Monthly Archives

December 2008


Urban Baby Shower

December 31, 2008

I was recently asked to do the flowers for a baby shower that was to be held at The Core Club in midtown Manhattan. The Core Club is a private club with an urban art gallery atmosphere. After taking a look at the space, I came to the conclusion that the traditional baby décor in pink and blue just wouldn’t work! I wanted to create décor that was artsy, fun and would speak to the occasion, as well as, work in the space. Also, at this point the sex of the baby was unknown, so I had to keep the décor as generic as possible.

At the beginning of the event, the guests mingled on the outside terrace. I chose to use stems of orchids in large glass cylinders for the bar and a mix of greens and Burgundies in glass cubes for the tables.

For the lunch, served in the main dining room, I created “peas in a pod” arrangements! I made the pod out of papier-mâché and the peas were spheres of prado carnations. Accent lighting was provided by glass votives surrounded by fresh snow peas.

Dessert and the opening of gifts took place in the library. The art displayed on the walls of the library were in neutral tones and had a graphic feel. For the flowers in the library, I used red roses and white orchids in glass cylinders decorated with images from a parent’s guidebook that I had found online. The advice was quite funny and everyone really got a kick out of reading all of the “vases”.

I am pleased to say that the floral décor was a huge hit and that little sweet pea, Abigail Moore Lenehan, was born a few weeks later and is healthy, happy, and beautiful (and my first great niece!). Her Mom and Dad are following all of the do’s and don’ts from their new guidebook and are doing a wonderful job!!

Holiday Decorations

Toast in the New Year with Easy Decor

December 22, 2008

New Year’s Eve is a time to enjoy cocktails and champagne toasts. Using cocktail glasses and barware as vessels for your floral décor is a great way to add a festive celebratory feeling to any size gathering. Here are a few ideas that I hope will inspire you to add some flair to your upcoming gathering. Just have fun with it and most importantly enjoy the time that you spend with your family and friends this New Year’s and remember to count your blessings!

Light up a bookshelf with a battery operated votive candle placed in a martini glass. When placing candles on a shelf you need to be careful that the shelves are not close to each other. Using a battery operated votive candle solves that problem and adds a nice unexpected glow.

Martinis on Bookshelf

A few lush red roses, sprigs of fresh cedar and baby’s breath will add a touch of elegance to any martini glass. Use them individually or grouped together for maximum impact. You could also give each guest this martini glass as a little party favor!

Rose Martini

To create the looks in the following images you will need floral gel, such as Crystal Accents, gemstones, shredded floral foam, fresh flowers, and various size martini glasses.

Calla MiniCocktail Grouping


This martini gets its glow from a submersible light; available at craft and floral supply stores.

Martini Light

It’s still the holiday season, so why not add a small tabletop tree to the bar area. Using a silver ice bucket as the tree stand keeps it in the “cocktail party” theme!

Ice Bucket Tree

If you are short on time and want easy New Year’s Eve décor check out the Happy Hour Collection at 1-800-FLOWERS.COM.


Williamsburg Centerpiece

December 18, 2008

The people of Colonial Williamsburg began decorating with fresh greenery and fruit in the 1930s. At that time the pineapple was already a well-established design element in architecture, ceramics, and art. It only stands to reason that beautiful fresh pineapples would become the centerpiece for the creative decorations for which Colonial Williamsburg is known today. The pineapple has become a universal symbol of welcome and hospitality.

For a brief history of how the pineapple has served as both a food and a symbol throughout the human history of the Americas, go to

Williamsburg Centerpiece

To create your own version of the welcoming Williamsburg centerpiece featured here, follow these simple instructions.

  • Tape a piece of wet floral foam to a low shallow dish.
  • Insert a 4” floral or craft stick about 2” into the bottom of the pineapple and insert into the top of the foam.
  • Insert fresh cut greens, such as magnolia or balsam, into the bottom of the foam to form the base of the arrangement.
  • Using the 4” sticks insert a row of apples on top of the greenery base.
  • The next row that will be between the pineapple and the apples will be made with lush red roses. Give each rose a fresh cut on an angle (stem length should be about 5”) and insert into the foam.
  • You can add sprigs of filler flower, such as the blupernum that I used here, or add another variety of evergreen for additional texture.

Tabletop Trees with Personality

December 15, 2008

Three trees, three different materials, three different stories. What’s your story?

Tie A Yellow Ribbon
A small way to keep the troops in our hearts and minds throughout the holiday season is to decorate a tree with yellow ribbons and top it off with an American Flag. This one is a faux. It’s what I like to call a “Charlie Brown” tree.

Tie Yellow Ribbon Tree

Roses and Elegance
Add to a holiday cocktail party by placing a fresh cut tree into a silver ice bucket and dressing it with lush velvety red roses and delicate baby’s breath. The fragrant combination of roses and fresh evergreens is truly intoxicating!

And the best part is that the tree only costs $15 at Lowe’s. You can even create the same effect and keep the cost down by decorating the tree with just sprigs of baby’s breath. It will look like fresh fallen snow.

Tree with Roses

On The First Day of Christmas
A partridge in a pear tree is a classic symbol from a traditional holiday song. Create this tree by using a base of floral foam and fresh boxwood. By adding fresh white flowers, faux mini pears and a decorative bird in a nest made from Spanish moss, you will have completed the look.

Pear Tree


“A Christmas Story” Inspired Vignette

December 11, 2008

If I had to choose my favorite holiday movie it would probably be “A Christmas Story”. But I do have to say, the movie “It’s A Wonderful Life” certainly runs a close second on my list. Just thinking about the movie “A Christmas Story” puts a smile on my face. I thought it would be cool to create a vignette to honor that emotional tie to a certain time and place. This is easy to do with any movie or book that you love.

One of the first things that I found for my vignette was “Ralphie’s” hat! The miniature sleigh was the base for a gift basket I received last year. I filled a split wood basket with strands of mini white lights and added fresh evergreen sprigs to the rim and pinecones on top. This makes a wonderful night-light. A few ilex branches in an old milk bottle, popcorn to string, and a framed photo of the infamous tongue on the flagpole scene and you’re there!

A Christmas Story


Floral Snowman

December 8, 2008

Who doesn’t love a snowman? There’s something so innocent about them. This year create a snowman of your own to enjoy throughout this festive season or to give as a gift to someone you love. The best part of creating your own snowman is that you can give them a unique personality or customize it for the recipient! The size is up to you too. Watch my step-by-step video on how to create a floral snowman similar to what you see here. This is a project that is perfect for all ages and something you can have a lot of fun making!

I gave the snowman challenge to my stylist friend Laraine. I’d like to introduce you to her snow friends, Snow Queen, Officer Joe and Surfa Girl! Laraine was inspired by the doll and pet clothes departments she saw in the store. She also added her own creative embellishments. We both had a good time and a lot of laughs when Laraine was putting them together. You could really see their personalities forming. Go ahead have some fun of your own!



Have a “Shiny Brite” Holiday

December 4, 2008

I have always had a real affection for the old Shiny Brite ornaments that were part of the Christmas tree décor of almost every American home throughout the 1940’s and 50’s. These colorful and charming ornaments were first introduced in the United States right before World War II when Max Eckhardt, a German manufacturer of glass ornaments, sensed the storm clouds of war gathering over Europe and made a deal with Corning Glass to mass produce the ornaments at an affordable price.

The best parts of the holiday season are the nostalgic memories from childhood. Incorporating those memories into what you do today creates new traditions that tie to the past. Here I created a tabletop tree using another nod to the past and American craftsmanship, a Fenton hobnail milk glass planter, as the base. The tree was made using a floral foam base and fresh boxwood accented with a few sprigs of balsam and baby’s breath. The garland is new, but done in the traditional “shiny brite” colors. I put this tree on my kitchen table and it perfectly complements the large tree in the adjoining family room that is filled with all of the ornaments that I have collected over the years.

Shiny Brite

Think outside of the box and come up with other ways to be creative when decorating for the holidays. You can create new looks using the décor elements from the past. Here is a way to use your Shiny Brite ornaments to create a welcoming wreath for your front door.