Light up your festivities with these creative flower ideas

You can create a variegated look by simply adding silver spray paint to a red poinsettia lower. PHOTO | DIANA NGILA | NMG

It is that period of the year to get creative with your Christmas flower arrangement ideas. After all, what could be more enjoyable than channeling your inner florist by artfully arranging some luxurious blooms?

With varieties of beautiful seasonal stems and foliage to take your pick from, it can be confusing to know where to start. But with the right ideas and advice, creating a stunning centerpiece for your festive displays can be easier than you think.

Thanks to a large selection of fresh flowers at local grocery stores and markets, fresh blooms are readily available and perfect for the festive season.

For Christmas flower décor, these pretty flowers, including poinsettias, roses, and amaryllis, will no doubt brighten your Christmas displays.

Marion Wambui, a florist designer and owner of Beautiful bouquets Kenya which provides florals for special occasions, garlands for spaces like the staircase and Christmas door wreaths, and other events regularly gets her fresh flowers from a flower farm in Naivasha.

“We usually send them our list of flowers and they send them to us via a truck while en route to the airport to do their delivery at least three times a week. It is easy and convenient to get a mix of flowers at a reasonable price” says Ms Wambui.

Having been in the business for four years, Ms Wambui says there is a method to selecting flowers. They use a scheme based on the season and the flowers available during each season.

Marion Wambui

Marion Wambui a florist and founder of Beautiful Bouquet. PHOTO | POOL

“During Christmas, we usually use a lot of red blooms with gold accents and greeneries. You then match it with the ambiance in different client’s homes or as per the gifting needs,” she adds.

The queen flower for Christmas decor and design, the poinsettia is a must-have for your holiday style, with its variety of white-and-silver leaves. You can create a variegated look by simply adding silver spray paint to a red poinsettia. Placed in a pretty silver pot, these flowers will show off the sparkle!

“This season we have also seen themes like rose gold with a lot of pink and white which is unlike the traditional Christmas theme, but it’s a modern twist to Christmas,” says Ms Wambui.

Nothing speaks Christmas more than traditional red-and-green decor. Simple arrangements of red amaryllis, tulips, and winterberries look beautiful on your Christmas mantel.

A stop at Roystar Florist will get you roses, carnations, gypsophila, hypericum, ruscus, fern, and lilies.

“Pair carnations with roses, ranunculus, and gypsophila. Fancy carnations from Left to Right: carnation orange, carnation purple, carnation green, carnation yellow, and carnation pink. These perfect blooms work in any season and in any design!” says Zachary Mokaya, owner of Roystar Florist.

“We decorate Christmas flowers mostly red and white with some more greenery. It can be arranged in a Christmas tree design,” he says.

Nothing beats the fragrance of fresh roses. Include an arrangement in your holiday decorations by placing your favourite variety in a pretty, festive pot. Fill in with bits of fern and evergreen. Crisp fruit, such as pears or apples, make great fillers for this centerpiece idea,”

Similarly, you can cut roses short for a coffee table arrangement and place single stems in mini vases around a large pillar candle. Surround with ornaments and other greenery to bring in the traditional colors of Christmas.

Mr Mokaya also suggests taking a small branch from a pine or fir tree and placing it inside a bouquet with deep rich florals for a holiday look.

As you fill a cylinder vase with baubles to raise the flowers up, add more sticks to bring them up through the flowers. It is easy to create and when you switch the lights on the party will come to life!

Though deep, red roses are especially festive for the Christmas holidays, they don’t last as long as other varieties of fresh flowers which can last up to fourteen days with great care.

So how can this be resolved?

“Regularly change the water in your vase or pot, ensuring all your flowers are well spaced not crowded and no leaves are touching the water. With every water, change add some flower food to the mix to help them, have a healthy bloom, Ms Wambui advises.

Similarly, she says that ways to ramp up the effects of grocery store flowers can include getting flower food from a store or simply making a homemade solution with one teaspoon of bleach mixed with one teaspoon of sugar for half of water.

Trimming the stems of fresh flowers at an angle with a pair of scissors or a sharp knife is a must-do once you get flowers home.

“A fresh cut at an angle means they have a bigger surface area to draw water in. Add the little packet of preservative flower food that comes with them and put them in lukewarm water, she adds”

Are there designs to match the vessel?

Almost any container in your home can become a makeshift vase and can easily be styled for the Christmas season, accompanied by ribbons, twinkle lights, or other accouterments.

“If you want to have a different look from what you have during the rest of the years, the easiest and pocket-friendly way to do this is to repurpose your old jars and vases by spraying them and sticking some Christmas trinkets on them,” says Ms Wambui.

For a professional look, she suggests trimming the flower stems so that the top of the flowers are just above the edge of the container or vessel; this prevents inches of stems from showing.

“If you have a round base, let the flowers be full to create a round design. If you are putting the flowers on a shelf or on a counter, you can easily do a three-sided design, she says.

While Marion and Zachary focus mainly on fresh flower arrangements, dried and silk flowers can also be incorporated into arrangements.

This will be achieved by getting good quality dried and silk flowers. Dried flowers are going to absorb the water that the fresh flowers need, so fresh flowers might get limp faster.

PAYE Tax Calculator

Note: The results are not exact but very close to the actual.