feature designs


Fall flowers shine with these creative treatments in clear glass.

Designs by Talmage McLaurin, AIFD

Often for autumn designs, we automatically reach for baskets or other rustic containers, but as the designs on the following pages show, clear glass is another great option. Available in a wealth of forms, it lets the floral ingredients shine. But it can be challenging to work with clear glass, which doesn’t hide any design flaws. Try some of these techniques to ensure your arrangements in glass always look professional and clever.


autumn by the sea 
Seashells may at first seem a solely summer accent, but examine the brown and golden hues in their intricately patterned whorls, and you realize they are a perfect fit for fall. Here, they accent the rich caramel of the wood tray and support a profusion of colorful blooms arranged into a base of verdant Hydrangeas.
MATERIALS: ‘Cartagena’, ‘Circus’, ‘Indian Femma’ and ‘Sunset’ roses, ‘Mambo’ spray roses, Hydrangeas, Asclepias (butterfly weed), Echinacea (coneflower), Celosia (cockscomb) and Berzelia from Transflora; Square Vase from Syndicate Sales; Acacia Square Tray from Eighteen Karat International Product Sourcing.


feathered colonial
Chrysanthemums are dressed up for fall in this formal gathering that incorporates premium roses and Gloriosas in a tightly manicured nosegay. Several faux pheasant feathers collar the design. Their wired spines easily hold the circular shape, and the ends are simply tucked into the design. The wood pedestal enhances the upscale look.
MATERIALS: ‘Indian Femma’ roses, ‘Chippendale’ spray roses, Gloriosas, chrysanthemums and Hypericum from Transflora; permanent feathers from Sullivans; Gathering Vase from Syndicate Sales; wood base from Oriental Trading Co.
grouped focus
Each ingredient stands out in this bouquet of tightly grouped sections. Mesh ribbon creates a pretty ruffled collar. Fold the ribbon in half lengthwise, and accordion-fold it from end to end. Sew a thin wire through the folded edge, and tie the wire to form a mesh circle. Position the ruffles evenly around the circle, and place it into the vase before dropping in the bouquet.
MATERIALS: ‘Estelle’ roses, Ageratum, Anigozanthos (kangaroo paw), Berzelia and mint from Transflora; Trapez vase from Jamali Garden Supplies; ArtMesh® from ArtMesh/Earth-Deco, Inc.
touch of tuscany
Gold-leaf vases are in high demand, and one way to get the look at a fraction of the cost is to paint faux leafing onto a clear glass vase. Sponge gold paint on first—a natural sea sponge gives the best results—then add a few violet accents. This treatment beautifully accommodates a gardeny gathering of blooms encircled by a vine of painted salal leaves.
MATERIALS: ‘Wanted’ roses, Hydrangeas, miniature Gerberas, Amaranthus, Celosia (cockscomb), Grevillea, Hypericum, mint and Sedum from Transflora; Wisteria vine and salal leaves from favorite supplier; vase from Sullivans; Violet Colortool® Spray and 24KT Pure Gold from Design Master Color Tool.


grasses in motion
A whorl of Wisteria vines inside the vase conceals the flower stems and complements the architectural curves of the lily grass tufts that emerge in triangular formation. Hydrangea blossoms serve as a floral armature in this design, and the pink-tinged blooms are accented with lines of florals in deeper berry hues.
MATERIALS: Hydrangeas, chrysanthemums, chocolate Cosmos and Hypericum from Transflora; lily grass and Wisteria vines from favorite supplier; Diosphere Vase from Eighteen Karat International Product Sourcing.
fall field
A single, screenlike arrangement of the fruits of fall is created in what appears to be a trio of clear glass vases but, in fact, is one interconnected vessel. Dense clusters of bear grass are cut to equal lengths and placed into the three openings to create the foliage screen and serve as the mechanic to hold the other materials in place.
MATERIALS: Gerberas, Amaranthus, Echinacea (coneflower) and Sandersonia (Chinese lantern lily) from Transflora; black-bearded wheat from LoveJoy Farms; bear grass from favorite supplier; Trio Vase from burton + BURTON.



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