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Father’s Day Flowers? A Stunning, No Frills Arrangement for Dad

12 Jun

Dad’s Can Appreciate Floral Art Too!

Father's Day FlowersGood Afternoon, Bloomies! This weekend is Father’s Day. Are you ready? If not, I have created a super simple many arrangement that you can do yourself. Enjoy!

Ikebana influenced Father’s Day Arrangement

When it comes to men’s flowers, I tend to choose big, bold blooms, or potted plants, but not this time. Instead of going for tropical flowers, sunflowers, or succulents, I’ve chosen an minimalist arranging style. Ikebana is a Japanese style of arranging that is simple, with three main components standing for Earth, Heaven, and Man.

I took this idea and used each item in multiples of three (for the most part). I used what I had on hand: Blues and greens in neat textures (Thistle, Ergynium, Galax, Larkspur, poppy pods, artichoke, and Bells of Ireland).

How to Craft a Father’s Day Floral Arrangement

Ikebana: Earth, Heaven, and Man in Three Simple Stages

Start with a container that is streamlined, sleek and low. Mine required foam to hold the flowers, but you can get “pin frogs” (little pin covered disks you can stick the stems into) at a craft or floral store if you prefer.

I put the two biggest items, my thistle and the artichoke, low in the front of the container for focus. I added a few galax leaves to cover some of the foam base, and started building out with ergynium and poppy pods.

Then, add three TALL items. I used the bells of Ireland for my tallest feature. These can angle to the sides slightly, a bit like a W.

Repeat the W/three with another type of flower, in front of and slightly shorter than the tallest.

I repeated this process one last time with the Veronica, echoing the original W and allowing for the negative space between the stems to become part of the arrangement. Cover any open foam with extra low flowers, galax, other leaves, or moss. That’s it. You just did Ikebana!

Have a fantastic dad filled weekend, and remember to tell him Thanks.

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Creating the Perfect Bouquet for Mother’s Day

8 May

Mother’s Day is Right Around the Corner!

Seriously–it’s this Sunday. Don’t despair; I am here to help you make a memorable bouquet for mom that you did all by yourself. It’s like when you were little and made her ceramic doodads that she ultimately hid in the attic. This bouquet won’t be hidden though!

Creating your Bouquet: Choosing Your Setting

Pick your Flowers

Does your mom have a favorite color or favorite type of flower? Try to incorporate the things she already loves for automatic bonus points. Get at least 10 stems. Mixed flowers are great, but you can use all one type if you prefer.

Select a Container

Do you want to use a vase? Do you want to use a container with floral foam? Or do you want to make a hand-tied arrangement so she can put it into a vase she already has (like the one from 3rd grade that’s been hiding in the attic)? Fill the container with warm water and floral food (most flowers sold at the store come with a packet).

The container you selected will determine the shape and steps of the arranging process. For this article, I am going to use a vase arrangement, with no foam. The steps for a hand tied bouquet are almost identical, except you use  a table to create it rather than a vase.Vase

Building your Bouquet

When you select your flowers,  pick out some greens for structure and stability, and to fill in any bare spots. Fern, eucalyptus, and lemon leaf (salal) are common and readily available. I recommend at least two, but preferably 3 types of greens for visual interest.

Start with your Greens

Cut them to the level of the neck of the container, crossing the stems to create a framework for the flowers. Then add 3-4 more stems of greens, varying in height. The tallest should follow the “golden rule”: 1 1/2 to 2 times the height of your vase. The greens should mimic the total shape you are looking for, similar to a cone.

Add greens

Adding in Flowers

My flower school recommended starting from the tallest stem down, but I think it’s easier to start at the bottom and go up. This makes your arrangement straighter and holds that tall flower more securely. General rule of shape is the biggest, fattest flowers at the bottom, and smaller at the top.

Building your bouquet

Creating the Shape

Measure your flowers to the vase, and trim stems at an angle. Four to five should be about the height of the neck of the vase, three to four stems staggered a little taller , and then one stem (pick the tallest, straightest flower before you start cutting!) for the very top. Think of  a dozen roses and the shape they come in.

Continue to add flowers

The Finishing Touches

Give the vase a few rotations, looking for clumps/gaps and adjust accordingly. Remember: you can always make them shorter, but once they are cut, you can’t make them any taller.

Now you have a beautiful hand-made bouquet that your mom will love, and she will appreciate the fact that YOU made it. Of course, if this all seems a bit overwhelming, you can still call me for a beautiful arrangement handmade by me!

Good Luck!Your finished product

Funeral Flowers vs. Memorial Plants

11 Apr

Hello Bloomsies.

Sorry this post is late; yesterday was the first anniversary of my dad’s death, and I felt like I needed a moment before I wrote this.

rose bloomBeing in the flower business, I have done more than my share of funeral arrangements. Having someone close to you die gives a different perspective of the process. There were so many arrangements people had sent my step mom that she wanted to have at the memorial, I offered to put some in my cooler and take them to the memorial the next day. Which was fine, until I got there and say the size and enormity of all the other arrangements that were there. Clearly, transportation for most grieving families is an issue.

Also, these arrangements are beautiful and last a while, but inevitably fade and leave the recipient nothing but vases to fill or get rid of.

Plants might not seem as beautiful a sentiment, but they last longer and are a constant reminder to the person that you are thinking of them. If you know the deceased liked a particular type of plant (indoors OR out) get that for the family members. It can be planted outside and be a yearly blooming reminder, an evergreen memory, or a houseplant that gives you oxygen and comfort.

Also, don’t be afraid to ask the recipient. If you’re not sure, say “I am feeling the need to get you something as a sympathy gift. Is there something you’d prefer?” They might not even want a plant of flowers, perhaps just a meal or a sympathetic shoulder. Anything is welcome in the time of grief.

Peace and Love, Jessicasingle tree in field

Back to School: Flowers are Just the Thing For Teacher

12 Sep

What to Bring to the New Teacher?

A mug of cheerful flowers is the perfect back to school teacher’s gift.

Ahhh. Hear that Bloomies? It’s the first bell of the School Year! That means it’s time to meet your kid’s new teacher. Back to school also comes with the chance to start the year off right with a small gift for the person who will spend the majority of the next ten months with your child.

Skip the Traditional Teacher Gifts Continue reading

Colorful Flowers Make a Great Hostess Gift

29 Aug

For the Hostess With the Mostess

It’s true. You can only give wine so many times. As hostess gifts go, it’s predictable, and what if she doesn’t like wine? Or THAT type of wine? Oops! Here’s my suggestion: bring her flowers! If you’re a true Bloomie, you’ve already brought a big bunch of colorful flowers to a party, and know just how welcomed they are. Here how to make sure they’re always well received.

What Flowers Make Good Hostess Gifts?

Sunflowers and roses make a perfect pairing for an autumn dinner party hostess gift.

Often, a hostess is so busy planning the food and beverages for an event, simple decorating touches like flowers can get overlooked. Sure, there might be other decor or theme decorations around, but fresh flowers can give the party space that extra oomph! There are several ways to give hostess gifts involving flowers, and options for every budget and and taste. Continue reading

Unusual July Holidays

11 Jul

3 Unique July Holidays Just Perfect For Flowers

When we think of July holidays, there are plenty of ways to celebrate national pride. There is, of course, Independence Day on the 4th, Canada Day on the 1st (I’m sure there are some Canadian transplants among my Portland readers), and Bastille Day on the 14th (for the Francophiles among us). What about those other July holidays, the lesser known, more ridiculous holidays?

Let’s Celebrate the Other July Holidays

I Forgot Day, July 2nd

Did you forget a birthday, anniversary, or some other big milestone?  This is the most ironic of the July holidays — it seems doomed to be forgotten! It is however a perfect opportunity to clear the air and say you’re sorry with a lovely flower arrangement or bouquet. It’s hard to stay mad in the face of flowers.

Cheer Up The Lonely Day, July 11th

Today, July 11th, is Cheer Up the Lonely Day! What better way to cheer someone than with flowers? Doesn’t even have to be someone you know. Take flowers to a stranger who looks sad, or seems lonely.

Cousin’s Day, July 24th

Cousins the best of both worlds. They’re somewhere between siblings and friends, and you love them. I bet you have at least ONE cousin who enjoys flowers. In fact, I’m sure all of your cousins enjoy flowers! Who doesn’t?

Free delivery This Month!

One more great reason to celebrate these wacky July holidays — free delivery all month! In the month of July, all orders at jblooms.com over $75.00 have NO delivery charge!