Still beauty

Joanna Cuenco
·2 min read

DESPITE everything that these wearying times have destroyed, a passion for creativity and a flair for aesthetics could not be withered.

Fervent creative Chyrel Gomez has been in the weddings and events industry for five years. With Covid-19 postponing these special occasions until further notice, event stylists are among those whose occupations have been put on lockdown for an indefinite time.

Faced with the stress of losing her livelihood, Gomez’s creative thinking brought on the unexpectedly successful enterprise of DriedFlowersPH.

As an event stylist, she works with a team to design the entire venue’s concept, and arranges, glues, paints, and ties décor and flowers with her own hands. Instead of letting the floral arrangements go to waste, she would save flowers left over from events, air dry them and gift them to friends. Dried flowers are really no less beautiful than their fresh counterparts, and last much longer—three years or more, depending on display conditions and care. These “forever flowers” add rustic beauty and a different kind of elegance to a simple vase or table setting, and can be used as bookmarks, framed as art, or as a flourish to wrapped presents.

DriedFlowersPH became so popular online that Gomez now has her hands full. Flowers can be bought on their own, arranged in vases or custom-made to order. One of her largest projects is a wall installation at Tightrope Coffee. “Quarantine has been a depressing time for everybody. With the world going crazy, I am grateful to have this small corner of sanity where I can have my coffee and my creativity.”

When asked about her creative process, Gomez says there’s no strict handbook for curating what makes her happy. “As with life, we have to keep trying and failing until we come up with something we actually love. Failure has its benefits.”

More than just producing something aesthetically pleasing, DriedFlowersPH aims to add a little joy when it feels like we’ve been trapped by our common circumstance. “I want to inspire people with something creative and beautiful even if we can’t really go anywhere. We can make something out of nothing. I want to remind people that despite everything going around us, there are still things to look forward to and we can still find beauty around us.”