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Oct 25

A Day at the Hamilton Dahlia Farm

When Andrew first proposed the idea of moving to Michigan I felt like the world was going to cave in on me.  After only three months in Chicago, I was annoyed at having to pack up again. Michigan wasn’t where I imagined our home being and Michigan certainly didn’t offer me any conveniences or perks pertaining to my job. So I thought. We don’t have a nationally recognized floral market like San Fran, we’re not in the heart of a bustling, eccentric big city like New York, and we don’t have picturesque tree lined driveways leading up to gorgeous restored mansions just dripping in Southern Charm. Michigan felt like such a shot in the dark and I remember sulking like a miserable toddler the entire drive to our new apartment when we moved.

But I like so many others who fail to give credit to The Mitten, was so very wrong. We have so much to be blessed about here. Us as wedding vendors included. We have vintage barns, chic art galleries, and really rad museums. We have the northern part of our state where the shore kisses turqiouse waters and the beaches could be mistaken for somewhere south. We have four distinct seasons, each bringing completely different environments to the table. We have vendors who produce some of the most gorgeous work you’d ever seen, and then we have the Hamilton Dahlia Farm. Guys, we hit the jackpot on this one. This little gem deep in the heart of western Michigan is absolutely a must see if you’re ever around. It’s a private owned dahlia farm with rows and rows of gorgeous dahlias open to the public on a daily basis so the lovely Kelly Sweet and I took a morning trip out one day to cut our own goodies. Here, let me show you around a little, guys. You’re going to just love this sweet little space.

Dahlias, dahlias everywhere! It’s actually pretty incredible.

I never realized first off how tall the dahlia plants can grow and secondly, how thick the stalk is coming out from the ground. If you’re new to the whole dahlia scene no worries because Janet, the lovely owner of the farm (or her sweet daughter) will be able to show you how to cut the perfect dahlia and how to tell if the dahlia is alive or not. Sometimes a gorgeous dahlia from the top can actually be starting to die and will expose brown petals if you check out the back where the petals first sprout out.

I was sort of a hot mess that day so I’m not sharing too many of the photos of me here. But this next one made me laugh and I couldn’t leave it out. All morning while searching for dahlias to cut, I kept finding a bloom that I thought I loved and then I’d yell to Kelly “Oh my gosh look at THIS one!” or “This one is GORGEOUS” and I think by the end of our morning I had said this about every single bloom at the farm. They were seriously all so lovely and delicious. These peach ones were especially yummy. I mean look at my face! If you know me well you’ll know this is classic happy/laughing/amused Rhi at her best.

Our bucket of gorgeousness.

And then it was time to get serious.

Using the blooms that we picked that morning, I threw together a little bouquet. With just the dahlias, a little floral tape and some satin ribbon, the finished product reminded me of a brightly-hued bowl of sweet sherbet. Those colors in the dahlias were so brilliant and bold. A few adorable elderly ladies who had also stopped by the farm that day were standing back watching me make the bouquet and couldn’t stop proclaiming how gorgeous the florals were. Those dahlias are seriously out of this world and just so lovely. Local florists, wedding planners and even brides with their family and bridal party, come out to the farm on a daily basis to cut all of the dahlias they need for weddings, parties, special events, retail locations and more.

And more shots of the bouquet; which my mother in law lovingly unwrapped to display in a vase on her kitchen counter.

A giant thanks goes out to Janet and her family for allowing Kelly and I to visit the farm and have a little fun for a morning. If you’re ever in Hamilton, Michigan or near grand Rapids or Holland you need to stop by. You can check out their farm’s website here where information on the varieties, seasonability, hours and pricing can be found. If you have any questions at all shoot Janet a message and tell her Rhi sent you. She is such a doll and will help you with just about anything. And just for fun, tell me what you love most about Michigan below, regardless of if you live here or not :) Happy Thursday, loves xoxo

20 thoughts on “A Day at the Hamilton Dahlia Farm”

  1. cindy says:

    gorgeous! I wasn’t psyched to move to Michigan either, I had never even been here before! The seasons here are like nothing I had ever experienced out west. Fall here is perfection.

  2. How gorgeous~ I’d love to visit there, and the bouquet you made is so pretty! My husband is from the Detroit area, and this Christmas we’ll probably be spending at least a night or two in Michigan and the rest of the time in Chicago where his sister’s family lives. I’m from New York, born and raised, but I really enjoy visiting “the mitten,” and I’m rooting for the Tigers to win the World Series!

  3. Annie says:

    Those dahlias are gorgeous! I don’t think I could choose a favorite part of Michigan (I was born and raised here). But I do love the beaches! I’ve only been to the beaches on the west side but I would love to visit the ones in the northern part of the state!

  4. Lisa says:

    Cafe au lait dahlias are my new obsession. Like, it’s ridiculous haha :P So of course, I am loving this post and all these pictures! Someday, somehow, when I visit you, can we go here? :)

  5. Sarah says:

    ohhh this blog post made me so homesick for michigan!! although i’m only two states away in minnesota, and obviously still in the midwest, i think one of the best parts of michigan is the easy access to the absolutely beautiful GREAT LAKES! (i think in 4th grade we were taught that when you’re in michigan you’re never more than 87 miles from a great lake…or something like that. haha) there are plenty of lakes here in minnesota, but for the most part, there is little opportunity to stand on the shores of something like lake michigan and be able to just appreciate how VAST and beautiful it really is. loved this post..thanks for sharing! :)

  6. Liesl says:

    This looks like such a beautiful day and you are just glowing, Rhi, I love it! The flowers you picked are lovely and make for the perfect bouquet! :)

  7. Lori says:

    Dahlias are my Mom’s Favorites ~ those and glads actually. She always planted them at home but they are too much work for me!! I would love to visit this place Rhi ~ I remembered when you tweeted about going there ~ so glad you did a post. xo

  8. Laicie says:

    Haha oh my gosh I love the excited picture of you it is so adorable! I love dahlias… this place kind of looks like heaven actually. And same for Michigan — I was so shocked the first time I visited the upper peninsula and realized how unbelievably gorgeous the state is. It’s such an underestimated gem.

  9. What an amazing experience! Dahlias are so pretty :)

  10. michaela says:

    Ah…this place is heavenly. I want to come visit again and go here :) The bouquet is so pretty and you are glowing!! You in your element :)

  11. Joelle says:

    I love this! I so wish we had something similar near me (we probably do, but I don’t know about it…). I’m kind of obsessed with dahlias, so I probably would have been doing the exact same thing ;)

    xoxo,
    Joelle

  12. So lovely Rhi, and I spy African bracelets :) XO

  13. Shalyn says:

    Okay this is seriously THE cutest post EVER! GAWWWWSH I miss you! I am currently in the Baltimore airport and I sincerely wish I was flying to come see you! Love you so much! Talk to you tomorrow morning muffin <3

  14. Alexandra says:

    It DOES look like a bowl of sherbet!!! A really gorgeous bowl of sherbet :) And those purple tipped white dahlias made my heart happy – sooo pretty! <3

  15. Gosh! I’m so envious of how Michigan has all these GREAT places!!! And sooo beautiful too!

  16. Vika Moka says:

    Truly gorgeous ! Such a lovely light, such a lovely girl and such lovely dahlias :)

  17. Gloria says:

    Ok you are seriously way too adorable :-) This dahlia farm is magical!

  18. As you know…I have a deep love for the Mitten…even though I have only been there twice. Alex is applying for jobs like crazy there and I am waiting on pins and needles every day just praying he gets one! Hopefully soon my friend! You will be my first call! xo

  19. Welcome to Michigan! Thanks for sharing this gorgeous farm. I’m obsessed with dahlias. I will definitely have to check it out the next time I’m on the west side of the state.

  20. Ah…I’m dying and swooning over here. I’ve always wanted to visit a real dahlia farm. This really makes Michigan worth it, Rhi! So awesome and you’re so adorable!

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