Im often asked for ideas for flowers to use at this time of year. Nowadays with modern technology an awful lot of choice is available which might not have been before, daffodils were available from early November this year! However, I think its still best to keep as seasonal as possible when choosing flowers, just personal taste I guess.
Some of my suggestions are as follows: Of course your own colour theme may exclude the use of some of them.
ERYGIUM Blue Thistle (non prickly) is a beautiful soft frondy addition to winter bouquets and arrangements, it can also be lightly sprayed with silver to catch the light - very frosty wintry looking.
DOGWOOD Shiny vibrant red stems of woody twigs look fabulous in winter arangements.
Dogwood is quite flexible and can be used to weave smaller flowers through it or support for gerbera or lillies.
Winter flower arrangements and weddings wouldnt be complete without berries of some sort.
HYPERICUM The Berry of St.John's Wort is fabulous because of the different colours the berries can be, lime, peach, pink and burgundy. Of course, they can also be sprayed to fit your theme.
As seen in previous workshops on here, these can be threaded onto grasses and made into loops as well. Very pretty in corsages and buttonholes to compliment their use in the main flowers. They are also on very long stems so excellent for using in large pedestal arrangements.I always use leaf shine on the berries as it adds to the natural gloss. Available in my ebay store. A link to which will be at the end of this entry.
EUCALYPTUS SILVER DOLLAR FOLIAGE
This type of Eucalyptus is so good for winter as its a kind of frosted green, and matte not shiny so a good choice to give interest to arrangements and flowers adding texture. Using textures is so important to making floristry interesting, the smooth shine of the berries next to the matte Eucalyptus and the spiky Erygium, for example, is very pleasing to the eye.
NEVER USE LEAF SHINE ON THE MATTE FOLIAGES! FOR OBVIOUS REASONS.
MOLUCCELLAKnown as Bells of Ireland. Another favourite of mine. Its used as a foliage AND flower as it is actually both. The smell is wonderful, and used in cosmetics and soap, buy some just to smell the fragrance! Lime veined leaves on a long stem so also good for pedestals and top table long low arrangements, but take care! The stems have long needles hidden under the 'bells'. Can be cut down for smaller lengths and cut just above a bell cluster so the cut end cant be seen, very decorative
WHITE TULIPSAdds a WAXY texture and a purity to the designs - always pierce the stem just below the head with a pin all the way through to avoid the tulips blowing open too soon, this will hold them in bud. Adds a promise of spring to Winter Weddings.
AVALANCHE ROSE, PURE WHITE ROSE FAVOURITE
WHITE PEONY These are available from around February, adds a luxurious big focal flower where impact is required, ie pedestals, top tables, and of course in wedding bouquets. Stunning in White, but also available in pink from pale to cerise.WHITE RUNUNCULUS -IN VASEa smaller version of the peony, ie in bridesmaid bouquets, its good to use Rununculus, they look very similar and are so pretty, they also come in the same colours as peonies so i use them in smaller arrangements if using Peony in larger ones, to keep the arrangements matching if you know what i mean.
ORCHIDStp://www.blog.co.uk/media/photo/white_dendrobium/2245077" title="white dendrobium">
TOP - Dendrobium (Singapore Orchid) MIDDLE - Cymbidium BOTTOM - Phalaenopsis (Butterfly Orchid) The Dendrobium is the most delicate, the Cymbidium is cut into single flowers for corsages etc, and the Butterfly is a large very easily spoiled orchid so only use if you have experience with them.
WHITE LILLIES, THE LONGI LILY, Like a Trumpet in shape and comes with 2 or 3 flowers per long stem. Perfect for pedestals because of the length, allow a good few days to open so buy in advance. Always remove the stamen as shown in the lily workshop because the pollen stains permanently.
THE CALLA LILY, the smaller ones are called ZANTEDECHIA A very elegant lily, single flower per stem, thisk stem though so if making a bouquet its best to buy the smaller ones or have just a few in an over arm style. The thick fleshy stems can be warmed by the hand and gently curved if need be, these look lovely with twig frames and if left out of water the stems are flexible enough to weave with, they are fine out of water.
ORIENTAL LILY, TIGER LILY, Below - Very versatile, a little quicker to open than the Longi, but still need to be bought in advance, multi headed, sometimes speckle throated, long stem lillies.
The White Gerbera here has a chocolate middle but they do come with white too, they are a good focal flower but if using them, avoid other round flowers, go for points or trails otherwise they will compete visually for attention and can look clumsy. They must be supported as in the wiring workshop, give them a good long drink in cold water prior to use, they tend to droop quicker than other flowers if in a mixed bunch, but there is a tablet form of conditioner just developed which is available from my store on ebay.
WHITE SPIDER CHRYSANTHEMUM
These are very economical and hardy flowers, their petals are ragged and give a nice texture - they are sometimes called spyder with a 'y'. The lime green version is also quite dramatic. A good snowflake effect winter flower for impact.
Hope you found this article of use when choosing materials for winter weddings and arrangements, its obviously just a few of the many flowers and foliages available but might give you food for thought. Please visit my ebay store for floristry tools and sundries at E-Jay Trading. Ebay Store.CLICK HERE FOR A VISIT TO MY ONLINE STORE