My inspiration for this design is the color green, which I’m all about right now. Every morning I wake up to a verdant garden papered on my bedroom walls. It’s energizing. With so many different intensities, green is a naturally rich choice, but it’s often pushed aside in floral arrangements—and I like giving presence to the underdog. To turn my arrangements into leading ladies, I give each one a name. This one is Green Goddess. She’s got a little bit of everything, including some scented herbs, funky texture, and tall branches that give her height. There’s something very chic about sporting different shades of a specific color.
geranium leaves, poppies, poppy pods, thistle, safflower buds, dog-eye euphorbia, artichokes, almond branches, kangaroo paw, berzelia, oregano, mint, manzanita
vase, clippers, flat floral wire, floral knife, snips
First cut a long piece of flat floral wire, and crumple it into loose folds inside the vase—it’s so easy and takes two seconds. Some designers use flat wire decoratively, but I use it functionally instead of a frog or floral foam. Then fill the vase with water.
Add several stems of mint—one of my favorite ingredients—at an angle on opposite sides. This is the start of the arrangement’s winged shape.
Cover the lip of the vase with geranium leaves around the perimeter.
After cutting each to your desired length, add a few safflower stems and manzanita stems on both sides. Then place some berzelia down low.
Continue layering the taller elements such as the dog-eye euphorbia, and peel any leaves off the part of the stem that will be underwater. Group some wispy oregano stems across from the berzelia, but place each stem individually.
To really bring in some height, add a few stems of kangaroo paw on one side. It should look like it’s flying away but still integrated into the design.
Artichokes are harder to add because of their bulky stems, so a little trick is to shave them down with a knife to make them thinner. Just be sure to only shave the section that will be underwater. Then add a few artichokes grouped in the center.
Place some poppy pods throughout the arrangement at varying heights. This is when you’ll really start to see some magic.
The blue in the thistle adds dimension, but it’s still in a green vein. It’s OK to pull off some lower stems before adding it. Never be afraid to manicure your flowers! Continue with the almond branches. They have woody stems, so cut them with clippers before adding a few to the design.
The poppy bloom is just a detail, so place it where it won’t overpower. Finally, add the playful poppy buds as flyaways—just one last thing to make the arrangement take off. Voila!
Produced by Abby Braswell | Photos by Jessica Sample