The Art Of Flower Arranging: 3 DIY Arrangements
Follow our DIY guide to build 3 gorgeous, fragrant flower arrangements from scratch.
Think show-stopping flower arrangements are complicated, expensive or can only be done by a professional? Think again. This step-by-step guide will help you create stunning springtime arrangements that look as gorgeous as they smell.
DIY flower arrangements
Most arrangements use the same basic components, and you don’t have to shop at a fancy florist shop to find them – many of these stems can be found in grocery stores and farmers’ markets. You might even be growing some in your own garden!
Focal flowers: Larger blooms, or large clusters of blooms on one stem, are the focal points of the arrangement. We like hydrangea, roses, tulips, gerbera daisies, Queen Anne’s lace and spider mums.
Filler flowers: More delicate or smaller flowers, often distributed along a stem rather than clustered on the end, such as limonium, tea tree flower, baby’s breath, Bells-of-Ireland, snapdragons, pom mums, larkspur or delphinium.
Greens: These stems provide a foundation for the arrangement and can add texture. Leather leaf, Italian ruscus and myrtle are all staples, but any greens you can find will usually work well.
Stumped on which blooms to include? You can also purchase a pre-mixed bouquet at most grocery stores!
Secrets to full, lush flower arrangements
Use these tips to keep blooms from drooping or arrangements from looking too sparse:
- Use a tape grid to help stabilize stems. This is more necessary with wider-mouthed vases or shallow bowls. Your grid should have enough openings to incorporate the number of flowers you plan to use, but not so few that flowers will not be stabilized when placed within the grid.
- Cut and place greens in the vase first to create a foundation for the arrangement.
- If you’re trying to evenly arrange two different flowers (such as tulips and lavender – see our arrangement below) it’s sometimes easier to arrange the stems outside of the vase on a table or other flat surface, and then place them in the vase.
- Flowers stay alive longer if the vase they’re arranged in is clean. Before you start, wash the vase with Home Made Simple Dish Soap to clear away residue or debris from previous arrangements, and then rinse thoroughly.
3 DIY Flower Arrangements to try
These exquisite combinations of blooms and greens celebrate the colors, scents and textures of spring. Feel free to substitute the flowers we suggest for varieties you prefer or can readily find.
1. Rose and rosemary vase arrangement
As far as unexpected floral combinations go, you can’t get much more creative than roses and rosemary. Add a few fresh sprigs of this common herb to a vase of traditional rose blooms for a centerpiece or shelf accent that will smell as divine as it looks. The best part? Assembling this arrangement couldn’t be simpler.
- Vase arrangements are often easier to put together by hand. Layer together six to eight roses, several sprigs of rosemary, and a few stems of limonium, and play with the heights of the stems. Roses look great when their heights are staggered slightly, and the rosemary can vary in height depending on the look you want
- Once you’re happy with the arrangement, trim all stems
Tip: Trim rose stems under cold running water at a 45-degree angle; this helps them absorb water and stay fresher longer.
- Place the stems in the vase. You may need to add or remove a stem; the arrangement should fit snugly within the vase, but should not look choked
- Adjust or position stems until you’re happy with the arrangement. We positioned the taller roses toward the center and the shorter roses around the edges
Tip: After you’re finished arranging, wipe down your work surface with our plant-based Home Made Simple Multi-Purpose Spray in Rosemary Scent. The fresh rosemary scent in our Home Made Simple products inspired this arrangement!
2. Tulip and lavender arrangement
With their soft profiles and gently bowing blooms, tulips are beautiful in a vase all on their own – but they look even sweeter when accented with fragrant stems of lavender. Use a Mason jar as a vase to complement this rustic combination.
- Determine the desired height of your arrangement before you cut. Ideally, the tulip blooms should be about 4-5 inches above the lip of the vase so they can droop gracefully. You can choose to stagger the heights of the tulips or cut them all to the same height
- Lay the tulips flat on the table, with all blooms facing one direction. Begin layering in stems of lavender. You can also stagger the height of the lavender stems to add visual interest
- Carefully gather the tulip and lavender stems in your hands. Make sure the tulip stems are all the same height. Trim any lavender stems that are longer than the tulips
- Place the bouquet of tulips and lavender in the vase. If the arrangement looks a bit too “droopy,” cut additional lavender stems to fill in gaps
- Add a few stems of beargrass to the center of the arrangement
3. Daisy, hydrangea and citrus arrangement
What’s fresher than fresh flowers? Vibrant, citrus-y oranges, of course! This arrangement incorporates both within a wide-mouthed, shallow bowl. We chose white flowers and delicate filler so the citrus details would pop.
White mum daisies White hydrangea or Queen Anne’s lace
While larkspur or white delphinium Tea tree flowers
Italian ruscus, myrtle or nagi
Small oranges, lemons and/or grapefruit, whole or sliced into halves or discs
Bamboo skewers Clear or floral tape Shallow or wide-mouthed vase
- Arrange clear or floral tape in a simple grid pattern over the wide-mouth bowl or vase
- Cut greens and distribute them around the outer part of the bowl, angling the stems inward so they point toward the center bottom of the bowl
Tip: You can always trim stems, but you can’t add length once you’ve cut! A good rule of thumb is to hold the stem to the base of the vase, and cut the stem 1 to 2 inches higher than the desired height. This will allow you to angle stems within the vase without losing height.
- Use the tape grid to help stabilize the arrangement, and add more tape to the grid if needed (see “Secrets to Full, Lush Flower Arrangements” above)
- Add focal flowers, dispersing them evenly but focusing more on the center of the bowl. Hydrangeas are top-heavy and benefit from being cut a bit shorter, while the mum daisies have sturdy stems and can tolerate a bit more height
- Cut filler flowers and add them to the arrangement. Use the larkspur or delphinium to add height, and fill in gaps to add fullness around the focal flowers
- Cut additional greens to fill in gaps in the arrangement
- Skewer oranges, lemons and/or grapefruit on bamboo skewers, and place them within the arrangement (you may need to trim the skewers). You can choose to slice them in half or into discs. Because these accents are heavier than the flowers, try to nest them in clusters of filler flower to help stabilize.