Fashion will flourish at the 2009 Philadelphia Flower Show, “Bella Italia,” March 1-8, at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.
A Piazza of handmade men’s shoes, women’s handbags and belts, and Italian suits offers a bit of authentic Italian style to a range of special displays inspired by Italy. The Piazza is located in two areas of the Show just outside the entrance to the Exhibit Halls and in the Grand Hall. See Show Guide for map.
Assembling a team of more than 30 designers from all over the country, the American Institute of Floral Designers (AIFD) will interpret the fashion and style of Milan with a 2,400-square-foot walk-through boutique set to the backdrop of stylized, hand-drawn architecture. Reminiscent of a high-end shop in Milan, the exhibit will evoke the Italian way of life with handbags, shoes, dresses, hats, perfume, jewelry and art interpreted in floral designs.
“We are going for the wow factor,” said Philadelphia native Ron Mulray, chair of the AIFD exhibit at the Flower Show. “We’re looking at Italian designers such as Prada, the Gucci for color inspiration. We’re also looking at the cutting-edge designs of Taiwanese floral designer Elly Lin and English fashion designer Alexander McQueen, who did a line of couture using freeze-dried flowers. All of our fashions will be functional; 90 percent can be worn. We’re pushing the envelope of wearable art.”
In an innovative new partnership, dresses based on Italian artists such as Sandro Botticelli, Leonardo Da Vinci, and Alberto Seveso were designed for the Show by junior and senior fashion students from Philadelphia’s Moore College of Art. The dresses along with Venetian vases and flower arrangements created by entrants in the Show’s artistic divisions will be paired together in a show-stopping “Fashion District.”
Floral designers, inspired by the artistic flair of Italian fashion designers, will also create hats, jewelry, handbags and shoes all made of flowers.
In addition to the Italian-made products available in the Piazza, visitors can take home hand-painted Italian ceramics, Murano glass, antique cameos and one-of-a kind vintage pieces from the Official Flower Show Shoppe.
For more information and ticket prices, go to theflowershow.com
The Philadelphia Flower Show, the oldest and largest indoor Show of its kind, is
produced by the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (PHS) and presented by PNC Bank. PHS has more than 15,000 members throughout the country, offers hundreds of gardening programs year-round, and is considered the nation’s foremost authority on urban renewal through greening.