Archives for posts with tag: DIY flowers

As DIY brides make plans for their spring weddings, a simple hand-tied is often the bouquet of choice. One design technique to consider is a finished bouquet handle for a polished look.

Strip foliage from the flowers you will use in your bouquet so that you will be holding clean stems. Begin the design by holding the center flower (central axis or spine flower – in this photo, green hydrangea) with your left hand.  Add more flowers, one at a time, around the first flower in a spiral motion – building a rounded circle of flowers. (Here, roses and lilies are used). Visit your local florist to purchase the perfect fresh flowers for your design.

When you have completed the design, use waterproof floral tape or waxed string to tie off the bouquet at the binding point – just beneath the flower blooms. Pull the flower stems together and bind them again, with tape or cord, a little shorter than the width of your ribbon. Cut the stems straight across at a length that is comfortable for holding; at least 1 – 2 inches longer than the width of your hand. If you want the bouquet to continue to drink water, leave a couple of inches of stems uncovered below where the ribbon will be applied. This length of stem can stand in a vase of shallow water  below the ribbon’s edge without getting the ribbon wet.

Cut a width of ribbon long enough to wind around the stems and barely overlap itself. Turn under the a fold of the unfinished edge of ribbon and pin   or glue it in place for a finished look. For extra security with no mess, you can add double-faced tape or UGLU ( to the stems beneath the ribbon to keep it securely in place.

After securing the ribbon, insert into the ribbon/stems pearl-headed or accessorizing pins, glue on gemstones, or pin on a favorite brooch to personalize the handle to reflect the personality of the bride or bridesmaids. The brooch of a deceased loved one may be used in honor of their memory.

Mist the flowers with an anti-transpirant like Floralife’s Finishing Touch to provide nutrients and hydration. This ensures that the flowers will stay fresh longer. (

What questions about DIY Flowers you would like to see answered in this blog.

Need more wedding ideas? My book of wedding photos and tips, Flowers of the heart – a bride’s guide to choosing flowers for your wedding,  is available at, on, & FaceBook – Flowers of the heart page.

Celebrate life with flowers!

Sharon McGukin AIFD, AAF, PFCI


I had a great weekend in Wichita, Kansas. However, I was delayed for hours both going into KS and returning home to GA. Storms rolling through the southeast had our planes grounded. Guess I should have clicked the red shoes I was wearing three times. It worked for Dorothy!

I presented a holiday design program at Valley Floral Wholesale on behalf of Teleflora. Suzie Kostick, editor of Flora Magazine and I were the guest speakers for the presentation. I presented designs arranged from permanent botanicals (silk and dried materials) and Suzie designed arrangements using fresh floral product. We shared a great audience and were available to them for questions. Jerry and Kelly have a great staff to work with. Kerry Sallabedra AIFD, their design director does a fantastic job organizing their design events – including the recent wedding of their youngest daughter. Gorgeous! Ask to see their photos….

For the design event, local designers were offered the opportunity to participate in a Valley Idol contest. I have attached a few photos of some of the entries. One segment of the contest was designing a wreath, and another area of competition was creating an arrangement in a cornucopia. I left for the airport before the winners were announced.

With the autumn season approaching it’s a good time to think of late summer / early fall flowers that we can enjoy in our homes. Luckily, many flowers whose color and texture reflect the season are long-lasting ones as well. Here is an idea for a quick DIY arrangement that you can enjoy for table for a ‘late summer supper’.

Drop by your local florist and select some stems of lilies in orange or yellow as your form flower. This gives body or form to your design. Choose some tall grasses, cattails, or curly willow tips for height, creating the line of your arrangement. If you want to add mass to your form you can add a few stems of small flowers like miniature mums or fall leaves as filler. Ask to purchase a small amount of fresh flower food to add to your vase. Re-use a clear glass vase from home, choose a mason jar, or even use a glass pitcher. Gently place river rocks or polished stones in the bottom of the container. Fill it with 4 or 5 inches of lukewarm water and add the flower food. Strip the foliage from each stem that would fall below the water line to prevent a build-up of bacteria. Re-cut each flower stem with a sharp, slant cut for better water absorption, before placing it in the vase of fresh water.

View these cornucopia photos from the Valley Idol contest to get other ideas of color combinations and flower selection. Ask your florist to make suggestions of flowers you can enjoy using at home. Create. Design. Enjoy!

Celebrate life with flowers!

Anthurium CornucopiaCORNucopiaJasmine