As a lover of many things Japanese, I was thrilled to discover from a friend that an English-speaking French lady, Pascale Coste, hosts Ikebana workshops both for adults and children in her home in Mont Kiara.
Ikebana is the art of Japanese floral arrangement which is quite different from the usual floral shop arrangements. Its approach is simpler and more natural, often incorporating other elements from nature. The harmony of all these materials, including the vase, is important. And it is always beautiful to me.
My six-year-old daughter has joined two of Pascale’s themed workshops for kids – one for Christmas and another for Chinese New Year – and has enjoyed them both. All classes include flowers and materials so the children just turn up and spend a quiet two hours working on their flowers.
I find it is a refreshing change from the usual crafts workshops as it incorporates an appreciation for nature’s beauty. Pascale’s creativity injects an innovative twist to all her projects, transforming everyday objects into pretty vases for her flowers: a straw hat, a star lantern, a plastic bottle decorated as a qipao/cheongsam.
Pascale is a wonderful teacher and the children always feel such a sense of pride with the floral arrangements they bring home. The workshops have that personal touch as Pascale prepares a home-made snack for the kids and sends them home with treats such as a Christmas goodie bag and a CNY greeting card. I always look forward to the floral surprise that awaits me and am happy to add a spot of beauty in my home for days.
All photos by Pascale Meissel Coste. Written by Marite Irvine