Category Archives: Workshops

DIY Floral Parties by Floral Circus

Today is incredibly amazing as I have a fantastic interview with Jo Wise from Floral Circus to share with you. I came across Jo on Twitter a few weeks ago and was immediately intrigued by the idea of a Floral Circus. What on earth was one? Did the flowers dance and sing? I had to find out more. Over to Jo…

“Hello, I’m Jo Wise and I own and run Floral Circus. I’m an artisan florist combining my background in theatre and event design with a love and understanding of garden-grown flowers to create unforgettable weddings, innovative events and creative floristry workshops.”

Hello Jo, I have to say i’m really excited by the idea of a Floral Circus, what inspired you to create the business and what services do you offer?

I set up the grower/florist partnership Green and Gorgeous in 2008. After 5 years of working with garden flowers and a whole lot of weddings I wanted to take all my experience and create a new type of floristry business. My background is in theatre and event design, so Floral Circus is bringing together my theatrical routes, floristry design skills, and a good understanding of how to work with garden flowers. I offer wedding and event design, workshops, and floral parties. My floral parties were the inspiration for the name Floral Circus. These are ‘pop up’ floristry workshop packages. So, like a circus I’ve taken to the road and can bring the flowers to the people! A Floral Party includes a floristry tutorial, great food, usually a cocktail or two, a bit of pampering, and frequently a whole lot of laughter. There are two to choose from and they are perfect hen do packages. You can find more info by following this link.


Images by SLR Photography

Which flowers are in season right now and how can people tie these in with their wedding decor?

Popular late summer flowers include; dahlias, sunflowers, larkspur, zinnias, cleomi, verbena, crocosmia, scabious and roses (on their second flush). The later summer flowers are usually more robust and colourful, so look great with grasses and seed pods to create a really textural meadow styled wedding. Dahlias in particular offer a wide range of saturated colour. They fell out of fashion a few years ago, but they are back with a vengeance now! There are so many varieties that they can be used in many different ways. If bright colour isn’t your thing, check out the gentle oyster tones of the cafe au lait dahlia. Just stunning.  Or soft pink roses with lavender scabious and lots of greenery.

What is the most unusual flower display you have ever created? Can you show us some photos? 

Gosh, I’ve done quite a few unusual flower displays. Flowers in shoes, handbags, gilt picture frames, corsets, dog collars… I once created a milky way of orchids which was truly amazing. Thousands of white cymbidiums wired into twisted willow which snaked across the ceiling of a huge dance floor. When lit the orchids looks liked stars, it was gorgeous. Sadly no photos though – a lot of A-listers and royalty were going so security was very tight.


Images by Jo Wise Design

What makes Floral Circus that little bit different?

I think that because I’m not a trained florist – I went to Art School and come from the theatre, my approach is quite different. I love the ‘Theatre of Flowers’, their ephemeral beauty is reminiscent of a theatre production or fabulous party. It’s a moment in time and I like to try to combine that kind of magic with the soul, fragrance, and nostalgic qualities of garden flowers.

What would be your number one DIY tip for brides wanting to get creative with their own wedding flowers?

Number one is go with your heart, don’t get too bogged down with trends or other people’s opinions. A VERY close second is to be realistic about what you can achieve in the time and for the budget you have allowed. My heart sinks when I see a bride who has lost sleep the night before her wedding because she hasn’t finished the place settings or something. I offer DIY bride workshops which focus a fair bit on timings and how to make sure you enjoy the whole process, alongside design tips and floristry guidance. The course is also for mothers, friends, and bridesmaids too. Anyone being called upon to help can get a lot out of this workshop.

What do you think people love the most about your floral parties?

They are a bit different. Something very special happens when women get together and create something. They are always fun and you get to go home with some stunning flowers that you have arranged. Great company, beautiful flowers, fabulous food and cocktails, what is there not to love?


Well, I don’t know about you, but I’m dying to have my own floral party now! Hmmm, how many of my lovely mates can I get together for this… Check out more on Jo’s website

And if that’s not enough, Jo has some fab YouTube tutorials on how to make a buttonhole and flowers in a jam jar…

Lots of floral love

Michelle xxx

Hen Party Workshops with The Crafty Hen

Making craft parties and workshops a regular feature on the blog has given me the opportunity to engage with some inspirational, creative, and very fun businesses. This latest feature comes from Julie who is the owner and founder of The Crafty Hen. I asked Julie a few questions about her wonderful crafty hen parties to find out more. Julie even threw in a special offer for brides booking thier parties before July 15th 2014. What a lovely lady! Read on to find out more…

What inspired you to start The Crafty Hen workshops?

The Crafty Hen started quite organically. I’ve run craft workshops for a long time for different groups; demand for hen party workshops became more than one woman could manage. I ended up asking colleagues to help out, and The Crafty Hen hatched! Now we can offer our workshops all over the UK with experienced workshop leaders. My real passion is sharing crafty skills with others, and The Crafty Hen enables me to do this far and wide. I love seeing how pleased participants are when they make something wonderful.
Who do you cater for?
We mostly do hen parties, but can cater for any event. We can work with any group size and there is no upper limit for how large a group can be. We recently did a hen party with a whopping 34 hens. When it goes over a certain number, we always bring in assistants (with no extra cost to the party), to ensure that everyone gets the same amount of attention and help. We are used to catering for people, crafty or not. All our sessions are tailored to the individual groups, and we provide a range of options for the novice to the experienced crafter within each session. Our expert tutors will guide you along the way!

What is your favourite workshop or product to make and why?

I would definitely say knicker customisation – It’s a very popular session with hens, and it’s easy to see why. It’s great for all levels of abilities, you get to play with Swarovski crystals, ribbons, bows, fabrics and much more (my idea of haberdashery heaven!). You end up with something fun to wear afterwards, and its a great giggle along the way.
Knicker Workshop with The Crafty Hen
Our newest addition is the memory book session which has something very special about it. The hens are encouraged to bring along photos and other items that evoke memories that they share with the Bride-to-be. These are assembled and collaged into a beautiful book, along with lots of other crafty goodies including beautiful papers, vintage lace and printed letters. Added to this the leader brings along a Polaroid to capture the fun as it happens, which you can even include in the book!
Where are the workshops held?
Anywhere and everywhere! We are a mobile service and go wherever we are needed; we’ve held workshops on kitchen tables, and at remote cottages, and pretty much everywhere in-between. We often go to where the hens are staying (holiday cottage, town house etc) if it’s part of a weekend, or can arrange bars and restaurants for the workshop at either the hens’ suggestion or ours – we have a long list of suitable venues across the UK.

We encourage hens to have the sessions at the hens’ private homes or rented holiday accommodation, as it has a more intimate flavour to the party. You can arrange your own music, snacks and relax even more – so if you would like to try on your knickers, or even nipple tassels, there’s nothing to stop you! We have had some good laughs with the entire party dressed in their pants jumping about – should just be said – the knickers were worn outside their normal clothes…

What makes your workshops different from the other ones out there?

We spend a lot of time sourcing and putting together the loveliest fabrics and all other materials, tailored to each group. We also have a team of wonderful workshop leaders that are all craft experts, so they can help with whatever technical or creative advice is needed. Foremost we try to get the experience just right for the hens, exchanging emails and phone calls to make sure we have got it all just right.

We come to you and give you an amazing fun bonding experience that you don’t get in any other way. You get to take something away that you can cherish, use at the wedding and have a fantastic memento to treasure forever – This is something different from a bar bill and a hangover.

The Crafty Hen Garter Party!

What level are the workshops aimed at?
All levels – Our parties are usually a mix of people with different experiences, from hens who have never held a needle and thread to keen crafters, and we instruct them all! We provide techniques that inspire inexperienced crafters to try new things, and experienced ones to stretch their skills.

We often hear “I’ll never be able to make that” at the beginning of a workshop, and it great seeing people surprise themselves by what they have created at the end. Sometimes the hens are so inspired they go home and continue crafting (and that always puts a smile on my face).

We have had parties where they have all been experienced crafters, and in those situations we specifically gear the workshop towards challenging them with something exciting, and new.

Why do you think workshops are a good idea for hen parties?

Hen parties are constantly changing, and hens now want something they will remember, and be able to take with them, be that a self-made item or a fun memory. People want time to chat, relax, drink tea and bubbly, eat cakes, and do something which is fun and a bit different. You get to take away a fabulous handmade item and a lovely memory of an afternoon well spent with a Crafty Hen workshop.

Showing off their handmade nipple tassels after The Crafty Hen workshop
A special offer for H&H readers. Book your party before July the 15th 2014 and the bride goes FREE! Just quote H&H14 when making your booking.
Find out more about The Crafty Hen

Images courtesy of Julie @TheCraftyHen

Hen Party Workshops with Crafts & Giggles

What better way to celebrate handmade at your wedding than getting your friends and family together for a craft workshop. Crafts & Giggles run hen parties and even come to your wedding venue to keep the little nippers entertained. This week I managed to catch up with business owner Katie to find out a little bit more about the hen party side of the business. Katie was even kind enough to throw in a special offer exclusive to  H&H readers, what a lovely lady!
What inspired you to start Crafts & Giggles workshops?

I was inspired to start Crafts & Giggles workshops to share my passion of art and craft, making it accessible to everyone. Not everyone believes that they are creative, and people rarely get the chance to be creative with the busy lifestyles we all lead. Crafts & Giggles allows people to have a taste of inspiration which I hope will open the door to continued creativity.

Pretty garter made at one of the Crafts & Giggles workshops

Who do you cater for?

We run craft hen parties, corporate events, baby showers, birthday parties and more. We take our workshops to every corner of the UK catering for up to 60 people per workshop. Our craft hen parties are the most popular party of choice.
What is your favourite workshop / product to make and why?

My favourite craft party workshop is our ceramic painting workshop. Everyone can choose to paint items for themselves, or if it is a craft hen party they can form a pretty tea set for the bride to be.

Where are the workshops held?
We take our craft hen parties across the UK providing crafts and giggles on the hens door step. If the hen party does not have a venue we are more than happy to help find the perfect place to run the craft hen party.

Crafts & Giggles hen party fun!
Crafts & Giggles hen party

 Is there anything that you do that you would consider to be a bit different from other workshops?

All of our craft hen party workshops are lead by professional crafts people. They all have their own expertise giving the hen party the best possible experience. Our craft hen party workshops are more than a workshop they are an experience which the hens will treasure as a memory.

What level are the workshops aimed at?

We make sure our craft workshops are suitable for all abilities. We often run craft parties where the abilities are diverse.

Why do you think craft workshops are a good idea for hen parties?

Our craft hen party workshops are full of crafts and giggles! They give the hen party the chance to relax in a creative atmosphere. They give the party time to socialise and to get to know people they may have never met before. You can’t get better than crafts, cake, chatter and creativity!
Crafts & Giggles hen party

Special Offer

As a special gift to all Handmade & Hitched readers, Crafts & Giggles are allowing the bride to craft for free at hen party bookings. To receive this fantastic offer just quote Handmade & Hitched when you are making your booking. This offer runs until June 30th 2014


You can find out more about Crafts & Giggles by visiting or contacting Katie at You can keep up to date with latest Crafts and Giggles news and offers on Facebook and Twitter.

All images courtesy of Katie at Crafts & Giggles