If you’re new to the art of flower arranging, or perhaps new to working with faux flowers, the prospect may seem a little daunting. Our guide harnesses expert tips from flower designer Poppy Sturley and walks you through every stage, from choosing colours and containers to creating your display and adding seasonal touches.
And if you're shopping in stores, you’ll be sure to find one of our resident floral experts on hand to help guide you through the process. Find your local store here.
Choose a theme
An understanding of the space in which your arrangement will live and the existing colour palette in play is essential. The right combination has the potential to amplify your chosen aesthetic.
Consider vases, pots & jugs
Begin by choosing your vessel, considering scale, style and the final silhouette of your display. Bud vases work particularly well along the center of a tablescape, while larger wide-necked vases are best suited to a console table or kitchen island for example.
‘What’s really lovely’ says Poppy, ‘is to think outside of the norm’. Whether it's jugs, bowls and ramekins from your kitchen or large garden pots, ‘all sorts of things can be used as vessels to create interesting arrangements’.
Selecting your flowers & foliage
Start by selecting your foliage, this will help to determine the shape of your arrangement, adding naturalistic depth and texture. While Poppy tends not to follow traditional number rules, she suggests ‘working in odd numbers can help’ when selecting twigs or greenery.
Note - the greenery you select is an investment, one that can be reused across your displays and throughout your home time and time again.
Now you can select your all-important hero stems. Again, you may find it easiest to work in odd numbers. The key here is to be open-minded, follow what you’re naturally drawn to. ‘Just try to limit yourself to three flower species’ Poppy says, suggesting ‘stems such as roses, dahlias and peonies.’
For those who wish to take their flower arranging skills one step further, Poppy recommends an additional three stages. Firstly, adding ‘layering flowers’, these are smaller flowers like ranunculi than can be placed in front of your hero stems. Secondly, ‘frothy flowers’, such as gypsophila branches to add a sprinkling of light colour and lift the arrangement. And finally, two or three ‘dancing flowers’, these can be any stems which add height and will ‘float around the top of the arrangement, such as arrowgrass’ says Poppy.
Form your arrangement
To form your arrangement Poppy recommends deciding on your shape and then layering outwards. ‘Arrange things in groups’ she says, ‘mirroring how they would grow in your garden or in the wild’. This will help to make your arrangement feel as natural as possible. ‘You want it to look like it grew within your chosen vessel’ Poppy explains.
To keep your stems in place, tie them together with string, or as Poppy has done here, discreetly scrunch up chicken wire, layering it in the base of your vessel. This is particularly helpful when using lower pots where you have less support.
Finally, adjust each individual stem for a more lifelike display. All of our stems contain a cleverly concealed metal wire to allow for gentle shaping. Should you need to cut any of your stems to size, we recommend using wire cutters.
We recommend rotating your bouquet with the season to refresh its look and feel. Beginning with your base, select several new stems, faux or fresh, each season to reflect what’s naturally in bloom. ‘In spring you can add blossom, in summer roses, in autumn focus on foliage and in winter the addition of branches is perfect for something more structural’ says Poppy.
Caring for your flowers
The wonder of our life-like florals and foliage is that they promise to keep your home in bloom through the year, every year. To keep your arrangement looking its very best, we recommend keeping it away from direct sunlight and moisture and regularly dusting it with a feather duster.