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We send out a month­ly newslet­ter — It’s free and has great flower arrang­ing ideas and tips includ­ing our upcom­ing flo­ral work­shop list, flo­ral design book reviews, how-tos, and more. We send it out each month and don’t share our mail­ing list with any­one.

Floral Design Newsletter Archives

Read more Flower Duet Newsletters from past years:

2018 Newslet­ter Archives

2017 Newslet­ter Archives

2016 Newslet­ter Archives

2015 Newslet­ter Archives

2014 Newslet­ter Archives

2013 Newslet­ter Archives

2012 Newslet­ter Archives

2011 Newslet­ter Archives

2010 Newslet­ter Archives

Each month, we cov­er a cur­rent event in the flo­ral trade, flo­rals from real wed­dings, our lat­est flower adven­tures and endeav­ors, design tips, cur­rent flo­ral trends, flo­ral design class­es and work­shops, book rec­om­men­da­tions and flo­ral tool tips.

Since 2010, we’ve cre­at­ed a hot list of what’s on for flo­ral design in and beyond South­ern Cal­i­for­nia. As guest speak­ers inside and out­side of Cal­i­for­nia, we know what clients need in the wed­ding and event indus­try. We are your trust­ed resource for flo­ral design tips and tech­niques for all lev­els of the flower enthu­si­ast.

We are Kit Wertz and Casey Schwartz, the sis­ter design team of Flower Duet. We are com­mit­ted to edu­cat­ing our stu­dents and fans since we start­ed our flo­ral design busi­ness in 1999.

We don’t share our email list with any­one! So, you can rest assured, your email is safe with us.

Winter White Flowers

Hydrangeas and Ranun­cu­lus blooms make up this sim­ple vase design that is great for a win­ter white flo­ral dis­play. Flow­ers by Flower Duet. Pho­to by Kit Wertz.

August Floral News

Flowers on Friendship Day — August 3rd, 2014

by Kit Wertz

Friends Shopping In 1919, Hall­mark found­ed Friend­ship Day to be the first Sun­day in August. It was intend­ed to be a day for peo­ple of all ages to cel­e­brate their friend­ship by send­ing each oth­er cards. By 1940, no one was inter­est­ed in send­ing cards and the trend died out. In 1998, Win­nie the Pooh was named by the Unit­ed Nations as the Ambas­sador of Friend­ship and in 2011, the UN  made July 30th Inter­na­tion­al Friend­ship Day. How­ev­er, most  coun­tries cel­e­brate on the first Sun­day of August!

Friendship Day Flowers

Learn to how to make flo­ral arrange­ments for Friend­ship Day by recre­at­ing this design. Fol­low our How-To below!

On this Friend­ship Day, Flower Duet is host­ing a group of friends at our flo­ral design stu­dio for a pri­vate flower par­ty.

We’ll be teach­ing the ladies how to cre­ate their own flo­ral designs to take home to enjoy or give away to friends. It will be a won­der­ful way to cel­e­brate Friend­ship Day.

Per­haps you would like to make a flo­ral design to give to your friend? Here is a quick flower recipe and step-by-step pho­tos for cre­at­ing a love­ly design to give to your best bud­dy on Sun­day (or any day of the year!)

All flow­ers pur­chased at Trad­er Joe’s. You could also source from a local Farm­ers Mar­ket, gro­cery store or if you are lucky a whole­saler close to you. NOTE: The mums, ros­es and stock are avail­able year-round, but Dahlias are most­ly only around in the sum­mer­time. So get them while they are hot!

[one_fourth] Flower Recipe:

  • 7 stems Pur­ple Dahlias
  • 8 stems Ker­mit Mums
  • 13 stems small head­ed Hot Pink Ros­es
  • 7 stems Laven­der Stock

[/one_fourth][three_fourth_last]

dahlia-pink

Dahlia

kermit-mums

Ker­mit Mum

roses-hot-pink

Hot Pink Rose

stock-lavender

Laven­der Stock

[/three_fourth_last][one_fourth] Sup­plies:
  • Flower Food — came with flow­ers — use it!
  • White Cube vase — 4x4x4 inch­es — opaque con­tain­ers are great because they hide the stems
  • Flo­ral twine — you can use rub­ber bands or kitchen twine
  • Flo­ral cut­ters

Total Cost about $23 for flow­ers and $4 for the vase.[/one_fourth] [three_fourth_last]

friendship-day-cube-food-twine[/three_fourth_last]

Friendship Day Flower Design Instructions

Step 1: Clean all the leaves off the stems and sep­a­rate stems so that each stem is about the same length. It’s best to remove all green­ery on a stem that will be below the water line in a vase. This will help the water stay clean and enable the flower stems to stay unclogged.

[one_half]

Dahlia

Uncleaned Dahlia

[/one_half] [one_half_last]
Cleaned stem of Dahlia

Cleaned and sep­a­rat­ed Dahlia

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Step 2: Make small bun­dles of flow­ers using 2–3 stems of each type of flower and tying them togeth­er with a rub­ber band or twine. I used flo­ral twine because I was out of rub­ber bands and it is more Eco-friend­ly!

Flower Bundles

Keep the stem length of each bun­dle long to start and trim as you place them in your con­tain­er.

Step 3: You’ll end up with about 3–4 bun­dles. Place each in a small, low con­tain­er full of water and flower food. Place them so you lock the stems in place.

Lock stems in vase

Place each bun­dle inside the vase so the stems lock togeth­er. This method of design­ing is called “bun­dle and place” and it helps to ensure heavy blooms like Dahlias stay in a low con­tain­er like this one instead of flip­ping out!

Step 4: When plac­ing the bun­dles, be sure to have the low­est blooms of each bun­dle just rest on the lip of the vase. This ensures you don’t see any “stems” above the top of the vase and lends itself to a mod­ern and lux­u­ri­ous look.

Angle the bundles in the vase

Angle the bun­dles and cut the stems so that the low­est blooms sit slight­ly above the lip of the con­tain­er.

 Step 5: Fin­ish adding the bun­dles, write a card to your friend and give it away for Friend­ship Day!

Finished Friendship Flower Arrangement by Flower Duet

The fin­ished design used a total of 35 whole stems, but some of these were sep­a­rat­ed to make small­er stems to fit in the vase.

Flower Tool: Racking Gerbera Daisies

By Casey Cole­man Schwartz

Gerber Grower Box

Ger­ber Grow­er Box

Ger­ber Daisies are a joy to work with and to look at. The hap­py faces and mul­ti­tude of col­ors are extra­or­di­nary. Their stems how­ev­er can chal­lenge your design on a reg­u­lar basis.  This can be helped.

I pur­chased a grow­ers box last week and they were out of water and lying flat. I need­ed to sus­pend them some how so the stems would get strong and straight.

I had to rack my brain….“Aha, a rack with a buck­et under­neath. Per­fect,” I thought.  I pulled the Ger­bers out of the box and snipped a half inch off the base of the stem and slipped the stem between the grid of the rack and presto, a sus­pend­ing Ger­ber, with a straight stem com­ing right up!

[one_third]

Gerber Rack Closeup

[/one_third][one_third]

gerber-rack

[/one_third][one_third_last]

gerber-rack3

[/one_third_last]

Ger­bers also love to drink lots of water, caus­ing their heads to get very full and heavy, mak­ing them droop eas­i­ly. So, when you put them in a vase, try to lim­it their vase water and add just enough to keep them hydrat­ed.

Teach Your Children Well: Flower Arranging

By Casey Cole­man Schwartz

DR. Suess Flowers

We taught this Dr. Suess-inspired foral arrange­ment at The Hunt­ing­ton Library to the chil­dren’s class in March. It’s very styl­ized and the chil­dren all did a won­der­ful job, but admit­ted it was hard­er to cre­ate than it looked.

Young Learn­ers

Cros­by, Stills, Nash and Young sang it best….”Teach your Chil­dren Well…“

We do our best. We teach our chil­dren every­day, and we teach oth­er chil­dren as often as we can and we love it.

Whether it is about bugs, birds or flow­ers, it’s all relat­ed and increas­es aware­ness to the entire world around them.  My sons, Will and Sam, went on a bird watch­ing tour while we were on the East Coast this sum­mer and those two hours shaped them for the remain­der of the trip and con­tin­ues on since we have returned to Los Ange­les. They point out flow­ers to me along our walks in the neigh­bor­hood and at the gro­cery store, they even iden­ti­fy flow­ers by name or com­ment if I had just used them for an event.

Kit’s twins who are 3 1/2 years old are already design­ing and have shown they have com­plete­ly dif­fer­ent design aes­thet­ics, are com­plete­ly fear­less and have embraced the nor­mal­cy of it.

[one_half]

Three-year-old's flowers.

Kit’s daugh­ter’s design using left­over tulips and spray ros­es. She’s three and a half years old.

[/one_half][one_half_last]
Cole's design

Kit’s son’s design who is also three and a half. He used sea hol­ly, ros­es, pit­tospo­rum, spray ros­es and ros­es that had been “petaled.” He said he liked the “spiky” flow­ers.

[/one_half_last]

The daugh­ter of a co-work­er spends a lot of time at the stu­dio with us, and I have been teach­ing her a few tricks and tips. She spends her morn­ings in Jr. Life­guards and in the after­noon she is ready to help me with clean­ing flow­ers and loves to see what she can cre­ate with all the left­overs.  She has made some com­bi­na­tions that I would not think to put togeth­er and they are amaz­ing­ly sweet.

Another creation by Kit's daughter. This one looks like it has tow eyes and multiple antennae. After working on this, she relayed to her dad, "We were at the studio and I made beautiful flower arrangements." Yes, indeed.

Anoth­er cre­ation by Kit’s daugh­ter. This one looks like it has two eyes and mul­ti­ple anten­nae. After work­ing on this, she relayed to her dad, “We were at the stu­dio and I made beau­ti­ful flower arrange­ments.” Yes, indeed.

We have an intern this sum­mer, he is the son of friend of mine. He is 17 and just grad­u­at­ed from high school and will be head­ing to a four-year col­lege in Sep­tem­ber. He had expressed this inter­est about floristry to his moth­er, who relayed it to me. He is total­ly game for any­thing.

So far this sum­mer we have cre­at­ed 14 arrange­ments togeth­er using three dif­fer­ent tech­niques, built the inside of four, 25-inch tall vas­es with man­zani­ta branch­es, sand, shells and sea stars. Togeth­er, we’ve mixed cement, cut PVC pipe and the tack­led the ever glam­orous task of clean­ing many, many used vas­es and buck­ets. He is get­ting a behind-the-scenes view of a flower busi­ness. He is real­iz­ing that he has a keen sense of design and detail. He admit­ted that he had no idea what to expect and is hap­py to be learn­ing so much. We have a full month of August ahead of us, so he will con­tin­ue to bloom and learn. Our job is to teach them well. And we love it.

Manhattan Beach Wedding at a Private Residence

By Flower Duet

Here are a few designs that our 17-year-old intern helped us cre­ate for a Man­hat­tan Beach wed­ding at the end of July. This wed­ding was in a pri­vate home, so the flow­ers were treat­ed as accents to the love­ly beach envi­rons. All designs by Flower Duet.

flowerduet-wedding-manhattan-brides-bouquet

Bride’s Bou­quet of Yel­low Calla Lilies and Lily Grass.

flowerduet-wedding-manhattan-centerpiece

Din­ing Table Cen­ter­piece with Mini Green Hydrangea, Bil­ly Balls, Lily Grass, Rus­cus, Ger­ber Daisies and Green Trick Dianthus.

flowerduet-wedding-manhattan-ceremony

Wed­ding Cer­e­mo­ny back­drop with five accent flo­ral pieces.

flowerduet-wedding-manhattan-cocktail

Cock­tail flo­ral piece.

flowerduet-wedding-manhattan-coffee-table

Cof­fee table design with Ger­ber Daisies, Sun­flow­ers, Calla Lilies, Bil­ly Balls, Green Trick Dianthus and Celosia.

flowerduet-wedding-manhattan-detail

Cer­e­mo­ny accent piece detail fea­tur­ing two types of Ger­ber Daisies, Bil­ly Balls, Dahlias and Lily Grass.

 New Farmers Market on Wall Street: Saturdays 10 a.m. — 3 p.m.

By Flower Duet

The Wall Farmers Market

The Rib­bon is cut to com­mem­o­rate the open­ing of the new Farm­ers Mar­ket on Wall Street Sat­ur­day morn­ings in down­town Los Ange­les in the flower dis­trict. Pho­to by The Orig­i­nal Los Ange­les Flower Mar­ket.

[pul­lquote align=“left” type=“simple”]Mission: Increase foot traf­fic into the flower mar­ket with a week­ly event that pro­motes improved fresh food access with rea­son­ably priced high qual­i­ty per­ish­ables that ben­e­fit all while sup­port­ing Cal­i­for­nia small & mid-size farms. Result, enrich the health & over­all qual­i­ty for the com­mu­ni­ties in which we work & live.[/pullquote]

There is a new place to shop for fresh local pro­duce in down­town Los Ange­les and it’s right in the mid­dle of our favorite place to buy fresh local flow­ers — the Los Ange­les Flo­ral Dis­trict! On July 26th, The Wall Farm­ers Mar­ket was launched amid fan­fare that includ­ed a rib­bon cut­ting, cook­ing demon­stra­tions, live music, aer­i­al per­form­ers, food ven­dors and local politi­cians.

The mar­ket has fresh pro­duce as well as flow­ers and plants and will be open each Sat­ur­day from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Wall Street between 7th and 8th Streets Rain or Shine.

Be sure to note this the next time you trav­el down to the flower mart. Stop by and pick up some fresh fruit and veg­gies along with your flow­ers. Just be sure not to dis­play your flower designs next to any ripen­ing fruit!

View more pho­tos on Face­book or on Yelp. Know that Flower Duet offers guid­ed group and pri­vate tours of the Los Ange­les Flower Dis­trict. Our next sched­uled group tour is Octo­ber 25, 2014.

Book Review: Summer Reading Recommendations Include More Florist Mysteries!

It’s sum­mer and time for some light read­ing for the plane, the beach or your com­fy couch at home. Last year, we wrote about The Flower Shop Mys­ter­ies by Kate Collins. This year we want to high­light two more authors who write mys­tery nov­els which fea­ture florists as the ama­teur sleuths. Thanks good­ness that Agatha Christie gave us Miss Marple or where would we be with­out all these fun-light­heart­ed mys­ter­ies?

Theo Bloomer Mysteries

Joan Hadley’s Theo Bloomer mys­ter­ies from the late 1980s are a fun flash­back to a time when Kit was in col­lege and Casey was gal­li­vant­i­ng around the globe on cruise ships design­ing flow­ers for pre­mi­um pas­sen­gers. You can pick up a used copy online for a few pen­nies or hunt one down at your local library book sale!

[one_half]

The Deadly Ackee, retired florist Theo Bloom lucks into what appears to be a perfect situation -- escorting his teenage niece and her five friends to lush Jamaica, where he can study the tropical flora to his heart's delight. But there are serpents in paradise; his squabbling charges are enough to drive even mild-mannered Theo to drink, and when an old friend from the CIA turns up, it's more than coincidence. But when a body is found floating in the resort pool, Theo's vacation turns murderous, and only he can solve the mystery before another victim is found.

In The Dead­ly Ack­ee, retired florist Theo Bloomer lucks into what appears to be a per­fect sit­u­a­tion — escort­ing his teenage niece and her five friends to lush Jamaica, where he can study the trop­i­cal flo­ra to his heart’s delight. But there are ser­pents in par­adise; his squab­bling charges are enough to dri­ve even mild-man­nered Theo to drink, and when an old friend from the CIA turns up, it’s more than coin­ci­dence. But when a body is found float­ing in the resort pool, Theo’s vaca­tion turns mur­der­ous, and only he can solve the mys­tery before anoth­er vic­tim is found.

[/one_half][one_half_last]

In The Night Blooming Cereus, Theo Bloomer, a retired Connecticut florist, discovers that his niece, Dorrie Caldicott, refuses to leave a kibbutz in Israel beacuse her Vassar roommate may be involved with some dangerous characters implicated in gun-running and terrorism.

In The Night-Bloom­ing Cereus, Theo Bloomer, a retired Con­necti­cut florist, dis­cov­ers that his niece, Dor­rie Caldicott, refus­es to leave a kib­butz in Israel because her Vas­sar room­mate may be involved with some dan­ger­ous char­ac­ters impli­cat­ed in gun-run­ning and terrorism.[/one_half_last]

The Lake District Mysteries

Rebec­ca Tope has writ­ten numer­ous mys­tery nov­els and three which fea­ture a florist as the sleuth. In her Lake Dis­trict Mys­tery series, florist Per­sim­mon ‘Sim­my’ Brown has moved to the beau­ti­ful region of the Lake Dis­trict to be near­er her charis­mat­ic par­ents. These are more recent and can be read as eBooks or pur­chased online.

windermerewitnessFrom the pub­lish­er: “In The Windere­mere Wit­ness, things are going well for Sim­my, with her lat­est flower arrange­ments praised and Sim­my con­tent to lose her­self in her work. But the peace she has found is shat­tered when, at the wed­ding of a mil­lion­aire’s daugh­ter, the bride’s broth­er is found bru­tal­ly mur­dered in the lake.

As the florist of the wed­ding and one of the last peo­ple to talk to Mark Bax­ter alive, Sim­my grad­u­al­ly becomes involved with the grief-rid­den and angry rel­a­tives. All seem to have their fair share of secrets and scan­dals — an uncar­ing moth­er, a cheat­ing father, and a hus­band twen­ty-five years old­er than his bride. When events take anoth­er sin­is­ter turn, Sim­my becomes a prime wit­ness and finds her­self at the heart of a mur­der inves­ti­ga­tion. The chief sus­pects are the groom and his close­ly knit band of bach­e­lor friends. They are all intim­i­dat­ing, volatile and secre­tive — but which one is a killer?”

Also be sure to check out the oth­er books in this series:

The just pub­lished The Con­is­ton Case (avail­able July 24, 2014) and The Amble­side Ali­bi

New Photo Galleries!

Galleries of Flowers

One of three new pho­to gal­leries on our web­site fea­tur­ing all of Flower Duet’s orig­i­nal flo­ral designs from past wed­dings and events.

We’ve added three new pho­to gal­leries to our web­site which fea­ture past flo­ral design work. Under the Wed­ding Flow­ers menu item, you can peruse our:

2019 Flower Design Classes

Flower Duet’s South­bay Stu­dio
Reg­is­ter for these class­es online. *LA Flower Mart Tours avail­able some dates also.

  • Jan­u­ary 12, 2019 — The Ele­gant Calla Lily
  • Feb­ru­ary 9, 2019 – Organ­ic Con­tain­ers
  • March 9, 2019 – Eccen­tric Emer­ald Flow­ers
  • April 20, 2019 – A Mod­ern Take on the Bas­ket of Flow­ers
  • May 11, 2019 – Tulips for Mother’s Day
  • June 15, 2019 – A Pock­et Full of Posies
  • July 20, 2019 – Large-Scale Flo­ral Design with Ros­es
  • August 17, 2019 – Too Hot Trop­i­cal Flow­ers with Orchids
  • Sep­tem­ber 14, 2019 – Suc­cu­lents & Flow­ers
  • Octo­ber 12, 2019 – Fall, Tall & Ter­rif­ic Flow­ers
  • Novem­ber 23, 2019 – Flo­rals On the Table Work­shop
  • Decem­ber 7, 2019 – Wreaths!

Wednes­day Night Wed­ding Series Work­shops:

  • Jan­u­ary 23, 2019 – Bou­quet & Bou­ton­nière
  • Feb­ru­ary 27, 2019 – Cen­ter­piece & Table Accents
  • May 22, 2019 – Bou­quet & Bou­ton­nière
  • June 26, 2019 – Cen­ter­piece & Table Accents
  • Sep­tem­ber 25, 2019 – Bou­quet & Bou­ton­nière
  • Octo­ber 23, 2019 – Cen­ter­piece & Table Accents

Hunt­ing­ton Library

We will be cel­e­brat­ing the 100th Anniver­sary of The Hunt­ing­ton Library start­ing in June with themed flo­ral designs.
Reg­is­ter for these class­es through brownpapertickets.com.

  • Jan­u­ary 19, 2019 — Herb Gar­den Flow­ers
  • March 2, 2019 — Bulb Spring Flow­ers
  • May 4, 2019 — Cin­co de Mayo Bright Flow­ers
  • June 1, 2019 — The Hunt­ing­ton’s 100th Rose
  • Sept 2, 2019 — A Flower from Every Gar­den
  • Sept/Oct 2019 — Spe­cial Cock­tails & Flower Evenings Planned — Con­tact Us for details as dates are being decid­ed soon!
  • Oct 19, 2019 — Suc­cu­lent Pump­kins
  • Nov 9, 2019 — Fall Flow­ers Inspired by Paint­ings in the Art Col­lec­tion by
  • Dec 14, 2019 — Tra­di­tion­al Hol­i­day Designs inspired from 100 years ago

Dates are set for 2020 — so more flower fun to come!

Autry Muse­um
Watch for Novem­ber Class in 2019!



Wedding Flowers

Fall Wedding Bouquet by Flower Duet

Flower Duet offers a gen­er­ous wed­ding pack­age includ­ing a trip to the LA Flower Mart and a mock­up design of the wed­ding vision. Check out the details on our Wed­ding Flow­ers page. If you are com­ing to the Los Ange­les area for your wed­ding, we are your Los Ange­les wed­ding des­ti­na­tion florist!