THE HYDRANGEA

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When hip stylist Camille Bidault Waddington was photographed in her home for French Vogue, she chose to be shot alongside just a few of her favorite things: an antique wooden dresser, a sensuous sculpture and a vase overflowing with bulbous pom-poms of inky-blue hydrangeas. In the past, the hydrangea was a plant that was kept strictly outside. Today, it’s the bloom du jour, not just for stylists, but couturiers, jewellers, hoteliers – and even milliners. At last year’s Kentucky Derby, the heads of fashionable women were adorned with it, clearly inspired by such great hat-makers as Paulette Marchand, who created “caps” of hydrangea blossom for such clients as Greta Garbo and Edith Piaf. “Hydrangeas just go anywhere,” says florist Reed McIlvaine, whose arrangements adorn The St. Regis New York. “In winter we use big white balls of them to recreate snowy scenes, and in fall use them to turn the lobby into a jewelbox of beautiful rich antique colors. They’re incredibly versatile.” rennyandreed.com