The Future Looks Rosy for London's Florist to the Stars
Steinar Berg-Olsen simply radiates calm. Surrounded by flowers, vases and chandeliers in his central London shop, Visionary Living, Steinar has pulled off an elusive feat: he's taken what he loves doing and made it his career. Steinar opened Visionary Living in 2000 with the aim of elevating floristry to the level of interior- and fashion-design in the contemporary lifestyle industry. In just two years he has achieved that, designing displays for shows and parties for the likes of Paul Smith and Isabella Blow. He recently filled the British Museum with black roses for Alexander McQueen's fragrance launch, and he is Gucci's florist of choice in the UK.
Steinar attributes his specialist knowledge to his upbringing in a florists' shop, but it's his Midas-like personal touch which has won adoration from customers wanting maximum impact with maximum taste. (It is testimony to his talent that he can create something appropriate after a quick character sketch of the recipient given over the telephone.) Among his satisfied private clients he counts Deborah Hower and Jeremy King, proprietors of legendary London restaurants The Ivy and Le Caprice. "They have the most beautiful house in London and they give me free rein with the flowers there," he enthuses. Not surprisingly, Steinar admits to finding his business "more fun" than he first imagined and is itching to open his second branch of Visionary Living in East Sussex, where the beauty of the surroundings will match the tranquillity inside the shop.
Prices start at €4.50 for a single rose. Visionary Living, 47 Lamb's Conduit Street, London WC1 (+44 (0) 20 7242 9876)
By Maria Paggetti