spring fling

entertaining with style- making it work for you

Categories: Setting the Stage, Posted on March 4, 2018 by Sandy Bergsten

When tulips start to pop up in the grocery store it’s a sure sign that they will soon be blooming in our yards. With that optimism, I rush to fill my home with these spring beauties.

I’m always looking for inspiration on how to arrange flowers. So, the other day when I was waiting in the checkout line with several sleeves of tulips in my cart, a magazine on Easter entertaining caught my eye. I impulse bought, shrugged off the outrageous price, and looked forward to perusing the pages with a big cup of coffee.

A beautiful underwater design inside a large round vase intrigued me. I set down the magazine and went into my darkroom which now houses all of my vases, old cookbooks, Christmas ornaments, and hundreds of vinyl records. I couldn’t believe I didn’t have one of those big round vases. And I certainly wasn’t going to purchase one. One of my new year resolutions was to give things away, not to accumulate anything more. (Do you know that most florists will gladly take your old vases? That’s probably what happened to my round one when I loaded up the back of my car and made one of those deliveries.)

I was a little frustrated that I couldn't recreate that arrangement. I was also a little perplexed at how many vases I still had. My mind wandered to other things that I have a lot of. When I first got married thirty years ago one of the most popular gifts was crystal bowls. I think we got seventeen. I kept asking my mother and future mother-in-law what I was going to do in a tiny Manhattan apartment with all those bowls. They merrily replied, “put fruit in them.”

So, I went into the other part of the basement that has all of my rarely used entertaining and cooking items. I opened a cupboard and behind my asparagus steamer was the most beautiful crystal bowl.

Here is my arrangement. I actually think it is even more beautiful than the one I was hoping to copy.

Start with a dozen tulips.

Fill a glass bowl with cold water. (Tulips like to be in cold water.) Add a little floral preservative to feed the flowers and keep bacteria at bay.

Trim one of the flowers ,a little at a time, so that the bloom just touches the top of the bowl when it’s wrapped along the edge.

Use that flower as your guide flower when cutting the rest.

Make sure that your final cut is on the diagonal so that the stems can drink up as much water as possible.

Discard the excess leaves.

Begin winding the stems along the side of the bowl.

Keep adding blooms.

Remember to keep adding cool fresh water to the bowl each day. And you might need to rearrange and trim your tulips as the days pass, tulips continue to grow even after they are cut.

This arrangement is stunning in its simplicity, and surely cause for celebration.

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