feature designs

smart start
 to Mother's Day

Six do-able designs, with guidance for planning, ordering and assembly, to help get your holiday off to a bright beginning.

Designs by Christina M. Burton, AIFD

Mother’s Day is among the most special of days—for moms, children and floral retailers alike. At this time of year, when the sky is brilliant and clear and the sun warm and bright, floral gifts seem the perfect choice to recognize the most wonderful of women—our mothers!

For floral retailers, the holiday typically represents about 25 percent of dollar volume*, so taking time to plan ahead, order carefully and maximize profits is critical.

With the help of designer Christina M. Burton, AIFD, we’ve developed six Mother’s Day designs, all of which are easy to replicate and deliver. One example is even complete with a detailed recipe and step-by-step assembly instructions. The process can be adapted to the remaining designs, giving you a ready-made Mother’s Day menu and guidance for efficient, profit-producing assembly-line construction.

* Information provided by the Society of American Florists (SAF).

step-by-step production
The lush look of this pretty arrangement belies its simple design, which can be accomplished in just seven easy steps, making it ideal for assembly-line construction. Our list below shows the ingredients needed for one arrangement as well as for six (the number of the featured containers that come in each case), enabling easy plan-ahead ordering.

Before getting started, assign one staff member to rinse all vases and fill them with properly mixed flower-food solution. Position three or four designers around a large work table that is prepped with materials needed for each step. Depending on the number of designers, each may complete one to three steps.

One Arrangement
5 roses
3 Gerberas
2 Hydrangeas
2 stems spray chrysanthemums
3 stems Godetia
4 stems Bupleurum
7 stems salal
  Six Arrangements
30 roses
18 Gerberas
12 Hydrangeas
12 stems spray chrysanthemums
18 stems Godetia
24 stems Bupleurum
42 stems salal


step 1:
Arrange seven stems of salal, positioning them to create a sup-port structure for the flowers.

step 2:
In the center of the vase, place two Hydrangea blooms through the network of salal stems.

step 3:
Position two stems of spray chrysanthemums vertically through the Hydrangea cluster.

step 4:
Arrange five roses in a stair-step fashion between the Hydrangeas and the chrysanthemum blooms.

step 5:
Add three Gerberas, two in the front and one higher toward the back.

step 6:
Position a cluster of Godetia toward the upper right side to fill out the triangular form.

step 7:
Arrange four stems of Bupleurum to fill gaps and enhance the triangular form.

Hydrangeas, Gerberas and Godetia from Golden Flowers; ‘Aalsmeer Gold’ roses, spray chrysanthemums, Bupleurum and salal from favorite suppliers; Reception Vase from Syndicate Sales.

personalize with monograms

Nestled inside a large lidded basket—the lid is adhered to the base with adhesive dots—an inexpensive plastic liner displays a glorious gathering of bright blooms for Mom, which is evident from the foam monogram that decorates the citrus-hued container. Tucked between the liner and the basket are bits of excelsior, making a snug, secure fit. The base remains lightweight, however, so the gardeny mound must maintain a modest posture to prevent toppling.

MATERIALS: Ranunculi and hyacinths from Flower Transfer; stocks from Golden Flowers; spider chrysanthemums, waxflowers, salal leaves and lily grass from favorite suppliers; Straw Basket and Glue Dots® from burton + BURTON; Spring Fill Crinkle Shred from Nashville Wraps; foam letter from craft store.

maximize short stems

Teen shoppers will shriek with delight at this pretty, out-of-the-ordinary offering for Mom. Featuring tall magenta-colored branches that draw visual interest to the lush bed of flowers in the beribboned planter, this composition possesses a grand presence with a mix of short-stemmed blossoms. Beatific butterflies, which flit through the vibrant garden, can be affixed to branches with floral adhesive—recommended since it is designed to hold securely, even in the cooler.

tips for recipe planning and efficient assembly
• Keep costs in check by following a basic recipe. Plan your recipe to use flowers in quantities relative to bunch sizes so that whole bunches are completely consumed.

• Plan to assemble the same number of designs as containers in a single case so that all are used. (The stylish green vase in our example on Page 39 is sold in six-packs.)

• Create samples, and take note of the flower quantities and stem lengths, the latter being important so materials can be cut before assembly, saving time during construction.

• Replicate our guide to step-by-step instructions for
foolproof, profit-producing Mother’s Day designs.

Step 1:
Place a saturated block of floral foam inside a lined tin planter. Ensure that the foam is recessed about 2 inches below the container’s rim.
Step 2:
Arrange branches into the center of the foam in a zigzag pattern, leaving some space
between each branch.
Step 3:
Arrange florals between and around the branches, concealing the foam. Insert
butterflies’ wire stems into the centers of sturdy blooms, such as carnations. Apply other butterflies with floral adhesive.

MATERIALS: mitsumata (Edgeworthia) branches from Accent Décor; Planter Tin with Bow from burton + BURTON; ‘Attaché’ roses, carnations, miniature carnations, miniature Gerberas, dyed daisy spray mums, Hydrangeas, heather and butterflies from favorite suppliers.


easy assembly

This cheerful mound of bee-topped blooms is sure to make any mom break into a radiant smile. The whimsical insects, on thin-gauge wires that easily pierce the blossoms (an assembly-line step for novice designers), are a novel addition that will appeal to both ’tween and teen shoppers as well as moms of all ages, as will the charming polka-dot pot. Long-lasting florals such as these will impress with their bright, stay-fresh faces, so they’re excellent for Mother’s Day.

MATERIALS: ceramic container from Diamond Line Containers; carnations, daisy and button spray chrysanthemums, and bees from favorite suppliers.

• To read and see more, Click here to purchase the current issue of Florist's Review.

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