As florists, we often hear from our customers that they prefer more high-end flowers in their bouquets. Carnations, chrysanthemums and gladiolus seem old fashioned in today’s market in favor of peonies, tulips, roses and orchids, which have a greater, perceived value and are more trendy. Yet as often with other materials, how you put them together makes all the difference. Every now and then we have a creative client who wants something special and to create these one-of-a-kind designs, we immediately gravitate toward our traditional favorites.

A young lady made her Bat Mitzvah and in lieu of gifts she requested donations be made to the ASPCA as she loves animals. To decorate the table that was set up for guests to leave their notes, cards and donations, we created the “coolest” dog ever made mostly from white carnations. It was such a nice touch and brought attention to something that was very important and personal to the teenage girl. That puppy was certainly the most popular guest at the event.

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That puppy wasn’t the only one to make a party debut. A bride’s father requested we duplicate a favored stuffed animal in flowers as a surprise for his daughter’s wedding day. We obliged with button chrysanthemums over a custom carved floral foam base and with a little creativity this little guy was the hit of the party.

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What about a four-foot Fabergé egg to add to the decor? A love of collecting led to this party theme with gorgeous replicas of the treasured eggs created from carnations and roses. Quite a few different ones were made and used throughout the room to develop the theme. It gave the party a very personal touch and generated excited conversation. I think everyone had their photo taken by at least one of them.

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Gracious swans were invited to share in this beautiful wedding. A pair was created with chrysanthemums, gladiola petals and rose petals. When the swans were finished, they were perched atop square bases and then accented with additional flowers to create their “nest.” These graceful creatures flanked the dance floor and stood seven feet tall.

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Creating designs like these are a challenge, and take some practice. They are time consuming and rarely made at the event site. The tricky part is moving them. Because of their unusual size and shape, handling them is difficult. They are totally covered in flowers so where can you grab on to them without damaging the design? How do you pack them in the delivery truck so they arrive in good condition? All part of the job. We florists can get pretty clever and come up with some interesting solutions. Our special designs arrive in perfect shape.

Not as elaborate but certainly fun is creating floral vases. Covering a traditional vase in petals creates a luxurious and unique presentation. Here gladiolus petals cover a vase, creating a fabulous vase for an outstanding bouquet to adorn an entrance or escort card table for almost any party.

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I work with flowers every day and have my whole career. Creating bouquets for every occasion is something I truly enjoy yet every now and then getting to create floral sculptures like these is a real treat. They are a lot of work, but when they become the focal point for a party or wedding, and you see how much people enjoy them, it is certainly worth the effort.  Having the opportunity to take standard flowers and turn them into something unique is a pleasure yet it is part of my job. Do I have a fun job or what?

What floral sculptures have you seen?