Morning. It’s a big botanical week this week. We’re installing a botanical bar outside our florists’ cabin at Heal’s. the idea being you can customise (should you so wish) all the amazing bouquets, wreaths and hanging planters Gem and her genius team have put together. So there will be trays of foraged materials like fir cones, berries, the most beautiful asparagus fern I have ever seen (coppery and black in hue) I’m hugely excited. It’s an interactive bar so you can totally personalise bunches and anything else for that matter making it the best present yet no? Personally I want everything for myself! OK perhaps a little selfish, but there you go.
Anyways the install is happening this week. Having a sister who is a genius florist puts me in a very privileged position. House needs a revamp? Then it’s a call to Gem to put something wondrous together – lucky me hey! If you don’t have a Gem on speed dial, and with the holiday season round the corner, then here are some very common flower arranging mistakes to avoid. Oh and without sounding super technical bear in mind that arrangements can be made up with:
- Focal flowers: all those fat headed ones we so love – roses, peonies, hydrangeas, ranunculus
- Intermediate flowers: smaller than the fat headed focals, and often varying the height of the bouquets – dahlias, gelda or sprays of blossom
- Filler flowers: these guys solidify the colour scheme bringing everything together. Something textural like cow parsley, vibernum or alliums are brilliant here, as well as any plant based materials like barks/grasses/moss etc
- Foliage: foliage is beautiful either to lend texture to a floral bouquet, or you can make arrangements just with foliage
Right then, down to those top 3 “DON’TS” of flower arranging:
Too many colours
For a sophisticated look, stick within a well-defined colour scheme. This goes for the container too, as well as the flowers! We generally go for containers that are beautifully hand thrown and ceramic, or metal pieces that complement but don’t compete with our arrangements. Oh and remember to balance your colours so things don’t look like a hot mess. If you have a splash of green with a large hydrangea, say, balance it out with a bit of greenery in other parts of the arrangement.
Big no no! As always, mix don’t match. In our book, flower arrangements should always have some sort of transition bringing different colours, shapes and textures together. I can’t bear regimented bouquets like rows of alternating red and white roses, you know the type. Doesn’t do it for me at all!
If it’s too difficult to pull a mixed arrangement together (not something I can do I must admit), just take 3-5 fat headed blooms and plonk them in a sweet little vase. Or even one of our absolutely GINORMOUS giant hydrangea on it’s own will do the trick! If you must match, that’s the way to do it.
We plump for asymmetry every time. It’s harder to pull off but loose arrangements, have a foraged and wild vibe, and lend a casual air to any scheme. We’re obsessed with branches and foliages like lilac and dogwood in the spring, and berries on branches, and then lots of autumnal foliages in autumn and winter.
Talking of spring I cannot wait to show you what we’ll be introducing. We’ve gone a step further and it’s to die for. I was almost fainting with excitement when we looked at all the samples! OK maybe that’s exaggerating a little but its the coolest spring botanical collection EVER, we’re knocking summer flowers out of the park next year!