Thursday 17 July 2014

Catching Up With Lisa O'Connell from Wallingford Flowers, Echuca

Its been a month or so since our last "Catching up with" series, but todays guest is a real treat for anyone who loves flowers. And let's face it- who doesn't? 

Introducing the lovely Lisa O'Connell from Wallingford Flowers, Echuca. You may remember Lisa from a recent post I did sharing some photos of her amazing garden studio where she operates her business from.

Lisa is a very talented florist who is well known in the area for her amazing ability to transform any function room into a gorgeous flower show that will leave you gasping! With 26 years experience up her creative sleeve, Lisa specialises mainly in weddings. She is also a very keen gardener and although most of her flowers she buys in, her garden does provide her with a good supply of David Austen roses, seasonal flowers and lots of lavender which grows in abundance along with the many rose bushes up Lisa's front driveway. 

Lisa is incredibly passionate about her flower business and creating a personalised and unique floral arrangements for each of her clients. A background in teaching floristry has led her to also run workshops from her dairy studio which is another way Lisa can expel some more of her creativity and special talents.

So, without wasting any more time, below is a rather large handful of questions for Lisa and a chance for you to get to know her better. If you are considering "tying the knot" in the Echuca/Moama area or a party that requires some flower love, I would highly recommend getting in contact with Lisa too!

As an extra treat to add to Lisa's interview, if you scroll right down to the bottom of this post you will find a music clip I am really enjoying at the moment (let's say it gets played quite a bit in our house!!). The kids love the video (watch it and you will know why!). Press play and listen to it whilst reading about Lisa and checking out all these stunning images- which I might add have been taken by two very talented local photographers- Tamara Cadd Photography & Cindy Power Photography.

1. Describe your style?
Friends and family often laugh at the fact I am a bit of a chameleon.  One day I may be in designer heels and frocks, full hair and make-up, the next day hanging out in the dust/mud of the paddocks in my work pants with built in knee pads, and work boots.  My work with flowers is similar- I make things for others, so I try to see what their style, or vision is and make it happen for them. So I get to create many varied things-  although in all honesty I tend to attract customers that like similar things to me, so it's really quite easy!
2. What you love most about your job?
I love when people trust me enough to say, do whatever you think will work. When they say, I want something people haven’t seen before - as quite often I will be decorating a venue half the people have been to many times.  I will spend countless hours thinking of ideas and concepts, quite often drawing ideas and sketches at 3am- a strangely productive time for me!
Also unpacking flowers is a sheer joy, especially when you know an order has materialized, sometimes many hours of planning and ordering go into a function.  You never really know for sure until the beautiful fresh blooms are in front of you.

3. Favourite flower?
Gardenia ( I was given 5 boxes to make my bouquet as a wedding present by Carolyn whom I did my apprenticeship under ). My favourite bouquet I ever made. I finished it at 2 am the night before our wedding.
4. Three things you can't live without at the moment?
Family, garden, tea.
5. Favourite scent?
6. Where do you seek inspiration and ideas from?
I follow many overseas designers. Also many brides come to me with great ideas - I just need to make them!
7. What do you love most about living in the Echuca area?
Most definitely the people, or maybe the restaurants - Ok both!
8. Most loved colour combination at the moment?
Pale blue, any pale blue flower melts my heart. 
9. Your morning ritual is…..
Again with the chameleon, some days I am at a spin class at 6am followed by a productive morning organizing family, cleaning house, to be in the garden by 10am.
(Until recently several people in my gym class, thought I was two different people - I look different with no make-up and my red curly hair in a tight bun apparently).
 If I have a wedding and the weather is hot I will start a 4 or 5am in the dairy, to make everything as fresh as possible, or alternatively I have been know to wait till last service in Oscar W’s 10.30 pm to set up for a wedding the next day, leaving when the staff knock off at 1am, then return at 8am to finish.   I will then start at 8am on Sundays to take everything out, so they are ready for lunch service.
Some days I like to not get out of bed until I have had at least 2 cups of tea!
10. Are you an early riser or night owl??
Again both, depends on what I need to do that week,  I feel very lucky to self indulge and work all night if I am in the mood.  Or not!
(note: work sometimes involves pinterest!!!)
11. Favourite season and why?
That is really hard for me, as I have favourite parts to them all. 
Autumn – Autumn leaves, cooler nights, best weather in Echuca for weddings, best planting time, bulbs start.  Nerines, and roses in the garden at the same time
Winter – Winter hellebores, ranunculus, lily of the valley, forget-me-not, anemones, stock oh and another favourite daphne.  Brides should get married in winter for the fragrance alone!!
Spring – Peony need I say more? ok sweet pea.
Summer- The succulents come into their own, roses show why they are to be revered, and respected.

Just press play, sit back (or bop along) and enjoy these stunning photos of Lisa's work…..xx
Music- In Your Arms by Kina Grannis

Special Thanks to Tamara Cadd Photography and Cindy Power Photography for sharing their beautiful images. 

Wallingford Flowers-"Wallingford", 9179 Murray Valley Highway, Echuca, Victoria, 3564
Phone Lisa on 0414 709376
Or follow on Facebook ,Instagram and Pinterest

Tamara Cadd Photography-

Cindy Power Photography-


  1. beautiful arrangments - love reading about creative people!

  2. What stunning flowers, Lisa is indeed a very talented lady. What a great life and business she has, I love the arrangement of pink gladdies and roses at the beginning of the wedding isle in the second last photo. I hope all is well with you Kylie, you've been doing some fabulous posts. XO

  3. How wonderful to be that creative and to do a job you absolutely love! xx


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