Happy first day of spring, loves! Flowers make everything better, but what's even better than a beautiful bouquet brightening up your home? A beautiful bouquet that you made yourself! We spoke with Alice of Alice's Table, a company who hosts flower arranging workshops all over the country, how to create a flower arrangement you can be proud of.
Here, Alice gives her step-by-step guide to creating a gorgeous arrangement, just in time for the first day of spring or perfect for the Easter and Passover holidays!
Make a grid with tape on top of your vase (just like a tic-tac-toe board). This helps you avoid the flower flops by building structure. This will also help to control and hold your arrangement in place so you get the best-looking arrangement possible.
Fill your vase with room temperature to warm water–about baby bath temperature. This will help open the flowers and let them last for at least a week. Always add plant food to the water! It's a preservative and a sugar which really makes the flowers last longer. There are lots of myths out there about adding bleach to your arrangement or Seven Up and Vodka – I always say I am not a chemist and I prefer to drink my cocktails, so stick to the plant food, it works!
Create your base with greenery. This is the least expensive part yet most people skip it. It's the key to florist-quality bouquets! Use inexpensive greens to start your arrangement. When we "green our base" we're building the skeleton of the bouquet. I like to use Italian or Israeli Ruscus to green my base because it's the best bang for your buck but still gives a high-quality look, as opposed to ferns.
Work with flowers from largest to smallest. The larger flowers are the structure needed to support the smaller flowers and make them shine. Cut stems at a 45-degree angle, this increases the surface area to drink water and also makes sure that your stem does not sit flat on the bottom of the vase.
As soon as you cut the stem, make sure to place the flower straight into water. Flowers have the ability to scab over – once the scab is formed (which only takes about ten seconds) they do not drink water as effectively and don't last as long. Be sure to have a good (sharp!) pair of clippers and rose strippers to make your beautiful bouquet.
Strip your roses to get rid of thorns. By stripping the rose, you remove all of the leaves and thorns. We never want leaves in the water as they create bacteria, which will prevent the flowers from lasting long. The great thing about stripping your roses is it also removes the thorns, which makes the roses easier to handle and arrange.
Blow on your roses to help them open. You know when you go to a wedding and all of the flowers are perfectly opened? That happens thanks to interns! They painstakingly blow on each and every rose to open them up. The warm air from your mouth will open them up and make the arrangement look fuller.
Finish off your arrangement with textural elements to complete the look. You always want to finish your arrangement with a textural element. Again, these are the least expensive parts and make the biggest difference. Whenever we create bouquets, there are always holes or places that don't look right when we are finished. Those are the spots we fill in with texture.
I like to use Hypericum Berry because it comes in all sorts of different colors, is hearty, and is available year-round. Another thing I love is wax flower – I like to say it is the classy sister of Baby's Breath!
In an ideal world, you would change the water every day... I tend to just add water when it is needed though, because honestly, who has time to empty the vase and refill when it is only going to give you one extra day with the flowers?
Style Me Pretty Contributor - Jessica Tzikas is a freelance writer, editor, and content manager from South Florida, who recently moved back to the sunshine state after living in Philadelphia for the past few years. When she isn't writing, you can find her reading by the beach, spoiling her black lab, and exploring nearby towns with her new husband.