We chat to Floral Artist Jomeri Mouton
Jomeri Mouton is a lady of many talents. Her flower arranging skills inspire gasps of awe at their creativity and unusualness. She is also a talented photographer, capturing everything from interiors to food and people. We sat down with Jomeri to find out a bit more about her love for all things visual.
Tell us a little more about yourself, i.e. who you are, where you are from…
I’m a part time floral designer, photographer by trade. I’m originally from a small area called the Koue Bokkeveld (close to Ceres). Now based in Cape Town.
How did you get into the flower arranging business?
It has always been a part of our family – I remember my grandmother ordering bulbs through the post, each season something new. When spring came we used to fill every last one of her vases with a combination of veldblomme and flowers from her garden. My mother, Adriette, started to farm with flowers in 1996; we’d always have a bunch of flowers for someone in the car. She is not farming flowers now, but is still my go-to person if I want to know something or need help… a bit like a walking flower encyclopaedia.
How do you go about planning flowers for an event?
Planning an event starts out with mood boards for reference and I build on that. Anything can be used in a ‘flower’ arrangement, so I always keep my eyes open for something new. I source a lot from our family farm.
Where do you draw your inspiration from?
Every Sunday lunch is an event in our family – not just the food, but the décor for the table has to be something different. We only make use of what is available in the garden, so we have to get creative! I also follow international floral designers and wedding photographers on Instagram.
Do you have favourite flowers to work with?
As long as I can play with different textures and colours, I’m happy – I love them all!
Tell us about your favourite project so far…
Each project has its own rewards. I’m lucky to have worked with brides who trust me to play with unusual combinations of flowers. In the end, I think the reward is in creating something unique and different each time.
Like everything, the floral industry must go through different trends, what’s hot right now?
At the moment, very romantically styled flowers are popular – an abundance of flowers, combinations of peonies, roses, tulips and, if in season, dahlias, all in one arrangement. The more the better!
We see that you use fresh veggies and fruits in your work –what does this add to the arrangement?
Some of the elements are edible, but I use the fruit and veggies purely for aesthetics. I like the texture the fruits and veg create in combination with the flowers, something unexpected. Also, the colours – the yellow-orange colour of a pineapple or the deep, dark purple of an aubergine…
If you were creating an arrangement based on your favourite meal, describe what it would look like and what flowers you would use.
Curry! Rich contrasting colours – I would use black calla lilies with some dahlias in shades of orange, burgundy and yellow, goldenrod and maybe throw in hypericum for a touch of red.
Do you have a tip to make cut flowers last longer?
There are a lot of tricks; the first thing we always do when buying cut flowers is to cut about 5 cm off the stems. When the flowers are originally cut, the stems start to take up air and this prevents them from taking up water again. By nipping off the ends, you eliminate this problem. We then place them directly into about 5 cm of boiling water mixed with a little sugar; this ‘hardens’ the flowers and improves absorption. We let them stand for a while and then arrange in fresh water.
If a man were to buy an arrangement of flowers for you, what should he send?
I’d prefer it if he picked flowers rather than buying them for me – ok, maybe that’s asking a bit much… I will always love receiving roses!