I’ve never attempted to arrange flowers at home because I have absolutely no idea how! So I thought it was time to call in the experts and ask five of Sydney’s best florists how amateurs like me can create some floral loveliness at home.
Aleksandra Keast of Aleksandra: (Jen’s wedding florist no less!) “When you have spontaneous guests, use your fruit and veg as your flower arrangements! Adding sweet-scented orange and peach blossom and fruit on the branch such as cumquat, pear, fig, apple and mandarin, is a beautiful en masse vase filler and looks great for the kitchen and dining room. You then get to reap the rewards and eat it too! Rosemary and fresh bay leaves look beautiful next to the stove top and are on hand when cooking.”
Louise Reeves of The Posy Supply Co.: “I specialise in posies or little bunches of blooms so the most important tip I like to give is to use a size-appropriate vase. Little arrangements look beautiful in jars or small vases that narrow at the neck. A little jar of flowers on the bathroom vanity or bedside table can have just as much impact as a huge arrangement. Try mixing different flower types of varying size and texture such as a big feathery Protea with delicate Geraldton Wax, along with some lovely fresh foliage like Dollar Gum.”
Claire Simpson of Willow and Dune: “To keep flowers looking fresher for longer always remember:
- To remove foliage from the stem that sits below the water line; this prevents the water from getting polluted.
- Cut stems at an angle to maximise the area for water absorption.
- Re-cut stems and change water in the vase every two days.
- Keep floral arrangements away from warm sunny areas and heaters.”
Sophie Rothwell of Little Flowers: “You should always arrange the flowers in their natural form, be it wonky, kooky or perfectly perfect. By leaving them in their natural state and not forcing them into a position they are not suited to, the flowers not only live longer and flourish, but it allows the arrangement to take on a beautiful, uncontrived freedom. Depth is also important because it encourages the eye to look at every individual element of the bunch instead of just the bunch as a whole. You can create depth by layering your stems and placing different floral elements at different heights throughout your arrangement.”
Holly Hipwell of The Flower Drum: “There’s nothing worse than getting home with an armful of beautiful blooms only to realise you don’t have the perfect vessel. Be sure to have a good selection of the basics. Every home must have a tall cylinder vase with a heavy base for big blooms and blossoms; a fishbowl vase for tulips and posies of roses; a tear shape vase with a narrow neck to keep arrangements from splaying out of control; a cone shape to construct a relaxed looking masterpiece; and a couple of old pasta jars for garden picked treasures. Making sure your flowers are in the correct shape vase is really the number one trick to making your florals look good.”