My first summer job as a teenager was working at a florist. As the assistant I just washed plastic vases, trimmed stems, and dusted the shelves.
But one quiet morning my boss showed me how to arrange flowers, and I was hooked. And apparently I did a decent job, because I got to make a few bouquets and potted arrangements.
Flower arranging is one of those skills that you keep for life. It’s like riding a bicycle.
And if you want to learn, a book is a good place to start. I love the book ‘Simple Flower Arranging’ because it lives up to its name. Flowers don’t need to be overly complicated. Pick the right blooms, and they speak for themselves.
Disclosure: I was given this book c/o DK to review.
Mark Welford and Stephen Wicks, the inspiring florists behind the book, started their business Bloomsbury Flowers in 1994. I love that they became friends when they were working together as dancers for the Royal Ballet; floristry was new for both of them. And I think that shows in the practicality of the book and its arrangements.
Simple Flower Arranging has none of the posturing or pretence I’ve found in other floral design books. Everything is broken down to the basics. If someone’s the type to plonk flowers in some water and call it good, they will still be able to use this book.
The arrangements in the book are like recipes. Three of this, five of that, two of these, a bit of foam, and you have a beautiful bit of nature to keep in your home. I love the rustic appeal in all the photos.
There are more than 60 designs in the book, and each section starts with a juicy gallery of the arrangements you’ll learn to make. They range from sweet peas in tea pots to huge, extravagant and entrance-worthy displays.
And arrangements really is the proper word. This isn’t a book just about hand-tied bouquets. My favourite is a ‘living’ arrangement combining potted and cut flowers to make an indoor garden. How lovely is that!
Not every arrangement has a step-by-step photo tutorial, but all the basic techniques are covered and unusual arrangements are explained in photos.
All in all? Simple Flower Arranging is practical, inspiring, and the arrangements are gorgeous.
Learning to arrange flowers can feel like learning magic card tricks. So that’s how they do it![box title=”Simple Flower Arranging – summed up thoughts” box_color=”#c943b2″ radius=”2″] [list icon=”icon: plus” icon_color=”#000000″]
- So many tips you’ll improve even if you don’t make any of the exact arrangements
- Lovely to browse for colour and flower combinations
- Beginner and intermediate friendly; tips with every arrangement
- Stunning photography and clearly written instructions
- Perfect for ambitious flower gardeners to make use of their blooms![/list] [list icon=”icon: minus” icon_color=”#000000″]
- Not all arrangements have step-by-step tutorials
- The binding needs some TLC to lay flat; necessary when referencing the tutorials!
Working at the florist I learned that flowers truly are a language. Flowers are for births and funerals, weddings and birthdays and congratulations. Sometimes it’s nice just to say ‘I haven’t seen you in a while’ or ‘I love you’.
What’s your take on flowers? I admit I buy them for myself as often as possible!
Simple Flower Arranging on the DK website, RRP £16.99, with more previews + information