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Must-Have Floral Design Books

Flower Magazine editors take a look back at some of the timeless floral design titles and new classics we have featured over 15 years.

Every year Flower receives dozens of floral design books for consideration. This list includes just a few of the beloved titles featured in the magazine over the past 15+ years. We turn to their pages again and again for flower arrangement inspiration and know-how, and recommend them for every flower-lover’s library.

book cover for Floret Farms’ A Year in Flowers

Floret Farm’s A Year in Flowers: Designing Gorgeous Arrangements for Every Season by Erin Benzakein (Chronicle Books, 2020).

In this book, Erin covers in depth her floral design fundamentals, essential techniques and tools, and inspirational arrangements for spring, summer, autumn, and winter. She is also the author of Floret Farm’s Cut Flower Garden and other titles.

Erin shares step-by-step instructions for a honeysuckle inspired arrangement.

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Florists to the Field by Greg Campbell, Erick New, and Christian Owen. (Southerly Media, 2018). Photography by Sarah Bell of Sélavie Photography

In their book, Florists to the Field (Southerly, 2018), Campbell and New make pilgrimages to 12 specialty farms to pay tribute to the families, growers, and colleagues whose floral bounty keeps Garden District humming. At each destination, the pair traverses field and forest, wielding clippers, gathering blooms and materials to use for a grand alfresco meal on the property.

See a sampling of florals and gatherings from the book.

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Handpicked: Simple, Sustainable, and Seasonal Flower Arrangements by Ingrid Carozzi (Abrams, 2017).

Ingrid reveals secrets of the floristry trade and step-by-step instructions on how to achieve her organic, lush look.

Don’t miss our Q&A with Ingrid or this step-by-step how to for making an all pink arrangement.

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A Life in Flowers: Lessons and Affirmations from the Garden by Holly Heider Chapple (BLOOM Imprint, October 2021). Cover photo by Emily Gude

A Life in Flowers: Lessons and Affirmations from the Garden by Holly Heider Chapple (BLOOM Imprint, October 2021)

Even with her nonstop schedule, Holly truly loves what she does. When interviewed about the greatest influences on her career, a handful of alliterative topics resonate throughout her comments: foundation, family, farm, faith, food, flowers, and future. She explores many of these topics in her book, which shares her story, beginning with a childhood spent surrounded by plants at her family’s nursery in the 1970s.

See our interview with Holly and select photos from the book.

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Spring Awakening Arrangement, Ariella Chezar how-to

 Seasonal Flower Arranging: Fill Your Home with Blooms, Branches, and Foraged Materials All Year Round by Ariella Chezar (Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Crown Publishing Group, a division of Penguin Random House LLC.). Photography by Erin Kunkel

Ariella’s book, Seasonal Flower Arranging, provides valuable tips and how-to’s for creating 39 arrangements in her lush, artistic style.

She shared this “Spring Awakening” arrangement how-to with Flower readers.

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Floral Diplomacy at the White House by Laura Dowling (Stichting Kunstboek, 2017)

After working in the White House for six years, Laura penned two books about her experience. Floral Diplomacy, released in March 2017, and A White House Christmas, which followed in October, both give readers a glimpse behind the curtain, so to speak.

See some of Laura Dowling’s Christmas designs and her visits with Parisian florists.

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flower recipe book

The Flower Recipe Book by Alethea Harampolis and Jill Rizzo (Artisan Books, ©2013).  Photography by Paige Green

This is not cooking with flowers but rather making beautiful arrangements from a specific list of ingredients. Written by Alethea Harampolis and Jill Rizzo of Studio Choo in San Francisco, this fresh and colorful book simplifies the process of creating lovely arrangements for everyday and special occasions.

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Faith Flowers book cover

Faith Flowers: Celebrate with a Glorious Array of Flowers by Laura Iarocci (Stichting Kunstboak, 2018)

With her book, Faith FlowersLaura Iarocci shares years of experience arranging flowers for places of worship. She covers everything from the fundamentals of flower selection, care, and arrangement to designs for regular church services, holidays, and special events.

See an excerpt, where Iarocci shows how to make a classic triangle arrangement.

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book cover for On Flowers: Lessons from an Accidental Florist (Artisan, 2019) by florist Amy Merrick

On Flowers: Lessons from an Accidental Florist by Amy Merrick, (Artisan, 2019)

New York florist Amy Merrick shares in essence a love letter to flowers, from hardworking tips to more romantic notions.

Don’t miss Amy’s step-by-step guide for making a festive holiday wreath.

By the Book

Styling Nature book cover

Styling Nature: A Masterful Approach to Floral Arrangements by Lewis Miller with Irini Arakas (Rizzoli New York, 2016). Photography by Don Freeman.

Lewis shares his approach to creating extraordinary and lavish arrangements. See this excerpt where Lewis Miller breaks down his method of arranging.

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book cover for CHARLOTTE MOSS FLOWERS

Charlotte Moss Flowers by Charlotte Moss (Rizzoli New York, April 2021)

In her 11th book, interior designer Charlotte Moss encourages readers to bring the garden indoors–with ideas for arranging flowers, selecting containers, and placing blossoms around the house.

In an excerpt, Charlotte reminisces about her lifelong fascination with flowers and their transformational power, and shares gorgeous photos from the pages.

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at home with flowers

At Home with Flowers: Beautifully Simple Arrangements for Every Room in the House by Jane Packer (Ryland Peters & Small 2011)

Jane’s 13th book is modern, fresh, and filled with a combination of innovative ideas and solid floral common sense. It is filled with more than 200 photos of beautiful, simple arrangements for every room in the house, providing flowers for loveliness, fragrance, and private moments—abundant fresh style for a life well lived.

See a sampling of Jane Packer’s arrangements from the book.

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Martha's flowers

Martha’s Flowers: A Practical Guide to Growing, Gathering, and Enjoying by Martha Stewart and Kevin Sharkey (Clarkson Potter 2018).

When presented with Martha Stewart’s flower book, Martha’s Flowers, we sat up straight in our chairs because Martha never does anything halfheartedly, and this project is no exception.

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Fresh (Glitterati, 2017)

Fresh: Fresh Flowers… Fresh Arrangements… Fresh Ideas… by Sybil Brooke Sylvester (Glitterati, 2017)

Fresh will inspire even the most florally frightened reader to venture into the garden with a pair of clippers. Reading Sybil’s book indeed feels like sitting down with a friend, albeit one loaded with talent and expertise. The tone is intimate, honest, and empowering, full of insider tips and practical know-how.

See more of Sybil Sylvester’s florals.

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kiana underwood color me floral

Color Me Floral: Stunning Monochromatic Arrangements for Every Season by Kiana Underwood (Chronicle Books, 2018). Photography by Nate Underwood

Kiana Underwood of Tulipina Design travels the globe teaching workshops that focus on her old-world-style arrangements, which she shares on Instagram @tulipinadesign. Her first book, Color Me Floral (Chronicle Books, 2018), with images by her husband, Nate, focuses on seasonal, monochromatic creations.

Underwood shares summer designs and answers our Flower questionnaire, giving us a peek at her personality and her world.

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Living Floral book, Margot Shaw, flower book

Bonus: Living Floral: Entertaining and Decorating with Flowers by Margot Shaw (Rizzoli 2019)

We can’t create a roundup of floral design books without including Living Floral. Flower expert and Flower Editor-in-Chief Margot Shaw presents portraits of top tastemakers who share their joy of flowers at home in this inspirational and instructive book for readers who possess a passion for nature’s bounty.

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By Jason Burnett