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Flower Arranging


Making a flower arrangement at home starts by taking some time to notice what is hiding in our gardens and all they have to offer. Home gardens have pockets full of beauties, with perennials, annuals, herbs and foliage plants, and when we stop to take note, we often become surprised by what a masterpiece we have to play with.

Although there are principles to floristry design, as a home florist you don’t need to feel ruled by them. Trust that the flower and foliage from your home will guide you to create your own, individual masterpiece.


Principle 1: Proportion and Scale

Decide how large your arrangement is going to be; this should be one and a half to two times the width of the container.


Principle 2: Balance

Within layer one you need to set your visual style. Here we are showing an asymmetrical style. The magnolia leaf, rock daisy, ligularia and solidago create elongation, and although it is placed unevenly, it still gives the eye an impression of balance.


Principle 3: Rhythm

The arrangement should have movement. This helps to create a visual path so that the eye can travel around the entire arrangement.


Principle 4: Line and Form

Consider lines created by the foliage, as well as the form the

flower shape will provide. Here we have used rounded flower shapes to contrast and soften the boldness of the foliage in layer one. Smaller flowers are normally used in layer two in groups of threes or fives in repetition.


Principle 5: Focal Point

This is the impressive flower and focal piece of the arrangement, and it is normally a large-sized flower in the arrangement that first attracts the eye such as the protea used in layer three.


Principle 6: Contrast

In layer three use darker flowers to contrast against bright flowers

in layer two. Think about your colour palette before you start. Here we have used a complementary colour scheme, choosing colours from opposite sides of the colour wheel. One colour should dominate; in this case the dominant is the pink of the protea, winter roses and ranunculus with a smaller impact from the lime of the chrysanthemum and solidago.



Make life easier and use floral foam. This will help to support your layers, making the flowers and foliage easy to arrange and move around if need be.

While arranging, stand back and assess your work. Do not be afraid to move things around, pull foliage out or add flowers in. There is no right or wrong way, so have fun with it.


The three layers to consider when flower arranging

Layer one uses foliage, berries or vines. These give the arrangement texture and movement.

Layer two uses smaller flowers. This layer creates uniformity for the entire design.

Layer three uses large flowers. These create the focal point of the arrangement.


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