Happy first day of spring from icy, snowy Northern Virginia. I always forget just how fickle March tends to be, and get overly excited for all things spring, when I should just sit back and enjoy the ride that is 70 degree weather one day, ice and snow the next. Really though, yesterday the girls were outside, bare legs, barefoot, and splashing in the Shenandoah River. And today we’re in the middle of hopefully the last Nor’easter of the season.
Spring weather will inevitably arrive. Until then, I’m on inspiration overload to prepare us for all things spring! I hosted a Welcoming Spring brunch last week, and today I’m sharing the simple DIY to create Ikebana-inspired floral arrangements. I’ve been really drawn to this type of arrangement over the last few months, as my Pinterest will show you. I attempted my first designs here, and loved the way they turned out.
While I am certainly not a floral or ikebana expert, I do know what I like to see in floral arrangements and I wanted to try my hand at these ikebana-type centerpieces for my spring brunch. This is a very easy-to-recreate look, and it’s incredibly affordable since each arrangement is using only 3-5 stems!
Put very basically, ikebana is the Japanese art of flower arranging. Ikebana emphasizes line form, minimalism, and asymmetry. People seriously spend years studying this art form, and I do not mean to subtract from that, and I wish I had the patience to become an expert at something like that. I just ordered this book, though, to learn more about this art form. Can’t wait!
These arrangements are very loosely inspired by the shape and minimalism of the ikebana philosophy, the Moribana style, specifically, which is the “simplest” form and supposedly the easiest for beginners to learn. One of my favorite aspects is just celebrating the individual stems, and letting them dictate the form of the arrangement. It results in delightful, spontaneous fun!
How to Make an Ikebana (Moribana)-Inspired Floral Arrangement
– Vessel for arranging; for this Moribana style, you’ll want a shallow, wide-mouthed bowl or vase
– Floral frog
– Shears or scissors
– Flowers/greenery/foliage of at least 3 different heights (I used snap dragons, white tulips, white anemones, Japanese white sweet peas, paperwhite daffodils, white grape hyacinth, ranunculus, and flowering cherry branch)
1. Place floral frog in vessel and fill with water.
2. Remember to give plants a fresh cut before placing in arrangement. Start with the longest stem and place it in the frog. Allow the stem to take whatever direction is most natural. Sometimes it will point straight upwards, other times it will lean a bit to one side.
3. Then place second-longest stem, at a 45° angle from the first stem.
4. Then place the third (and shortest) stem. You can angle it opposite the second stem, or group it alongside the second stem.
3. As needed, add a few more stems, keeping in mind the ideas of asymmetry, line, and form. Allow flowers to lean if that’s the way they were growing. Your final design should be sculptural and free flowing. Keep in mind minimalism if you’re tempted to just keep adding.
4. You can either completely cover the floral frog or allow it to show. For these arrangements, I allowed the frogs to show. But over here I decided to cover up the floral frogs with a cluster of flowers.
Photos by Jen Eun
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