Today our studio designed for a private residence. Designing house flowers is so much fun and it gives me a different type of  opportunity to practice my creativity.  My bounty of flowers included, white peony, white veronica, white astilbe, red and white roses, red and white spray roses, red and white tulips, white sweet pea, white and green variegated ranunculus, red amaryllis, white tallow berry, silver brunia, red and white ranunculus, ornithogalum, evergreens and banana sticks that we painted gold.  As you can imagine, I was in heaven!!!

The variegated ranunculus.

The most lovely of sweet peas.

The tallow berry, I was in love with this element. It had great movement and line.

Lovely peony.

My designer challenge began, when I chose to use red amaryllis as my focal flower for the all red entryway design. I needed the height and drama of the amaryllis, however amaryllis do not like to be put in florist foam (oasis). Because I was doing a really big piece I knew I wanted the foam so I decided to combine to different types of mechanics together to create my big red design. A tall glass vase was used to place the amaryllis in water.

The vase that would hold the amaryllis was placed in the center of the clients silver trophy bowl. The vase was completely surrounded with oasis (floral foam). Because the floral foam was going to be holding a high stem count, I used chicken wire to keep my foam from shattering.

We zigzagged wax string around the amaryllis stems holding them in place by tying them to the chicken wire. I purposefully chose not to use florist wire, as it would have severed the stems of my amaryllis. Once I had everything in place I started my design. To help support the amaryllis I inserted pieces of boxwood into the vase between the stems this made for a tight but soft fit.

Next I did the mechanics for my all white dinning room design. Notice in the background my first attempt. Yes I made an entire design and abandoned it, I knew the piece could and should be more sexy. So this is what happened, last year my daughter Abby and I found these banana sticks at Wegmans. They were contorted and weird and really black. I have been holding them for a year just knowing someday I would do something cool with them. Well today was the day. The black banana sticks were painted gold today and wired into my design. The gold branch gave the design the style it was lacking on my first attempt.

A piece of grande oasis was taped and then chicken wired into a bowl. I then zip tied the branches onto the chicken wire. This gave the design the most fabulous movement and texture. Did I mention that the clients dinning room has a gold branch wallpaper. I was screaming with delight when I made this happen. Once these mechanics were in place I sailed through the design like a queen.

Here is the red design in place. Forgive the photography!!

The green of the flying red tulip stems, really connects the green of the amaryllis stems.

My all white design looked like magic in the dinning room.

I just loved the way this piece turned out.

Clean elegant designs were created in mercury glass for the coffee tables.

I made this wreath completely out of permanent flowers. This was a bit of a challenge because I am typically all natural Holly!!!

Designs were also created for the sideboard, cocktail tables and the kitchen, but I was so obsessed with my entryway and dinning room that I neglected to photograph all of the other pieces.

Merry Christmas!!!


  • Laurie (Fleurie) Says: (12.19.2013 | 02:30)

    Very clever! I have added in a vase for amaryllis in arrangements, but not quite so dramatic like this,it was a very low table arrangement.

  • Pam Morris Says: (12.19.2013 | 04:20)

    Love all of the arrangements. Chinese tallow, aka popcorn is one of my favorites. It always takes me to Charleston as I work.

  • Elisa @ Elisa Event Design Says: (12.19.2013 | 09:31)

    Thank you for sharing these great tips on mechanics…loved how everything turned out!

  • Tracy Huntley Says: (12.20.2013 | 06:52)

    Just Beautiful! I really loved the banana sticks, and the drama they bring to your designs!!!

  • Ksenia Says: (12.23.2013 | 05:15)

    Ah, it’s like a small workshop online! great ideas and perfect choice of flowers, as always.

  • Kayla Says: (01.02.2014 | 09:15)

    This is incredibly amazing!!! Who has ever even seen such dreamy sweat peas before, they are perfect!! Thanks so much for all of the details, I am living my floral dreams through you!!! Have a super day =)

  • MelisaChaves Says: (01.12.2014 | 11:31)

    Excellent blog post. I absolutely appreciate this website. Stick with it!

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