Hanging with Martha at the Orchid Dinner. (click on photos to enlarge)
I had the pleasure last week of attending the New York Botanical Garden Orchid Dinner which was held at the Mandarin Oriental ballroom at Columbus Circle high above Central Park. Proceeds from this dinner fund the Garden's important research collection. The dinner was sponsored in part by Veranda magazine which assembled a roster of illustrious designers who created wondrous orchid centerpieces for the dinner tables. The theme of the centerpieces was "Key West Contemporary" which is also the theme of the annual orchid show at the Botanical Garden, which just opened on March 1. Orchids are such spectacular flowers – the haute couture of the floral world, though I myself do not have much luck growing them at home. The centerpieces were a joy to behold.
Alison Spear for Arquitectonica Interiors created an explosion of tropical colors –
I ran into Veranda editor-in-chief Clinton Smith who has been adjusting to this very harsh northern winter, having moved to New York from Georgia where he was the editorial director of Atlanta Homes and Lifestyles. "I'm amazed by these arrangements," he said to me. "I like that they are so happy."
A vertical design by Sherrill Canet –
Martha Stewart (pictured above) was looking very chic in a simple, luxurious top combined with an ornate, sculptural necklace. Martha is passionate about orchids and the Botanical Garden as well. "I have two giant benches of orchids in my greenhouse at home," she told me, noting that she is particularly partial to Phalaenopsis orchids, lady slipper orchids, and Christmas orchids. "The Botanical Garden is very important to us," she said to me. "We've done a lot of stories there, and Gregory Long, the Garden's president, is doing an amazing job."
An arch of orchids by David M. Handy Events –
One of my favorite arrangements was this spray of white orchids by David Easton, the great American decorator.
who told me that the beginning of this floral design was the geometric metal base which guests at the table can see through, so they can talk and converse around the table. Smart!
A lush profusion of orchids and palm leaves by FlowerSchool New York.
After dinner, there was dancing to a fun, lively band on the dance floor –
It was indeed a happy, colorful celebration on a cold, winter night.