VT Group and Vibrant Flowers welcomed Madeline Howard as Floral and Artistic Director in May, 2017. Madeline brings over 17+ years of floral experience and a versatile background in wedding and event design. Her journey began at her parent’s floral shop in Las Vegas and eventually brought her to Portland 10 years ago. Her work has been featured in Portland Bride and Groom, the tv show Grimm, and countless venues and homes in the Portland area.
She shares her experience and vision for Vibrant Flowers:
What drew you into working with flowers and what do you love about the floral/event design industry?
Growing up in and around the floral industry it was something I fell into naturally. I have periodically taken time away from floral and floral design but it’s something that continually draws me back. I find not only the creative aspect of conceptualizing ideas stimulating but the mechanics of bringing visions to life. I really enjoy working with my hands and connecting with the client to bring the personal ideas to life. It’s important to me that clients feel like our parties and designs are inspired by them and they can connect with what we develop for them.
What makes a successful client relationship for you?
It’s all about connection. I think it’s important that we all have different ways of understanding each other whether it be visual, verbal or intuitively. Once we’re able to find the best way to communicate, it becomes sharing ideas or coming to a client with more guidance. We really have such a variety of needs from our clients. Sometimes they have something very specific in mind and other times it’s a bit vaguer and it becomes a journey for us to find exactly what they need – together. Something that has really been exciting for me since I’ve come to Vibrant Table, is working with so many creative people. It allows for so many more resources for accomplishing a client’s vision. I feel like it’s a team effort.
Out of all the work experiences you’ve had with Vibrant Flowers (she’s been working with VT as a designer for several years), what is most memorable?
As of recent my most memorable is an installation for Wendy and Ben’s wedding. I think that’s mostly because not only was I able to share that amazing design experience with my team but I was able to bring in a couple of my favorite freelance designers. I feel really fortunate to not only be surrounded with so many creative people in my work but my outside life as well. It was such a great experience!
Another memorable event was a Legacy Holiday Party in 2006 at the Portland Art Museum. The event was in the sunken ballroom and the party was all set in red with tree formations throughout the room. They had a 45 min cocktail hour in which we completely flipped the room from red to green with all new tree formations. It was the first time I had ever seen a room converted like that (which is funny to think about now). It blew my mind on how well the VT group is able to work together to accomplish something like that so seamlessly.
What do you think makes Vibrant Flowers stand out in the industry and market?
Our versatility. Whether contemporary and modern or vintage, our designers’ unique talents combine to bring our clients’ visions to life.
Our lead designer, Summer Morgan, comes from an art and theater background and designer, Amy Kubow, has an extensive garden and outdoor knowledge specializing in event work.
Keep your eyes on this space, as we’ll be highlighting Summer and Amy in upcoming posts.
What are the 3 most important values to Vibrant Flowers?
Service. Creativity. Rapport.
What is your favorite flower?
This one is hard because flowers are so seasonal and each season has its highlights. I usually default to ranunculus. To me, they’re like baby peonies and poppies had a baby. I love the vibrancy of colors they come in and the delicacy of their petals.
What is your favorite part of your work day?
Conceptualizing! I love when people come to me with ideas and need to know how we can bring it to life for their event. I feel like when I get going my mind producing ideas it’s the most stimulating thing I can do. It makes me think about everything more creatively.
Outside of work, what is a perfect day for you?
Kicking it with my friends on an adventure! I love spending time either vacationing or camping. I’m really fortunate to not only have a great partner but a close friend group of about 10 of us. We love traveling together. It’s waking up and doing a big group breakfast going out and exploring our surroundings and returning to family style dinner. I grew up with 9 siblings and nothing makes me feel more at home than being surrounded by people I love.
Vibrant Flowers provides innovative and unique event décor from conceptualization to installation. Our designers merge floral, color, lighting, texture and staging to bring each client’s vision to life.
- Full service and décor and event stylizing – drapes to centerpieces and everything in between
- Floral design studio –décor, installations, lighting, drapes, structures, – chuppah, mandap, arches, ceremony settings, props, furniture, stylizing,
- Large in-house inventory for rent
- Bar Mitzvahs and Bat Mitzvahs
- Specializes in room flips