Create Your Own Floral Arrangement April 15, 2019 There is such a simple pleasure in enjoying a fresh floral arrangement. Perhaps it stems from a flower’s unique ability to bring the beauty of the outdoors in—or maybe it’s the intention and sentiment behind receiving them from a loved one. Arranging florals is a treasured art that so many of us hold an appreciation for, yet, we’ll be the first to say that taking on your own arrangement can feel like a big to-do. It’s hard to know where to begin! As you watch our how-to video below and read through each step of the process, we hope that you will feel empowered to try your hand at arranging—whether it be a bold and colorful centerpiece arrangement, like we’re demonstrating, or even a subtle side table bouquet. Color Story + Style of this Arrangement We wanted our arrangement to feel playful, whimsical and spontaneous—focusing on organic movements and spring neutrals with a hint of bold color. Before buying your tools or flowers, gather inspiration for the style and color of your arrangement. As you find photos you like, notice what flowers you are naturally drawn to, and what colors and shapes catch your attention. Books can be a great resource, too—here are a few of our favorites: Handpicked, Terrain, Foraged Flora, The Botanical Bible, Wreaths: Fresh, Foraged, and Dried Floral Arrangements, and In Full Flower. Gather Your Tools You’ll be able to locate these tools at most craft stores as well as florists’ shops. + Vessel of your choice + Small plastic dish (to protect your vessel from water damage) + Bowl of water (large enough to soak foam in) + Floral foam + Knife + Floral shears or sharp scissors + Towel + Floral Wire + Tall vases (for keeping blooms in water during arranging) Alternatives for floral foam (you’ll want to use what works best for your vessel, read more below): + Floral Wire Netting + Flower Frog Floral Selection for this Arrangement Florals you love don’t have to be hard to find! We located our blooms at a wholesale florist, but you could find them at a local farmer’s market or a supermarket. We’d also encourage you to forage in your own yard or garden for interesting greenery, branches or stems. Below you’ll find exactly what we used, but no need to stick to this—use as many or as few as you like. If you’re unable to find these in your area, scroll to the bottom of the blog for alternatives. Greenery: Flowering quince branches – 2 small branches Gunni eucalyptus – 1 bunch Jasmine – a few clippings from our garden Foundation Blooms: Dara Queen Anne’s lace – 3 to 4 stems White astrantia – 3 to 4 stems, pulled apart White Scabiosa – 2 to 3 blooms Romeo garden rose – 2 to 3 blooms Pink spray roses – 2 to 3 sprays Stock – 2 to 3 stems Statement Blooms: Cafe au lait dahlia – 3 of varying sizes Black-eyed beauty anemones – 3 stems Whimsy Blooms: Red geum – 1 to 3 of each stem Peach butterfly ranunculus – 1 to 3 of each stem Choose and Prepare Your Vessel We chose a vintage brass urn wide enough to hold a low and wide medium-sized arrangement—perfect for the center of your table. Cut floral foam using your knife to fit the vessel of your choosing. (Shop more vases here.) Fill a bowl with water as deep as the thickness of the block and place the cut piece of foam on the surface of the water. Wait a minute or so for the foam block to sink—there’s no need to push down the foam as it will gradually sink by pulling water in from the bottom and pushing air out from the top. This can take anywhere from 1-30 minutes, depending on the size of your foam piece. (Note: Floral foam does a better job of securing your stems in place once you begin arranging. It also has the ability to hold water, which helps keep flowers fresh and looking beautiful longer. However, a flower frog or floral wire netting may work best depending on the vessel you choose.) Set the soaked foam in your plastic dish. It serves as a barrier and prevents your vessel from being damaged by water. Place the dish with the soaked foam into the vessel, as pictured above. Start with the Greenery Layer Greenery we used: flowering quince branches, gunni eucalyptus, jasmine Begin your arrangement by placing your longest greenery branches into the foam. By starting here, you’ll quickly begin to set the shape for your arrangement, which will serve as a foundation for the rest of your greenery stems. We wanted our arrangement to feel whimsical, asymmetrical and a bit “undone,” so we began by placing white quince, our longest stems, into the floral foam on the right side, with a few shorter branches coming up out of the left. To help achieve this look, use floral shears to naturally clip away at branches or greenery that feel too full. Gunni eucalyptus is the second greenery we added, mainly because of its cascading branches, which creates the look almost as if it is overflowing out of the vessel onto the table. From there, we continued to fill in with jasmine, which has nice springy green, white and pink colors. Here are a few things to remember when placing any type of greenery into your arrangement: + Stick them securely into the floral foam, pushing into it enough that the stems are secure. + Greenery is the base of your arrangement, so it should feel substantial, but don’t overcrowd your vessel. You can always come back and add in more in later steps. Then, Add Foundation Blooms Foundation blooms we used: Dara Queen Anne’s lace, white astrantia, romeo garden rose, pink spray roses, stock Foundation blooms are your baseline flowers for the arrangement. Think of these as forming the supporting layer for the larger statement blooms, which come in later. + Pink and purple Dara Queen Anne’s Lace works to fill the spaces between the greenery, which aids in adding texture to the middle of the arrangement. + White astrantia is a filler bloom comprised of many small white flowers, and also adds texture similar to the Queens Anne’s Lace. + White scabiosa have ruffled petals and a green center. Use sparingly to help break up the color of greenery and other blooms in the arrangement. + Light pink Romeo garden roses have ruffled petals and look similar to peonies. Clip the stems at an angle, which helps them retain moisture, then pull leaves off and de-thorn. We added one to the front of the arrangement and one to the back of the arrangement. + Pink spray roses are a shade darker than the garden roses, these add a nice color. We cut the long stem of the spray leaving 2-3 blooms still attached at the top, and trimmed any blooms with floral shears to prevent crowding—placing them as a group into the arrangement. They help break up greenery, but also look nice bunched with a statement bloom to reinforce color. + Peachy pink stock adds more dimension to the arrangement. We added a few in the same places we added the original quince branches to emphasize the asymmetry of the arrangement shape we’ve already built. Next, Introduce Statement Blooms Statement blooms we used: cafe au lait dahlia, black-eyed beauty anemone Statement blooms are the stars of your arrangement. They are the most eye-catching flowers that you’ll notice in your final product. + Creamy pink cafe au lait dahlia is the largest flower in this arrangement and, as you can see, we used just one. We’ve placed it slightly to the right of the arrangement, so that the focal point is a bit off center. + Black-eyed beauty anemones are bold flowers. We’ve pulled these out of our arrangement a bit, rather than keeping them tightly tucked in the center, to add more whimsy to the look of our centerpiece. Since these stems in particular droop easily, we threaded their stems with floral wire to give them support and to help them stay in place. To Finish it Off, Create Whimsy Whimsical blooms we used: red geum, peach butterfly ranunculus The final step is incorporating whimsy by adding some final color and movement to the arrangement, specifically around the edges. + Red geums change the mood of the arrangement. Working these little bursts of red into your flowers adds an unexpected depth of color. + Peach butterfly ranunculus have an antique peach color. These work well for adding whimsy because they are tall and stand up well. The color also balances the bright red from the geums and the soft pink tones from the dahlia and garden roses. The Finished Arrangement It’s so fun to see all the flowers and colors blend together in the arrangement. Once all your stems are in, you can continue to play with it until it feels finished. However you decide to approach your arrangement, know that there is no right or wrong final product. By simply following these foundational steps, you’ll be able to create something you love. Happy arranging! Depending on your area, all of the flowers we used may or may not be available. See our list below for a few alternatives for each category: Greenery + Olive stems + Lemon leaf + Seeded eucalyptus + Silver dollar eucalyptus + Magnolia stems + Myrtle Foundation + Freesia + Feverfew + Gardenia + Ranunculus + Yarrow Statement + Large allium blooms + Icelandic Poppies + Peonies + Echinacea + Hydrangea + Ranunculus (for color) Whimsy alternatives that could also be statement blooms: + Narcissus + Cosmos + Tulips + Sweet alliums + Sweet pea The vessel we used for the arrangement is sourced from an antique store. We recommend checking your local antique stores for a unique vessel like this!