Just in time for Valentine’s Day, learn how to make a lovely arrangement AND join us for a visit to gardenstead’s flower shop, Flowerette. (It’s a two-for-one video!)
Hit play below to watch our host Gabi and gardenstead’s very own marketing coordinator Maher assemble a lovely bouquet for Love’s Big Day. They follow the expert tutelage of Flowerette’s manager Maria and her colleague Luisa to create a couple of floral masterpieces.
Here’s our step by step guide to creating a Valentine’s Day bouquet.
A (very short) history of the language of flowers
While we have you, have you ever wondered how and when the relatively modern tradition of giving flowers at Valentine’s Day started? No? That’s okay, we’re going to tell you anyway.
There doesn’t seem to be a single definitive answer to this pressing question. But, we have collected a few dates for a timeline:
In the late 17th century King Charles II of Sweden (and later Norway) visited Persia and witnessed lovestruck locals giving red roses to their sweethearts. He brought the tradition back to Europe on his return.
During a visit to Turkey in 1716, English writer and poet Lady Mary Montagu observed that the Turkish people derived different meanings from various flowers. She shared these meanings in letters sent home to friends and family in England.
Later that same century, the Scots poet Robert Burns’s 1794 poem included the line “My love is like a red, red rose”.
By the 19th century, during the reign of England’s Queen Victoria, books about the language of flowers (termed floriography) began to appear. Smitten aristocrats began to exchange flowers to convey sentiments and other messages. For example, a red carnation could say “My heart aches for you”, but a begonia could mean “beware”. It’s complicated.
Think of all the things you could be saying with a bouquet! The mind boggles.
How to build a bouquet in nine steps
We can hear you — “Nine steps! I thought you said this was simple!” Don’t worry, it is, we promise. Follow along in the video with Maher and Gabi to see the process in action and see how easy it really can be to create a beautiful V-Day bouquet.
Step one: Gather your materials — a vase, flower food, scissors or secateurs, your chosen flowers and greenery
Step two: Clean the stems to remove foliage that would sit below the waterline
Step three: Fill your vase with water and add flower food
Step four: Trim the stems to size, using an angle cut. Measure their height against your chosen vase to decide how tall you need them to be.
Step five: Create a lattice of greenery by crisscrossing stems to serve as the bouquet’s foundation
Step six: Add your main focal flower(s) — these will be the biggest, showiest blooms
Step seven: Add secondary flowers — the costars of the arrangement
Step eight: Fuss around with how things are arranged until you’re happy with how everything’s looking
Step nine: Step back and admire your creation! (Feel free to pat yourself on the back. Well done!)
Ordering flowers for Valentine’s Day?
If you’re planning to support your neighbourhood florist by buying your true love a bouquet, do your local friendly flower arrangers a solid and order your blooms in advance.
That way you’ll help them make sure they have the right flowers, in the right quantity on hand for the big day. Plus, you’ll also help reduce the overall level of chaos on the day itself. Nice.