IT WAS THE fluffy pink poufs covered in what looked like yak fur that lured me in, and then I noticed the flowers: the ostrich plumes, and vases and pots stuffed with masses of tulips, snapdragons, forsythia, hellebores and roses.
Take a stem or two for a bud vase or put together a wildly original arrangement—by yourself or with an assist from the owners.
This is Array, a pop-up floral studio at Washington DC’s snazzily redesigned riverside Wharf, where some of the city’s priciest restaurants (and absurd parking) mingle with wiltingly expensive shops selling $45-per-pound cheeses, $4 donuts and other items of similar extravagance requiring copious cocktails to grease the credit cards.
Array, which will occupy this space only for the next three weeks, is all spot-lit bare-bones wall and industrial pipe, delightfully Jean Harlowed with a plush sofa and chairs, rugs, etageres and tables borrowed from home.
While splendidly sexy, those poufs are “cheap stools from Ikea,” says Jennifer Dolan, the company’s creative director. There’s a pad under the pink fluff, which she picked up at JoAnn Fabric store, “that makes them more comfortable for seating.”
This will be useful, as she has planned a series of floral design workshops for the space. The idea is to teach students to put together their own fabulous bouquets and how to maintain them. Classes are $115 and include flowers, supplies and plenty of wine to lubricate the process.
Dolan, who also designs for weddings and special events, has a sample bouquet on a work table—one of 10 designs she’s created for the annual Leukemia Ball, which will be held this year on March 16 at the Marriott Marquis—a breathtaking mingling of creamy white hydrangeas, pink roses, white ranunculus and tiny blush-colored spray roses.
Meanwhile, Dolan and business partner Diane Lee are looking for permanent space at The Wharf. If this pop-up is a sampler of their talents, I can’t wait to see it.
LittleBird “Stephanie Gardens” has a plant-based visual diet and is based in Washington DC.