I am blessed to be part of an amazing bible study with a large group of God loving women! I was honored when I was asked to prepare twelve small flower arrangements to display on the tables at our first meeting after the winter holiday. My only restriction was… as always… keep within the budget!
I live in California…yes, sunny California…well MOST of the time! Currently we are experiencing heavy rains and extremely turbulent winter weather. I do have to say I am relieved to not hear the word “drought” any longer, however, the conversations have quickly changed to rumors of flood warnings! Yikes!
On the particular day that I set out to visit a local flower distributor it was pouring rain with 60 mile and hour gusts of wind! The weather was so terrible that I nearly turned around half way down the road because it was simply too dangerous to be driving in these conditions. However…. my need to bring natural cheer to my bible study women the following morning kept me on my path! With a little prayer to the big man upstairs… I was well on my way and eventually made it to the flower warehouse. Boy was I glad I did!
Typically I am a VERY simple flower girl. I enjoy a lovely arrangement of straight stemmed tulips wrapped in jute and placed in a tall cylinder jar with a hint of moss… or perfectly arranged white and green mini hydrangeas cradled naturally in their plentiful leaves! Hey, sometimes nature is perfect as is and we don’t need to go through a lot of effort to try to improve or add to God’s intention. I like to stay with neutral tones only adding a small touch of an earthy hue here or there. My ultimate arrangement usually combines a clean, delicate white flower paired with greenery and that was precisely my intention when I set out that morning. With that being said… my plans went completely out the window when I saw these beauties….
After my crazy drive…these thistles were the perfect color of icy blueish purple and just enough edginess to complement the weather we were experiencing! This thistle inspired my whole arrangement!
Due to the fact that it was a cold, wet, January…the colors that kept coming to my mind were blue, purple, white (I always like a beautiful white flower!) mixed with a silvery winter green. I decided to complement the wild blue thistles with a large white showcase flower. Not to my surprise, I had a lot to choose from…. decisions… decisions…
I went in search of a thin petaled flower that somewhat resembled a snowball to fill the space and kept within my budget. A large burst of white entangled with my blue spiny thistle seemed to be the perfect combination to reflect our stormy winter weather. I found beautiful white spider mums individually wrapped for protection and knew right away it would be the perfect compliment!
Once I had landed the white spider mum as my focus flower coupled with the beautifully colored thistle, I needed to add greenery and possibly a filler flower to tie it all together. Filler flowers are smaller flowers added to fill space and maybe add a splash of color. I knew I wouldn’t need a lot of fill since my centerpieces needed to remain small for the conversation that would be occurring at the tables.
This is when it gets fun! (Well at least for me!) I gathered different types of greenery and filler flowers that might work and I laid them on a work table. I was able to see the different combinations by simply changing out one or two pieces until I finally got the look I desired. This is the only way I can wrap my brain around color and texture combinations. So that is exactly what I did…
I chose a variety of green leaves so I could visually determine what type of greenery would complete the look I wanted. I found a hairy textured green, green and white leaves, waxy looking larger leaves, and a small silvery green eucalyptus leaf. After narrowing down my options, I finally settled on a silvery green eucalyptus with a simple “fever few” filler flower (small white flowers at the top of the picture). I was very happy to see a mix of January colors along with the rough “stormy” texture I was trying to accomplish!
Luckily my bible study group provided me with mason jar vases wrapped with a burlap and lace all sweetly tied together with a string of jute. One tip I learned a while back was to place tape in a crosshatch to keep your flowers standing tall while you arrange. So I quickly taped each vase and I was ready to go!
First I placed the colorful thistles around the jar. Next I carefully placed the white spider mums at varying heights. Last, I added the silvery green eucalyptus and sprinkled the fever few throughout.
Voila… I was thrilled when I saw the final result….