8 December 2017

From the Archives - 26 December 2014 - A Bunch for the Weekend



This post is part of a brand new blog series called 'From the Archives'. It will be previously posted blog posts that I feel are still relevant for some reason or another. 


It will always be a post from the same calendar month as we are in or it could be some of my favourite flowers from the same season - that still lifts my spirit. 


Flowers are so ephemeral - but their beauty caught on camera never fades.........!!



This week on 'A Bunch for the Weekend' - I'm featuring a bit of an unusual plant as a cut flower and it's called Skimmia japonica 'Rubella'.

We have just passed the shortest day of the year and flowers in the garden are in short supply, flowers in the florist shop during the winter season often come from far away and can be expensive.

There are some lovely potted plants around at this time of year - such as Poinsettia, Cyclamen, Paperwhites, Hyacinths and Amaryllis.

All these flowers are lovely and delightful - but I have already used all of them at least once in the last months - so I decided to try something a little bit different this week. 

I'm using a low-growing evergreen shrub called Skimmia japonica 'Rubella' and both my local flower stall and greengrocer were selling it as a cut flower.  

It has short stems but has these clusters of little, round, tight flower buds in a deep, dark, red colour and it has thick oval dark green leaves.



You'll need:

- about 7 stems of Skimmia japonica 'Rubella' - they will all have 2-3 flower heads on each stem 
- a medium size vase or container in a neutral colour - I have used a vintage zinc container
- a jam jar to put inside the main container 
- 3 grey and 3 white tissue paper poms poms - in three different sizes
- 3 Kosta Boda glass Snowball votive lanterns with tea-lights


For conditioning the flowers - you'll also need:

- florists snippers or scissors
- a florist bucket


As always - you need to condition the flowers - remove all the lower leaves that would end up below the waterline in the vase. Cut the stems at an angle - to increase water absorption. Put in a clean container with fresh water and leave in a cool place over night or at least a few hours before making the final arrangement.

With woody stems you also need to make a vertical cut up the stem to increase the area for water absorption. 


The container I have used can not be trusted not to leak and I also don't want it to get any more rust - so I'm using a jam jar filled with water inside.

The Skimmia stems are not very long so the arrangement will be fairly low and wide. The side of the zinc container flares out so the flowers will sit very nicely in a loose and natural arrangement.

The red flowers sits perfectly against the grey zinc and the grey is also picked up in the grey pom poms in the background.    


The grey and white tissue paper pom poms are all piled up in one corner and I have positioned three Snowball candle holders at the other end - both round and a little festive to fit the season.



Have a Happy Floral Friday and a Great Weekend!

~ xoxo ~

Ingrid

[Styling and Photography © Ingrid Henningsson for Of Spring and Summer.]


6 December 2017

Florets - Floral Quote - #162 - by Irene Schampaert and Judith Baehner



'Florets - Floral Quote' is a series of blog posts where I feature quotes by authors - mostly well known - but you will also find some obscure ones.

All the authors have written one or several books about flowers, green plants, gardening, interior styling or interior design. Many are experts in their field but what is the most important is that they are all passionate about flowers and plants.

I love books and in my ever growing library I look for quotes that I hope will be both inspiring and be useful while arranging flowers or green plants in your home.


" By the end of the eighties, house plants started to disappear from our homes, simply because they were outdated, no longer in sync with modern trends. Our lives got busier all the time. We no longer made time to care for our indoor plants. This custom is now returning, because we are gradually remembering to value slow-paced lives and experience nature.

We are surrounding ourselves with plants again, creating our own retreat and oasis. This makes us happy."

~  Irene Schampaert and Judith Baeher  ~


[Irene Schampaert: Editor, graphic designer, blogger and co-author of Wonder Plants.]

[Judith Baeher: Freelance editor, stylist, blogger and co-author of Wonder Plants.]

[Quote from: Wonder Plants (2016) by Irene Schampaert and Judith Baehner. Published by Lannoo]

[Cover image: Serge Anton.]

[Flowers: Ferns.]

[Styling and Photography © Ingrid Henningsson/Of Spring and Summer.]



4 December 2017

The Joy of Plants: Expose # 19: Christoffers Blommor



I hope you love this video as much as I did! 

I loved the fact that it was filmed in the beautiful country of Sweden.

It features the Swedish florist Christoffer Broman and his shop in the oldest part of Stockholm as well as his house in the archipelago. 

Blommor means flowers in Swedish.




His shop in Stockholm's Gamla Stan, that he opened in 2001, is legendary and as he says himself he likes to make flowers look modern but not overly trendy.

There is also a second shop in Södermalm - the southern part of Stockholm.

By some he is considered the best florist in Stockholm.....!

Here is a link to Christoffers Blommor



1 December 2017

From the Archives - 7 December 2012 - Floral Feast


This post is part of a brand new blog series called 'From the Archives'. It will be previously posted blog posts that I feel are still relevant for some reason or another. 

It will always be a post from the same calendar month as we are in or it could be some of my favourite flowers from the same season - that still lifts my spirit. 

Flowers are so ephemeral - but their beauty caught on camera never fades.........!!


Inspired by the season and the fact that I wanted to use some red berries I came up with this very easy and very quick arrangement. 

My local florist, Achillea, always has inspiring displays outside as well as inside their shop and this time was no exception. I picked some Ilex with red berries and some berried ivy. I also said that they didn't need to wrap it up, but as I turned my back for thirty seconds she had it all wrapped up in brown paper and matched the berries with red raffia!


The Ilex verticillata that I chose is a holly that is also called Black alder or Winterberry. At this time of year there are some other twigs with fruit or berries that you can use, like crab apples or rose hips. 


The berried ivy is just normal ivy, but it's only mature ivy that has berries. I have plenty of ivy in my garden but it is clipped every year so it never reaches a mature state and therefore no berries. I love the colour and texture of the berries combined with the glossy pointed leaves.


Just like with all cut flowers you need to condition both the Ilex and the ivy. Remove any branches and leaves that will sit below the waterline and cut the stems at an angle. You will need a pair of secateurs to cut any woody stems and you should also split the stem at the bottom to increase the surface area, to help the plant absorb water. 


I have used a large clear glass vintage apothecary bottle, a small glass container, a red and white enamelled candle holder, red raffia, some small mostly red vintage Christmas baubles and a torn strip of black & white fabric with a pattern of snow crystals. 


I put the Ilex in the big bottle and tied the piece of fabric around the neck.


I arranged the ivy in the little bottle and twisted the raffia around the top.


The vintage enamelled candle holder is made by the Swedish company Kockums. I put a partly burnt candle in the holder, I didn't want it to be too tall, and arranged the little vintage baubles around it.


I am hoping to be able to inspire you with more seasonal and very easy floral arrangements every Friday for the next few months.  



[Photography and Styling by Ingrid Henningsson for ...Of Spring and Summer...]

29 November 2017

Florets - Floral Quote - # 161 - by Willow Crossley



'Florets - Floral Quote' is a series of blog posts where I feature quotes by authors - mostly well known - but you will also find some obscure ones.

All the authors have written one or several books about flowers, green plants, gardening, interior styling or interior design. Many are experts in their field but what is the most important is that they are all passionate about flowers and plants.

I love books and in my ever growing library I look for quotes that I hope will be both inspiring and be useful while arranging flowers or green plants in your home.


"You often see amaryllis potted in containers or baskets or extravagant cut flowers in vases, but I prefer to grow them in old pickle jars, as shown here. I think that gives them a botanical chic, rather like turning them into a museum specimen for you to watch growing taller and taller until they flower.
Amaryllis always seem to fall over under their own weight, but these jars act as a support from every angle, which makes them practical as well as beautiful. Curiously amaryllis don't really need soil - just a tiny trickle of water every so often will do, to keep the roots wet."
~ Willow Crossley ~  

[Willow Crossley: British, Oxfordshire based florist, designer, journalist, founder of online business Willow Rose Boutique and author of two books. Inspire (2014) and Flourish (2016).]

[Quote from: Inspire by Willow Crossley. Published by Cico Books.]

[Flowers: Maidenhair fern.]

[Styling and Photography © Ingrid Henningsson/Of Spring and Summer.]


27 November 2017

Flowery Stories with Kally Ellis from McQueens Flowers


This is a lovely video with Kally Ellis who talks about her favourite flower - Anemones.



Kally Ellis is the founder of McQueens Flower Shop and Flower School in East London. She started her business in 1991 and is now one of the top London florists.

[Video by McQueens Flowers.]

24 November 2017

From the Archives - 27 October 2014 - Take 3 Flowers!



This post is part of a brand new blog series called 'From the Archives'. It will be previously posted blog posts that I feel are still relevant for some reason or another. 

It will always be a post from the same calendar month as we are in or it could be some of my favourite flowers from the same season - that still lifts my spirit. 

Flowers are so ephemeral - but their beauty caught on camera never fades.........!!



I'm starting a new series of blog posts called 'Take 3 Flowers' - I will show you how to make easy but beautiful and stylish flower arrangements - just using three different flowers. Sometimes one of the three will be some kind of foliage.

Using just three flowers will sometimes be a challenge - but it will also keep the cost down. Cut flowers can be expensive and foliage on the other hand tends to be cheap. You can use lots of it to help fill out the arrangement and to provide support for the other flowers. If you have a garden or access to one you can probably find some foliage to use from there.


In this first one - I'm using two different Chrysanthemums - they are both what's called 'spray' - that means that towards the top are several smaller stems with one flower on each stem. 


The light orange one has single daisy type flowers with a lighter centre. 


The other one has a light maroon colour and picks up the lighter colour on the back of its petals.


The green foliage that I've used is called soft Ruscus. Used a lot by florists and quite easy to find. But really any small- leaved green foliage would do. 

If you are in luck the Ruscus might have some of its bright orange berries - as an extra little bonus. 


You'll need: 

- 10 stems of Chrysanthemums in two different colours
- 5 stems of soft Ruscus or similar green foliage
- a fairly large vase or container - in this case I have used a large vintage terracotta jar
- a small vase or container - in this case an old small brown glass milk bottle

For conditioning the flowers - you'll also need:

- florists snippers or scissors
- a florist bucket

As always - condition the flowers by removing any leaves that would end up below the water line in the vase. Cut the stems at an angle - to increase water absorption. Put in a clean container with tepid water and leave in a cool place over night or at least a few hours before making the final arrangement.

Sorry, about always repeating this last bit - but it's probably the most important thing you can do to make your flowers last longer! So I'm afraid you have to put up with me always going on about it.


Start with the foliage and place it all around the edge of the vase. Then add the two different flowers - shorter around the edges and a bit longer in the middle - to make a soft domed shape. You don't want it too even - it looks more natural when the flowers are different heights. But this will probably happen naturally as the flowers are at different heights on the spray stems.

Make up a small arrangement with all the little off-cuts in the second little vase. 

Start with the foliage and place it all around the edge of the vase. Then add the two different flowers - shorter around the edges and a bit longer in the middle - to make a soft domed shape. You don't want it too even - it looks more natural when the flowers are different heights. But this will probably happen naturally as the flowers are at different heights on the spray stems.

Make up a small arrangement with all the little off-cuts in the second little vase. 


I love all these orange, maroon and terracotta colours especially at this time of year. I have also played around with placing the arrangement next to a 1930's Lloyd Loom chair in similar colour - that has an ethnic weaving hanging over the back of it. I also found a small bowl and some beads in the same orange and maroon colours. 

I hope you will enjoy my new 'Take 3 Flowers' series - I'm looking forward to the challenge and it will be lots of fun! 


[Styling and photography © Ingrid Henningsson for Of Spring and Summer.]


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