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Wild & Free

Instagram, Pinterest, home décor shows and magazines all remain filled with shabby chic/farmhouse décor, and that trend continues to inform the summer party scene. Anything with the rustic, vintage look of recycled or found material takes on a starring role, and this theme easily can be dressed up or down depending how formal the occasion.

Here, FTD Education Consultant Ann Jordan, AIFD, AAF, MMFD, shares a wealth of ideas for combining beautiful blooms with rustic-style accessories to set an intriguing buffet, welcome guests or decorate dining tables. These designs are ideal for everything from a farmhouse-style wedding reception to a casual summer barbecue. Be mindful of where clients plan to host their parties and how long your blooms will be exposed to the summer elements so you can choose hardy ingredients and plan for ample water sources.

From singular bold blooms to diminutive herbs dressed up with bark wrap, moss and lichens, the elements of this composite display offer color, texture and a variety of interesting materials to draw the eyes. The cord-wrapped candleholders and bark-wrapped containers echo the spiraling pattern of the galvanized pail while several pops of blue glass add sparkle.

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This vertical garden bursts with colorful wide-open blooms that create a natural and untended aesthetic. Decorated red-dogwood branches add to the strong vertical line. A bit of bark wrap and cording dresses up the simple rectangular container.

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Learn How

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STEP 1

Cut small squares of bark wrap, and score a small slit into the center of each one.

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STEP 2

Thread the bark-wrap squares onto red dogwood branches.

A more formal air is achieved in this gracefully draping reverse crescent, with lush garden roses as its centerpiece alongside distinctive sunflower centers. While still largely untamed, the ingredients maintain a trim outline. The container – a mini version of the popular shiplap finish – is personalized with bits of moss and bark wrap.

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Learn How

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STEP 1

Cut the bark wrap into small squares of varying sizes.

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STEP 2

Adhere the squares to the container in a stairstep pattern with adhesive dashes.

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STEP 3

Add small bits of moss among the bark squares with adhesive dashes or liquid floral adhesive.

Ideal to greet guests in an entry or send them off at the exit, this setting features simple single-bloom collections in a trio of blue buckets as well as a composite collection of smaller jarred blooms. The jars – each dressed with a simple corded ribbon – would make lovely party favors to send home with guests.

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Simple but stunning, a hand-tied arrangement appears plucked from a field of wildflowers and displayed in a vintage-look blue glass vase. Textural lamb’s-ears appears throughout, and blades of lily grass extend its lines and offer added visual dimension.

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Sophisticated party planners may appreciate the more formal and precious look that a glass cloche affords. Here, a variety of mosses, lichens and small plants are arranged under the dome while a garland of wired cording, bark wrap and lichens decorates the top of the cloche. Those seeking a more muted color palette also may appreciate such an option, though the cloche’s contents can also be made more colorful with the inclusion of cut blooms.

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The dessert table is one of the most popular locations at a party, and this tiered display incorporates several simple but impactful options to accompany the goodies. A cloche filled with lemons – or any colorful fruit – adds a pop of color echoing the buttery yellow Ranunculus blooms on the top tier. More blooms and smaller herb plants accessorized with bark wrap and moss easily fit on a tier or the tabletop.

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MATERIALS

Butterfly Ranunculus spp., Persian buttercups (Ranunculus asiaticus), garden roses (Rosa spp.) Hydrangea macrophylla, sunflower centers (Helianthus annuus), Dianthus spp., Queen Anne’s lace/bishop’s weed (Ammi majus/Daucus carota), speedwell (Veronica spp.), flaming katy (Kalanchoe blossfeldiana), chamomile daisies (Matricaria spp.) sea holly (Eryngium maritimum), thoroughwax (Bupleurum spp.), sage (Salvia spp.), heath asters (Aster ericoides ‘Monte Cassino’) and lamb’s-ears (Stachys byzantina) from FTD Flower Exchange; containers from FTD Marketplace; dogwood blooms and red-dogwood branches (Cornus spp.), birch logs (Betula spp.), herb plants, reindeer moss, lichens, river rocks and wired cording from suppliers of your choice; Oasis Natural Bark Wrap and Oasis UGlu Adhesive Dashes from Smithers-Oasis North America.

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Wild & Free