Online Tutorials


Fall Centerpiece Tutorial

October 2016

As promised in the post “A Fresh Autumn Tablescape”, here is a step-by-step guide on how to create a fall arrangement for the table. In this tutorial, Gina shows you how to transform a run of the mill pre-mixed bouquet into a beautiful centerpiece.mark

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centerpiece-first-four-steps

1. Supplies needed: flowers, two packets of floral preservative, large clear vase, container for centerpiece, floral foam, a container for soaking the floral foam, floral knife and scissors.

2. For the container that will be used to soak the floral foam – pour in the contents of a packet of floral preservative and fill with water. I am often asked if the floral preservative actually works and if it is really necessary. The answers are yes and yes; the floral preservative will help the flowers stay fresher longer.

3. Place the foam in the water. When soaking floral foam, do not push the foam down or let water run on top of it. Simply drop the foam into water that is deep enough to cover it. Let the foam sink down. When you no longer see any bubbles and it is no longer sinking, it is ready. The foam can only take in a certain amount of water so soaking for a long time really does not add any more water to the foam.

4. Be sure that the container for the arrangement is something that is low so that once flowers are added it will not be so tall that your guests will have to talk over or around it. I used a birch container lined with plastic. If you can’t find something like this, you can line the exterior container with plastic, a baggie or a small trash bag. Be sure it is water tight so the moisture does not damage your table.

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5. Cut the plastic wrap and rubber bands off of the flowers.

6. Give the flowers a fresh cut and place them in a vase or some type of temporary vessel with floral food and water. This fresh cut helps rejuvenate them and provides a longer life. It is best to let the flowers sit in this vase for several hours or even overnight if you have the time.

7. Put the soaked foam in the container.

8. For this arrangement I began arranging with the lilies. Lilies make really a big statement so although there are only three, they have quite an impact on the design. When placing flowers in floral foam, always give them a fresh cut and make sure the insertion is at least two inches to ensure the flowers are getting enough water. Next I added the alstromeria and then finished with the viburnum. That is all this arrangement needed. Small, round and happy!

I picked up the flowers for this arrangement at the grocery store for $19. I filled it in with some additional viburnum that I bought separately. Since these flowers had lots of leaves I did not need to use greenery but if you have empty space you could always fill in with some greenery from your yard.

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Sunflower and Hydrangea Tutorial

September 2015

Late blooming summer flowers are the stars of this cheerful, fresh floral arrangement. Follow our step by step tutorial below on how to make it.

Sunflower and Hydrangea Arrangement - Late Summer

UntitledSteps 1 - 4

Step 1. For this arrangement you will need a large cylinder glass vase, floral tape, floral knife, floral food, scissors, mini sunflowers, hydrangeas, greenery and burlap.

Step 2. Prepare a grid on the vase using the floral tape. Make sure that no part of your vase is wet before placing the tape on the vase. The grid makes it much easier to arrange the flowers and provides for better placement.

Step 3. Make sure to always use the flower food provided with the flowers. Pour the whole packet into the vase and fill with water.

Step 4. Since this is a rather tall vase, remove any foliage from the bottom stems. If foliage is left on the stem and then placed in water, a bacteria will form that will shorten the life of the flowers.

Steps 5 - 8

Step 5. Begin adding greenery to start the form of the arrangement. Try looking around your own yard for some interesting greenery. We used some great limelight hydrangeas from our backyard. But don’t cut too many or next year your plant will not produce as many. Depending on the time of year of your cut, the blooms may already be set for next year.

Step 6. These Sweet Bay Magnolia leaves will create a bit of drama in the arrangement. If you don’t have one of these in your yard, look at other trees and bushes for inspiration.

Step 7. Once you have the form loosely set, you can begin to add the flowers. We love how these mini sunflowers add a pop of color against all of the greens and textures.

Step 8. The finishing touch – we wrapped a bit of burlap around the vase to create a rustic look.

Let us know what you think of this tutorial. If you have comments, suggestions or questions, please click on the title of this tutorial and the comment form will appear the end of the post.

 

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Fall Door Arrangement Tutorial

August 2015

Let’s usher in Fall with a new door arrangement made of silk flowers to welcome our friends and neighbors. You can do this yourself and we have a great how-to that guides you through each step.

Both arrangements on doors
I love our French doors at the entry of our home, but whenever I want to put a wreath or arrangement up I need to remember that I will need two. Maybe many of you have French doors as well. This tutorial will work for either single or double doors. Lucky you if you only need to make one. I collected all sorts of goodies for this fall inspired design. I am still in love with succulents so I found a few that I really liked. The snowball spray and black eyed Susan along with the burnt orange baby mums relay a feeling of late summer or early fall. I found the wonderful woven cone baskets about a month ago on sale. Having two doors, I of course purchased two and decided they would make pretty arrangements. You can find similar cones at craft stores or gift shops. Of course, we will be carrying a variety of great baskets once our online shop opens.

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Step 1. Gather your supplies. You’ll need 2 cone-shaped wicker baskets, scissors, a wire cutter, a knife, 3″ wide ribbon, 4 bricks of dry oasis, a few sprigs of filler (any type of greenery), snowball spray, black eyed susan, burnt orange baby mums, succulents, angel vine and Spanish moss.

Step 2. Cut the foam to fit the container. You want it very firmly in place in the container. Here I cut a little at a time until I had to press pretty hard to get it situated. I found that using two bricks was the easiest way to fill my container. Getting this part of your mechanics in place is very important. You want your flowers to stay right where you place them. Make sure you are using “dry” oasis. It is made for silk flowers and is sturdier than a “wet” oasis which is used with fresh flowers.

Step 3. Here you see how the foam looks. There is no science to this. I used a floral knife, but any knife will work, to shave a bit at a time. I went from corner to corner until the foam was tight and did not move.

Step 4. You want your foam to stand a little taller than your container. This way, it is easier to fill with your pretty elements and have them appear as if they are spilling out.

Steps 5 - 8

Step 5. Using a wire cutter, cut stems off of the baby mum branch so that you can intersperse this fabulous color in your arrangement.

Step 6. Before beginning to actually place the flowers in the foam, I create a bit of a hand bouquet to get an idea of placement and color.

Step 7. And we are off! There is no easy way to dive into this. You just have to take a big jump and stick those flowers right in. You want a very good idea of where you want the placement to be because your foam is only so big and too many holes will create a foam that does not support the flowers. This looks a bit sad right now, but just wait.

Step 8. Now add the filler, I chose a great looking fern. Filler should be placed in areas where it enhances the flowers and the arrangement.

Steps 9 - 12

Step 9. Here we see an arrangement that looks complete but upon further inspection you can see some holes. This is where you fill in with the Spanish moss and Angel Vine. The Angel Vine gives the arrangement a bit of texture and natural look.

Step 10. These fillers are really your best friends. They are like concealer for your face or a comforter on your bed. I love this chartreuse colored moss, but it also comes in several other colors and of course it is very pretty in its natural state of gray. Just tuck these in wherever you can see the foam or to fill in an empty space.

Step 11. Don’t forget the back of the arrangement. This is the part that YOU will see from the inside of your home if you have a glass front door like me.

Step 12. I used the Command hooks on my front doors and they work great. Make sure you purchase the ones that hold at least 3 pounds. I chose the oil rubbed bronze for my finish but they also come in a few other colors.

If you try creating this yourself or it inspired you to create something similar we would love to see it! Have questions, comments or ideas? Click on the title of this tutorial and the comment form will appear at the end of the post.
Happy Beginning of Fall!

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