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A Muted Fall Arrangement by Sarah Winward

I love this pale, dusty-hued arrangement by Salt Lake City floral designer Sarah Winward of Honey of a Thousand Flowers. It is unexpectedly soft and muted for fall, when arrangement colors are typically dark and rich, but it is still fitting for the season. It would be perfect in a beautiful white kitchen or a simple guest bedroom, or as a centerpiece on a rustic dining table. For blooms, Sarah used blushing bride protea, coral bells, strawberry sundae hydrangea, and white gaura, composing the rest of the arrangement with white fountain grass, money seed pods, porcelain vine, licorice plant, ferns, dried wild sweet pea pods, and silver lace vine from her own garden. Here, she describes her process for assembling it so you can recreate a similar look at home. XXJKE 

October is one of my favorite months for flowers! I live in Utah where there are four very distinct seasons. In October there are still many delicate flowers available, but many things have also dropped their petals and leaves and have turned to seed pods. For this arrangement I mixed lots of small flowers with intricate shapes and textures for an arrangement that showcases the best of the tiny flowers that are still around!

This arrangement was made in one of my favorite ceramic compotes made by Frances Palmer. It is very shallow, delicate, and narrow in shape, so I used floral foam as the base for this arrangement. I don’t often use foam, but it was the best choice for this vase. I started the arrangement with licorice plant, fleece vine, and fern, since they were all my longest, shapeliest materials. This created my overall form for the arrangement. 

It is important to look at each piece before you put it in and decide what it’s strengths are, and what it would be best suited for in your arrangement. For example, the licorice plant is pretty strong and holds its shape, so I used it as the piece at the top of my arrangement because I knew it would make a neat shape, and wouldn’t flop down. The Fleece vine is better at draping, so I concentrated it in places where I could let it rest on something else, or hang down.

Once that was done, I filled in the flowers with the bigger heads, and used them to cover space at the opening of the vase. Then I added small floral pieces to connect those that were in tight at the mount of the vase, and the vines that were more far reaching. I wanted to fill out the space and give the arrangement some nice depth.  

While all of the flowers used here are fairly small and delicate, they have surprising strength as cut flowers. Because it is late in the season, they tend to be a bit stronger than your typical blooms—a nice bonus because they’ll last longer in your home as well. 

Photos: Tess Comrie