Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Candelaria @ GMP 2009


Last GMP I was given the opportunity to design the carroza of Our Lady of Candelaria. I am very grateful for Elpi for giving me the chance. Immediately I prepared my proposed designs so he can choose what he wants. I came up with three designs (two from the start) in the end what we used is the design I entitled Classica. See design below.

Elpi prefers a something very simple, classic and a bit on the safe side.

The Christmas wreath is the inspiration for this design and is primarily a garland type of arrangement. To add "twist" instead of placing it on top of the carroza the floral arrangement will run across the sides of the carroza leaving the top part of the carroza "clean" (since we are planning to put live candles on top of the carroza...in front of the Candelaria ala Macarena since the image is... Candelaria-thus many candles...as Elpi puts it, this is the "drama" he is after.)


How to prepare a similar type of arrangement:


1. Prepare your floral foam or if you are using saja, bundle the stalks together to form a long line. (Another option is to just bundle your foliage no need to use foam or saja).

2. Carefully outline how your garland will hang on the sides of the carroza, this depends on the shape of the carroza.

3. Secure the foam or saja.

4. Cut the stem of the flowers to about 2-3 inches. One by one arrange the flowers until the foam or saja is completely filled out--tightly packed. Key here is to ensure that there are no spaces between the blooms. (Option is to use leaves such as Papua so that you don't need as many flowers).

Lessons learned:

1. The Carroza. Determine the shape of the carroza and ensure that the design is appropriate for the length and size of the carroza. In our case, when we finalized the design the carroza was still being constructed. I was not able to see the carroza until the night before the procession, thus all the while I have a different carroza in mind. I had to make some revisions in the design last Sunday and had a difficult time deciding what element stays (it came to a point wherein I thought of removing the wreaths).


2. Money, Money, Money. Supposedly the flowers we will use are white roses, no leaves. Unfortunately when we went to Dangwa last Saturday, roses are very expensive and I only see a few stalls selling these. Our budget cannot afford this type of flower so we have to check the whole market for an alternative. Moments like this I wish I am a richman, price is of no concern, so I can still remain true to the design. In the end, we resorted to use Fiji and bought Papua leaves as fillers (as opposed to an all flower arrangement as originally planned).

3. Check the merchandise you bought before leaving. We bought thin wires last Saturday, when we were to use these, we realized that it was not included in our bag. I had to pick up discarded wires lying on the ground left by carozza owners who finished decorating before us.


4. Time. We did not have enough time to finish the carroza and just had to do what we can...another sad thing. Well for those planning to join GMP next year best to start early...besides if you are the carroza owner you don't want to look tooo tired during the procession. You would want to raise your head up high as you walk in front of the Cathedral.


5. Mentos moments. There are a lot of opportunities to be resourceful so just be creative, keep an open mind and maintain your cool always.

Wreath using Paper Roses
Aside from using roses and fiji, you can also use paper roses as a variation (add stargazers and orchids as accent).

In the end, though I still would want to do more it's already 3:00 pm. By this time the carozza's are already being lined up, just had to make sure that whatever we finished still looks presentable and somehow looks done. It was a very hot day (my skin felt prickly when I got home), and it was definitely stressful and tiring however I did enjoy every moment of it. One bystander even said, "ganito pala dito parang piyesta (while bands where playing Nobody, Nobody). And it's true, it was really a fun day amidst all the stress and work.

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