Chez: Audrey Stipanovich at Pastoral
Name: Audrey Stipanovich
Profession: Floral Designer at Pastoral
How did Pastoral come to life?
I think Pastoral came to life when I was very young, unconsciously under my mother’s influence, as she has always been crazy about flowers and gardening, and that used to bore me terribly before! But suddenly, I found myself compelled, and I understood that passion. Then it was just a question of time before I could actually start my own venture.
What did you think was missing before Pastoral was created?
A floral experimentation field, with no boundaries. Coming from fashion, then photography, I observe and treat flowers differently. I do not apply classical and traditional methods, so I obtain unconventional results.
Why is Pastoral so unique?
Pastoral is unique because it covers many fields of creativity and expression, using flowers as a material. I am not limited to making gift arrangements, events, set design. I also work on prints and illustration, can do installations, curating existing floral objects. Also, I like to work with mood boards and I find it very important to tell a story, to have a narrative especially on events and set design. Another reason I can think of is I don’t use roses, nor orchids! I am just not very interested in them as flowers. (Apart from huge garden roses) It is based on personal taste really.
Can you tell us a little about what past and current Pastoral projects
have been involved in?
I have done events such as Purple Magazine’s 20th anniversary dinner, a press event for the fragrance brand Lolita Lempicka, flowers that are part of artist Sophie Calle’s show in NY (until June 25th), set design for photo shoots (El Pais, CR Fashion Book etc), orders for MAC Cosmetics and Agnès b. I am currently working on developing a print for textiles, followed by wallpaper.
Images courtesy of Pastoral
And what your absolute dream project or collaboration would be?
I have always had the secret dream to work for Laura Ashley! I love the spirit of the brand, especially in the 70s. Their prints, dresses. Or to work on a huge feature film like a peplum, with an abundance of flowers among crowds, banquets, festivities!
Where do you collect your inspiration from?
My inspiration comes from many sources. Mostly films, literature, painting, photography… So I get inspired by atmospheres, moods, strong characters. I am also very inspired by interior designers or artists such as Elsie de Wolfe, Tony Duquette, Syrie Maugham, Billy Baldwin, who showed so much character and set a mood in their designs.
What is something you can’t live without?
Curiosity! That is the beginning of all discoveries, and on its path one can stumble upon amazing things. That is what keeps me going.
What is the best advice someone gave you, that has helped you realize Pastoral?
Certainly my dad’s advice, that I heard for years while growing up: “You have to be independent!” I had no idea what he meant, and thought it was just repetitive and boring. But I must have understood somewhere along the line, as that is one of the most important concepts to me! All my husband’s day to day advice, that has given me the courage to start Pastoral. And also, all that I read about Constance Spry, the British floral designer from the 30s to 50s, who was such a brave, independent, strong figure.
What is your WILD Wish?
My WILD Wish would be to continue developing Pastoral into a strong and creative company for many years. To never have to stop unless I decide to. It is not wild or crazy, but something that seems tough to accomplish these days.
Audrey Stipanovich, photographed by Michael Beauplet at Spirit and Matter, 280 East 10th Street, NY NY 10009. Special thanks to Rick Gallagher.
To order flowers from Pastoral please click here.