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CIT students present Wildflowers at Cuppacumbalong

Published: 21 Sep 2020

CIT floristry students have been given their first major opportunity to show their skills to the public since the COVID-19 pandemic through the Wildflowers event at the Cuppacumbalong Homestead in Tharwa.

CIT Floristry Teacher Narelle Phillips said the event was a partnership between ACT Historic Places, Cuppacumbalong, and CIT to celebrate the onset of Spring and Floriade Reimagined.

The theme for the event was "Recovery" and Narelle said the 16 participating students put a lot of effort into their designs. "This was a great opportunity to work to a very specific brief, to liaise with a venue and to go through a very realistic, industry-real process to arrive at a final public display. It was a chance to show our design skills and connect with an enthusiastic audience."

"My hope is students learned about the importance of the planning process, but also how much fun it can be to work to a brief and create on-site," Narelle said.

Floristry student Kerry Fagan said participating in the Wildflowers event enhanced her studies in a number of ways. "I gained more confidence in planning, designing and implementing my design skills while supporting and being part of a collaborative learning environment with other students."

Catherine Neilson, another floristry student, was excited to take part. "It was great opportunity to explore the possibilities of creative floristry designs beyond the more usual 'day-to-day' retail aspects of the industry. Giving local businesses and the general public the opportunity to see what students are capable of producing provides an important avenue for new talent in the sector."

Cuppacumbalong owner and former CIT teacher Ali Wass, said the event was in response to the different feel and approach of Floriade. "The event was an opportunity for CIT floristry students to show the rest of Canberra what they have learned, despite COVID-19 restrictions."

"It gave Canberra the chance to see what is in the garden and appreciate some beautiful design work. We offered students a different space to present their work. It is not your normal gallery space, display space or shopfront, and it's great for them to be able to work in a different type of space."