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Pick of the bunch

PA Photo/Jacqui Small

PA Photo/Jacqui Small

A gorgeous bouquet of blooms in a vase, lovingly placed on the kitchen table or windowsill, has to be the simplest way to instantly bring colour and warmth into a room.

But, while flowers don’t need much help looking wonderful, getting creative with your floral displays can add a whole new dimension to the natural wonders.

Stylists Holly Becker and Leslie Shewring certainly think so. Though not trained floral designers, they “love to play and experiment” with flowers and are blooming with ideas for fun and interesting arrangements, which they’re sharing in their new book, Decorate With Flowers: Creative Ideas For Flowers And Containers Around The Home.It contains a hearty bunch of suggestions for use with flowers which the authors promise are “budget-friendly and easy to find”, as well as ways to choose, make or jazz-up containers. Here’s a sneaky peak at some of the highlights, along with my suggestions for petal power buys...

BOTTLE CHANDELIER

A bottle chandelier can be made out of a wire loop, heavy-gauge florist wire, lighter-gauge florist wire, and vintage or interesting small glass bottles, suggest Becker and Shewring.

You will need to hang it securely from the ceiling with a hook. Use light wire to wrap around the necks of the bottles - this only works if there is a rim to hold the wire below it, then attach the other end of the wire to the loop frame. Attach bottles at varying lengths and space them evenly around the wire loop for balance. Use as little water as possible in the bottles and pop a flower or two in each one.

A cluster of small bottles could also be tied to the back of a chair, using light-gauge florist wire. Add blooms and ribbons for more pizzazz.

GET THE LOOK: Save pennies by collecting and reusing old glass bottles. Or, for an extra splash of colour, Next has a pretty set of Glass Bottles, £12 for 3.

A SIMPLE WREATH

Create a wreath using heavier-gauge floral wire to form a circle. Make a series of small bouquets or bunches out of greenery, wrapping the stems of each bouquet together with floral tape.

The authors advise; start at the top of the circle and attach the first bouquet to the wire form with more floral tape. Then work down one side, overlapping the next bouquet to cover the wrapped stems of the one before. When you get towards the bottom, add a couple of focal flowers to your bouquets.

Once you reach the bottom of the circle, start at the top and work down the other side. If needed, fill in any holes by adding a bloom or two using wire.

GET THE LOOK: If you’re not the crafty type, Bloom, specialists in faux flowers, has a Daisy Wreath, £12. There’s also an abundance of faux wreaths at GT Decorations; Artificial Silk Flower Mini Rose Eucalyptus Gypso Wreath in Baby Pink, £8.

FLOWERS AFLOAT

Shallow, ceramic bowls are transformed into a must-try centrepiece when filled with fragrant blooms and herbs - “We love mint!” say the authors. Wide flat flowers such as orchids, asters, gerbera daisies, gardenias and open roses won’t sink as quickly as those with heavier centres, which can sink within an hour.

If there are no fresh blooms to hand, just pop dried straw flowers, sprinkle some glitter and add tea lights, wrapped with patterned washi tape, for a sparkling focal point.

GET THE LOOK: For double the floral factor, how about using a bowl that looks like a flower too? Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen Gerbera Decorative Glass Bowl, currently reduced from £29 to £14, Very, could be paired with pale cream or white flower heads.

 

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