Friday, 21 July 2017


On the 21st of June Chieko Yazaki, President and Christopher James, Vice-president of Ikebana International Melbourne Chapter, had the pleasure of meeting the new Consul-General of Japan Mr Matsunaga and Mrs Matsunaga. In the meeting both the Consul-General and Mrs Matsunaga agreed to become patrons of the Melbourne Chapter during their tenure in Melbourne.

In the Consul Generals office (left to right) Mrs Toyama Information and Culture, Ms Ishida Vice Consul, Mrs Matsunaga, Mr Matsunaga Consul-General of Japan, Mrs Yazaki President Ikebana International Melbourne Chapter, Mr James Vice-President Ikebana International Melbourne Chapter.

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The Chapter meeting on 15th July took the form of a Saturday afternoon workshop lead by Christopher James and was attended by 30 members and visitors. It being winter the workshop theme of 'Bare Branches' was appropriate for the season.

Christopher had prepared two examples on the theme and demonstrated a third.

This example was focusing on the shape of the branch as formed by the wind. A small group of green leaves gives the work a feeling of new life.

The second example focuses on the surface texture of the bare branch which is covered in yellow lichen.

The third example was a partially prepared 'no kenzan' arrangement of bare apricot branches in a suiban to which were added three tulips as a focus of colour. 

Below are some examples of work by members and visitors at the workshop.

Robyn Unglik

Helen Novic

Chieko Yazaki

Olive Cheng

Aiko Nakada

Lyn Wong


Lucy Papas

Emily Karanikolopoulos

Marcia Lamrock

Margaret Wilson

Lara Telford

Members were pleased to meet Mrs Matsunaga who, with her husband the Consul-General, are patrons of the Melbourne Chapter of Ikebana International. 

(L - R) Christopher James, Yoko Matsunaga and Chieko Yazaki.

Saturday, 24 June 2017


At the June meeting members who had attended the Ikebana International Convention in Okinawa gave an presentation illustrated with 'slides' about their experiences. All spoke about the pleasure of sharing their passion for ikebana with people from around the world as well as other experiences of being in Japan.

Those who participated in the exhibition were invited to re-created their exhibition work.

Cheiko Yazaki re-created her ikebana in two white ceramic troughs.

Elizabeth Angel re-created her arrangement using flexible, easy to carry, man-made materials teamed with colour matched flowers.

Unfortunately I was unable to photograph Emily Karanikolopoulos' work on the day. 

The two photographs above, are the original works Emily created in the member's demonstration session, in the presence of their Imperial Highnesses.

Other members of the Chapter created their own arrangements on the theme: Tropical Ikebana, inspired by the convention being in Okinawa. This challenge, in the Melbourne winter, was successfully met as you can see in the ikebana below.

Aiko Nakada

Lara Telford

Beverley Webster

Betty Karanikolopoulos

Lee Johnstone

Marcia Lamrock

Toula Karanikolopoulos

Dianne Zaviska

Nicole MacDonald

Philip Keon

Sally Wilkinson

Friday, 16 June 2017


Members of the Melbourne Chapter again participated in the Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show this year. A combined exhibit of the five active ikebana schools in Melbourne was created. For the second year in a row the Ikebana International exhibit was awarded a Bronze Medallion. The photos below included some of the preparation and give an indication of the enormous amount of work that goes into this project each year.

As you can see the Japanese theme was powerfully communicated by the panoramic photo of the famous Tori Gate at the Miyajima Shrine.

In this photo President Chieko Yazaki is working on her arrangement.

The arrangement in the Flower Cart is by the Ohara members.

This work above is by members of the Ichiyo school.

Unfortunately he lack of side walls on the display area make it impossible to take a photo of the whole exhibit from the front. This is the left hand view. In the middle of this photo is a Rikka by members of the Ikenobo school.

This is the right hand side of the exhibit. With the Sogetsu school arrangement if the circular vessel at the front of the exhibit.

Congratulations are extended to Kaye Wong and the members her enthusiastic team who all contributed to this years exhibit.

Sunday, 14 May 2017


At the 9th May meeting a demonstration was given by Toula Karanikolopoulos. The theme of the meeting was origami. Toula created a paper sculptural form to which she attached small origami shapes. She had dyed the paper as well as moulding it to wrap around the unique ceramic vase which she had also made herself. 

Toula made a large arrangement of New Zealand Flax leaves and purple Singapore orchids to coordinate with the colours of the paper form.

The guest speaker, an origami expert, was unable to attend and Christopher James gave a demonstration of techniques for manipulating paper to use in ikebana arrangements.

In this example above, he has made straws from newspaper and included them with dried agapanthus flower-heads and fresh dietes leaves.

Below are other arrangements made by members at the meeting.

Lara Telford.

Emily Karanikolopoulos

Betty Karanikolopoulos

Elizabeth Angell

Margaret Wilson

Philip Keon

Marjorie Campkin-Smith

Thea Sartori

Eugenia Chudacek

Lee Johnstone

Nicole MacDonald

Marcia Lamrock