Meet Harriet Parry, floral stylist, artist and #KITRIgirl! We were delighted to work with Harriet to create beautiful, art inspired bouquets for our very first Bridal Collection shoot. We sat down with Harriet in her inspiring art and antique filled home to talk life, inspirations, art and, of course, flowers!
We’d love to hear about your journey into the art and floristry world. When did you realise this was the career for you and where has it taken you?
I have a BA in Fine Art, so I've always been interested in all things creative, artistic and visually intriguing! I also grew up in the countryside; surrounded by nature, plants and flowers.
My wonderful Granny has been a great influence on me and I get a lot of my aesthetic from her. She kept a beautiful garden and encouraged me to flower arrange and be very experimental from a very young age. So, it felt natural to combine my two loves and set up my own floristry business, creating floral work, where historic and contemporary art, culture, poetry, fashion and film are constant inspirations for every piece I create or job I do.
By following my heart and being true to myself. I have been very lucky to have worked on floral commissions for wonderful fashion editorials, films, TV, advertisements, all types of events and weddings. I even curated my own solo art/flower exhibition too.
We really enjoyed working with you on our Bridal Collection shoot. We are so inspired by your Flower Interpretations series – when did you first conceive the idea? Do you have any favourite interpretations in particular?
My Flower Interpretation series came about, firstly, because of my love of art and flowers. And, secondly, because of my passion for set design and styling. It allowed me to create really playful floral pieces that focused on attention to detail (my most favourite thing!) colour, texture and shape.
For me, it is a way of collaborating with fellow creatives and to share with others the art, films and fashion that inspire me! Sometimes the works I choose to interpret are iconic images. While, others are new, fresh pieces of work from contemporary artists that I have just discovered.
My favourite interpretations are the ones by contemporary artists. I have made some really lovely creative connections, from all over the world, by interpreting works and have had some beautiful responses and messages from the artists.
When I interpret their work in flowers, I’m showing them how much they inspire me! It’s so important to have positive interactions with people. After all people make the world go round…. oh and flowers of course!
What is a typical day like for you?
I’m up early, around 5 am, to go to the flower market. There, I select and collect my flowers for my job that day or the following day. I love the flower market - it’s a home from home! It's wonderful to start your day chatting to traders and other florists who have become such dear friends, surrounded by such beauty in all forms of flowers and foliage!
Next I’d head to the location of the job, where I get creative with my floral styling. Other times, it’s back to my studio to make up my flowers ready to deliver to an event.
Sometimes my days are filled with drawing and inventing new designs for clients or having fun making up a new flower interpretation! I also paint miniature bouquets in watercolour. So, some days are spent peacefully painting. My little painting commissions are usually given by bridesmaids or friends as a wedding gift for a bride. An everlasting keepsake of their wedding flowers.
You’ve had a very impressive career so far! Can you pinpoint a moment you are most proud of?
Why, thank you. That’s very kind of you to say! I felt very honoured and chuffed to have my flower interpretations featured in Vogue last year. It was indeed a very special moment!
Your home is fascinating and full of beautiful things we could spend all day discovering! What are your favourite pieces?
Ahhh, you can come and hang out any time you like! I collect lots of antiques and art works. But my favourite pieces are my collection of Art Deco fashion illustrations. They just resonate with me and bring me so much joy every time I look at them! I definitely think if I have been here before I was around in the 1920’s….
Who inspires you?
So many people I could mention, but here are a few… Tim Walker, Jean Cocteau, Tilda Swinton, Piera Gelardi, Salvador Dali, The Bloomsbury Group, Ana Mendieta, Frida Kahlo, Rupi Kaur, Grayson Perry, David Lynch.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
Just be true to yourself - always.
How would you describe your style?
Colourful and playful, with a touch of the pixie.
How do you like to accessorise to really make a look your own?
I love a bold earring. Quite a bit of gold and a hot pink lipstick.
You look amazing in our February collection. Which pieces have you chosen and what do you like about them?
Thank you, your collection is divine! I have chosen…
The Lorelle Daisy Print Dress - It reminds me of a vintage dress I have of my Granny’s. A very similar daisy print, but this one is in green - my spirit colour.
The Molly Pink Ditzy Print Dress – Heart, heart, heart! The colour, the shape, it brings out the pixie in me.
The Sylvie Green Polka Dot Shirt Dress - Emerald green is one of my favourite colours and everyone needs a polka dot in their life. The shape and style of this dress is so easy to wear. So comfortable and super stylish!
The Scout Navy Tailored Boiler Suit – Boiler suits are one of my go-tos and this design has such a bold '70s styling to it. It’s retro, yet super fresh! I love the strong pockets on the front.
The Rochelle Vintage Floral Dress – I love the sweet floral print (obvs, I’m flower obsessed!) I also adore the flowing bell shaped sleeves. Perfect for prancing around in a meadow at some point soon...