Flowers are my favorite way to add color, warmth, and a personal touch to any occasion. Since starting this blog, I have loved the opportunity to play with different arrangements and I'm getting more and more comfortable with my floral skills. Practice makes better.
When Anne's boyfriend, Chris, approached me for help in throwing her a surprise party, I had no idea how I was going to pull it off. I've only been in charge of a few surprises in my life and although, I'm good at keeping plans a secret, I was worried about all the other variables in play. What if someone accidentally tells Anne and spoils it? What if she's suspicious and figures it out before she arrives? What if she doesn't like being surprised?!
I quickly learned the awesome part about planning a surprise party: more than any other party, you must rely on the help of others in order for it to be a success. Chris and I talked a lot, about these concerns, plus ideas for the theme. He mentioned the SF Giants (a mutual love for Anne and myself) and polka dots. He said he trusted me with the decor and planning, which meant a lot to hear! (He asked how he could help, every time we communicated about the event. Best planner partner!) We came to a consensus on the guest list, and narrowed down the top restaurants. I felt confident in going forward with styling and crafting, because I knew Chris would be our "eyes on the inside", making sure Anne couldn't make any plans that conflicted with our plans.
The morning of the party, Jason and I visited the Farmers Market to grab some flowers. I found a great bouquet of wild flowers for $10. You can't beat that price for fresh flowers - thanks California! I had already purchased the small gold polka dot containers at Target, plus a brick of floral foam from Michaels.
I assembled the arrangements a few hours before the dinner, and kept them in my fridge until we left. I started by soaking the green flower foam in water. I wish I would have laid some wax paper in between the foam and the paper cups, to prevent them from getting soggy, but it wasn't too bad. Lesson learned for next time. I cut down the bouquet and worked away at making each box as uniform in shape as possible, while making sure to mix the colors and types of flowers.
Since the dinner was happening at a restaurant, I wanted to jazz up the table as much as possible. I knew I needed to keep things small, to not interfere with the food, drinks, etc., and I wouldn't know how much space I had until we all arrived that night. The miniature paper boxes ended up being the perfect size for the table. Phew! And the brightly colored flowers popped against the dark wood. Score!
The bright colors played so well with the gold. They didn't turn out perfect, which is exactly what I was hoping for. My natural floral aesthetic is loose and free flowing. I poked flowers into the foam and rearranged, until they looked right. Like most art, crafting, and flower arranging, there isn't a science to fall back on. No exact plans to follow, only a gut feeling. Part of this journey of mine is stopping to notice my gut, and then trusting it. I'm practicing every single day in at least one aspect of my life and so far, practice is making better.