Spring

Pantone Spring of '15 Color Inspiration: Custard

Enter the world of custard: a cheerful and sunny color of a softer shade of yellow. Without being too bright or overpowering custard brings the same happy effect of yellow. It's hard to go wrong with custard; very versatile and can be easily used as a neutral. We love it with pale pinks, lavender and grey for a vintage look. Instead of bright white, custard can be the palest color in a bouquet of bright colors.

Fresh Easter Ideas

Have you dyed your eggs or decided how to set the table for Easter yet? If not, here are some ideas that will give the day a unique look that wont take you forever.

Go Natural with Farm Fresh Eggs

Who said you have to dye your eggs for Easter? Farm fresh eggs come in lovely shades of light browns, tans, and blues. Gold or silver leaf would look elegant or use a white paint pen like the picture below along with feathers for that boho vibe.

Simple Floral Display

You really don't have to work too hard at making a spring themed floral display. This display is simple and would be easy to add your own spin to it. Here, all you need are a few small clear glasses or vases, some blooming stems, eggshells, and of course a little water.

Don't Forget About the Kids!

Easter morning is always exciting for the little ones. Grab their baskets and off they go to find the most candy filled eggs. Why not change it up a little this year? Apartment Therapy has 9 ideas that are sure to give the kids and you a good time.

 

Table for...

No matter how many people will be sitting at the table it is always fun to do it up right with name cards and beautiful food. How about eggshell place cards and a cute dessert display.

Spring Flowers In Bloom

Spring weddings on pinterest have proven to be a teaching opportunity for me. Brides find fabulous pins of bouquets created from flowers that are completely out of season or are quite expensive or difficult to ship. So many advice columns seem to beat the statement "in order to save money be sure to use flowers in season" to death. Since the 90's you can get almost any flower year round and they don't cost that much more. So for that reason I like to use flowers that are at their best and ONLY available a few weeks out of the year. Be more unique than your friend getting married in July. Sure you love roses, hydrangea, stock, and lilies but they are not specific to any season. When you are entertaining ten years later, I would want  saavy guests to look at your silver framed bridal portrait and recognize through the bouquet what time of year you were married. 

Tulips are first shipped starting around Thanksgiving and are waning by Mother's Day. That is a long season but seem to be most prolific February through April. Like roses, there are a huge variety of shapes and colors and their sleek texture and sheen can add so much. But in warm weather they will blow wide open and look just like a lily! They are also one of the only commercially grown flowers that continue to grow after they are cut. I find that desirable but if you are a roundy moundy domed girl then they might not look right to you.    

Yellow daffodils [also called jonquils or narcissus] are around for just a few weeks. They do not like warm rooms and in a bouquet they can "leak" so be sure to seal the ends with layers of ribbon.

Hyacinths are extremely fragrant so a few stems go a long way. We like to cut their individual buds and glue them into bouquets or corsages. There is nothing like a punch of pink or purple Hyacinth to amp your style to the next level!

 Ranunculus are also a cool weather favorite. They look like very fragile mini peonies but are sturdy enough for boutonnieres. Since they look so much like a miniature rose, I tend to use them in different colors from any roses I am working into the design   

Now on to my biggest "ask". Peonies are everywhere in print! Not so much in reality!! I love them just like you but here is my quandary. They are shipped April through June but are at their best in May. The pink ones tend toward a bluish cast so if you are adding them to a yellow based grouping they may be a little "off". Then New Zealand ships their crop Oct. and Nov. and, like lobster, are at market value. So if $20 a bloom is a lot to you, move on.

Sweet Pea is not very tall but oh are they wonderfully fragrant. The Japanese are growing some at almost 12 inches! Again, warm weather is not very friendly to their tender petals.  

Locally grown purple, lavender and white lilac is so sweet and fits in perfectly with vintage weddings. The long, thin stemmed varieties have little fragrance, are grown in greenhouses, and sometimes just won't drink water. Maybe it is because they are shipped from Europe and that long ride gives them a headache!

Anemones are one of Mother Natures' few true blue posies but their availability is not consistent. That deep blue center is so velvety and unique but if they are open too long you get to watch black crud fall out of your bouquet. Just sayin'!  Last Memorial weekend I had a bride who insisted on adding white anemones to all of her bridesmaid bouquets and the third replacement batch I found that week was just adequate.

As the spring season moves into consistent warmer weather the flower world flips into a whole different set of choices. Maybe April was your first choice for a wedding date but the church bumped you to July.....we florists do what we can to give you that amazing look you have had in your head for years. But if the day is 85 degrees my spring flowers will be very angry with you! 

2 Different shades of pink Peonies- blossoms and blooms.  Paul Versluis

2 Different shades of pink Peonies- blossoms and blooms. Paul Versluis

Fully opened soft pink Majolica Roses, white open Ranunculus, blush pink Stock, pink Mini Callas with fresh water pearls.  Paul Versluis

Fully opened soft pink Majolica Roses, white open Ranunculus, blush pink Stock, pink Mini Callas with fresh water pearls. Paul Versluis

Tulips, White Hydrangea, Coral Hypericum, fully opened Free Spirit Roses, Yellow Viking Mums, and Hens & Chicks.  Freeland Photography

Tulips, White Hydrangea, Coral Hypericum, fully opened Free Spirit Roses, Yellow Viking Mums, and Hens & Chicks. Freeland Photography

White Peonies, Juliet David Austin Roses, White Hydrangea, Pink and Blush Spray Roses.  RPM Photography and Cinematography

White Peonies, Juliet David Austin Roses, White Hydrangea, Pink and Blush Spray Roses. RPM Photography and Cinematography

Forcing Branches

A long winter season calls for a special celebration when spring starts to arrive. Bringing dormant branches indoors and watching them burst into bud is a simple pleasure anybody can have!     
The whole process lasts about a month- it could get you hooked on needing nature in your home.

  • When looking for your branches remember, the more buds the more blossoms you will have. Also, longer stems will make for a more dramatic design.

  • Cut the branches at an angle. This will help increase your branches water intake.

  • Fill your container with room temperature water. If you have floral preservative packets left from past bouquets be sure to use them. But a splash of hydrogen peroxide will keep the stinky stem clogging bacteria from growing.

  • Keep in sunlight to help the opening buds remain stronger.

Eventually leaves will emerge as the blossoms pollinate and fall. This can extend the arrangement a few more days.

Along with obvious flowering choices like cherry, crab, magnolia, forsythia, and spirea you can try shade tree branches too. Red maple is really cool with its long seed clusters.