A flair for floral designs

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A LOVE of flowers has led into a business for florist Margaret Cundall, of Southern Gravesite Designs.

A member of the local floral art club for the past 15 years, Mrs Cundall represented the lower South Island in the nationals about eight years ago.

During the past two years, Mrs Cundall has been designing and crafting outdoor floral arrangements, mainly for family, which has led to her establishing Southern Gravesite Designs.

She had been encouraged to offer the service to the general public after receiving so much positive feedback on her work, she said.

“People can struggle with flowers [at cemeteries], sometimes they blow away, sometimes they just don’t sit properly.”

This gave her the idea to create her own designs.

Mrs Cundall said she had designed floral arrangements for various graves for two years, and the arrangements still looked lovely.

The arrangements had been designed so if someone wanted to place fresh flowers as well, there was plenty of space left to do that, she said.

“Some people may want to place artificial flowers, but there will still be a space for others’ own personal flowers, especially when people visit a grave for a special event.”

Combining her passion for floristry and art, Mrs Cundall creates three floral sizes – large, medium and small – to suit the variety of headstones.

Each design was weighted, so it wouldn’t be blown away by the wind, and easy to place, she said.

“All headstones, whether for cremation or burial, are different, so all my designs are different. And the plant material is coated with a spray to protect the artificial flowers from UV light.”

The bright, colourful designs were also popular as gifts for family members, she said.

“They are great for any kind of celebration, special events such as a birthday or Mother’s Day, for people in retirement villages or simply as we are coming into winter, to brighten a room.

“Often a family will all put in to buy one.”

To give people the opportunity to view Mrs Cundall’s work, some of her designs will be on display during an open day on Saturday, May 12, from 10am-2pm, at Maidenstone Monumental Masons, 221 Yarrow St, where she will also be on hand to answer questions.

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