‘TULIP COUTURE’ Gift Cards - Farmgate Flowers Direct x Petal & Pins collaboration.
If you’ve been a long-time customer of ours here at Farmgate, you will know that we have admired and supported the gorgeous creations of Tasmanian-based designer and artist, Sandra Alcorn, owner of Petal & Pins.
Sandra is the creative force behind the exquisite range of greeting cards uniquely designed using real flower petals, stems, and stamens as well as other botanical elements sourced straight from nature and photographed, by herself, in-house, which she then transforms onto greeting cards to be given as gifts and enjoyed by many.
Sandra’s creative roots stem back to her early days as a trained fashion designer who worked in her studio overlooking a lovely old rambling garden nestled within the Tasmanian countryside.
Sandra Alcorn says it was only a matter of time until her passion for flowers and design intertwined.
We were always in awe of the magnificent miniature dresses she would delicately curate from the various flowers she sourced, either from her own garden, or from flower farmers she had collaborated with and our customers often commented on her cards, asking if she could capture their favourite Farmgate flowers in the same style, as they were also fascinated with her unique card creations and wanted to gift them to their loved ones alongside our fresh flowers.
This sparked us to approach Sandra directly and see if there was an opportunity for us to collaborate. This is when we became a part of her ‘Farmgate Project’ which resulted in the custom creation of six stunning ‘Tulip Couture’ designs that are now available for purchase online here. We are beyond besotted with every single one of these cards and can safely say, there is a dress to match every personality whether classic, flamboyant or always the life of the party… but definitely not demure!
From the minute this creative collaboration was formed, Sandra captivated us with behind-the-scenes snippets and intriguing updates on how she was tinkering with our Tasmanian Tulips and bringing to life a concept that exceeded our expectations beyond belief. Sandra shared on her socials and with us, step-by-step glimpses into some of her processes, and we thought we would show them to you also.
Below is when we first dropped off Sandra’s delivery of Farmgate Tulips. Arriving at her doorstep, we were welcomed with a beaming smile and a gorgeous furry friend.
The process continues with the early stages of constructing each of the Tulip dress designs. Sandra’s impeccable eye for detail and petal and leaf placement was something we found mesmerising to witness.
Next, we were treated to some scroll-stopping styled images set amongst fashionable backdrops and luxurious fabrics and props, featuring our flowers placed perfectly amongst these glamorous settings.
Along the way, we asked Sandra a few burning questions and we thought we would share her responses with you all.
Q: Where do you draw your creative inspiration from?
"I draw inspiration from the flowers themselves and fashion both vintage and contemporary.
A large part of the enjoyment I get from creating the dresses comes from their ephemeral nature, the immediacy of being able to transform an idea into reality (as opposed to working with cloth).
My experience as a fashion designer shows in the attention to detail within the designs I create with nature, they are sophisticated and extravagant like haute couture but also have a playful side.
The tulips conjured up for me the colours and opulence of the work of French fashion designer Christian Lacroix so I browsed through some of my fashion books for some inspiration and decided as well as dresses in each colour I would also combine them into one design.
Some of the designs are created with separated petals and stamens but I also wanted to use them whole and include the beautiful silvery green foliage of the tulips or emphasise the elegant curves of the stems".
Q: What part of the creative process of designing your cards do you most enjoy?
"My designing is governed by the seasons and there’s something very special about working like that – each season brings a different feel and a sense of anticipation welcoming the return of favourites or discovering something new.
The element of impermanence also encourages reflection which makes it quite a meditative process. Sometimes it’s just one design or it can be a series with the same flowers and foliage.
This spring I was delighted to design with Farmgate Flowers beautiful tulips, a flower I hadn’t explored creatively before, and I enjoy the conversations and connections that have come out of the Farmgate Project collaborations".
Q: Do you have a favourite flower or particular design out of all your works?
"Oh, this is one of the hardest questions I get asked because I LOVE all flowers – from tiny little ones like forget-me-nots to big bold peonies. But the ones that feature regularly in petal & pins collections are roses and winter hellebores.
I have a lot of Cécile Brünner rose bushes in my garden and it’s such a classic sweet and pretty rose that it’s inspired a whole collection called Love Letters.
My current favourites are the new tulip dresses - it was so hard to choose just a couple to add to the card range so we ended up with six".
We hope you’ve enjoyed coming on this creative journey with us. You can now purchase any of the six custom-created cards here:
FARM FLOWER GREETING CARDS – Farmgate Flowers Direct
or at our Saturday stall at the Jan Powers Farmers Market.