Sunday, February 13, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!!

     Valentine's day reached its height of popularity during the Victorian era.  Valentines were adorned with intricate details of flowers, birds, cherubs, lace and feathers.  Traditionally, valentines were given anonymously leaving ladies a challenge to discover their admirer.  It mights have been sent by a postal carrier or courier, or even tied to or slipped under a door.  This was a truly romantic time for our ancestors. 
      Flowers and gardens were also extravagantly decorated in Victorian times.  Some of the more common flowers seen in Victorian gardens included hydrangea, roses, daffodil, wisteria and lily of the valley.  Most Victorian arrangements and centerpieces were in footed glass vases or silver platters.  Floriography, the language of flowers, was used as a way of communication to send unspoken messages.
     Bring  back the art of romance this Valentine's Day by creating a handmade valentine or a wistful floral arrangement!!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

February -Month of the Iris

In Greek mythology, Iris is the goddess of the rainbow linking the gods to humanity.  The garden iris is found in a number of colors, thus receiving its name from mythology.  Of all the varieties available, the most common are the white, blue and purple.  This lovely combination of iris can create an eloquent winter display to brighten your home.  If spring is on your mind, the iris can also be found in yellow, pink, orange, red and even black!

Traditionally, iris represent faith, hope and wisdom.  In some areas the dark blue iris symbolized royalty and the yellow is for passion.

Iris are one of my favorite flowers since they are so versatile.  Blue, purple and white are reminiscent of the cold winter sky; whereas the brighter colors are a quiet promise of what is yet to come.  Help bring some cheer into a friends home by having a beautiful arrangement of silk iris custom made for them!

Below is how I created a simple centerpiece of iris to bring some cheer into my kitchen!

All the tools needed to create a one of a kind arrangement! Start by selecting the container for the display; I chose a simple black bowl.  Cut a piece of floral foam to fit into the container.  I use a hot glue gun to add spanish moss to the foam.  Side cuts are a must have - the easiest way to cut the flowers to size.  I also use a flower pick machine; this is not necessary but I believe it is the best way to insert the silk flowers into the foam.  The flowers I selected for this arrangement included white and blue iris, ivy, green eucalyptus, and a variety of winter pansies.
Next begin filling in the piece with your filler greens - mine being the ivy and eucalyptus.
Using your base flower, create focal points all around the arrangement.  You want your eye to travel throughout the entire piece.  The most common way to begin a centerpiece is by adding flowers to four sides of the container and in the center.
Now comes the fun part!  Just start adding the remainder of your flowers to fill out the centerpiece until you get the desired look!  The beauty of silk is if your are not happy with the placement, you can move it without compromising the integrity of the flower. 

The finished piece!  A serene centerpiece to bring comfort during this short cold month!