Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Flowers!

Last week I was awash in flowers, as you saw.

flower mess
{flowers, cut}

We had a family event, and I volunteered my services, despite my lack of experience. After all, your family can't really reject you, can they? (I did check in with my expert floral adviser before committing myself to this project - thanks, Kris!)

I purchased one case of floral foam, 12 white ceramic containers from Ikea ($4.99 each), a few dozen bunches of flowers from the flower market. I picked out simple mums (I think?) and yellow billy buttons. Total cost: $200 for 12 centerpieces, about $16 per table.

flower mess
{flowers, in process}

All I did was arrange floral foam in the bottom, soak it with water, and pop the flowers in, keeping them tightly clustered. Simple, yes. But so very time consuming. I estimated this would take a couple hours, but it ended up being more like 8 or 9 hours. Luckily, we have HBO (I re-watched the entire season of True Blood, plus a random movie). I sustained only one clipper related injury, which is pretty good for me. It involved a minimum of shrieking and whining to D as he tried to wrap it in gauze.

flower arrangements, finished
{flowers, finished}

If you're thinking about doing your own flowers for a wedding, don't assume it will just take a few hours, unless you are doing something really, really simple, like sticking a few flowers into mason jars. At the very least, have 4 or 5 friends over to share the work and cut down your arranging time. And order pizza. Flower related stress increases exponentially when you aren't properly fueled.

Tip
- don't think you have to stick to the vase section when you're making flower arrangements. The 8" Smarta dishes were cheaper than most of the vases I looked at and they are oven safe, so when we're done with the party, we'll have some useful bakeware and/or serving dishes.

33 comments:

  1. I find that most every kind of stress increases exponentially when I'm not properly fueled. Lovely flowers, R!

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  2. The final product looks amazing!

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  3. wow i wouldn't have imagined it could take that long either! kudos to you for doing it.

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  4. Fabulous job! *and* way to multi-purpose for the bakeware!

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  5. Everything worth taking time to do always is appreciated.
    I know your efforts will receive accolades. Clap, clap! Bravo!
    Take care of your boo boo!
    pve

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  6. Love the yellow. Really summery!

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  7. So yellow, I love it! And I love True Blood. I'd spend a day re-watching it for sure.

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  8. gorgeous! i love the idea of using only one color!

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  9. Wow. The monochromatic thing is awesome. I am so very impressed with you (nor surprise there).

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  10. I'd say you did a great job! :)

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  11. I've done the flowers for two weddings, and I vowed never again! But in reality it will probably happen again. So much work! I was a hunchback by the end. But your finished product is beautiful, and great tip regarding the dishes. I love repurposing!

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  12. They are adorable! Love the sunny shade. I did the flowers for a Christmas wedding a few years back- 300 Poinsttias, weaths for the tables, the handheld nosegays, alter vases- all very holiday-ish and lovely... but never again. It took me days...

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  13. Wow this is beautiful!
    I love your blog!

    xxx

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  14. http://absolutelynotmartha.blogspot.com/

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  15. Thanks for this post! My mom is getting married in September and we're trying to come up with nice centerpiece ideas. This is great!

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  16. As a part-time florist I have one tip for you: floral foam is pretty toxic (its made from petroleum based bi-products), I wouldnt reccommend eating out of something that it has been stored in. That said, if you (or anyone else) has some tips on how to use less toxic foam, I'm all ears! Its a shame that floral supplies are so gorss so the environment (and our bodies), seems like there should be better options out there.

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  17. what a fantastic job! a lot of time very well spent.

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  18. Your arrangement looks gorgeous!

    ...don't assume it will just take a few hours, unless you are doing something really, really simple, like sticking a few flowers into mason jars.

    Haaahahahahaha! That is EXACTLY why all I'm doing for my wedding is sticking a few flowers into mason jars! I originally had visions of wheatgrass and a variety of flowers, but I decided it would get too complicated and I'm not willing to pay someone to do it. I should have pictures up this week of what I hope to do.

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  19. Rachel, everything looks fantastical! I love how you mixed the cushion mums with the button mums. It adds a whole new layer of cuteness! If you want a job, call me :)

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  20. @ anonymous part time florist - thanks for the heads up! It didn't even occur to me to look up information about the floral foam before using it. I've recieved arrangments in mugs (with floral foam in the bottom), and I've never thought twice about using the mug afterwards. I'm thinking that a really careful cleaning will make me comfortable enough to use the dishes for food, but I'll definitely be doing some research first.

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  21. rachel - these look fantastic! how long do they last?

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  22. beautiful. they really are just perfect. simple and sunny and elegant and generous. maybe this says something about you?

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  23. @ courtney - I put them together Thursday night, and they still look great (probably would have looked better if I refreshed the water every other day). I'm guessing they'll hold up for almost a week, but they'll start looking peaky by the end.

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  24. What a great idea! Love low centerpieces, for sure (that is, assuming people want to talk to whoever is on the other side of the table). :)

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  25. wow....you could do this as a business as these are amazingly wonderful !

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  26. beautiful!!!! my brother got married 2 weeks before christmas and we used similar containers and filled them with silver, gold and while christmas bulbs. the married couple had a fully decorated tree with the ornaments after they returned from their honeymoon.

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  27. you did such a wonderful job! i admire your skills and creativity so much, you never cease to amaze me.

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  28. Such beautiful mums! The color is extremely vivid! I haven't been to a flower shop in such a long time. You've just inspired me to seek one out :)

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  29. so beautiful, rachel! if we're good, may we see how they looked en scène as well?

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  30. Wow rachel - 8 or nine hours - eek! But your flowers look so lovely and I seriously heart the shape of the arrangement and the colour. There look so lovely en masse. Have you no end to your talents!

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