Spring has sprung (hopefully) and nothing makes your home feel “spring fresh” more than a fresh flower arrangement. Recently I had a coffee meeting with Rachel Christy, owner of Alaska Blooms Peony Farms, and she pointed out that I’m a DIY bride’s florist. Indeed, many of the brides who hire me order the main floral pieces from me and then save money by creating centerpieces themselves. Since I’m a business of one person, I am completely fine with this arrangement. When a bride orders centerpieces I usually hire an assistant.
During a phone consultation with a Kentucky bride, she told me my floral business reminds her of small-batch whiskey makers. These are folks in Kentucky who make whiskey on the side of their normal jobs that are different from the standard whiskeys. I love that comparison.
Anyway, since Mother’s Day is the next floral holiday on the calendar (and often the busiest day for florists) I thought I would share a step-by-step tutorial on how you can make your own flower arrangement. Whether you’re a son, a daughter or a DIY bride, this should be helpful for anyone who is looking to be florally frugal.
If you’re in Anchorage, you can purchase beautiful greenery by the stem at Alaska Wholesale Flower Market. They range from $1.89-2.99 a stem. They also have gorgeous blooms there, but in an effort to save money I purchased grocery store flowers using a buy one, get one half off coupon.
DIY flower centerpiece
What you’ll need for this particular arrangement:
- 4 lavender and white alstroemeria stems
- 5 lavender football mums
- 4 baby’s breath stems
- 1 seeded eucalyptus branch (with at least 4 smaller branches)
- 1 baby eucalyptus branch
- one medium vase
- a roll of narrow cellophane tape (purchased at Fred Meyer)
- garden shears or scissors
Step 1: Create a grid of tape across the top of the vase. There should be nine quadrants in the grid. To keep the grid from breaking while arranging, wrap tape around the top edge of the vase two times.
Step 2: Fill your vase with water and if you have a little nutrition packet, pour that in.
Step 3: Start with your seeded eucalyptus. Trim small branches off the main branch and arrange them around the vase. I try and put the droopier branches in the front to cover up the rim of the vase. If you cover some of the rim it will give your arrangement more flow.
Step 4: Now add baby’s breath to the arrangement. Not only is this good filler but it also gives your arrangement some structure so the other blooms will be better supported.
Step 5: Find your most stunning chrysanthemum. You’ll use this as your focal point. Trim the stem at an angle and remove any extra leaves. Determine where the front of your arrangement will be and place your mum a little off center and facing toward you. Then trim and add two more mums, turning the vase around as you place them so it can be enjoyed from all angles.
Step 6: Break the leaves off the alstroemeria stems and cut the stems at an angle. Start filling in the gaps of the arrangement with the alstroemeria. Look at the arrangement from a bird’s eye view to determine where these gaps are. Nestle in these blooms so they are tucked nicely into the arrangement.
Step 7: Trim small branches of the baby eucalyptus and place them here and there in the arrangement to fill it out and cover any gaps.