Hey there! It’s Madison! If you’ve been to Lambert Home before, I’ve probably greeted you at the door, helped you discover your favorite candle, or booked an appointment for you with Sarah. What you may not know about me is that I’m often DIY-ing things for store display. (like our crazy book tornado last year or our overgrown chandelier right now!!) I’ve loved making things since I can remember. Scrapbooks for every trip and occasion, cardboard furniture for my dolls, a replica of Anne Frank’s house, holiday cards…the list goes on. So when I got to DFW it was natural for me to begin to work at a small flower shop. I continued to work in florals, mostly in weddings, until I started full time at Lambert Home! Once I started here, Katie and Sarah let me start running with not only our DIY projects but also permanent floral arrangements. Because of so much demand from our Southlake shoppers, we now have a whole section devoted to creating these florals. If you read this whole blog and decide DIY-ing your own permanent arrangement isn’t for you, I’m your girl! I’m even doing my own flowers for my wedding! And I know, I KNOW, it potentially will be stressful. But a craft queen can’t turn down a good challenge.
You need to know where the floral is going to know how to make it! On a dining room table? People are going to have to be talking over it – so it needs to be low. To fill up space in a giant island? Full and large it is! In that awkward entryway niche? How tall should it be? The location will affect not only the style but also the size of the arrangement!
Florals are a great place to tie in colors and communicate style. Is the space traditional – then we’re talking hydrangeas. Is the space party fun – well we obviously need bold colors and interesting additions.
My first step is understanding the goal. Whether you’re making this floral for yourself, a friend or a client, you’ve got to know your goals! What size does this need to be, where will it be located, and what do you want it to look like! Is it filling a specific niche in your house or is it a true focal point? Is it simply providing green filler for a book shelf? Will it primarily reside in the kitchen so I need to think about cleanliness? Then I look on Pinterest or Instagram to gain inspiration!
EXAMPLE: This client loves Asian-inspired art and fabrics. She loves teal, coral, and neutrals. She’s not afraid of color or bold decisions. She wants the floral arrangement located on a console table in her bedroom with lamps on either side. Where should we go from here?!
Based on your needs, choose a container to hold your florals. Both the size and style of the vase/bowl/pot are going to matter to the overall design.
EXAMPLE: I chose to go with a low terra cotta bowl. The size was perfect for the space! Choosing a terracotta textured pot surprised even me. But who am I kidding! Terra-Cotta is a perfect choice – the color pairs great with both coral and teal. And of course, this ancient building material runs deep in Asian history and culture. (Uh yeah I’ve been to the Forbidden Garden!!!! Have you?)
GATHER YOUR FLORALS
For me, I have endless options in our floral collection! But this step may cause you to hunt. Check out what Micheals, Jo-Anns, and Hobby Lobby all have (Or if you live local, come shop from my stems)! To create a cohesive arrangement, get a minimum of 2 or 3 of each stem. Be sure to reference your goals and see what you’re truly needing. You can never go wrong with getting lots of greenery and a couple of big statement flowers. It’s good to choose flowers of different sizes and I always recommend adding something with a little texture.
EXAMPLE: For this client, keeping in mind her asian aesthetic, I chose to feature orchids! Other options like bamboo, lotus, or jasmine would’ve been great here!
Not every arrangement requires foam, but it definitely makes all projects easier. Sometimes the shapes of the containers are not conducive to the foam block and you may have to cut it to size. It’s best if you can fill the whole container.
EXAMPLE: I used a bit less than two blocks. Next I filled in the rest of the spaces with paper so that the foam doesn’t move. I suggest covering the foam with a layer of paper because it can get messy!
Now the fun part! For the Primary work, I’m talking about the main items used in your arrangement! Start with your most important features! You may be featuring a particular flower, color, or something super cool like an antique piece of china or slice of agate! Once your feature component is in place, begin filling in with some greenery. Continue to fill your container keeping in mind your focal point at all times. Consider providing multiple textures and shades for interest!
EXAMPLE: In this arrangement I knew I wanted clean white flowers showing at the front as well as the faux orchid leaves. I added in the dried palm leaves for visual interest. They provide a spikey crisp texture and a matte muted color!
This is where you cover your foam/paper with really anything you can think of! Not every arrangement requires this step, but many do and this is a great opportunity to be really creative! I’ve used moss, rocks, crystals, geodes, succulents, broken dishes, wood chips, wood slices, etc!
EXAMPLE: You can see here, this arrangement required secondary work because the overall look was so light and airy! You’ve gotta cover that foam!
YOU CAN DO IT!
Now to go out there and actually do it! It’s difficult! I get it. I know you wanted me to give you a step by step guide for every scenario. Wouldn’t that have been the best!! But I can’t! Every scenario is so different. But I believe in you! I know you’ll figure out your groove and try new things. You can’t mess this up. “Messing it up” is not a real thing in the world of floral arranging! It’s a lie people believe about their crafts and about deeper things too (yikes). So friend, when you stick two stems into your container and feel like it’s terrible and not worth doing anymore, hear my little voice and remember that it’s all going to be fine! Just keep going! Once you get enough florals in the arrangement, you will see that it’s actually not bad at all! Sure one flower may be out of place, just take it out and try again! Maybe one flower is sticking up too high, cut it shorter! Whatever you do, don’t call it quits, get a second opinion, refer back to your goals, and keep going!
To watch me create this arrangement check out our reel on our Instagram @lambert_home
- Stick stems in at angles. A beginner’s biggest mistake is sticking every stem next to each other going up and down. It’s okay to leave the stems spaced out. A great way to create fullness is by focusing on adding stems at different angles.
- Keep things balanced. Repeat the same florals throughout the arrangement!
- Don’t forget the back! Another rookie mistake! Even if the floral is created to just face one way, you never know when you have repurposed the arrangement and a bareback will be embarrassing!
- A fun difference between real and faux flowers is that you can be a lot rougher with them! Typically, they come with convenient wiring where you can change the bend of every stem and sometimes petals and leaves too! This is great for getting the arrangement to look just like you want it! BUT if you’re wanting the florals to look as real as possible, don’t go crazy with this tip!
- Place the floral in it’s intended location. If it doesn’t look like what you thought, edit it. Continue to make edits until it’s what you want. And then when the next season rolls around, continue to fluff it and add to it. The floral process is a fun long creative journey! Keep at it!