4 principles of arranging deli flowers

deli flower arrangement ny times

Kava Gorna for The New York Times

The best thing we found in the recent New York Times’ Design and Living Magazine was Bud Wise, a story and slideshow about making arrangements out of ordinary deli/supermarket flowers. Having found ourselves many times looking blankly at the mishmash of seemingly uninspired offerings at the corner store for a bit of REAL to perk up our table, and spirits, we found the advice given by Sarah Ryhanen and Nicolette Camille each of whom run floral design studios (Saipua and Nicolette Camille Floral Designs, respectively) in Brooklyn. They also operate the Little Flower School, through which they give classes in various locations. They give some really good advice about choosing and handling flowers, what amounts to a set of four loose principles you can apply to fit your own sensibility and budget; it’s worth reading the reasoning and info they give for each one.

Each stem should be a different length. We’ve found this to be pretty much tried and true, the opposite of what many people think.

Kava Gorna for The New York Times

Get rid of over-the-hill petals. We were especially impressed with this one. Owen showed that pulling the wilty petals off an anemone yields a gorgeous black center.

Kava Gorna for The New York Times

Elaborate bouquets need three tiers. Avoiding the impulse to build a pyramid, allows for asymmetry, which creates movement. These arrangements can be fairly pricey, but nothing near what you’d get at a decent florist.)

When in doubt, go monochrome. If you separate out the individual flowers in a garish bought arrangement, you’ll find each has its own beauty, and is best displayed on its own. We found this to be true with the much-distained baby’s breath that came with some roses recently. They have such teeny flowers, we cut the stems to displayed them in teeny apothacary bottles and glasses, to discover they have great charm.

The article made us see deli flowers through fresh eyes. We recently discovered one of our favorite cheap-0 flowers buried amidst garish Mother’s Day arrangements: the modernist-looking Billy Buttons…

Style Files

yellow flowers via Style Files

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