We are fortunate to have a National Accredited Flower Show Judge and Master Judge to conduct free floral design workshops. Evelyn Warrington inspires, entertains and educates participants with a great variety of floral designs. These workshops are held just prior to our regular meetings for interested club members.

Her September workshop, "Summer Gleanings" demonstrated how to create an abstract design using all dried materials. Abstract means you use a minimum of plant material in your design. The dried Bird of Paradise leaf was placed in an opening. She used a single cattail secured by a pinholder to create the vertical line.

The September assignment was to bring a design illustrating what students had learned last year from the floral design classes. This student used live plant material in an abstract design. She used narrow leaves to create the two sizes of "bows" on the upper right and lower left of the large container. Since she did not have large, dramatic flowers blooming in her garden, she bunched several masses of yellow mums to create strong color spots in the design. The green in the leaves complements the green of the leaf bows and small red blooms add another color to move the eye around the design.

Evelyn's comment was that larger blossoms such as calla lily, iris or amaryllis are often used with this type of container to minimize the amount of plant material. Overall, the use of colors and materials made a nice design.

This miniature design by a student used a little basket for her container. She was careful to leave a portion of the handle showing and using tiny red and yellow flowers with a few green leaves for horizontal mass design. She was curious to know if her doiley was the correct size. Evelyn commented that the size of the blossoms in a minature design are important and the scale used here was correct. The flowers should not overpower the container. The size of the doiley was within the size limit and overall the miniature design was very attractive.

The third September design submitted was a twin container design. Since the containers were the same size the student varied the size of the floral design to give a smaller height to the second container. Plant materials used are miniature pink and white roses, Silver King artemesia for the line and fern leaves as filler material. The original base of a folded rattan placemat was exchanged for the turquoise placemat.

Evelyn commented that the pale brown color of the original placemat was not compatible with the container colors. The new base picks up the turquoise in the container and blends in with the overall design.

Our October 2015 lesson was "A Picture Tells a Story" using flowers in a floral design to compliment a picture. The picture she used orginally had a black frame which was too heavy for the pastel colors so she replaced it with a white frame. Standing next to the picture is a small basket with a minature shovel attached to the side. It is just large enough to place a needle holder inside to hold up the plant material. She used three stems of fountain grass to make the vertical line. To keep the seeds from falling off she suggested using hairspray to hold the dried material onto the stem. A miniature apricot colored rose was inserted to match the color of the woman's apron and a violet-blue stalk of flowers repeated the color in the farmer's jeans. Evelyn said you should try to have repetition in your design.

Our October assignment was to bring an arrangement using dried plant material in an abstract design. This student's design used a small oak tree branch for the vertical line, a dried aloe flower stem for the secondary vertical line and three sweet corn tassels at the bottom for horizontal movement. There is a dried jacaranda seed pot at the base of the design. Evelyn's comment was that the base was too small for the arrangement but that this is an example of an abstract design.

This student's design used only two plant materials - a dried birch branch and dried corn cobs which were attached to the branch with hidden wire. This is a nice horizontal design with good balance. Evelyn suggested it would be enhanced by using something like a place mat for the base.

This student's design used a wooden circle held up by a cavity in the wooden base. She used only one type of dried plant material in two sizes plus a small brown and white bird sitting on the base. Evelyn commented that this is a mass arrangement in the creative design not the abstract design because the plant material looks like a plant. The colors are good and the base is nicely proportioned to the arrangement.

Our November 2015 lesson was "Harvest Basket" using vegetables and/or fruit for a fall arrangement. Evelyn started with a green wicker basket laying on its side. A spray of Hawain tree fern was placed first as a base for the large items. It spills out from the inside of the basket onto the wooden placemat. Then she placed a red bell pepper, some persimmons, a mini pumpkin and some grapes arranged to make the green color flow in a waving pattern. A small cluster of apricot mini roses picked up the orange tones of the fruit and vegetables. This arrangement would also look nice on a burlap placemat. A still life arrangement would have very little foilage.

The November assignment was to make a floral design to complement a picture.

This student's design used an old family 1897 tinttype photo of her father and uncle when they were boys. She used some sticks for the line to give the arrangement some height, beige quaking grass to pick up the lighter colors in the photo and a brownish orchid helps brighten the colors.
Evelyn commented that the wooden base is too heavy in appearance for this design but that overall her choices were good.

This student's design uses an 80 year old wooden plaque her mother had enjoyed having as a reminder of a trip taken. The student used baby chrysanthemums in the vase to repeat the yellow tones in the plaque. The greenry is asparagus retrofractus which repeates some of the green tones in the plaque.
Evelyn commented that the figurine on the vase could be smaller because it competes with the image on the plaque. The colors chosen by the student are very nice and gives the design repetition to carry the eye from the plaque to the arrangement.

This student used a picture she won at a raffle. It rests on a wooden stand and she placed her flower holder behind the stand. The stems of lantana give the design a vertical line to carry the eye upward from the picture and then the red and yellow tones of the lantana flowers bring the eye back down to the right of the picture.

A ceramic plaque mounted in a wooden frame was used by this student for her arrangement. A small wicker basket hides a needle point holder for the plant material and picks up the warm wood tones of the frame. The brown tones are repeated in the bamboo placemat base. She used two stems of hummingbird vine to create the vertical line. The dried stem of red sage picks up the colors in the plaque and the small cluster of red and yellow chrysanthemums blend with the wood tones in the design. The hummingbird vine on the lower left should be trimmed back about one third to keep the design focused on the plaque.

Our 2016 January lesson was presented by member, Karol Freudenberg. She brought several examples of a tapestry design to demonstrate the "rules of a tapestry design" while she explained the specific features.

A tapestry design is viewed from above to see the combinations of pattern, color and texture. Use plant material in blocks of texture and color. Alllow a little space between the blocks of color Use plant material with the same life span to prolong the use of the design.

Prepare the oasis to be about 1/4 inch above the rim of the container. Chamfer or bevel the sharp edge into a rounded shape. Use the extra height to insert plant material that will spill over the rim of the container. Avoid using blossoms that will open wide and crowd the design.

A design could also be displayed vertically like the arrangement in a glass container with the opening on the side.

One of her containers was a round metal tin. The side were covered with a little fence purchased at a hobby store. The fence had dried plant material tucked into the open spaces to give it a woodland feeling. She used dried moss, a little bird's nest with eggs, pebbles, dried seed pods, etc. to give it a rich, varied texture.

Our January assignment was to arrange fruit and/or vegetables with plant material in a basket or other container. This student used a dark wicker basket lined with a moss green napkin to hold her arrangement. The color of the green is echoed in the green lemon leaves and the warm tones of the citrus fruits are also repeated.

This design uses a dark wicker rectangular basket standing on one end. A sword fern is inserted in the open handle area to lead the eye from the top of the design down to the fern leaf lying from the interior of the basket out toward the edge of the napkin. The orange tones are repeated in the small tangerine and bright colored napkin. A little bird on top repeats the color of the red apple.

This design used three grapefruits decorated with dark green leaves held in place with tiny straight pins. The bright yellow in the golden euonymus leaves in the top of the grape fruits repeats the color of the fruit. The chartruse petals of the little flowers add another tint of green. The white ceramic basket holds the fruit in place while allowing a view of the sides of the design.

The container used here is an orange carved into a little basket with a handle. Small blossoms of the lion's tail leontis leonurus repeat the color of the container and the green asparagus retrofractus adds a contrasting cool color. The base is round to repeat the shape of the orange.

This design was placed in a brick colored stoneware basket. Plant materials included small orange and dark green peppers, scallion tops and napa cabbage leaves. Several shades of green are repeated and the orange peppers echo the color of the container. Evelyn commented that the checkered base is a nice contrast in the design.

Our February lesson was to create a design using spring flowers arranged artistically. Member Carole Kyle presented the lesson using pots of spring bulbs in bloom and early flowers arranged in a large wicker basket. She lined the basket with plastic and used green moss to cover the rims of the pots.

The February assignment was to bring a tapestry design. This design used small roses in bright pink colors. The crisp, white doily echos the tiny white blossoms and creates an airy spring look to the design.

This design also uses roses and the tapestry look is depicted by the placing many small flowers tightly in an area. There appear to be rows of plant materials. The various textures, colors and sizes move your eye around the design.

Deep red roses with dark green leaves are arranged in a star shaped design with the larger blossoms toward the center and smaller blossoms on the edges. The cool, dark green leaves contrast nicely with the heat of the red roses.

This tapestry design uses dry and fresh plant materials. The orange Chinese lantern seed pods are bordered by stalks of wheat stems in the center. Fresh jade blossoms border on the left side and beach pebbles are used on the right side. Yellow straw flowers are repeated on both sides along with bits of pine cones to fill in toward the edges. A grouping of small succulents and fern leaves add some green to the design. A pair of poppy seed heads have wheat stalk heads on each side and are placed on opposite sides of the container.

Our March lesson for miniature designs was taught by member, Jean Crail. She brought examples of containers that could be used for 3 inch, 5 inch or 8 inch miniature designs and showed how to make guides for each size using a 3 sided cardboard to check your design for size limits as you work. A pair of tweezers is also helpful in placing very small elements in a design.

Here are two examples of miniature designs for 3 inches and 5 inches. It helpful to use tiny rosebuds, blossoms, closed buds, seed pods and other small plant materials to keep the overall design in scale with the container.

The March design assignment for class members was to bring an arrangement of spring flowers. This students's design used a white metal sprinkling can filled with purple larkspur and red sage blossoms surrounded by white flowers and green foilage. Evelyn commented that the colors blend nicely and the flowers are to scale for the design.

This student used a white basket lined with waterproof plastic. She used birch stems for height in her design and created a triangular look. The design looks light and airy with small blossoms. Deer moss is used to cover the edges.

This spring flower design looks very natural in its setting of a rustic container. The tall stem gives height and leads the eye down to the pot of violets and bright spot of color with the yellow blossoms.

Our April floral design class was presented by Pat Tjosaas. She introduced us to twin container designs and brought some twin containers for students to use for their assignment next month. She used some beautiful gold with red edges iris and yellow iris in her containers. To keep the stems upright she filled the containers with marbles before adding water. The second container has shorter stems on the flowers to make it slightly subordinate to its twin.

This member brought a 5 inch miniature mass design using red blossoms as her focal point and purple blossoms to carry the eye upward briefly and then down to the lower white blossoms with greenry. The white blossoms repeat the white of the container and the red and purple blossoms carry the colors in the design on the container upward. She created a light, airy look in keeping with the light weight of the container.

This student created a 5 inch miniature angular design. She used only two plant materials. The bent narrow leaves create the angles and greenery low in the design anchor it to the dark container.

This is another 5 inch miniature angular design which uses 3 different plant materials. Again the student has used narrow leaves to form an angular design and used light blue bachelor button blossoms to anchor the design to the containter. Asparagus fern was used to cover the edges of the container.

This is a miniature twin design using 3 inch glycerin bottles. She used three types of small blossoms and buds in her design. The colors she chose blend nicely with the container. The dark glass hides the stems and the little base ties the design together nicely.

Evelyn Warrington demonstrated our May lesson which was a design using a picture. She had an old photo of her five sisters and herself when younger. She put the photo in a pink frame to pick up the pink colors of some of the clothing in the photo. She used a cake display stand to hold the framed photo upright. First she inserted a stem of wax plant in the container to hold the stems of her flowers. As she worked to create her design she placed the bulk of the colorful pink flowers at the height of the top of her photo. She used pink chrysanthemums, aster and carnations for the "cluster' of blooms. She created a diagonal line design with the greenry and stems of larkspur. The various colors of pink blossoms repeat pink colors in the photo.

Our May assignment was to bring a design using twin containers. This student's design used one of the pair of containers Pat Tojosaas loaned to students last month. It was the most striking design this month because the colors of the lion's tail, alstromeria and nasturtiums blended beautifully with the color of the container.

This was another design using another pair of Pat's containers. The flowers were red and white geraniums with purple sea lavender and long sage stems with sword fern to give the design height. The larger dark green leaves repeat the green of the stems and fern. Evelyn commented that the greenry in the first container would look better if it were straight up and down. The colors go nicely with the darker color of the container.

This student used pink twin containers to blend with her choice of pink alstromeria which is backed by the greenry and smaller flowers of larkspur. The pink base pulls it all together to make a lovely design.

This student used wild pink sweetpeas, larkspur and nigella from her garden to create a beautiful spring design for her smaller, white, twin containers with a blue design. The tall larkspur blossom stems give height to the design and the pink of the sweetpeas move the eye downward to the contianers. Eveyln's comment was that the design was very nice and if she had a base it would help hold the elements together.