Scale is the most important thing to remember when selecting flowers for arrangements and centerpieces. The types of flowers you choose and the containers they are placed in should reflect the size of the room, the tables, and the style and color scheme of your event. Most important, centerpieces should never obstruct your guests' views of one another.

Beauty can often be found in simplicity: Consider a single variety of blooms artfully arranged in a clear, square vase.

Tools and Materials

Assorted flowers and foliage, such as roses, leaves, berries, and gardenias

Glass cylinder vases

Julep cups

Shallow glass bowl

Glass donuts or floats, for floating blooms and votives

Floral knife

Thick rubber bands

Simple Floral Centerpiece How-To

1. Arrange the flowers on a flat surface so that the blossoms create a fanned dome shape. (Face each floret in the same direction.)

2. Hold flowers just below the blossoms. Carefully pick them up, and lock your fingers into a tight ring. (Arrange the stems like pencils in a jar.) Secure stems with a rubber band. Place in a container filled halfway with cool water.

3. Remove the flowers, and cut the stems to desired height. Return flowers to the container, and snip the rubber band, allowing the flowers to fall into place.

Julep Cup Centerpiece How-To

1. Fill a julep cup about 3/4 full with cool water. Cut flower stems to a length slightly higher than the mint cup. Arrange the flowers around the perimeter of the cup, crisscrossing the stems in the center.

2. Fill in the middle of the arrangement with additional blooms. Add more blooms, as necessary, to complete the arrangement.

Gardenia Centerpiece How-To

1. Fill a low glass container halfway with cool water.

2. Carefully handle gardenia by its stem, and trim to just beneath the bloom. Take care not to touch the petals because they may turn brown. Place the glass donuts (also known as floats) in the water, putting a flower or votive candle in each.


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