Flower Arrangements 101: A Crash Course for Easy and Elegant Florals - Gardenista

Lookbook Get Inspired

Get Inspired

All Gardenista stories—from garden tours and expert advice to hand tools and furniture roundups.

View All Inspiration

Steal This Look 10 Easy Pieces Rethinking Flowers Lessons Learned Outbuildings Swimming Pools Required Reading Garden Visit Landscape Architect Visit Browse All Categories Back Issues by Week Web Stories Sustainable Design

5 Gardening Trends to Try in 2024

by Kier Holmes Garden Design 101

Garden Design 101

Starting from scratch or upgrading an outdoor space? Look here for advice on plants and hardscape materials. We have 200 guides on everything from fences to foxgloves.

Start With Our Hardscape 101 Guides

Garden Design 101 Guides

Hardscape 101 Annuals Bulbs & Tubers Edibles Grasses Ground Covers Herbs Houseplants Perennials Shrubs Succulents & Cacti Trees Tropical Plants Vines & Climbers

Exclusive Features

Garden Design 101 Landscaping 101 Curb Appeal DIY Before & After Ask the Expert Paints & Stains Gardening 101

A Garden from Scratch: How to Start Designing Your Outdoor Space

by Clare Coulson Travel


Heading somewhere? Plan your trip with our destination guides to our favorite public gardens, hotels, restaurants, and shops.

Plan Your Trip

Popular Countries

United States United Kingdom France Canada Australia Sweden

Popular Cities

New York City San Francisco Los Angeles Paris London Stockholm Shopper s Diary

Shopper’s Diary: Peonies in Paris, for Flowers and Coffee

by Annie Quigley Find a Firm

Find a Firm

Gardenista’s members-only directory of landscape architects and garden designers.

View All Landscape Firms

Popular Locations

NYC Area SF Bay Area LA Area Texas United Kingdom

Browse by Field

Landscape Architecture/Design Architecture Interior Design Featured Firm

Kim Hoyt Architect

Plants & Seeds

Plants & Seeds

Browse our collection of more than 2,000 plants and seeds, which can be ordered directly from our favorite shops and growers.

Browse Collection of Plants & Seeds

Flowering Perennials Fruits & Vegetables Grasses House Plants Hydrangeas Roses Specialty Flower Bulbs Trees & Shrubs Tropical Plants Vines & Climbing Plants ZZ Plant

Move Over, Monstera: 2024’s New Houseplant Trends

by Laura Fenton Shop Our Picks

Shop Our Picks

See our obsessively curated catalog of favorite products sourced by the Gardenista editors.

View All Products

Baskets, Bins & Trugs Garden Tools Garden Supplies Landscape Design Structures Pots & Planters From Rejuvenation Outdoor Activities & Games Outdoor Dining & BBQ Outdoor Furniture Outdoor Lighting Backyard & Garden Animals View All Products Rejuvenation

Carson 12 in. Wall Sconce – Copper Penny

$237.00 USD Remodelista Organized Home You are reading

Flower Arrangements 101: A Crash Course for Easy and Elegant Florals


Start typing to search

Search Entertaining & Arrangements Issue 7 — Europhile

Flower Arrangements 101: A Crash Course for Easy and Elegant Florals

Meredith Swinehart February 12, 2018

Popular posts:

10 Things Nobody Tells You About Fiddle-Leaf Fig Trees A Garden from Scratch: How to Start Designing Your… Hardscaping 101: Ground Covers to Plant Between Pavers Greatest Hits 2023: Mugwort the Herb vs. Mugwort the Weed Hardscaping 101: Decomposed Granite

Like many people, I want cut flowers to grace my home at all times, and in most instances, a simple jar of in-season blooms feels like enough. But sometimes—be it a birthday, holiday, or with congratulatory intent—a bona fide flower arrangement is called for.

I’m going to guess that, like me, many readers have taken a stab at making a floral arrangement while wondering if they were doing it right. (With a supermarket bouquet, my technique involves placing the most delicate flowers in the center of a vase, the spiky ones on the outside, and then “artfully” messing it up with my fingers.)

But one day recently I went to  Lambert Floral Studio in San Francisco for an informal class on tabletop arrangements (champagne was served). Maybe it was the bubbly, but while I watched studio owner Sammy Go demonstrate the essentials of floral design, I saw the clouds part: Suddenly, arranging not only made sense, but perhaps sounded fun.

We asked Sammy to share secrets of flower arranging that you can use for any arrangement. (The step-by-step instructions for the arrangement below will work no matter what flowers you use.) I hope his tutorial is as enlightening to you as it was to me.

Photography by Leslie Santarina for Gardenista.


Above: When shopping for flowers, Sammy says, “I usually find something I really like and build the rest of the arrangement off that.” Shown, from left: ranunculus, hyacinth, daffodils, more ranunculus, sweet pea, fritillaria, sweet almond branches, and calla lily leaves.

What should you look for when you shop for flowers? First and foremost, seek out a variety of textures, says Sammy. Second, find variety in the shape of the bloom, and third, seek variety in color. For example: The ranunculus shown above are rough and circular with white bodies and purple edges, the daffodils are smooth and star-shaped with classic yellow centers, and the pale pink sweet peas are dainty and reminiscent of butterflies.

Above: Sammy’s materials include a small watering can, a  Deep Serving Bowl in opaque white from Heath Ceramics ($65), a pair of floral shears, some chicken wire, and tape, plus fritillaria, hellebores, daffodils, and hyacinths.
Posted 28 Comments