Summer Garden Party Floral Arrangement Masterclass courtesy of Nikki Tibbles…
Hello and welcome to my floral master class where this time I am going to show you how to create the perfect table arrangement for a summer garden party.
With an abundance of colour, scent and texture, Summer is by far my favourite season. I just adore the array of beautiful flowers; blousy peonies, cloud-like hydrangeas and beautifully scented sweet peas to name just a few, as well as the assortment of colours that flowers such as Dahlias come in.
So, for this arrangement I wanted to create something playful, that would bring an element of fun as well as elegance to a summer garden party. Using the concept of a teaparty, I opted to use teacups and cakestands instead of vases to add a little quirkiness to the table setting. If you don’t have matching sets, don’t worry, the beauty of an arrangement like this is that it doesn’t have to be identical but instead works best with mis-matched pieces. For this arrangment I decided to combine a centrepiece of a cakestand with teacups filled with flowers. Depending on the size of your table either use the cake stand arrangement as a centrepiece and then place the teacups as placesettings or alternatively group them together to create one large central arrangement – the beauty is that you can play around and make it work for the space that you have.
When it comes to creating the dome of flowers on the cake stand the choice of colour and flowers is completely up to you, however I would suggest picking flowers that range from large and blousy to small and softer which can be used as fillers where there will be gaps between the larger flowers. I opted to use beautiful Sarah Burnhardt peonies, All For Love, Baroness and Nostalgia roses and bubble gum pink sweet peas. Cut a piece of oasis so that it fits on the centre of the cake stand and soak so that it is wet all the way through. Remember this is a centrepiece so you don’t want it too high so that your guests won’t be able to talk across the table so take this into consideration when you cut your oasis.
Start adding the larger flowers to the block of oasis. Cutting the flower stems to the height that you want the arrangement to be at. Remember to cut the stems at a diagonal angle and then place in the oasis.
Use the first few flowers to create the basic shape of the arrangement, placing them sporadically around the oasis.
By adding the larger flowers such as the full blown peonies and the larger headed roses, it will help to fill the space quicker and help create the basic shape of the dome. Don’t push the stems all the way into the oasis but instead place it so that the flowers come out to just over the lip of the cake stand so that the final arrangement will be a loose arrangement of blooms with a feathery, textured look.
Once all the large flowers have been placed in the oasis, take the smaller blooms and start to place in between, making sure that there is an even spread of the different shades across the dome.
As the arrangement is for a special occasion and isn’t required to last more than a day, make sure that the flowers that you are using are fully open and blooming so that you get maximum impact from your arrangement.
Once the majority of your flowers are in place, fill out any gaps with the soft, small flowers such as sweet peas.
…as well as the unopened buds of the peonies which are great fillers also.
Once all the gaps have been filled, take a step back and make sure that you are happy with the shape and the placement of the flowers. Don’t be afraid to play with the flowers and pull them out and fiddle with them until you are happy with how it looks.
When it comes to the teacups, fill each half full with water.
Keep things simple, using only a small selection of complementary blooms and use varying flowers for each teacup. So, with the peonies I cut the stems so that they were short enough that the flower sits in the cup and doesn’t float out.
Alternate the amount of flowers that you have in each cup. So, with the roses group them together.
…and arrange in a small hand-tie fashion with string.
Arrange in the teacup and repeat with the other flowers of your choice.
At this time of year dahlias are in season so I have chosen to use these to also float in the teacups as they come in an array of colours and add great texture to the arrangement.
Enjoy all your guests’ reactions as they comment on your unique and beautiful summer garden table display.
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