What are you doing this weekend?
a) enjoying your loved ones
b) giving thanks
c) salivating over a nice feast at a fancy table full of thanks
d) snoozing somewhere in a tryptophan induced coma or
e) all of the above.
Chef Kev and I are really lucky in that we have not one, but two dinners this long weekend. Yay! We are off to my parents one day, and his the other.
I wanted to bring a nice Thanksgiving flower arrangement to each dinner to show our 'thanks'. And so I made some tonight. Here they are...
I've always wanted to try making one of those neat pumpkin arrangements I've been seeing around, so here was my chance! I've outlined the steps below if you'd like to make something similar.
First I simply picked up an assortment of grocery store blooms. I just chose what was economical and what I thought looked nice together. I was going for a 'harvest' type colour palette to play off the feel and colour of the pumpkins.
Once home, I grabbed two styrofoam cups from my stash to use as the 'vessels' to hold water. I was afraid that putting the flowers directly into the pumpkins (and filling them with water) would cause them to rot faster than the speed at which Chef Kev gets up for seconds of turkey. Fast.
As you can see, they are taller than the pumpkins. But don't worry, I have a plan for that.
I traced the perimeter of the cup to mark the opening on my pumpkin.
Then I cut them open, hollowed and cleaned out my little gourds.
Placing the styrofoam cups inside, I rested my pen on the 'lip' of the pumpkin and rotated the cup to mark where I would be cutting it down to fit.
Then I simply cut the cup down to size with regular scissors.
Once trimmed, I placed them into the pumpkins. Don't worry that they are not a 'perfect' fit to your opening, the extra space allows you to wiggle your fingers in to turn or remove the cup (for adjusting, filling with water etc.) So it's actually a good thing (to quote Martha).
After filling both cups with water and flower preserve, I began assembling each arrangement.
First I started with the sunflowers as they were the largest bloom I had.
The bundle sold at the store came with three sunflowers so I already knew I'd be building two different arrangements (versus building little twin ones).
Next I started layering in the carnations. It's probably obvious but you'll be cutting your stalks down really short for this type of 'low and lush' arrangement.
Don't worry about making it perfect, or even gaps like this...
Simply fill it in with some of your lighter textured blooms. I always like getting an array of textures when I pick flowers for arranging. Dense blooms are great for 'bulk' but finer, more textural or 'looser' blooms make great options for filling in gaps and adding some variety to your arrangements.
I like that that bloom has a much smaller 'flower' on it than the larger carnations and sunflowers.
Since one bouquet had two large sunflowers and the other only one, you'll see that the arrangement below right was starting to lack some star power.
But BAM! Using my trick above I threw in an unexpected textural element to turn it up a notch (am I channelling Emeril here)?
See that little greeney yellow guy I added and how with just ONE bloom it can totally change the dynamic of the arrangement? Oh, and I placed it in that location and a bit higher than the rest to add some balance to the large sunflower.
Next I layered in the tiny roses I had bought and I was done. To save you from scrolling back up, here are the finished arrangements again...
These were fun AND economical. Each arrangement came in at around $15.
And a few more views of the finished pumpkins...
Oh, and don't worry if your favourite 'side' or 'view' of the arrangement falls at a spot of the pumpkin where there is a blemish or scratch, simply wiggle your fingers in and turn the styrofoam cup so that the flowers' 'good side' matches that of the pumpkin's.
Gourds can be so vain.
Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!
Liz Marie Blog
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