all things environmental swings it in my direction: "Earthy, organic, rustic, campaigning..." with a penchant for "natural textures, recycled paper, rough hewn wood and coarse linen". My mood board, created in the afternoon from items I had brought in with me before the class, seems to back this up. A retrospective glance through my library of photos taken this year - from Magnolia branches and Belle Epoque tulips in the spring, Koko Loco and Cappuccino roses, and Dalmatian Peach Foxgloves in the Summer, through to Café au Lait dahlias and echinacea in the Autumn, my chosen colour palette is fairly consistent whatever the season. This year, at the Chelsea Flower Show, I discovered that Verbascum Petra is my new all time favourite plant. My love of corals, peaches and browns is always backed up by a healthy dose of green too, and whenever and wherever there is a hellebore or a fritilleria to be found, I am probably not far away...
Fiona also took time to talk us through the positive attributes of each colour - interestingly I only noted down green and brown in my notebook. For green, we have harmony, balance, abundance, instinct. Green has restorative properties. For brown, we have words like earthy, stable, sincere grounded and, er, modest.
We covered so many other topics that day, not least why we should all dress like Sarah from Simply by Arrangement (her favourite flowers include chocolate cosmos and sanguisorbia, by the way, which makes her a good egg, and a stylish one at that!). We chatted dogs over cocktails - it wasn't JUST me, there were others too - this time. All in all, it was a pretty special day. One full of inspiration and more new friends. And another big step in a new direction. So the next time you see a workshop with Fiona and Rona pop up, I would wholeheartedly recommend it. Meanwhile, I am off to think of more literature inspired puns. Dandelionhead Revisited anyone? Maybe not.