During the lead-up to Christmas 2022, we eager to embraced the opportunity to make it special as it marked our first celebration where we felt at ease expressing ourselves after the Covid-19 restrictions. My sister Crystal, a trained florist, and I wanted to create a special Christmas at The Sunnyside that would leave a lasting impression on our guests.
Crystal has become famous locally for her flower arches and her Christmas doorway decoration quickly became a sensation – captivating the hearts of our guests, neighbours, and the Southport community. Its presence spread joy and created a warm, inviting atmosphere that resonated with the Christmas spirit. Passersby would often pause to admire the amazing display.
Witnessing the overwhelming response to the Christmas flower arch, Crystal and I realised we had created something that was to become the Sunnyside’s Signature adornment in six short weeks. Its potential to become a cherished permanent fixture was clear, and so we embarked on a journey to transform the arch to mark a variety of different occasions throughout the year. We decided it was possible to repurpose the green foliage from our Christmas decorations whilst adjusting the floral displays in order to embracing sustainability and minimizing waste.
This year, as Liverpool hosted the Eurovision Song Contest on behalf of Ukraine, Crystal and I decided to tailor the flower arch accordingly as we sought to pay tribute to Ukraine and express solidarity with its people. The sunflower is the national flower of Ukraine. Ukrainians view the flower as a symbol of peace and resilience. After the Chernobyl nuclear power plant disaster in 1986, Ukrainians planted sunflowers to grow in the devastated area. The flowers represented not only renewal and hope, but they also helped extract toxins from the soil.
The sunflower has now become a cherished symbol of hope and resilience for Ukrainians as they endure the challenges of war. Recognizing the significance of these vibrant blooms, we adorned the flower arch with an array of sunflowers, harnessing their golden radiance to honour Ukraine’s spirit and strength. It was our way of extending support and expressing unity with a country going through difficult times.
As the seasons change, we eagerly anticipate the next chapter of the flower arch’s captivating journey at the Sunnyside Guest House. May it continue to spread joy, beauty, and a profound sense of unity, reminding us of the power of flowers to bring light to even the darkest corners of the world.