JENYA TSYBULSKI

Say It With Flowers


My whole philosophy is wherever you have the wedding, try to use flowers that are as local and authentic to the place as possible,” says New York-based celebrity florist Jenya Tsybulski (@jenyaflowers). Named by Harper’s Bazaar as one of the top wedding florists in the world, he’s responsible for creating the bouquet that Priyanka Chopra carried on her wedding day.

 

After graduating from university in his native Ukraine, Jenya started his career working at a store in Odessa under the franchise by French florist Christian Tortu, before moving to America where he now works on private events for clients such as Ralph Lauren and Christian Louboutin.

 

Jenya’s style signature is artistic and deeply colourful. Personal experiences mean a lot, as he strives to tailor his approach to the couple’s needs to offer a more contemporary take on wedding norms. “I love it when they’re open to doing something different and unusual, I try to ask them about their travel experiences, what music they like, their design taste just to see who they are and consider all of that.

 

In his opinion, the most important thing is to keep an open-minded approach which can often lead to unexpected flower combinations and unique presentations. He gives us some tips on how to avoid a “cookie-cutter” wedding and keep your day looking extra special.



WITH THE RISE OF MICRO-WEDDINGS, WE’VE BEEN SEEING A LOT OF TRADITIONS GETTING PUT ASIDE. WHAT'S BEEN INTERESTING FOR YOU IN TERMS OF FLORAL DÉCOR?

 

I usually get tired of peach, white and green so every wedding I try to really convince the couple to add another colour. For some reason, people tend to get fixated on certain things, but I do a lot of colourful arrangements for delivery and parties, so some see other variations and then they think, maybe we can try this.

 

WHAT HAVE BEEN SOME OF YOUR MOST MEMORABLE WEDDINGS?

 

There was a rehearsal dinner at the Frick, which is a super classic location but for the flowers I did something totally opposite, almost creepy-looking, with things trailing all over the table. It’s great when the clients really trust you and are willing to follow your vision for them, those are the most fun weddings I’ve done.

 

HOW DO YOU AMALGAMATE THE PERSONALITIES OF THE COUPLE INTO YOUR WORK?

 

I had this wedding where the couple was really into contemporary art, they showed me what kind of art and movies they liked, such as Only Lovers Left Alive. The venue was this massive studio in Chelsea, and they wanted something weird, bright and fun that their guests hadn’t seen before. In my research, I came across this art installation that was a block of hay spray-painted white. I like unusual textures, something raw that’s not typically used in weddings, so we did a huge hay installation that became a rolling landscape like hills and we put incredibly beautiful dahlias into it.



A LOT OF PEOPLE HAVE DOWNSCALED THEIR PLANS DUE TO THE PANDEMIC, HOW WOULD YOU ADVISE THEM TO MAXIMISE THEIR RESOURCES?

 

People try to do flowers for this corner and that corner, but with a limited budget that doesn’t make sense. I would just focus on the bouquet and the table, it’s where people will sit and talk, and they’ll see the flowers closer. I do like to work with inexpensive flowers and do one type in mass. I’ve done a few weddings with a limited budget, just using one type of flower, one type of foliage and a lot of random vases, which creates a very elegant and simple look.

 

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVOURITE FLOWERS TO USE?

 

I always like to look for what’s native to the area. For example, when I was in India for Priyanka’s wedding and in the flower market at 4 am, I found some incredible tuberose that I used a lot of in her bouquet. It is her favourite flower too, which was an amazing coincidence.

 

WHAT WOULD BE YOUR MOST PRACTICAL TIP?

 

Don’t get attached to a particular thing, you should think more about the overall mood you want. People go on Pinterest, see something like a peach rose and become determined to use that, but they don’t know if it’s in season or if it’s even available in their country. Then they get upset when they find out it’s not the right time for it or it’s too expensive. Quite often, people overlook the possibility of being a little more open.  Find a colour scheme and then look for flowers that are possible to have within that.

 

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE FUN IDEAS YOU’VE BEEN SEEING FOR SMALLER WEDDINGS?

 

I just decorated a stoop for a couple who were getting married in front of their house in Brooklyn, I think it’s really nice people are willing to do that and involve the whole neighbourhood. When it’s a small wedding and people are choosing a fun dress with prints or colour, I think they’re more open to going with colour in their flowers too, even if it’s monochromatic at least if it’s colourful it makes it feel so alive.

All photos courtesy of Jenya Tsybulski