Sending Thoughts About Garden Wear & One of CHOF's Favorite Workshops Into the World

I shared the following words on our Instagram today: 

"It took lots of work and heart to bring this sophisticated garden wear workshop by Colonial House of Flowers to life, and the results were TOTALLY worth it! ūüíē ¬†Set at the incredible Musgrove Retreat and captured by the talented Corbin Gurkin. Every European-inspired touch of timeless luxury and classic romance in the shoot is styled by super artistic Lindsey Nowak from Charleston.

The palette is made of rich neutrals with soft champagne hues and pops of exciting silver toned greens curated by Passionflowersue. Though foraged blooms were out of season Musgrove has a stunning, huge property on the Georgia Coast with tons of romantic spaces to shoot from weeping oak trees to quiet, dolphin filled waterways.

Just one glimpse of the show stopping tulle Carol Hannah gown has me swooning for daaaays. ūüėć Seeing how the workshop artfully unfolded into this beautiful image reminds me to expect that there will be obstacles but you can still achieve your goals and joy, a reminder that ‚Äúit doesn‚Äôt have to be perfect to be beautiful.‚ÄĚ It makes me delighted this year to be working on more endearing projects like this one.

Here’s to us all letting the magic In to reach our goals in 2022!"

I wanted to share more of the artful imagery of the garden wear and reasoning behind the workshop (below) of the Musgrove Flower Masterclass so you, too, may can fall in love with the details. 

Yours Truly,

CGH

 

See Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, Georgia

I Believe In Magic

I am ridiculousl passionate about florals and workshops and keep ours curated to more exclusive because I care about every single detail. As an independent floral design house we are driven by the artistic side of flora more than the commercial. Yes, we want to sell our classes and designs, but we aren't willing to sacrifice our beliefs, true floral design, innovation, creativity, history and believes to sell more stuff. My point of view is deeply personal and I try to create original concepts and courses and products instead of replications of what's already out there. 

See Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, Georgia

Why I Chose To Feature Sue McCleary of Passionflower As The Honorary Instructor 

Floret's The Farmer & the {Florist} Interview: Susan McLeary, describes Susan as "one of the most talented, innovative, generous designers I’ve ever met." Her creativity and positivity are contagiously infectious and she's inspired so many designers to think outside of the box. I met Sue many years before and her guidance from afar means the world to me. I felt like her compassion and our quiet pep talks were important to my journey and I wanted to give back with a workshop that featured she and her artistry. I find her book The Art of Wearable Flowers beautifully filled with plant based designs representative of her spirit and style. I was thrilled to have her join the class.

See Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, Georgia

Why I Chose Musgrove

Is located on St. Simons Island, Georgia midway between Savannah, Georgia and Jacksonville, Florida. My childhood memories are steeped nostalgic visions of visiting a quaint, humble old family beach house on Saint Simons. This place means a lot to my mother, her mother, my sister and my children and everyone in our family. 

The Musgrove Retreat and Conference Center, under the stewardship of The Brenn Foundation, is a beautiful picturesque hidden sanctuary on the banks of Village Creek on Saint Simons. This place takes you back in time. Musgrove is rich with history from its construction in 1938 by R.J. Reynolds Tobacco heir and philanthropist Nancy Susan Reynolds, to President Carter’s first pre-inaugural cabinet meeting. Mrs. Reynolds felt strongly that the Musgrove mission of family gathering and philanthropy carry on. In the spirit of that mission, generations still enjoy the lush grounds amidst the draping Spanish moss and the sweet and spicy smell of the BBQ pit. They gather as family, colleagues and friends and invite others to their property to do the same.  

We become not a melting pot but a beautiful mosaic. Different people, different beliefs, different yearnings, different hopes, different dreams.‚ÄĒ Jimmy Carter

As I curated this workshop to reflect what and who I believe in, I found Musgrove in line with the goals I try to achieve in live, in business and with the workshop I was curating. 

See Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, Georgia

Why I Chose To Source Flowers From Mayesh, Rosaprima and Certified American Grown Flowers

I believe in developing environments that make sense aesthetically, historically and that are on point with our brand. I am deeply loyal and committed to the members of the floral industry whom I believe make the world a better place. For me there are no shortcuts or quick fixes, I incorporate the people and companies I have relied on for years so that I can carefully design things that are special. For this workshop and photoshoot I wanted to introduce the attendees to the practices that are true to me. Mayesh, Rosaprima and Certified American Grown Flowers are an important part of my design and success. I want to share that... with all honesty.

Good bye, floral nightmares! 

See Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, Georgia

Why I Think The Carol Hannah Gown Is Best

This workshop was curated with sincere attention to intention, if that makes sense. I have always been inspired by Carol Hannah Whitfield (or CH) who is a  transplanted gal from South Carolina and a self taught designer living in NYC. CH began sewing at the ripe age of seven under her mom's instruction. I connect with her story as I, too, began sewing under my Grandmother and mother's instruction.  And, just as her once secretive sewing hobby blossomed into a profession in the dreamy world of the bridal industry so has my once secretive floral hobby. 

Deeply drawn to the CH commitment to the highest quality techniques --French seams, baby seams, tiny baby hems, building our own corsets, hand draping - and the fact that every every single gown is made on-site by hand, one at a time by a team of skilled artisans who span decades of experience, I feel like the Carol Hannah fit and brand are in-line with Colonial House of Flowers aesthetics and beliefs. 

I wanted the shoot to really be all mine and because of Carol Hannah's personal story and approach to fashion design I felt it is the perfect line for this workshop.

See Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, Georgia

Why I Believe Liv Packard Is Perfect 

Liv's mother Laura Packard reached out to me a few years ago to offer an opportunity to be a part of a Southern Living experience in South Carolina. Laura is a creative writer and esteemed copy writer and branding expert who is a University of Georgia alumni. She asked me to create living jewelry for the event at Habersham. Laura is vibrant and kind and generous and took a chance our our little flowers shop. During the event she spoke in ways that enthusiastically celebrated my work and our family flower shop. She makes me feel good and deserving and is a wonderful champion of honesty, women and success. Her kindness back in the early days of my career always meant a lot to me. 

Through following Laura's work I knew the her daughter Liv was entering the world of modeling. And, I really like Liv's heart as much as her beauty. This workshop and photoshoot is an opportunity for me to extend an opportunity to Luara and her daughter and a way to say thank you. 

Liv has gone on to become a acclaimed model since the day we took these photos.  Now she works with international agencies and fashion icons. I knew she would! I believed in her and her mother and I am proud of her work and her heart and remember our time at Musgrove fondly. She was the sweetest, prettiest young lady. 

 

See Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaSee Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaSee Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaSee Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaSee Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaSee Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaSee Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaSee Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, Georgia

 

See Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaMusgrove at Saint Simons Island, Georgia

 

See Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaSee Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaSee Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaSee Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaSee Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaSee Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaSee Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaSee Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaSee Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, GeorgiaSee Fine Art Flower Fashion captured on film by Corbin Gurkin by Christy Hulsey and Colonial House of Flowers at Musgrove on Saint Simons Island, Georgia

I would love to help you with your floral design and learning through our online shop, private courses, videos and tutorials. You may visit our shop, colonial house.net any time to connect and for inspiration. 

Workshop + Planning: Colonial House of Flowers including Kaitlyn Baxter, Christy Hulsey, Brian Hulsey, Derek Eason and Amanda Currier
Floral Sourcing: Mayesh, Certified American Grown Flowers, Rosaprima
Location: Musgrove Retreat Center, Saint Simons Island, Georgia 
Instructor: Susan McLeary, PassionflowerSue
Photography: Corbin Gurkin
Hair and Makeup: Ashley Brook Perryman, ABP Makeup 
Styling: Lindsey Nowak Style of The Edit Collective, Charleston Weddings Magazine
Model: Liv Packard, Chapter Management UK
Gowns: Carol Hannah Bridal

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