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Petal Pusher

How to be a fearless flower arranger

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

There’s no better way to bring spring into your home or office than with a fresh floral arrangement. With a little practice, you can make your own custom flower arrangements with materials you forage.

Award-winning Bellingham floral designer Natalie Ransom of Pozie by Natalie recently shared a few tips she uses to create amazing floral pieces for weddings, special events and businesses.

Whenever possible, Ransom uses flowers and plants found or cultivated in Whatcom County.

“The things you see every day or have grown up around are a great place to start,” Ransom says. “You may be walking right past something that can add vibrant color, rich texture or real meaning to your arrangement.”

Ransom grew up on a farm in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. That’s where she learned from her father Chip to keep a mental list and use what’s in season. “In the spring I use pussy willow. In the fall there are rose hips. In every season there are different elements to forage.

“Also, keep a pair of clippers in your car,” Ransom suggests. “There are beautiful plants like huck, salal and snowberries in roadside ditches. Beauty is all around. We only have to look.”

Don’t be afraid to ask your neighbor, either. “Take over some muffins and ask if you can have a few cuts from their unruly shrub,” Ransom says. “Nine times out of 10, they will be generous.”

However, be sure to ask before you collect any flower or plant. Never remove them from parks, or public or private property, without permission.

Embrace your own style, Ransom adds. Whether your look is posh or casual, your unique style probably already shines. Apply those same instincts to flower arranging.

“Most people know what they like and don’t like,” she says. “What flowers make them happy and the memories connected to certain plants. You know what’s working and what isn’t if you just tune in to your gut.”

Think outside the planter, and “don’t be afraid to try new things and experiment,” Ransom says. “Add non-floral elements like paper, fabric, metal, fruit, vegetables, branches, and dried plants like pampas grass or rye.

“When I work with something new, I like to do a test cutting.”

Ransom suggests placing a clipping alone in water to learn more about how it changes throughout the life of an arrangement. Some flowers and foliage that appear sturdy may wilt within a couple of hours after cutting, making them unsuitable for an arrangement.

Art is in the eye of the beholder, she says, and sometimes exploring new things is what it takes to create your masterpiece. Keep your expectations in check and try not to judge your creations too harshly. There is no right or wrong. Like anything, creativity blossoms with practice.

Above all, have fun. Expressing yourself through flower arrangement is a great way to bring the sunshine into your home or office. Enjoy getting to know the plants and flowers in your surroundings and sharing their beauty with others.

With Ransom’s advice and a little practice you, too, can create stunning floral works of art with confidence. But when you just can’t get out to forage, Ransom is always available to make and deliver a beautiful custom arrangement.

For more details, go to http://www.poziebynatalie.com

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