One of the first things that comes to mind when planning flower arrangements or bouquets is COLOR. It’s one of the fundamental elements of any type of design, as important as Form (shape of the flowers and the overall arrangement) and Texture (from smooth and sleek to ornate and airy.) (More on those later!) There are lots of different ways to combine colors that you might have never considered that can really set your floral arrangements and wedding flowers apart! First, a quick primer on Color. Color has three components: Hue (what most of us think of when we say “color”), Value (from light to dark of a given color), and Saturation (the intensity – vibrant or soft/muted — of a given color). Today we’re going to focus on Hue. Any of us who have made it through Kindergarten have seen a color wheel (ok, maybe not the flower version!) …and there you have your basic hues: Yellow, Yellow-Orange, Orange, Red-Orange, Red, Red-Violet, Violet (Purple), Blue-Violet, Blue, Blue-Green, Green, Yell0w-Green. To begin experimenting with your flower arrangements, start working the Flower Color Wheel.
- The Flower Color Wheel
For vibrant, intense results, combine Complementary colors in your bouquets and arrangements. These appear across from each other on the color wheel: Yellow-Purple, Blue-Orange, Red-Green. When you put Complementary colors side-by-side they tend to enhance the intensity of each other.
- Complementary Color Combinations for Fresh Flower Arrangements
You can create soothing, harmonious, romantic fresh flower combinations using Analogous colors. These are families of colors that are next to each other on the color wheel, like “Blues” (blue, blue-violet, blue-green), or “Yellows” (yellow-green, yellow, yellow-orange).
- Analogous Color Combinations For Fresh Flower Arrangements
You can also create unusual, exciting combinations using Triadic colors, basing your flower choices on three colors that are equidistant from one another on the color wheel. Think yellow/red/blue, or purple/green/orange, or blue-green/yellow-orange/red-violet.
- Triadic Color Combinations for Fresh Flower Arrangements
Of course, this is just the beginning. As you get more comfortable working with different harmonies, start experimenting with Value and Saturation. (We’ll look at those a little more closely in a later post.) You’ll start to see combinations that work and don’t work, and will begin to see how following some basic design guidelines can lead you to beautiful success in floral design.
In recent years, trends for wedding and party flowers have moved away from elaborate, intricate, filler-laden extravaganzas to the “less is more” approach. Simple hand-tied bouquets using just a single flower variety, centerpieces comprised of floating flower heads in low-clung bowls. Tasteful, refined, elegant, simple – and easy to do. Except now everyone is doing it. So how do you step up your presentation to make it yours – and not just like the ones you and your guests saw at the last five events you went to? Let’s talk bouquets. Hand-tied bouquets are very popular now. For one, they are easy for even the most craft-challenged to create. Just about any kind of flower can be used. For wedding bouquets, 20-25 premium roses can be gathered and wrapped in a graceful ribbon. So what if you like that look, but want to make it more your own? Think about introducing a hint of something different – fillers or greens you’re not used to seeing. Step away from the Baby’s Breath or the Leather Leaf Fern. For an almost “antique” look, try combining cream roses with Seeded Eucalyptus and some Hypericum Berries. Not a lot – just a few sprigs within the rose heads.
Or add some monochrome texture: Try pairing Lavender Blue Curiosa Roses with some delicate purple Wax Flower, and frame with some Green Ruscus or Lemon Papoose.
White and Purple Astors, which look like mini Daisies, dress up simple carnations. Or introduce an Asian or Tropical flair by adding Aspidistra or Tepee greens. Don’t be afraid to try some new combinations. You’ll be thrilled with the results, and so will your guests!
- Wholesale Billy Balls
The wholesale flower industry is joining the rest of the consumer products community with the latest inititive by the GS1-US to barcode cut flowers and their packaging. One of the last holdouts in the consumer products world, flower growers, importers, and wholesalers will be moving toward a June 2010 target to add a UPC barcode to their products. The UPC barcode uniquely identifies the grower and product identity and will greatly streamline the movement of cut flowers through the supply chain. Visit the website http://www.floralgtin.com for more information. Contact Blooms if you have questions. Believe it or not barcodes are something we know a lot about!
The most popular flowers used in simple fundraising events are carnations and roses. Carnations are very affordable, easy to prepare and handle, and are long lasting and durable. They come in a variety of colors with red, white and pink being the most popular for fundraising. They can be purchased in bunches of 25 stems, with discounts given as the quantity increases. Typically they can be sold at 200-300 percent mark up for a tremendous profit! For an even more profitable item, we suggest a simple bouquet of 2-3 flowers and adding a stem of leather leaf fern and a stem of gypsophila (baby’s breath).
Roses are also very popular for fundraising, especially around the Valentine’s Day holiday! As with carnations, they can be sold by the stem or simply arranged. We recommend using 40 cm or 50 cm stem roses for most events as they are less expensive. All roses are sold in bunches of 25 stems, with a discounts given at larger quantities. For Valentines Day, red roses are the most popular, but their prices jump dramatically, so plan your pricing ahead of time. For a higher priced and more profitable item, we also recommend a simple bouquet of 1 rose with a stem of leather leaf fern and a stem of gypsophila (baby’s breath).
Another option to consider is bulk bouquets, which are already assembled and ready to sell! With a variety of sizes, price ranges and flower selections, they are a perfect solution for quick and profitable fundraising with a minimum of preparation.
Keep in mind that your guests will want to talk to teach other. Your flowers should not block their view. Centerpieces in low, square or round glass vases are very popular right now. Floral tape is placed over the top of the vase forming a supporting grid. The flowers are simply placed in between the openings in the grid right into water.
Many flowers of the same color and variety are being used in these low vases. Nine to 12 roses of the same shade or in various shades of the same color create a beautiful look. Hypericum berries and greens like aspidistra and ruscus add interesting texture, and are great fillers for this type of arrangement.
Traditional roses are also being mixed with spray roses of the same color. When placed in a taller vase with cascading filler such as bear grass it creates a more modern yet still romantic look.
Tulips of the same shade or of multiple shades also make beautiful table centerpieces. A satin ribbon tied around a vase of tulips creates a more formal look while a raffia ribbon provides a more casual look.
Vases of different shapes and sizes can be placed in the center of the table, each holding a single flower or several. These vases can also serve as wedding favors for the guests. If guests are sitting at long narrow tables where space is at a premium, a small vase placed in front of each guest or placed randomly down the length of the table is a very effective look.
Another simple idea is floating flowers and candles in a low flat centerpiece. This looks beautiful with roses or gerbera daisies. A centerpiece of floating candles can also be surrounded by flowers, in small lower vases or placed in a ring of floral foam.