Floral arrangements aren’t the easiest to put together if you aren’t a professional; here are my tips I learned in a class practicing with faux flowers!
I never anticipated that I would love faux flowers. But welcome to the new me in 2016 folks – I LOVE faux flowers! They have come a long way in the past few years, and it’s possible to make beautiful floral arrangements with silk stems as well as other types of faux flowers.
Well – NOW it’s possible for me. Because I took a free class at Michaels! Did you know that Michaels offers free classes in their stores? You can try out a new craft skill for just the cost of supplies. And that’s exactly what I did recently, and I’m excited to share what I learned with you.
Because I’m the first person to admit when I don’t know something, and I love school. Yes – Michaels classes are perfect for me. Especially the free part! They aren’t all free . . . but this one was.
I was the first one to arrive in the classroom on the day of my class, and I was able to print out the supply list beforehand. We actually began the class by touring the floral department of Michaels and purchasing our supplies.
We were able to customize the colors of our arrangements differently from the syllabus if we wanted to – so I decided to go with pinks.
First I’ll share the supply list with you and then I’ll show you how I put together the basket – with the tips I learned for making perfect floral arrangements included in my steps! Making floral arrangements is way easier than I thought.
Tips for Floral Arrangements
Gather These Supplies
- Wooden bucket
- Green floral foam ball
- Wire cutters
- Faux flowers in the Michaels floral section:
- Peony (pick two)
- Dahlia (I picked two pink and one white)
- Pom with Berry Bush
- Ranunculus (pick two)
- Wooden letter
- Acrylic paint
- Hot glue gun
So as you can probably guess, you’ll need a vessel for your flowers (my bucket). You’ll also need what is called “floral foam.” This is a bad of soft goodness that your flowers are going to stick in to – and it will hold the stems upright.
I don’t know what it’s made of, but it’s magical and it feels weird. Remove the plastic and place in your vessel. If you have heavy flowers, there’s such a thing as floral clay that you can purchase. I’m not sure if it’s as magic as floral foam but . . . it will work.
Tip: you can cut the floral foam if it doesn’t fit. You can even use several pieces in one vessel. You don’t want to cut it up two small because it will crumble, but a few bricks cut up is fine.
Start with a base. Now – I’ve seen this done both ways. I’ve seen the “pros” say start with a green leaf-y base and build around that. Our instructor suggested starting with the largest bloom and building around it, which actually worked best for me.
The best bouquets don’t have tons of knockout flowers. They have just a few with other flowers that accent. I decided my knockout flowers were a few dahlias – they made for a good focal point.
And that’s what I built around. I didn’t need it to be right in the center, but it was definitely in the front and it’s where I started.
You’ll use wire cutters to remove the length of stem from your flowers. DON’T trim them all the same length. You want that variation in height to add a bit of interest.
When in doubt, clip off a little of the stem at a time and stick into the floral foam – then clip off more if the flower is still too long. You can keep cutting down, but you can’t put stem back.
Before you stick all of your flowers into the floral foam, hold them in your hand and move them around. Get an idea of how they flow together. Experiment before committing!
Now, if you stick into the floral foam – you can pull them out and stick them in again. But before you put 1,000 holes in your floral foam, at least get a general idea of the “feel” of your bouquet.
Start moving things around in your hand and see what floats your boat. I did this with my largest flowers first and then added a few smaller ones. I did NOT add the berry or pom pom greenery – not yet.
Once you are somewhat happy about what you have in your hand, start sticking the faux flowers into your floral foam. Remember – trim if you need to. You don’t want a perfect ball of flowers!
Use the pom pom flowers and berry strands to fill in the holes. Observe your arrangement from all angles. Cut the pom pom flowers and individual berry strands and stick them into the floral foam.
Adjust as you like, and bend the other flowers to help you cover areas if you need. Stand back and observe your arrangement and see what needs to be added.
Tip: your arrangement CAN have a backside – mine did. Since I was going to hot glue a letter in front, I knew I’d have a back. I made the berries and pom pom flowers kind of stick out like a peacock tail/fan.
Another tip: floral moss exists if you have areas you’ll still like to cover that are visible in your arrangement.
You shouldn’t be able to see floral foam . . . but if you can, you can purchase more flowers OR you can purchase floral moss and cover the magic foam.
As a finishing touch, paint the letter in the color of your choice. Let dry and then use the hot glue to attach to the front of your wood bucket. You’re done!
Floral arrangements are MUCH easier than I thought! If you aren’t afraid to experiment – you can do this. And if you are a type A, try to let go a little bit and play. If you try to be controlling, I think it will be much harder.
I’ll leave you with the project – but also with the final message that I found in the Michaels classroom and really loved.
What are your favorite tips for arranging flowers? I’d love to know in the comments!