April 2017 Newsletter

Floral Trends - Volume 85

Easter Flowers: DIY Floral Easter Egg

By Kit Wertz

Flower Easter Egg by Flower Duet

Kit’s 2017 version of a flower Easter Egg stands about 15 inches tall and 8 inches wide in the middle. This can be displayed nestled in a basket or on a pillar candle stand as shown here.

I featured a version of these giant oversized flowery Easter Eggs many years back in our blog, but never broke down how to make them. Here are step-by-step instructions for how to make a giant Easter Egg out of flowers and succulent blooms using floral foam, bamboo sticks and a variety of small blooms.

Start with Floral Foam Shaping

Start with a 4-inch floral foam ball and a half a brick of wet floral foam. Soak the foam for about 5 minutes in water and flower food until all the bubbles stop appearing in the water. Remember to not push the foam down…just let it sink on its own.

Foam shapes

I used a half brick of Oasis floral foam and a 4-inch Oasis sphere to start. Cut the sphere in half. Placed half on top of the foam and cut down the sides to create a cylinder. Photo by Kit Wertz.

Bamboo Skewers for floral foam attachment

I used two bamboo skewers to attach the top and bottom half of the spheres to the cylinder foam I created from the half brick of foam. Photo by Kit Wertz.

Floral foam egg capsule before shaping top.

Here is an overall look of the two spheres on top of and below the cylinder of foam with the bamboo skewers showing at the bottom. I trimmed these before I started to shape the top of the foam into an egg shape. I placed it on a cylinder vase while I worked. Photo by Kit Wertz.

Shaping the top of the floral foam capsule to make an egg shape.

With a knife, I shaped the top third of the foam capsule to create more of an egg shape where the bottom of the foam is rounded and the top is more elongated. Photo by Kit Wertz.

Floral Foam Egg Shaped by Flower Duet

Here is my finished egg shape made from two pieces of floral foam (a half brick and a sphere). At this point, the egg shape does not have to be perfect since you are adding fluffy flowers to it. It just has to have the basic smaller rounded top than the bottom to mimic an egg shape. Photo by Kit Wertz.

Add the Fresh Flowers to the Egg Shape

Using a lot of short stems that are less than one inch long, fill the egg in a pattern that mimics a decorated Easter egg.

I used waxflower, statice, Billy Balls (Craspedia), green Dianthus and Aeoniums in this design. Here is how much it will take to cover an entire egg.

White wax flower

White wax flower makes up a large part of this design. I had a lot of it and it was in full bloom, so it was easy to fill the egg quickly.

Aeoniums

I used about 16 small aeonium blooms for this design.

Statice flower

I cut this Sea Foam statice from my garden where it is blooming like gangbusters from all the rain we had this winter. If you buy statice at the mart, get one full bunch per egg.

Billy Balls

I used 20 Billy Buttons (Craspedia) for this design. That is two bunches.

Green Dianthus

Green Dianthus balls or green trick Dianthus will work well to cover an egg in short stems.

Stems for Flower Egg

Here are examples of the sections of flowers I put into the egg. Very few blooms with very short stems. It’s a long process and a bit like putting together a puzzle. Photo by Kit Wertz.

Partial Flower Egg in process

Here is the egg partially done. I ended up taking out the middle section of the purple statice and replacing it with more Dianthus. Photo by Kit Wertz.

Finished Flower Easter Eggs on Display

The final egg can be displayed in many ways. Have fun and Happy Easter!

Flower Duet Easter Eggs. Photo by Kit Wertz.

Kit’s original eggs from around 2006 for her Easter brunch. These are made with mums and yellow statice.

 

Flower Duet Easter Egg flowers. Photo by Kit Wertz.

Placing the flower Easter Egg on a pedestal vase makes it look like a Faberge egg come to life! Photo by Kit Wertz.

April Fooling

Flower Duet’s Favorite Flower Jokes

What did the bee say to the flower?

Kit and Casey first heard a version of this joke on A Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor during one of his classic joke shows.

During our classes, Casey and I have a fun time sharing a few of our favorite flower jokes and during our last workshop, I realized that like an old stand-up comic, my material was getting a little stale. Half of the class attendees were repeat students and they had heard this one before:

Flower Duet’s Original Flower Joke

Q: Why are flowers like old people?

A: “They don’t like to be moved….they don’t like drafts….and they need to stay hydrated as much as possible.”

Since this is the month devoted to foolery, Casey and I thought we’d share some new flower jokes with you, our loyal readers.

Here’s one that our mom made up (she is also our editor):

Q: What do you call the place where you buy used automobiles?
A: “Carnation”

Black Eyed Susan - photo by Wikipedia

Black Eyed Susan is the common name for Rudbeckia hirta, the state flower of Maryland.

And a few more flower jokes that are pretty clever as told by kids:

Q: Which flowers roar?
A: “Dandelions.”

Q: What flowers talk a lot?
A: “Tulips.”

Q: What do you say to a fancy cactus?
A: “You look sharp!”

Q: What did the bride say when she dropped her bouquet?
A: “Whoopsie Daisies!”

Lilacs in three colors!

Lilacs in three colors – almost too pretty to be a punchline! Photo by Kit Wertz.

Q: What do you call a flower that can’t tell the truth?
A: “A lilac.”

Q: Why couldn’t a flower ride its bike?
A: “It lost its petals.”

Q: How do you tell a dogwood when it’s not in bloom?
A: “You recognize its bark.”

Q: What kind of flower looks like it just came back from a fight?
A: “A Black-Eyed Susan.”

Q: What did the baby tulip say to its babysitter?
A: “I want my Poppy and my Mum.”

Flowers as Art

Photos by Jen Fujikawa

Lapis colored flowers Pantone spring 2017

One of the many lovely photos taken by wedding and event photographer Jennifer Fujikawa at our studio this year.

We teamed up with a very talented photographer named Jennifer Fujikawa whom we met at a WIPA event late last year to create some artsy photos of flowers in the spring palette for 2017.

We are pleased to announce that some of these photos will be featured in a blog feature this month on Inspired by This! Stay tuned to our Facebook page for updates!

Book Review: The Art of Flower Arranging by Paula Pryke

The Art of Flower Arranging book cover

The Art of Flower Arranging is the eighteenth book by master floral designer Paula Pryke of the United Kingdom. A flower student in the Constance Spry school, Ms. Pryke reveals her signature British style within a plethora of designs in this book.

When my workshop students ask what books are a good start for beginners, I’ll often refer to  Pryke’s Flower School: Mastering the Art of Floral Design as a good reference.

This newest book published in late February of 2017 is however not for beginner flower arrangers. One would need to have more than a few hands-on floral classes or workshops before trying to recreate most of the designs within the beautifully photographed pages. For example, there is only one page about floristry tools and equipment, but no instruction or photos within the book to explain what they look like or how to use them.

There are many lovely color-filled pages which offer ideas for the most on-trend flowers in popular palettes like the peaches to browns selection which includes a rich peachy-brown ‘Marrakesh‘ rose.

At a hefty 288 pages, it’s well worth the investment. Ms. Pryke offers 15 designs complete with flower recipes and steps to complete the look. There are designs for intermediate to advanced designers in this book, so it’s a great addition to your flower library if you’ve really caught the floral design bug.

Note that some of the ideas and images in this book have been featured in previously published books by Ms. Pryke. Some of the floral designs in the book are not necessarily new; however, they do continue to represent a classic floral design look and feel that is still very much in demand by today’s floral clients.

Available at Amazon.com or Barnes and Noble stores.

Flower Tool: Rubber Bands

Rubber Bands Flower ToolFlower Duet uses rubber bands in our flower toolkit for many reasons. Here are a few ways in which we use the versatile rubber band:

  1. As a way to gather fabric when draping an aisle: Gather a section like you would a ponytail and then pouf out the fabric to create a wide loop.
  2. When creating a bundle and place arrangement in a low vase or floral container: Useful for handing out posies at the end of an event. See our article about this technique.
  3. To bind stems for hand-held bouquets: Using a rubber band to hold stems in place in a hand-tied bouquet makes more sense than using just floral tape or binding wire. When stems are out of water, they dehydrate and shrink. Bouquets will loosen if they are not held together tightly and rubber bands will contract as stems shrink. So…the bouquet stays sturdy and strong throughout the event!
Rubber band bundles for flowers

Rubber bands bind the flowers in place. Make 3-4 bundles and place in a clockwise direction into a low cube vase to make a perfect design.