Pilar Zuniga, Owner of Gorgeous and Green on the Manzanita Coast

Beautiful things come out of Flower Friendships

 Earlier this year, I was afforded the opportunity to attend the alumni Ponderosa and Thyme retreat in Manzanita Oregon.  It was such an occasion for nurturing and centering my flower self, I couldn't pass it up.
film photo by anne blodgett of Pilar Zuniga and the alumni at the Alumni Ponderosa workshop
Photo of us at the Dining table by Anne Blodgett 
My friend Megan (from Isle de Flores in Nantucket) and I drove up to Manzanita together from my house in Oakland (I met her at last year's workshop in England and we hit it off immediately) She and I had a wonderful time together. We are flower souls, and maybe even just soul sisters.
 
Megan and I at a giant drive thru redwood as we headed up the coast.
the alumni crew after an installation at Manzanita BeachSome of us who attended the workshop Megan, Polina, Kristin, Sarah, Katie, Carrie, Mandy, Tara , (a small flower child) and Me (not pictured, Dallas, Maja, Mark and Anne)
   
floral installation by the alumni florist at the Ponderosa and Thyme workshopThe beach installation the group did, featuring local grown tulips from Witte Farm and our fabulous Model, Carrie McIntyre Jones.
The workshop/retreat itself was spectacular.  We all stayed in one house together, we cooked, we ate, we danced in the rain.  There were no expectations and yet, we managed to forge some very strong bonds and even heal our souls a bit.  We made beauty.  We cried.  We shared secrets.
bridal bouquet by Pilar Zuniga, of Gorgeous and Green at the Ponderosa workshop
Photo of my bridal bouquet/giant bridal bush held by Carrie in an Anthro dress. by Anne Blodgett
 
film photo of Manzanita Beach by Anne Blodgett
Film photo by Anne Blodgett of the beach at Manzanita, Oregon
The thing about being a florist, is it's really hard.  It's a creative job, and yet it's filled with a lot of labor (a lot), business decisions, tired hands, a lot of customer service, plenty of anxiety, flowers that die, expectations, cliques of designers and quite a bit of competition.  Hence the hashtag I often use #creativityovercompetition.
Katie in the workshop flowers at the Alumni Ponderosa WorkshopKatie, of Ponderosa and Thyme amongst our workshop materials including blooms from Witte Farm, Charles Little and Co and Grace Rose Farm at the Manzanita Beach House.
So, the fact that Katie was able to create this environment for floral designers, and that so many of us go to these types of workshops, is a testament to how much we need this.  We need it to keep designing. Actually, we need it to keep living. So go. Do it.  If you're not a florist, do it some way or do it anyway, shoot, it's a human thing. We all need something lik this. And we need it often.
 
 
I could go on and on here, but mostly I just wanted to share how much this experience opened my heart. It reminded me to live and work in the way I want to be seen in this world: as a beautiful person on the inside, creating beautiful things on the outside.
mandala dance, florists dancing in the rain at the Manzanita Beach workshop
A group of us who came together in the rain to make a flower mandala, and touch hearts.  Photo by Anne Blodgett
I'm thankful for all the hearts I've touched in the years I've been doing this work, and I look forward to connecting to more of us creative souls. In Peace and a florist's clarity of heart, Pilar of G&G 
Still life on the beach by Pilar Zuniga, photo by Anne Blodgett
 A photo of Pilar on the beach after our vessel arrangements were made. Photo by Anne Blodgett
June 27, 2017 by Pilar Zuniga
Owner and Lead Designer of Gorgeous and Green, Pilar Zuniga

Collaborations and Community

I was recently asked to collaborate with a marketing and branding guru, Anastasia from The Identite Collective.  She was in need of beautiful florals for a two day workshop at the famed Oh Happy Day Studios in SF, and I was in need of some great pointers to help me with my brand and social media marketing.  It was friendship and collaboration magic, and I believe we both got a lot out of helping each other. It was also a great opportunity to create supportive community, and with some amazing business gals to boot. Here are a few photos from the fantastic weekend workshop and the florals. If you are in need of a marketing guru who specializes in women entrepreneurs, check her out!  

All photos by JennaLynnPhotography  

#goals women entrepreneurs talking about business, collaborations and social networking

the table scape for the Identite collective workshop at O Happy Day studios in San Francisco

Anastasia, the founder of the Identite Collective with Gorgeous and Green florals at Oh Happy Day

up close with the Gorgeous and Green florals in pinks at Oh Happy Day Studios

Pilar and Anastasia meeting to talk about instagram marketing and networking at the Identite collective workshop

details of the Gorgeous and Green tablescapes and giveaways at the Identite collective workshop at Oh Happy Day

Pilar Zuniga of Gorgeous and Green and the florals for the Identite Collective workshop at Oh Happy Day in SF

   G&G

Beautiful jewel tones for a Summer wedding in Tiburon

Beautiful jewel tones for a Summer wedding in Tiburon

Bright and festive colors and blooms for this couple's Summer wedding in Tiburon.  They chose a beautiful location in Marin, with the ceremony on a bluff in Marin and the Reception in the historic China Cabin.  With beautiful cobalt dresses and the water surrounding the venue, these shades of golden yellow and plum really popped. Photos by our friend and lovely photographer Sonya Yruel....

ranunculus boutonnieres in golds and plums by Gorgeous and Green, Tiburon Wedding

Adorable lineup of the boutonnieres in shades of golden yellow, white and plum. Can you guess which one is the groom's?

Bridesmaids bouquets and Bridal bouquets by Gorgeous and Green, Tiburon Wedding

Sweet bright bouquets look amazing against that cobalt blue.

bouquets in oranges, corals, fuchsia, green, golds and plums by Gorgeous and Green, Tiburon Wedding

Flower power.

groom's boutonniere in white golds and plums by Gorgeous and Green, Tiburon Wedding

Boutonniere special for the groom

Bridal bouquet, alive wild and colorful by Gorgeous and Green, Tiburon Wedding

That wild and natural bridal bouquet. 

reused bridesmaid bouquets, florals by Gorgeous and Green, Tiburon Wedding

Beautiful wild blooms decorating the buffet of nibbles.

Floral Design by Gorgeous and Green, Tiburon Wedding

Bride and Groom, florals by Gorgeous and Green, Tiburon Wedding

The sweet and stylish couple.

Ceremony on the hill, florals by Gorgeous and Green, Tiburon Wedding

Beautiful ceremony scene from the top of an ocean hill in Marin.

 G&G

July 08, 2016 by Pilar Zuniga
An amazing vintage wedding at the Berkeley City Club, Part 1

An amazing vintage wedding at the Berkeley City Club, Part 1

Last summer I got the green light to create beautifully detailed designs for a vintage inspired wedding at Berkeley's famous Berkeley City Club.  

The couple I worked with were wonderful, and they also gave some design reign to create some interesting tablescapes with vintage pieces as well as plants and flowers, a wonderful card display, beautiful bridal bouquet and I even got to pick the color scheme.  Overall, I had a blast and the couple said their guests just loved it. Here is the first segment of some beautiful shots from the photographer Sonya Yruel...

First: the Bride and the Groom

Bride and her Vintage Bouquet by Gorgeous and Green, wedding Berkeley City Club

Groom, florals by Gorgeous and Green, wedding Berkeley City Club

The amazing architecture by local favorite Julia Morgan:   

Escort card display by Gorgeous and Green, wedding Berkeley City Club

This beautifully designed set of windows and the vintage window below that we used to help people find their seats.  After they were done, it said this:

Escort Card display design by Gorgeous and Green, wedding Berkeley City Club

  This beautiful vintage inspired arrangement with peacock feathers and their eyes....

Entrance florals with a vintage twist by Gorgeous and Green, wedding Berkeley City Club

This amazing shot of the couple at the swimming pool.    

Berkeley City Club wedding, florals by Gorgeous and Green

Stay tuned for more pictures from the event in the next installment....   G&G

April 11, 2016 by Pilar Zuniga
Some beautiful floral designs from the NEW Oakland studio

Some beautiful floral designs from the NEW Oakland studio

Gorgeous and Green is having a ball at the new Studio in Oakland.  We are devoting more time to our local bike delivered flowers, corporate work and our designs for large events.  After we get a little more settled and get things more organized, we hope to have a small evening cocktail party at the new space this May.  We'll share the details shortly! For now, take a look at what we've come up with lately...

 

protea, orchids and and textures by Gorgeous and Green

Rustic protea, orchid and lily arrangement for a fun and textural tablescape.

 

Large arrangement of foliage and bright blooms for Local delivery by Gorgeous and Green.

 A large and swooping arrangement with our signature abundance of greens and interesting foliage.

 

Tiny ranunculus and rose baby crown for a newborn by Gorgeous and Green

 A sweet baby floral crown for a newborn.

 

   In Green, Health and Local Beauty, G&G

April 06, 2016 by Pilar Zuniga
Vote for us! Oakland Magazine's Best Florist

Vote for us! Oakland Magazine's Best Florist

Best of the East Bay Florist: Gorgeous and Green Vote for us!Click Here to: Vote for Us Oakland Thanks for your support! G&G
March 24, 2016 by Pilar Zuniga
Beauty at San Francisco City Hall and Sir Francis Drake Hotel

Beauty at San Francisco City Hall and Sir Francis Drake Hotel

There were so many wonderful weddings this summer for Gorgeous and Green  Here are a few photos of the simple and natural designs we did for one of our local makers, Tricia of Typelites soy candles.  She got married at San Francisco City Hall and had a reception at Sir Francis Drake Hotel.  We included beautiful ferns, fun flyaways and white seasonal blooms in concrete containers.  All made without floral foam, using our friend: chicken wire. Take a look:

bridal bouquet, simple white and green for SF City Hall Wedding by Gorgeous and Green

The Simple white and green bouquet, perfect for a SF City Hall Wedding.

simple white boutonniere for a blue suit, City Hall wedding by Gorgeous and Green 

A simple white rose boutonniere, perfect for City Hall.

Bride and Groom SF City Hall Wedding, florals by Gorgeous and Green

Cool SF City Hall details and a wedding couple 

The Window at SF City Hall, a great place for a Bridal portrait, florals by Gorgeous and Green

The Beautiful Art Nouveau window at SF CIty Hall.

Simple airy centerpieces at the Sir Francis Drake Hotel, by Gorgeous and Green

Simple white and green airy centerpieces in ceramic pots for the reception at the Sir Francis Drake.

Simple white and green centerpiece by Gorgeous and green at the Sir Francis Drake

The couple with Gorgeous and Green florals at the Sir Francis Drake Hotel

The simple white blooms and interesting greens made a spectacular look.  All photos are courtesy of Vivian Chen Photography, and are beautifully done.   G&G

December 15, 2015 by Pilar Zuniga
blush cream white peach pink bouquet by Gorgeous and Green

Beautiful Blush Bouquet by G&G

Today at Gorgeous and Green I made a beautiful blush bouquet for an out of town bride, featuring all locally grown flowers:  garden roses, spray roses, stock, dahlias and seeded eucalyptus.  Hints of champagne, off white, and blushes of pink and peach. G&G

blush bridal bouquet with local grown goodness by Gorgeous and Green

Floral Foam at the Beach

Floral Foam at the Beach

This past weekend the rain stopped.  And we took the dogs to our local beach in Emeryville/Berkeley.  We love it, since it's only a few minutes away and the dogs love it too.

Emeryville Beach great short walk for dogs

Unfortunately, I found a large glob of floral foam there. It's sad.  It is full of yucky toxic chemicals and not only is it not biodegradable, but those yucky chemicals pollute the water and the air around it.  It's unfair to the fish, humans, amoebas, birds, sea lions and crabs that may have come into contact with it. Please don't use floral foam.  It's not worth it.  There are many other ways to make and find beauty that are more sustainable....

floral foam found washed up on the Emeryville Beach

Gorgeous and Green

March 23, 2012 by Pilar Zuniga
Large entrance arrangement for Gaffta banquet at the Warfield by Gorgeous and Green

Floral Designs for SF GAFFTA Event

A few weeks ago Gorgeous and Green teamed up again with the awesome catering company, Table Nectar on an event at the Warfield in San Francisco.

Gaffta.org reception florals by Gorgeous and Green

 There were a total of 26 tables in the space, and it was tricky to find something that would fit on the  very narrow tables.  I also wanted to include the GAFFTA logo and modern charcoal color, so I came up with this:

Gaffta centerpiece by Gorgeous and Green

and this for the VIP tables:

Gaffta centerpiece Warfield by Gorgeous and Green

and a variation on that theme for all the tables:

Rows and Rows of tables for Gaffta Event at the Warfield by Gorgeous and Green

 

In Green, Beauty and Health, G&G

December 30, 2011 by Pilar Zuniga