Rosecliff, seen here in a miniature crafted from organic materials, was the setting this weekend for the 19th Newport Flower Show. Journey: Grand Vistas was the evocative show title and theme for the many classes in all divisions.
The vista from the terrace at Rosecliff towards the sea is enlivened by the jaunty tents of the many elegant vendors in the Oceanside Boutiques, selling clothing, hats, prints, gifts, garden ornaments, jewelry and more, all to the accompaniment of a Lester Lanin-like orchestra, shaded by its own tent.
All the Floral Design class titles reflected the travel of a bygone era that, in the words of Patricia Fernandez, Show Chairman, “ a style so luxurious it can only be imagined today”. The titans of the summer cottages also built the infrastructure that changed American industry.
“First Class”, four entries above and below, was staged around the elegant fireplace and piano of Rosecliff. “First Class travel meant that all the luxuries of the best salons in the world were available during the travel at sea or on the rails”.
“Captain’s Table”. “The Captain of an ocean liner in the 1900s was considered a prominent social figure. An invitation to dine was at his table was a privilege…” This striking staging of a mirrored centerpiece (maybe 18” H and close to 30” long) and a riser challenged the designers with its many reflections. Needless to say the simplest designs came off the best.
“Picture Postcards”. “As travel become more accessible, the popularity of postcards exploded… Postcards were assigned on a first come basis. This is the first place winner of the class, a sinuous curve of flowery tracks.