Images taken and owned by Mademoiselle Meme
by Editor | Mademoiselle Meme
Part III of the LA-themed party series covers the most difficult aspect of this party: a DIY flower table runner.
The flower runner was our biggest task. Because it was a formal dinner, I wanted to make sure the table setting was très chic. Creating a table arrangement that I hadn’t seen elsewhere would be key. I decided on the flower runner idea after seeing it on a bride’s table from a wedding Instagram account. Making this flower arrangement instead of ordering it was the better choice when planning with a group. Not because it is easy, but because it accommodates all budgets. My friend and I have much experience creating our own flower arrangements (call us enthusiasts), so we planned to assemble it together. Given that we wouldn’t be using a table cloth, I figured that to keep in line with the theme all ivory florals would be best suited to brighten up our darker wooden table. With many options at the flower market, it is more difficult sometimes to choose what to add to an arrangement. The holiday season brought a more exotic selection of flowers with some being sprayed with silver and gold glitters. There was a diverse selection of flowers like Dutch peonies and multicolored hydrangeas in peach and more. I bought 100 ivory roses and 35 ivory premium hydrangeas. I ended up having about two dozen extra roses, which were later placed on the dessert table. Because I decided to go to the Downtown Los Angeles flower market, my expenses were cut in half. #winning
To assemble a flower table runner, I researched online and was unable to find a website with a comprehensive description on how to create this. After some more googling, I decided to wing it.
Before you start, you will need to purchase green floral foam in a rectangular shape. I was able to find a 9-inch-long foam at the flower market for $1 each. For the 6 foot table, I used five foams to accommodate the large chargers on each end. In order to protect the table, you will need to purchase shallow plastic containers. These containers can be found online or at wholesale flower warehouses. Do not go to Michael’s or a craft store, they are overpriced. I found a local wholesaler that allowed me to make a one time purchase without a wholesale license to get these containers. They fit the foam snugly and catch any water that is released from the foam. Order containers that are shallow enough as to be covered once the flowers are added. With my co-host, we were able to finish the runner in about two hours, one of us cleaned and trimmed the flowers while the other put them into the foam.
Some tips for working with flowers: Leave the stems of the flowers double the height of the foam. Our foam was about 3 inches high, so our stems were cut to 6 inches. This will give your runner the volume and fullness you want, instead of sticking the stem close to the foam and having the runner lacking in fullness. Also, when soaking your foam, let it naturally sink to the bottom of your water bath.
When you start to add the flowers to the foam, it is important to be careful when piercing it. Once a stem is pierced through the foam, you must not move it. If you pull out the stem to adjust it in any way, air will enter that space and dry out the foam, which will then cause your flower to be surrounded by dry foam. In order to move your stem in any way, you must pierce a new hole into the foam. Hydrangeas, like the ones we used, are particularly sensitive.
So your hydrangea died overnight or during transport, what now? My co-host taught me a trick to resurrect hydrangeas from the dead. Boil water and add to any vase/container. Then, put the dead hydrangea stem into the water and let it sit. It could take a few hours, but gradually, the hydrangea will come back to life and bloom again.
Have your flowers bloomed? The roses I had purchased had not fully opened by the time I was assembling them for the runner. This is easily solvable. Blow into the center of the rose to open up the bud delicately. If it is still very tight, peel the outer layers of the rose bud gently to frame the inner bud. Not only does it look much better than a closed bud, but it will help you fill more space in your arrangement. We, however, didn’t have to do this often since the large hydrangeas filled up a lot of space.
Be sure to check out Part I and Part II! Questions? Send us a message!