Experts Spill Their Go-To Tricks for Autumn Floral Arrangements
Tried-and-true tricks for giving your flowers the ultimate fall treatment.
Published Sep 10, 2017 6:00 AM
It’s difficult to forgo purchasing fall décor items, but the truth is, the best finds are right outside. Autumn is the perfect time to make a statement with flower arrangements, and the season provides a welcomed opportunity to add a warm and cozy atmosphere to your home.
If you’re looking for a way to spice up the orange and red bouquet combo you’re accustomed to putting together, let these experts guide you.
Not all arrangements need a particular order, and sometimes, a bit of havoc is even encouraged. “Don’t be afraid to get a little wild with your styling,” says Sarah Toufali, creative director and owner of Black & Blooms. “There’s no such thing as too much greenery, in my opinion.” She chooses to style her dahlias with seeded eucalyptus, chamomile, amaranthus, and cockscomb to really capture the spirit of the season.
During this time of year, florists encourage exploration with foliage before making any rash bouquet decisions. “There are endless palettes to experiment with when the leaves begin to change into beautiful tones of golds, rusts, and plums,” says Cara Fitch of Trille Floral. She, too, believes fruits are a way to complement these deep tones.
L.A. florist Kelly Kaufman uses this time of year to celebrate that cozy vibe we’re all craving, and she does so with her arrangement. “Opt for rich hues that capture the warmth of the season by choosing an unexpected earthy color palette of earthy tones in shades of rose, coral, and taupe florals,” she says. She tops off each look with berries and copper and gold-colored foliage.
Summer might be gone, but that’s no reason not to embrace what nature has left. “I often use dried seed pods or twigs, grasses, or anything that shows that shows the life of a summer that has passed,” says Sarah Winward of Honey of a Thousand Flowers. “There are so many delicate little twigs and tiny pieces that you can gather from your surroundings and mix with flowers you purchased to make an arrangement that feels seasonally appropriate.”
Sometimes a 15-minute walk outside to get your creative juices flowing is just what you need to help you decorate inside. “Often taking simple botanical elements out of context by bringing it indoors allows us to have a new perspective on the season we are in,” says Katie Davis of Ponderosa & Thyme. “One of my favorite things to do is to find a branch with it’s changing leaves still attached and hang it from the ceiling, lay it on a mantel, or lean up against the wall allowing the leaves to dry out naturally.”
Christy Doramus, founder of Crowns by Christy loves to add berries, branches, dried flowers, and greenery to her floral arrangements—or floral crowns—but she insists on separating her flowers from others in the bunch. “I always love an element of personalization,” she says. “A name card or note written in calligraphy is always such a special touch and for Thanksgiving, I love to tie name cards to mini pumpkins at each place setting.”
Fall is a highly anticipated time of year for flowers. It’s the final hoorah before the end of the season, so you’ll want to make sure your arrangement is the perfect send-off before winter. Holly Heider Chapple, owner of a home-based garden studio, says, “dahlias, zinnias, cosmos, amaranthus, autumn clematis, straw flower, celosia all come together in a beautiful dance.”
When it comes to adding the perfect touch to your floral centerpiece, look no further than your backyard—the go-to nursery for style blogger Camille Styles. She has a tendency to incorporate maple tree leaves and acorn branches into her bouquets, but there’s definitely a science to it. “Since heavier branches require stability in order not to topple over, I use sturdy vessels with a narrow neck to hold them in place, plus some balled-up chicken wire in the base creates little holes that will hold each stem in place,” she says.
When making the perfectfall floral
arrangement, color is everything… but not necessarily the colors you’d expect. “The nude tones soften up the bolder colors in the palette and help offset the “standard” fall palette for a fresher more sophisticated look,” says Ingrid Carozzi, owner and creative director of Tin Can Studios. “Use plenty of foliage and round everything off with some stronger non-traditional elements such as dark thistles, persimmons, or blackberry branches.”
When in need of a little autumn inspo, Stems Brooklyn’s owner Suzanna Cameron suggests heading to the farmer’s market to see what dried flowers vendors have available. She also believes a good way to break away from red and orange (if you so choose) is to opt for burgundy and cream-colored flowers to add a “moody” aesthetic to the bunch.
Though pumpkins and squash are everyone’s typical fall go-to items, there are ways to enrich the autumn ambience with pieces of fruit and berries, the way the owner of Denise Fasanello Flowers does with her wedding centerpieces. As an added bonus, Fasanello also offers tips to keep the fall flowers around for a longer period of time. “On the last day of your flowers’ peak freshness, I suggest clipping the head and floating in a shallow bowl to extend your enjoyment,” she says.