Sunday, January 16, 2011

Flowers and Greenery in Your Home

Adding the finishing touches in an interior can be challenging. Flowers and greenery or interior plants are the final flourish that adds your style and personality and can bring life to a room.

Fresh is always best. I love to use white tulips in my photo shoots of projects, like the one above. Tulips are not a "busy" flower with lots of detail, contrast, or varying colors. Those types of flowers are visually distracting and I'm a huge fan of simplicity in anything botanical in a home. My feeling is that flowers should appear as though they were just cut from the garden or brought home from the market and effortlessly tossed into a vase to enjoy in their least contrived and most natural state. Cut branches are also a favorite of mine to add drama and height to a space. They also have that natural, effortless look that brings such life and beauty to a room.

Many people like to use silk because they can keep it a long time, they don't have to water or tend to it and well......many times that's just what it looks like. I see many silk arrangements that have lots of dust on them, are faded with age, and just are too busy and dated (because they've been kept way too long). I understand the need for ease of care. Silk or dried botanicals can be beautiful if they're maintained well and are properly selected. Remember.....simple.

If you have an "arrangement" like this, it's time to update.

A little busy, wouldn't you say?

I think this looks a bit contrived.

Not my favorite type of botanical addition to a room.

Silk ivy trailing up on cabinet tops is very dated and the dust up there could probably fill a sandbox!

In this image from House Beautiful, one type of flower is used to create a low mound of softness on the table. It brings the white wall color down to the brown table. Simple and beautiful!

In this image from Elle Decor, an elephant ear plant acts as a living sculpture in the room. I often use philodendron leaves or ginger plant leaves in water for a long lasting fresh botanical in my home. I have three of those plants in my garden and all I do is go out and clip.

Love the branches in these photos from Elle Decor.

Look at how light and dramatic the branches are in this space. Image from House Beautiful.

Another interior above from House Beautiful using interesting, sculptural branches. They really complete this room and are the perfect addition because of the contrast they provide against the light walls.

The fresh flowers used above are of all the same color and type and again have that effortless, uncontrived look. From House Beautiful.

Beautiful blooming branches in an interior from House Beautiful.
These magazines are arbiters of good taste and style. Do you see any of the "arrangement" type of botanicals in any of these interiors?

I used all the same type of flower in this photo shoot of a powder bath.

I picked up a few sunflowers at my grocery store for this photo shoot of a kitchen remodel. They add just the color and life that cabinet needed. These could be silk, but you don't need all that excess greenery and other botanicals stuffed in the vase to make it successful.

These pussy willows (I love pussy willow branches) provide the height and drama needed for the corner of the cabinet above. They dry and last a long time. I also like stuffing small potted plants in baskets like on the table shown above. Those are geraniums. They bloom for a long time and when they are done, you can plant them outside!

Again, my favorite white tulips and branches. The tulips here are fresh and the branches are fake bamboo look alikes. Carefully chosen botanicals can enhance and bring life to a room. Take a moment to look around your home and see what looks tired and dated. It's such an easy fix and will make a huge difference in the look and feel of your home.

If you would like help deciding what kind of flowers and greens to add to your home, contact Aston Design Studio for a consult.

If you have a design related question or need some advice on any aspect of interior design, e-mail me HERE. I might feature your question in a special Q and A blog post!


Sally@DivineDistractions said...

What a good subject to tackle, Carla. I must admit that I do a poor job of keeping fresh alive, so I've resorted to a couple of silk trees. I promise to keep them free of dust! Love the branches look too.

Jane Ann Simon said...

They say great minds think alike and I agree with each and every point of your article. I hate most silks, love the use of branches, agree with keeping it simple and clean. I often tell clients that I would rather see a bowl of fresh fruit on the kitchen table than some old dusty mess from years ago!
By the way, love the kitchen shot. Your work is lovely!
Jane Ann

quintessence said...

Great tips and suggestions. Not my area of expertise so always glad to see some tasteful advice!

Unknown said...

Sally and Jane Ann, thanks for visiting and commenting. Quintessence, so nice to have you here for a visit. All of your blogs are beautiful!

Kellie Collis said...

I love tulips too! It's great that they are simple yet elegant. Have a gorgeous day, Kellie xx

Kathryn said...

Love the branches idea! Beautiful photos.

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