Words On Wednesday: A Floral Escape

There seems to be a theme amongst events on here right now: armchair travel. Like many people in New Zealand, it has been a long time since we have been able to see family and friends abroad (it is over three years since I went to Europe, and our 2020 trip to Canada was cancelled), or even just to travel somewhere outside of the country. I guess that is why we are seeing so many substitutes around at the moment! My virtual travel this week was a floral escape to Italy at a floral design workshop organised by Twig & Arrow.

The event was held at next door cafe, Squirrel, which regular readers of the blog will know is a firm favourite of mine. There were six of us participating in the workshop, with owner Mindy Dalzell, taking us through her design thinking and guiding us through putting together little posies to decorate a long lunch table. Her daughter Gretta is also part of the business, and local photographer Ryan McCauley was also present to record the afternoon. This was the second ‘escape’ event, the first having Mexico as a theme and next week will be India.

A basket of olive branches, a vase full of red roses, a basket of sweet smelling basil welcomed us on arrival. Everything looked so lovely and fresh and almost too good to disturb. Mindy took us through making an arrangement using a mix of the greenery from the olive branches and basil (lovely idea to incorporate in a floral display), daisies, bluebells, carnations and a stunning red rose as the centre piece. Below you can see my effort.

The table was then dressed as if we were about to start a long lunch, with flowers, candles, and piles of lemons and tomatoes. We then sat down and ate some lovely bites of cheese and salami, and talked about flowers and travel.

Below you can see Mindy putting the finishing touches to the table, the end product and the photographer in action. Not only did we get to take our flowers home, but local producer Bongusto who provided the snacks, also provided a takeaway of some fresh pasta and sauces.

All in all, a lovely way to spend a Sunday afternoon, forgetting the cold, grey day outside and instead imagining being in Italy, sitting in glorious sunshine.

You can find Thistles and Kiwis on Facebook, and also on Instagram @thistlesandkiwis.  As for Twitter….am totally inactive these days.  If you want to get in touch, email me on thistlesandkiwis@gmail.com


  1. What a great idea, I started thinking about flowers in Italy as that was one of my favourite holidays. You are always having fun in restaurants in Wellington, it really must be a great place to live!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for providing your readers with our own bit of travel, twice removed (Italy by way of Wellington, right into our inboxes). I applaud the participating businesses and you for seizing on the chance. Such a great idea. And your words and photos brought us with you. I do love your blog!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks for holiday. I just love reading about amazing people doing wonderful things like that which awesome people such as yourself not only participate in but share. That was fun & beautiful as always.

    Liked by 1 person

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