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Shutterstock image courtesy of Michael Skaff.

Shutterstock image courtesy of Michael Skaff.

A fun way to preserve the colors and textures of summer and bring them indoors is with dried flowers. You can dry and preserve your own garden beauties or go to a local florist and choose your favorite blooms in a variety of colors. An easy crafting idea is to highlight the flowers in frames and use as wall décor, adding interest, texture, and color to spots in your home.

Drying flowers is easier than you may think. Here are four popular ways to dry flowers.  Read More

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Awesome Aesthetics at Art in Bloom

by Stephen Rittner on July 21, 2017 at 6:24 am

“Flowers in Frame” by Paeonia Designs This year’s Art In Bloom at Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts had some amazing displays. Floral designers paired works of art with tropical flowers. Another interpreted a black-and-white modern painting with flowers. There was even a floral arrangement designed differently on two sides to complement a Reliquary Figure.

And there was one floral design that wasn’t paired with a specific work of art — it literally mimicked art. “Flowers in Frame” by Paeonia Designs simulates a painting.

This floral design works so well on many levels. Check out what’s behind the frame:  Read More

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Floral Designs Match Works of Art

by Stephen Rittner on July 14, 2017 at 6:14 am

The fusion of floral designs with other types of art is celebrated in museums across the country with “Art in Bloom” exhibits. Art in Bloom originated in the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston in 1976. I love going to the exhibit every year. Here are some pieces from this year’s Art in Bloom at the MFA.

When you go to Art In Bloom, you never know what masterpieces will be paired with flowers. Will it be a bowl decorated by Jackson Pollock?

“Flight of Man” by Jackson Pollock interpreted with flowers by the Spade and Trowel Garden Club of Andover.

“Flight of Man” by Jackson Pollock interpreted with flowers by the Spade and Trowel Garden Club of Andover.

Or perhaps models of boats created by ancient Egyptians will inspire a floral designer.  Read More

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Loving the ‘Greenery’ Trend

by Carol Caggiano on June 28, 2017 at 10:32 am

A lush hand-tied bouquet of sword fern, maiden hair fern, dusty miller, silver brunia and astrandia was accented with white eskimo roses and white sweet peas was created for the bride to carry while the guest tables were a glow with candles entwined with hand made garlands of ferns, ruscus, lemon leaf and touches of dusty miller for color and texture.Each year, creative people wait for Pantone to announce its “color of the year.” For 2017, the color is “Greenery,” a lovely shade of fresh leaf green. At first, I thought the name greenery unimaginative, kind of boring, but I soon realized that for this year, the name not only depicts a color but also a state of mind.

As technology occupies more and more of our time and space, and the world talks of robots that can pretty much take the place of humans, we find ourselves being drawn more and more toward things that are natural, part of a world that is not manufactured or controlled by electronics. But we take it even further to appreciating simple forms, such as leaves and vines. We have always loved flowers and still do, but now the simple motif of a fern leaf brings us joy and comfort, energizing us at the same time.

We see this translated in design on many levels, such as fashion and home interiors. Fern prints are in demand and “Greenery” painted furniture and home accessories are popping up everywhere. I saw the most gorgeous pair of “Greenery” shoes with all kinds of jewelry to coordinate.  Read More

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Photo Courtesy Ardith Beveridge, AAF, AIFD, PFCI, CAFA,Koehler & Dramm's Institute of Floristry in Minneapolis, https://www.kdfloralinstitute.com/My 4-year-old grandson and I were walking through an inside public area that had many planters. He walked up to one plant with brown leaves, visibly in need of water. “This hurts my feelings,” he said. Seeing the plant in bad shape made him sad.

Research proves flowers and plants make us happy and benefit our emotional health. However, I had never considered the opposite emotional response to seeing flowers and plants in poor condition.

Just like my grandson’s reaction, it hurts my feelings to see plants turn brown from neglect. It hurts my feelings to see a floral design in a vase of dirty water with fuzzy stems or dead flowers.

The beauty and ephemeral nature of flowers make them special gifts. For maximum enjoyment, take care of them. When the water turns cloudy, empty the vase and refill with fresh water mixed with floral food. If possible, re-cut the stems with a sharp knife before placing them in the fresh water. When flowers start to fade, clip them.  Read More