we like it wild: inspiration/creation- italy



This week we’re introducing a new regular segment for We Like it Wild called inspiration/creation. There are certain things that inexplicably stick with us- paintings, postcards, places- and sometimes we want to find ways to incorporate these things into our everyday lives. With inspiration/creation we will take some of the things we love, no matter how mundane or abstract, and find ways to bring them to life in plantings and arrangements. We always like a challenge.

A fabulous Italian vacation is a nice place to start such a challenge. When junior Studio Choo member, Lia, came back from a recent amazing vacation in Italy she brought back tons of inspiring pictures of peachy-pink villas, hikes along ancient pathways, and wild roses that sprouted all over the Italian countryside. In addition to the actual flora she photographed, the colors and textures of the villages and served as great inspiration for a summertime arrangement.


Lia’s trip ventured through the northwestern town of Chiavari, and the small coastal towns that make up the Cinque Terre. What struck her most was the wildness of the flowers, and the roses in particular. Every trail and overgrown garden was alive with wild roses. Villa Rosa, stony and overgrown, was one of the most remarkable buildings on the way to town (and the most aptly named). The roses grew like crazy here, as they did along the Cinque Terre trail along the coast. All sorts of herbs grew unabated along roadsides, and succulents poked out from craggy cliffs and ancient walls.


Between roses, wild herbs, and the warm blush and rusty colors of the local buildings, we created an arrangement of garden roses, rosemary, sweet sage, and earthen colored succulents. Layering and stacking blooms and succulents, one atop the other, we were reminded of the coastside gardens where the plants and flowers competed for a space in the sun. A small patina-ed terracotta pot recalls the cliff-side villages and the high walls that surrounded ancient and decrepit residences.

CLICK HERE for more images of Studio Choo’s Italian-inspired arrangement after the jump!




Inspiration can be found everywhere, and just because a vacation is over doesn’t mean you have to leave it all behind or just moon over your trip’s slideshow on your laptop. Try bringing some of your trip alive again using the colors and textures to make an arrangement that reminds you of your good times. Who knew that the entire Italian Riviera could fit into one little vase?

  1. Beautiful. I love all of the colors and the washing hanging out to dry from the houses. I am yearning to travel to Italy…hopefully soon.

  2. virginia says:

    this may be your most gorgeous post, ever!

  3. rachel says:

    we were just in the Italian Riviera and it’s just as amazing as the photos! love the resulting floral arrangements.

  4. Heidi says:

    Such gorgeous photos. Thanks!

  5. Kate says:

    Can I get a print of that picture on the beach?!? It’s so beautiful!

  6. Maria says:

    I love how colorful the homes are!

  7. I didn’t think it was possible to want to visit Italy and specifically the Amalfi Coast any more than I already did… Then I saw this. Such old world romantic gorgeousness!

  8. didi says:

    oh little Chiavari, so glad to see peeps discovering this little gem of a town. so pretty

  9. LindseyBee says:

    I second what Virginia said! & it seems like such a sweet, pretty, old, charming, humbling place I think it needs to go on my travel to-see list… SIGH:)

  10. Ana says:

    Yes! Cinque Terre! How awesome are the views? and the food? I’m so glad to see this on design sponge, please post more pictures.

  11. Andrea Manning says:

    I went there once in January. Wrong month to go! Everything was closed. It’s wonderful to see pictures of the area open and sunny and busy!

  12. Marie says:

    Hey Annie, just so you know, Cinque Terre isn’t on the Amalfi Coast, it’s in the north.

    It’s absolutely amazing though. Make sure you go during the spring though, the summer heat is brutal.

  13. GORGEOUS! Love the new theme.

  14. Evie says:

    Oh I spent a summer in Cinque Terre…these photos just felt like seeing and old friend.

  15. victoria says:

    so gorgeous – you just took me back to cinque terre. and now i’m going to clip rosemary and thyme from the garden to add to my arrangements. nice!

  16. Angela says:

    This is such a beautiful post. Thanks for making my heart warm and happy!

  17. Shelley says:

    My husband and I vacationed in Cinque Terre a few years ago. We took the exact same picture of all the colored building on the cliff! We were there in October so there were no roses but the pomegranate trees were full of fruit and pumpkin vines were growing in low trees, dangling pumpkins from the branches. It was quite inspiring.

  18. Jolie says:

    Something I found really stunning about one part of Northern Italy was that hydrangeas were everywhere! They were along roads, walls, houses, lakes. My mother and I were able to pick hydrangeas of every color by the bushels to put in our hotel rooms.

  19. Emily says:

    Um… I think that if I could describe my soul, in colors, those potted flowers would be IT! So so so beautiful! I may just make one of those photos my desktop background to inspire some art making. Thank you for sharing. Also, I’ve never left the country before, but when I do, Italy is first on the list!

  20. absolutely gorgeous…..
    the colors, the textures…
    :)

  21. ana says:

    fabulous pictures really. I’ve been in Italy, but I would love to go again, beacause it has so many things to see

  22. Jennifer says:

    Ahh, Cinque Terra, one of my favorite holiday destinations! What a perfect place to use for the inspiration / creation theme. It really is such a beautiful and inspirational place.

  23. simply to-die-for flowers!
    I want to paint them all…yum

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