Curious Lola

Make a Floral Centerpiece with a Vine Foliage Cage

Spring is just around the corner and seriously, who doesn’t love having some flowers to brighten up the house? Learn this quick and eco-friendly way to create a beautiful floral arrangement with a vine foliage cage. You know we don’t use flower foam so it’s our go-to, tried and true way of keeping stems in place. Reference our video version of this tutorial if you’re wanting some more tips on creating this!

If this is your first time making a centerpiece, fear not! We have another video that covers our common-sense method on flower placement. It’s right here: centerpiece demonstration It goes a bit more in depth.

Supplies needed:

  • vase
  • floral tape
  • chicken wire
  • bind wire, cut into 1″ pieces
  • floral clippers
  • wire cutters
  • water
  • flowers, of course! We go to our local wholesale floral market, but you can find some goodies at your local store or garden.

First, use your wire cutters to snip a piece of chicken wire from the roll. For this size of pot, I cut a piece about 6 inches wide. Bend the chicken wire into a ball shape and tie the ends around one another to secure it. Then, place it in your vase.

Tear off strips of floral tape and place them like a grid over your ball. This will ensure the chicken wire won’t fall out. Once it feels sturdy, add the water.

Strip the bottom of your vines of leaves and little sprouts. Begin weaving them through the wire structure.

Once you have a few stems in the base, choose two vines and attach them with a piece of bind wire in a place they might naturally grow together. Continue to add in vines and sprigs of Jasmine until your foliage cage feels full and strong.

Just let it get wild…

Now it’s just about full enough to support some flowers. Add in them flowers!

Taa-daa! You have made a glorious, foam-free floral arrangement! Snap a picture and show off, be sure to tag us so we can enjoy your work too!

We’ll be featuring this arrangement and others in a moody photoshoot we did about a Subterranean Moth-Fairy who is waiting in her underground den for spring to come. Oh and she’s a hoarder… Ha! To hear more about our hoarder fairy and the next DIYs from that shoot. You’ll want to SUBSCRIBE!

 

Here’s a sneak peak:)

Ugh. I just love those moody blooms.

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Sustainable Flower Arranging, Part One: Frogs

frog arrangement

We successfully weaned ourselves off of flower foam over at Lola Event Floral & Design. It’s not been easy. The green yuck (floral foam) is just so efficient and when you’re in a bind, it’s easy to revert back to what’s easy. (Isn’t this addict talk?) You can hear more of my whining about it in this previous post. I discovered (though I hate to admit it) that my short term anxiety over time restraints during event production, delivery, and setups trumps my noble desire to run a more sustainable operation. But thanks to the waggling fingers and stoney resolve of some of my employees, the interwebs, and some colleagues, I’ve been kept on the straight and narrow. Hopefully I can be that motivation for you.  If I can build some new greener neural pathways, you can too. It’s definitely a different way of approaching arranging, but we’ve developed some new processes that we can be proud of. So proud, in fact, that we’d like to share them with you.

(And by the way, I documented this tutorial with On-Site Reporter, an app that facilitates this sort of thing. Read more on that at the end. And as a bonus, it just happens to be created by the most wonderful man in the world (hubby)).

We’ll start with what’s easy. Flower pin frogs. Little metal pucks with pointy ends to grip your stems. They are great for securing a few stems as you make a stem cage support for the rest of the arrangement, or for use in a low dish where there isn’t much room for support. frog arrangement9I make sure my frog and bowl are dry and secure the frog to the bowl with some floral clay.

frog arrangement8Next I start adding in my base foliage. Agrostis and Begonia leaves. I use river rocks to add more support for the frogs, disguise a bit, and add more structure for plants to be nestled into.

frog arrangement7pink rhododendron sustainable flower arrangementI’ve got a potted azalea that doesn’t have a home so I cut off a piece of the mini shrub and secured it to the frog. Woodier stems like this will have to be jammed in. Careful you don’t impale yourself! I also want to add some pussy willow but the stem’s too thick for me to jam it on with all these other plants in the way so I go ahead and add some clay to the end to give it a bit more adhesion. This stem is dried so I’m not concerned with it actually being under water- just in there enough to stay in place.

stem

sustainable flower arranging.

Next I’ve got some monstrous ranunculus, a hellebore plucked from my yard, and a few more bits of foliage. And that about does it. Don’t need much.

frog arrangement4

So cute… so healthy… Loooove. If you deliver this you’ll just have to remember to water again when you get there.

Now for some glamour shots.

frog arrangement3frog arrangement2That’s it for now.

We’ll be going over a bunch of different methods for getting interesting foam free looks, so follow us to keep up to date. And if  you’re thinking about going foam-free, do it. Hesitant? Of course, but do it anyway. You’re a freagin’ MacGyver, you’ll figure it out.

AND if you want to know more about On-Site Reporter, check it out. It basically allows you to document any site visit or process with steps by matching photos with dictated or typed in notes. Chronological photos and notes are then sent to you. No more confusion wondering what you did when- BOOM. It practically puts your tutorial together for you. At the time of this article, we’re (ehem, I mean) THEY are still working on some quirks with the android version. But i-phone is good to go. Let us, er… they know what you think.

Farm to Table: Flower Arrangements with Edibles.

I get a special kick out of watching people interact with our flower arrangements. We don’t get to see it too often since we are typically long gone when the event’s guests arrive. This is especially fun when they see something unexpected- like something they are usually seeing on their dinner plates. That’s why I was so excited when Ravishing Radish asked us to set up a unique “farm to table” themed set for their April tasting at the yacht club on Lake Union.

Vintage Ambiance let us ransack their cave of vintage treasures. We picked up some pieces from their new stash of milkglass vessels and some old crates.

We chose to stick with oranges, reds, and yellows mostly because the daffodils look so freegin’ delicious. They are truly the happiest flower I know. After heading to the flower market we stopped by the grocery store for some kumquat, peppers, parsley, chard, lettuce, artichokes, oranges, lemons, and strawberries….  and asparagus…. and tomatoes… oh and grapes. Maybe I should have had a snack before heading to the grocery store.

aside from the produce, we also incorporated ornamental artichoke foliage and scented geranium.

We coated the lemons, oranges, and strawberries with a thick layer of decorative sugar. Yummm.

Pure Imagination

Hey, here’s some eye candy from the Pure Imagination event held last month in Tacoma.

Run by some of the same peeps that run the Tacoma Wedding Walk in February, this event was at the Thea Foss Working Waterfront Maritime Museum. When draped off, basically like a big beautiful warehouse with a ceiling that does wonderful things when drenched in light. This was the premiere for this event and it was magical. That means next year will be mind-blowing. Lola partnered with Sensorium Event Productions on this space and had help from Trendy Event Rentals and Olalla Production Solutions (do look into them).

Our space was a little challenging. It was skinny and long, and centered in the entire event space. Our theme was to have a groom’s side and a bride’s side- or a more masculine side and a softer side. Guests would walk into the space and see our spot first. So it kinda had to be cool- and somehow coherent. Lola pulled the two spaced together with two tables mirrored and offset into the center of the ‘booth’. Gobs of purple fabric was billowed into a bustle toward the fiery side, and the fiery side, billowed lava-like folds, and gobs of red roses petals toward the soft side.

They were further pulled together with a backdrop made of paper garlands. Super rad and easy.

Each side had its own custom made chandelier (ehem, by yours truly). They were my favorite parts. The drippy fabric chandelier that looks like a sea creature is actually a grey to white ombre effect. A little lost here, but in the future I will use a bolder color transition for a more successful effect. The best part for you? We are expanding our inventory and color choices for these chandeliers to rent to your for your event. Ditto for the fiery branch mass that also looks like a sea creature.

And on the purple side we had multi height arrangements as well as low arrangements on tables and cocktail tables. Flowers included lush, bold orchids, roses, ranunculus, beautyberry, amaranthus, fringe tipped tulips, dahlias, purple anemone, and dusty miller.

The groom’s side? Textural, moody and fiery. And this crazy, fiery mass of branches.

Flowers for the fellas included parrot tulips, burgundy gerberas, ranunculus, and red garden roses.

 

Flower Baby

When I send my flower babies out into the world. I hope they will succeed. I hope they will find people who will love them. I hope they are taken care of. I hope they stay strong and healthy. I hope they hold it together. I hope each flower supports its neighbor. I hope they work well together knowing that, together, they can achieve so much more. I hope a lot of people take notice. And perhaps most of all, I hope their work in the world is documented beautifully through images. I hope those images find their way back to me so that I can remember and share the joy they brought to all.

I am so happy that this flower baby came across the likes of Jason and Jenny, the lovely team at JKoe Photography for Rachel and Ben’s lovely wedding. They grasped all that floral success and put it in a photo that oozes beauty.

Photo by JKoe Photography

Photo by JKoe Photography

Thank you guys! And thank you to Rachel and Ben for bringing this flower baby to life.

I love the tie, by the way.

And while sitting at my computer…for some reason drawing a flower baby seemed more interesting than doing what I was supposed to be doing.

So here you are world.

Oh, no. Honey you’re not ready for the world.

There now. That’s a pretty flower baby.


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