Elevated Autumn Design
Welcome to the Flower School .com video library. I’m Leanne Kesler, director of the Floral Design Institute. And today, I’m going to share with you a wonderful autumn design elevated for excitement.
For this design, the first step was these wonderful dahlias. That’s where I began. Then I looked at my color wheel and thought about how do I want to work. And I went to an analogous color, harmony going the burgundies into the oranges. You can see I’ve got beautiful autumn materials. Then my next situation was, as I was looking at this vessel and the size of the stems, and the fact that their heads are all going different directions, wasn’t going to work. So that’s where the professional mechanics come in, rather than placing the flowers directly into the vase. I’m going to elevate, using an O’Bowl, an adaptable from the Oasis Company. It sits on top, but it shows so I painted it black using the Design Master Flat Black. And used midnight foam so that it just disappears in. Then I taped it in place using clear tape. So my mechanics start to disappear before I even begin. Lastly, I’ll be using a pick machine. I’ll show you how that works later.
First step is to start with line in the design. Looking at the dahlias, seeing how they’ll work. I love the buds as well as the blooms, and then cutting them apart. I’m going to work on a horizontal line first, so removing a foliage, bringing the bud out, coming back with a bloom, maybe coming to the opposite side. Making sure it’s in. Then another bloom, facing beautifully towards the front. You’ve got one more, adding a little bit more on this side for interest. Then looking, I’ve got a few more buds that I could tuck in, maybe off to this side. Just thinking about that beautiful, horizontal movement. Then to add interested impact, coming in with the beautiful hanging amaranthus. Cutting, this one has a nice stem, so I can just place it directly in. This one, the stem’s, a little more broken, soft, not as strong. This is where using the pick machine comes in handy. Just pulling it forward, placing it in, and clamping back. Then placing it in with the pic. Now you can’t do that with most fresh flowers, but amaranthus, it dries beautifully. So you can go ahead and just tuck it in, even though it’s not going to drink as well. Then using a greening pin, and draping it, bring it, looping. And then repeating with more of the amaranthus, more dahlias, until you love what you have.
With the main lines established, it’s time to add in the emphasis. And that’s where I’m going to use the fabulous orange roses. And they have that bi-color, picking up the burgundy. Cutting some short, you’re going to see I’m working on an asymmetrical format, more of the dahlias on this side, and then bringing out the rose over onto this side, little bit further over. Keeping it low. Then pulling up towards the center. And then of course, I don’t want it to be one sided. So pulling it all the way through, towards the back. Then for unity, thinking about the burgundy to the orange, and bringing it a little bit of that burgundy hue up to the focal emphasis.
Now comes the fun part, adding contrast, texture, interest, and just filling in. I love rose hips. They are the essence of autumn. Cutting them down a bit and then tucking them. Creating interest between the blooms. Finding the perfect little hole. They also worked to unify the right side to the left side, coordinating. Bringing out towards the front and down, breaking the line of the container. Some beautiful leucadendron, picking up that burgundy hue. Making sure mechanics are concealed. And for a little bit of lightness, some asclepias in a vivid orange, it brightens everything so quickly, and adds texture. An echinacea pods glowing with the orange, and you can see how much fuller it begins. And then look at it from front to back, side to side, making sure you fill in, so there’s no holes that distract the eye.
I saved the best for last. I’m going to add in the fruit of a passion flower vine. It’s foraged from the neighborhood, and it’s just grand. That orange hue, perfect. I set it on a turntable so you can see that I did finish it all the way around. So it is two-sided, even though I designed one-sided as you were watching. But I finished out the back. Now to add the excitement, coming in with the passion flower vine, giving it a cut. And then just sneaking it into the side, letting it trail. Making sure it’s into the water well. Repeating that with another piece. This one doesn’t have as many leaves, but I left the vine because I can bring it, and just wind it back through creating dynamic line in the arrangement. Then turning, bringing another branch, letting it trail on the opposite side. Then turning and looking, pruning out any leaves that are in the way, and adding in a few more pieces.
This arrangement, as dramatic as it is, doesn’t really have a lot of flowers, but it does have a lot of variety. I used five dahlias, three of the hanging amaranthus, four the roses, five of the echinacea pods, just one stem of the rose hip that I cut apart, four asclepias, three of the leucadendron. And then of course the fabulous passion flower vine that’s fruited out for the autumn season. Now, I designed this so that it was deliverable. And when I deliver elevated things, I take them apart because I don’t want it to tip over. And I set this portion in a box and deliver this separately. Then when you get to the location, you can take UGlu Dashes, put them on the lip, set this in place, and the UGlu will secure it so it will stay.
Just as we teach you at Flower School, oftentimes you’re designed to begin with one flower, the beautiful dahlia. Then you look at your color wheel and pick a palette. The analogous, the burgundy’s over to the orange. Perfect. For more creative inspiration and Flower School, you’ll find it Flower School .com. If you have questions, you can reach us through there or pick up the telephone and give us a call at (503) 223-8089. Now it’s your turn. Gather up beautiful autumn flowers, create a design. Be sure to take a picture, post it on social media and tag Floral Design Institute. That way, I’ll see, and we all can see what you do, as you do something you love.