Behind-the-Scenes as a Brides' Editor Tackles Flower Arranging 101

Flowers
diy-wedding-flowers Photos: All courtesy of Heather Lee

If you've ever thought about trying your hand at flower arranging, sign up for a beginners class at your local floral studio. Last week, I visited Ovando—a floral boutique in New York City known for their bright, chic arrangements—for a beginners class and to check out their new 5,000-square-foot design studio on Wall Street. At the end of the two-hour class, I learned how to create the tropical arrangement (above). Here's how it all went down:

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From top to bottom: -Our supplies: a rectangular vase, floral shears, and plastic floral tubes filled with water. -It was cool seeing the shelves lined with hundreds of different vases, in all sorts of shapes, sizes, and colors. -Our instructor Michael taught us how to insert single stems into the floral tubes; this gives you more flexibility and control as you're designing your centerpiece. -His finished arrangement was so pretty!

diy wedding flowers

From top to bottom: -The beautiful fresh flowers we used: purple hydrangeas, burgundy dahlias (which are just coming into season!), bright sunset-hued "voodoo" roses, and orchids (deep-purple vanda orchids and pink phalaenopsis orchids). -We began by cutting ti leaves to line the inside of the vase; next, we cut pieces of chicken wire and inserted the wire into the vase to give the arrangement more structure.

diy wedding flowers

From top to bottom: -I started by creating a "purple" section using several stems of stock and vanda orchids, which I inserted individually into floral tubes before being placing them in the vase. -Next, I added the burgundy dahlias, followed by a cluster of "voodoo" roses for a bright pop of color—I tried to arrange the flowers so the colors smoothly transitioned from one hue to another. The final touch: geranium leaves, which I tucked here and there into the arrangement. -Voila! Me and my finished centerpiece!

The class was such a fun experience and I was so happy with how my arrangement turned out! Now I feel much more capable of turning my grocery-store flowers into a much-prettier centerpiece. To see a list of upcoming Ovando classes, click here.

—Heather Lee

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