how to

rugged cross

A plastic-foam cross provides a symbolic and dramatic backdrop for a spray of autumnal flowers.

Design by Tina Stoecker, AIFD, PFCI

Lovely for a Christian funeral or memorial service, this composition features several elements that make it stand out. Flowers in a traditional autumnal combination of orange and yellow hues are arranged into a bouquet holder and create a central focus on the cross. Stems of permanent Forsythia follow the lines of the cross, and dried pepperberries inserted directly into the foam enhance its vertical line and extend the vibrant hue of the roses and lilies.
    The edges of the plastic-foam cross have been shaved for a rugged appearance. Paint layering achieves a dramatic look on the cross, with black adding depth to the portions of foam that have been shaved and brown softening the overall look. A birch-covered wire easel gives the composition a woodsy feel and emphasizes its masculine appeal.

‘High Society’ roses from Royal Flowers; ‘Royal Wonder’ L.A. lilies from The Sun Valley Group; Forsythia, Solidaster, Pittosporum, salal and tree fern from favorite suppliers; wire easel from The John Henry Company; Styrofoam® Cross and Oasis® Hot-Melt Glue from Smithers-Oasis; birch and dried pepperberries from Knud Nielsen Company; Standard Bouquet Holder with Aquafoam® from Syndicate Sales; October Brown and Flat Black Colortool® from Design Master Color Tool.
HOW TO 1::
Shave the edges of a plastic-foam cross with a knife to make the surface more coarse and rugged in appearance.
  HOW TO 2:
Spray the foam cross with brown paint. Then spray the carved portions black. Finally, spray the entire cross brown again.
  HOW TO 3:
Cut off the end of the bouquet holder’s handle. Dip the remaining handle into hot-melt (pan) glue, and insert the bouquet holder into the center of the cross, where the vertical and horizontal pieces intersect.

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