Beth Flower Elizabella Flower Farm

Beth Wilbur, Elizabella Flower Farm, shared some design theory at her DIY Farm Fresh Flower Bouquet class at the Co-op on June 20, 2017.


Color, form and texture are the elements which come into play when creating art.  In terms of form – get an idea of what shape you want your bouquet to be (does the vase dictate this?  Do the size of the available flowers?) And try repeating that circle or triangle in width, depth and flower placement.  Beth emphasized that we all have a pretty instinctive eye for color, after all we choose our wardrobes each morning.  For floral arrangements try focusing on either complimentary colors or pile on layers by using analogous color schemes.   Texture is an element that can literally support larger flowers.  Wind filler flower stems in the bottom of the container, positioning the first flowers at 30’ angles to create a base and a structure for large, focal flowers which are tucked in later.


Beth suggests to create a satisfying floral arrangement (in this particular order) look for these types o flowers and fillers:

  1. 6 Frizzle Flowers (think, filler) – Beth brought in cilantro and asparagus that had bolted. Others include yarrow, greens, seeded flax and butterfly weed. Frizzle provides support and texture as well as pops of color.
  2. 6 Line Flowers – these are long, simple items like veronica, salvia, penstemon, snapdragons or tall grasses. Line flowers can separate two elements or colors, drawing the eye up and down, unifying the flowers.
  3. 3 “Face” Flowers – think of these are large and open, like a lily, rose or peony – a big smiley face. These are the first thing that catches the viewer’s eye because of size or breadth.


Other tips that Beth suggests includes:

  • Rule of thirds. The vase is either = 2/3 or 1/3 of the total composition.  Think about the purpose and placement of the arrangement, No one wants a two foot centerpiece which no one can talk over at the table.
  • Remove extra leaves. Any leaves that fall below the surface of the water will rot and shorten the life of your arrangement.   Hold the flower at the top of the stem in one hand and starting at the flower other with your free hand, slide to the cut end, removing all leaves as you go.
  • Clump your flowers. Instead of filling the exterior of the container with a filler evenly, try taking 3 or 6 of your frizzle or line flowers and treat them like one or two stems.   Something simple suddenly has more impact when grouped together.


Beth encourages you to look at what is in your home garden differently in terms of color and texture and to consider adding new kinds of foliage to compliment more traditional cut flowers in future arrangements.