Laura Dowling served as Chief Floral Designer at the White House form 2009 until 2015. In this unique position, she managed décor and flowers for thousands of White House events while using flowers as a strategic tool for communicating diplomatic, symbolic and policy messages. She is renowned for creating a new romantic style of flower arranging featuring free-flowing lines of vines and flowers emanating from a classical bouquet. This style is most evocative of nature and the garden, and balances a strong artistic vision with the wildness of nature. Under her leadership, Laura implemented floral artistry at the White House, designing bouquets of seasonal garden flowers in a style that is both modern and refined, yet casually elegant. She often presents her innovative arrangements in hand-made organic containers composed of leaves, branches and berries that are woven into patterns and motifs, creating integrated, cohesive displays that conjure both nature and the garden. Here, she describes her inspiration, provides tips and techniques on flower arranging and entertaining, and offers readers a fascinating behind-the-scenes glimpse into both official and private White House life.
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