Floral Arranging Simplified

I remember Nate Berkus on the Oprah show saying, “NEVER have fake flowers in your home!” (Seriously, he yelled. And yes, I have a keen, even weird memory!) It was such a strong statement that I was shocked as I looked around my home, seeing all my artificial flowers. I remember thinking, “Who can afford fresh flowers all over your home all year long?!” Oh yeahhhh… Oprah can! 

Mauve artificial flowers

Thankfully, a lot has changed since the 90s! Artificial florals have come a long way from the days of roses with hot glue “water” droplets and dusty, plastic ferns. So, while we love fresh arrangements & live house plants, today’s artificial stems are so lovely that you can mix both live and faux plants in your home all year long.  Now, the only question is, “How can I bring these gorgeous, new flowers into my decor?”

 Artificial Floral Arrangement in bowl

There are a few things to keep in mind when you’re selecting florals that will look great in your home. If you’re like me, you’ve been in a store and found a gorgeous stem that you just “had to have.” But when you get it home it just didn’t quite work out the way you had hoped. Can you relate? If so, here are some of our favorite tips to get your florals just right every time.

Centerpiece Arrangement

Tip 1: The container sets the stage.

  • The vessel you use will determine the type of stem you need. Do you have a tall, skinny vase? You’ll need tall, airy stems. Or maybe you're looking to fill a bowl? For this you’ll want something smaller, more compact. Think: "My stems should mimic my vessel."

 Forsythia in tall vase

  • The vessel you use will also determine the overall height of your arrangement. For a balanced look, your stems will ideally be 1 to 1.5 times the height of your container. With all design rules, there will be exceptions, but this is a good rule of thumb. 

 Artificial Greenery Arrangement

  • The mouth of the vessel will determine how many stems you need. A narrow opening on a tall, narrow vase may only need a couple of stems to achieve the light, airy look we talked about above. Don’t be afraid to leave a little “wiggle room” in tall, narrow mouthed vases. A vase with a wider mouth will need more stems to cover the opening. That “wiggle room” will be less appealing in a wide mouthed vase, so plan to fill it with more stems or a full, floral bush.

Hydrangeas in a bowl

 Tip 2: Selecting the best stem for the season.

  • Floral arrangements are at the heart of seasonal decorating. For most containers, we recommend having 3-4 arrangements that can be switched seasonally to mimic nature. For spring think hydrangeas, tulips, and forsythias. Summer is a great time to embrace daisies, sunflowers, and pampas grass. Fall is for autumn leaves, mums, and pumpkin picks. And winter can blend in with Christmas decor utilizing evergreens, snowy branches, and holly berries. 

Holly Mason Jar Arrangement 

  • Perhaps you have a container that you don’t want to change seasonally. Maybe it’s hard to reach on top of a shelf or just in a room where you keep the decor consistent throughout the year. For these, we recommend taking a look at the colors and style of the other decor in the room then selecting greenery stems that will coordinate. If your color palette is black and white, the deep, rich green of our rubber plant stems will blend nicely. But, if your colors are a little softer, lambs ear may be a better choice.

 Rubber Plant Tall Arrangement

  • A note on tulips: Even though tulips bloom in the spring, they have been a popular choice for year round arrangements over the last few years. We recommend coordinating the color of the tulip with the season. For example, in the spring you might use light pink tulips in a vase, then exchange that light pink for a bold yellow in the summer, then orange in the fall, red for Christmas, and white for winter.

Red and White Real Touch Tulips 

Tip 3: Creating a cohesive mix.

  • You may have heard the saying “Thrillers, Fillers, & Spillers” when referring to planting live flowers in a container. The “thrillers” are the eye-catchers, the “fillers” fill in the gaps, and the “spillers” spill over the edges. This same formula can be applied to artificial arrangements as well. Pick a vibrant flower as your focal point, select greenery or other coordinating flowers to fill-in, then add interest with sprigs that extend beyond the borders of your arrangement. In this arrangement, our thrillers are the hydrangea, fillers are the boxwood pick, and the spillers are the flexible boxwood pick that have longer, twiggy pieces.

Real Touch Hydrangea Arrangement

  • Don’t forget about the texture of your arrangement. Smaller leaves or petals will add more texture than larger leaves. Typically we aim for a mixture of leaf styles and sizes. 

Spring Floral Arrangement

I love how flowers brighten up the store and my home, and am amazed at how real they look now compared to the arrangements that filled my home in the 90s.  I’ve actually had people smell my tulips, thinking they were real. And I can’t tell you how many of you have told us stories of friends watering your artificial flowers! Faux flowers have never looked better, and now is the perfect time to add some to your decor.

Need a little more help? We’re here for you! If you’re local, swing by the store and let us create a custom arrangement just for you. If you’re an online friend, send us an email or give us a call. We would love to help you select the perfect stems for your home.  

Until next time, happy flower arranging,

Rachel and Joy


Ready to find that perfect arrangement? 

Check out our collection of Vases & Vessels HERE

Check out our collection of Floral Stems HERE

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