A closer look at a color-coordinated cluster of peonies, roses and hydrangea.

Garden Party


Soft touches for any springtime fête

Ah, the flowers that bloom in the spring with their riots of color and kaleidoscopic selections~ they are truly the inspiration for the romantic days of springtime.


* If you place a penny in the water for the tulips, the blooms will rise to full attention in the vase.

* Hyacinth stems are delicate. If you use an oasis (floral foam for creating arrangements), take a pencil or knife, and pre-make the hole that this blossom will go into.

* Change the water in your vases every two to three days. Remove all leaves that are below the water line to lengthen the life of your flowers.

* To extend the life of your arrangement, add sugar, 7-Up, a touch of corn syrup or crushed aspirin into the water. Don’t have any of the above in your cupboard? Buy floral food from your local floral supply house.

Steven Boyle’s Design team created a spring-inspired look at Hanaiakamalama (The Foster Child of the Moon), or Queen Emma Summer Palace. The Palace’s romantic past served as a retreat for Queen Emma of Hawai’i from 1857 to 1885, her husband King Kamehameha IV, and their son, Prince Albert Edward. If ever there was a more romantic location for a tea party, day with mom, garden feast or wedding, we can’t name it!

First, a little more about its history (as delightfully explained by the Daughters of Hawai’i who maintain the Palace and ofier guided tours for guests from every corner of the world): The Palace was built in Boston in 1848 and shipped around Cape Horn to this site in Nu’uanu Valley. Here, it was assembled on land owned by John Young II who then gave the land and house to his niece, Queen Emma, in 1857.

Now, in your mind’s eye, think about the history and about the beautiful grounds that served as our inspiration for this spring garden table set and floral arrangements. Our table was draped with a dupioni silk cloth that was hand-painted with plumeria blooms. This vivid tablecloth was the backdrop for the complementary flowers. We selected a bird-cage, ceramic eggs (an inspiration from Easter) as well as glass footed containers and Asian ginger jars. Each of these easily attainable items can be placed throughout your home for a spring look.

When it is time to set your dinner table, all may be gathered and displayed on the table for your special guests. Our spring blossoms include hyacinth, since these delicate blossoms are both a spring favorite and very aromatic. Peonies, garden roses, tea roses and hydrangea also added to our garden feel. Tulips, sweet peas, variegated ivy, hanging amaranths and ranunculus completed the ffnal touches. Aside from pastels being the shades of the season, we focused on the soft hues because they capture the wistful essence of the grounds and Palace.

Event designer Steven Boyle’s high-end design concepts have captured the imagination of his clients worldwide. His award-winning style has been recognized by multi-national organizations, hotels and destination management companies. For more information, visit www. stevenboyledesign.com.

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