Author Archives: Joan

Sakura Days-Japan Fair

Sakura Days, at the Cherry Blossom Festival at VanDusen Gardens…the Vancouver Ikebana Association participated with a display in the Discovery Room. Most arrangements included branches of cherry blossoms to go with the occasion. Five arrangements were on display by members of our school, Sangetsu. Three other schools participated, displaying 16 arrangements in all.
Classes continued, on three different levels.

Spring has Sprung

Another busy month with flowers. Having stepped into the position of President of the Vancouver Ikebana Association, in January (for the third time), I have been busy helping get the VIA newsletter together, as well as editing a semi-annual newsletter for Sangetsu North America.

We have gotten a committee together to plan our upcoming Spring Show in May, with haiku and poems as inspiration for our arrangements. This is a new undertaking, and over one hundred haiku and poems have been collected, which range from old masters of the seventeenth century, to some from the Vancouver Haiku Group, as well as our association’s international haiku champion, Inga Uhlmann.

Classes continue, although the afternoon ladies have taken a two week break to be with their children who are on Spring Break. Here is a picture of an arrangement using local flowering current, and iris.

Joan <3's her Customers!

February is a busy month for flower orders. I acquired a very appreciative customer this month, who ordered three large arrangements. One was for congratulating his dentist on opening a new office, the second was for his Valentine, and the third was supposed to be for his mother for Chinese New Year.

I say “supposed to be”, because when he saw it, he loved it so much, he couldn’t bring himself to give it away! He went to T & T to get her something else…



I was also invited to do an ikebana demonstration for the South Burnaby Garden Club, so I used as many branches and greenery from our strata grounds, and made five arrangements.

2018 is off to a busy start!

Happy New Year!

I was invited to attend a New Year’s celebration at the Japanese Consul General’s home.  Mrs Okai hosted the luncheon, which started off with the ceremonial breaking open of a sake barrel. Delicious traditional New Year’s food and specialty sushi was plentiful. On the front porch of the mansion in Shaughnessy, two huge matching New Year’s Ikebana were displayed.

Merry Christmas from Joan!

I always think that I have started my Christmas preparations early, but before I know it, December 25th is almost here!

We had our last Ikebana classes for the year, in early December, and ended the lessons with some tea and goodies. Plans are under way to continue two sets of classes, and if there is enough interest, two more on Wednesdays.

Hope everyone has a very Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy New Year!

Falling for Fall Colours

October saw the start of a group of brand new students. Now we have three classes a week! Well not every week, since my continuing students get together every other week…We have been making fall arrangements with flowers and leaves in the yellow/orange/red range. We even made Hallowe’en arrangements with home grown Chinese lantern and wisteria branches. You can check out more pictures of our arrangements and gardens by following me on Instagram @joanfairs

Back to (Ikebana) School!

It’s back to class time again, and our continuing students have been lucky enough to have a fellow student who is an avid dahlia grower. Not only does he have a beautiful garden, he shares all that he is growing with our class at the beginning of the fall season, and invites us to his home to cut and arrange. Here are some of the ikebana created with the colourful blooms. Thank-you, Jack!

Celebrating Japanese Culture

The Powell Street Festival was held in the section of Vancouver which was once called “Japan Town”, on the BC Day long weekend. All things Japanese were celebrated, including food stalls, taiko drumming, Bonsai and Ikebana displays. Two ikebana demonstrations were held each day in the Buddhist temple hall. I demonstrated Sangetsu style along with a new instructor So Jung. We created five arrangements with materials found in our surrounding gardens. The audience members seemed very interested in the results.

Petal to Pencil

The Burnaby Art Gallery put on a workshop called “Petal to Pencil”. One of my former students who works at the gallery, recommended that I head the ikebana part of the workshop. A simple ikebana arrangement was made by each participant using roses and branches of weigela. We worked outside on the art gallery grounds, in the shade, since the weather was so nice. The six ladies happily made their first ever ikebana, which they used later in the day, drawing their arrangement.

Summer is off with a running start!

June was my busiest flower month, ever! I had three special events to provide flowers for; a funeral, a wedding, as well as traveling to LA to help head a seminar and exam for the Sangetsu Ikebana group. I also had four classes to teach and an impromptu class of mini ikebana at a student’s home.

I am planning on taking a breather for the summer, and do more gardening. Who knows what July and August will bring?