Happily we don’t have to be florists, or have a Sissinghurst style picking garden. The prettiest arrangements are perfectly within reach. All you really need are need are some simple little glass bottles.
You can buy bottles like this cheaply from homeware stores or Trademe. However, there are plenty of small bottles which can be recycled into new life. It still makes me laugh that mine started life as IV paracetamol bottles. Well cleaned, and with labels scraped away, they have been pressed into a new and more decorative life
Right now in our part of the world the burgeoning, budding spring loveliness is all around us. Even if you don’t have a garden it isn’t hard to find a few buds or blooms. This type or arrangement is marvellously non-discerning. Here are five ways you can use bottles like this to satisfying effect:
Meet Pierre (de Ronsard). I get ridiculously excited when M. de Ronsard decides to pop out a few fat, heavy buds, the petals of which open gradually into this lovely old fashioned quatrefoil arrangement. It speaks for itself and doesn’t need any further embellishment.
2. The tiny, fragrant bouquet
I wish I could link you through to the amazing old fashioned scent of these purple sweet peas. If anything will take you back to your grandmother’s garden, it will be these. The stems are not always as long as you might like, which is why these little bottles are just perfect.
These glorious purple opium poppies bloom and then give way to these plump upraised seed pod faces. They seem to have their own comical characters and I like to see them in chatty little groups. My children sometimes draw fierce little faces on them when I am not looking. It can be quite disconcerting to have a flower arrangement stare back at you!
4. The easiest dinner party arrangement ever
I used eleven small glass bottles and whatever I could find in the garden to create this centrepiece for a dinner with friends last night. This is an extremely simple arrangement to create but it brought lovely colour and sparkle to the table creating and a real sense of occasion. On a practical note, the cakestand makes it easier to remove the arrangement from the table when it came time to put the main dishes on the table.
To make the arrangement simply, cut the stems to roughly the same height and place them in their bottles on the base of a glass cake stand or plate. This brings them together and give them some height.. Add simple tealights in decorative glasses for a bit of glimmer.
I had no time, and not many flowers. But a surprising number of the few blooms went with the froot-loop inspired bunting. Keeping the arrangement on the windowsill took advantage of the sunlight and kept them out of the way of serial small party-hyped elbows. (You will have to supply your own house-elf though. This one is ours ).
There you have it, five ways with everyday flowers, glass bottles and no time. Do you have any favourite tricks with flowers?