And while fresh flowers are a seasonal thing, a fanfare of faux flowers can bring happiness 24/7.
“Faux flowers have gained huge popularly over recent years as the quality improves – and the stigma against this ‘fake’ addition appears to have waived,” says celebrity florist Larry Walshe.
There are various reasons why you might go faux, with Walshe citing “allergies and pets, to dark environments and time-poor homeowners who prefer not to maintain plants and flowers regularly”.
But how can you create a professional-looking bouquet at home, with just a few simple tools and techniques?
What you’ll need
When arranging faux flowers, Alick Burnett, managing director of Blooming Artificial, says a few important tools will make things a whole lot easier.
Firstly, pliers or wire cutters for cutting your flowers down to your desired height. “You’ll need string, ribbon or jute twine to hold your stems together, and a vase to house your arrangement,” adds Burnett.
He says bouquets with bold colours are best paired with clear and simple glass vases, whereas bold and stylish ceramic jugs compliment subtle shades.
Decide on the space
Ahead of choosing your flowers and foliage, you should consider where your bouquet will live, says Burnett. Understanding the space and your existing colour palette will make picking out your stems more thoughtful and connected to your home.
“If your home uses neutral tones, brightly coloured tulips will bring joyful bursts of colour,” he continues. “Alternatively, white lilies and delicate blossoms offer muted tones for rooms with vivid colours and patterns.”
Colours are known to have psychological effects on the home. “Yellow will add uplifting cheer to a room, red brings powerful energy, and blue can reduce tension in your space,” says Burnett.
Consider height too: if you’re placing your flowers on a dining table, you won’t want to block the view across the table with stems too tall.
Choose your flowers and foliage
Pairing your favourite flowers with foliage and other textures will bring your arrangement to life.
“Begin with a centrepiece to your arrangement, something that stands out and makes you smile,” encourages Burnett. “Bring in two or three other flower types that complement your statement centrepiece.”
He says to include two or three types of greenery or interesting textures to bring each stem together.
“Cheese plant leaf stems and paradise leaves are the perfect partners to bright, exotic features, whereas forest fern stems are a gentle classic,” suggests Burnett.
For an average-sized bouquet of 60 centimetres in height, Burnett suggests around 25 stems in total. However, he says there are no rules, and you should experiment with the size of your bouquet until you’re happy.
Depending on your budget, Walshe says he likes faux flowers to look as realistic as possible. His advice is to make an investment and buy high-quality products that have a detailed finish.
“Hand-painted finishes on the leaves, texture on the stem and rich colouration result in an incredibly lifelike effect,” he says. “And will, in my opinion, provide the most amount of ongoing joy in your home.”
Crafting your bouquet
Before starting your creation, lay out your stems in groups of similar colours and flower types.
“This will make choosing stems when building your arrangement simpler and easier,” says Burnett. “To bring your groups of stems to life, bend out the leaves and flowers before styling.”
Hold your hand out, relaxed, and start by adding your centrepiece flower. “By keeping your hand relaxed, your stems will spread out rather than looking tightly formed,” explains Burnett. “Next, add three or four stems diagonally over the top of each other to build around your centrepiece. Twist or spiral the selection in your hand, add another layer of flowers and repeat.”
He says spreading out your stems will ensure your bouquet is balanced. View your bouquet from above, and look out for any colours or flowers that may be clumped together. “You can add stems to the middle by loosening your grip and pushing them in,” Burnett adds.
As your bouquet begins to take form, he says larger leaves can be used at the edges to frame the outside of your arrangement. Make any final adjustments or changes until you’re happy, and tie with string or ribbon.
“Next, sit your bouquet beside your vase to see whether you need to trim any stems with pliers or wire cutters to fit your container,” says Burnett. “Once done, add your arrangement to your vase and place in your chosen spot to admire the beautiful arrangement you have created.”
If you’re worried about people knowing they are fake, Walshe recommends incorporating them alongside fresh flowers and plants throughout your home at artful moments.
“Pop faux plants in hard-to-reach places and fresh options on coffee tables and low-standing surfaces,” says Walshe. “This will give the appearance everything is fresh, but also remove the burden from having to stand on a ladder to water your plants every other day!”
When selecting your faux flowers, he says to be mindful to buy blooms which exist in nature. “Steer away from those colours which are obviously ‘fake’, like blue roses, and steer towards varieties which look like their fresh counterpart.
“This will again reinforce the authentic look you’re creating, and be more likely to stay with you in your home for longer, as you continue to seek enjoyment from them.”