One thing I adore in rooms and décor is fresh flowers. They brighten up the setting and give a sense of calm and peace and at the same time a feeling of life and vibrancy. Two challenges…I have allergies to certain flowers and, well, since they don’t last, my wallet is not happy in having to replace them constantly.
While I love fake flowers for wreaths and seasonal décor, I am not a fan of the amount of faux in many faux flowers. In fact, I can spot most fakes a mile away. But a recent trend in floral décor has given me hope. You walk in to Home Goods, Marshalls, TJMaxx or check out Wayfarer or Joss & Main and you see an abundance of faux floral arrangements sitting in clear glass containers with fake water! While most still look fake, there are many that come off pretty dang close to real flowers. Super excited, I checked out the price tag of these lovelies. Not surprisingly, the more real they look, the higher the price tag. The ones that I fell madly in love with were all over the $100 mark and that was the discounted price. Retail, most were upwards of $150.00 to $200.00.
So up for a challenge and convinced that I could make my own for less than $100, I embarked on an epic adventure to create my faux mixed floral arrangement using the simulated water stuff (yep, that’s a technical term in case you were wondering). Michael’s had one unheard of sale on all their faux flowers. I scoured the pickings and found an array of yellow flowers that looked as real as I could muster. They were almost all brushed with hints of pink and magenta to add to the realism. My personal favorite and the most pricy (again, more real looking more dinero needed) was the roses. They regularly cost $7.99 a stem so 50% off was awesome and the wallet approved. I also grab ranunculus, dahlias, tulips, and peony.
I picked up some white floral tape and the ever important Quick Water Simulated Water for Silks. Again, the deal diva in me used the 40% and 50% coupons I just happened to have with me. Now the vase was a little harder to find. I needed a vase that was fat but had a smaller mouth and wasn’t too tall. Ideally, I was looking for a shallow bowl with stout straight vertical walls. It needed to be heavy so that it would be weighted more than the flowers I was adding and it needed to be short enough that people would be able to see over the arrangement when done. What I ended up with and thought I liked very much was a fishbowl.
Everything in hand, it was time to assemble. I have to admit I was excited and yet nervous. I was a little scared to cut the flowers since it was an all or nothing shot where if I went too far, I was screwed. But I had faith. So once I got everything prepped, below is how it all came together.
Step One: Determine height of flowers. Figure if I need to cut more I can. Attempt to make first cut with my personal floral wirer cutters. Get frustrated at lack of accomplishment. Head to garage and search husband’s unorganized tools. Wait for him to come into the garage and find heavier duty wirer cutters. Success! New wire cutters snip all the flowers to the right height. Do dry run of the floral arrangement. Notice that stems seem to ride up the side. This could be a problem.
Step Two: Prep the bowl for flower arrangement. Use white floral tape that was purchased at Michael’s. Place first strip onto bowl and watch as it refuses to stick. Stretch floral tape to get better adherence. Not to be defeat, go to utility drawer, grab scotch tape, tape floral tape down. Stick in first flower and watch as it’s climbs up the side. Again, this could be a problem. Notice floral tape is stretching against weight of the flower. Ignore husband’s comments. Get slightly irritated when husband questions the amount of simulated water and feasibility of working.
Step Three: Test husband’s theory. Fill bowl with equal amount of real water to the amount of simulated water. Annoyed but happy that was discovered before the bottles were opened, grab purse and head to Michael’s for two more boxes of Quick Water Simulated Water for Silks. Pray there is a few 40-50% coupons on Michael’s app. Grab better floral tape while there.
Step Four: Pray as I begin to mix Part B of Quick Water Simulated Water for Silks into Part A. Stir until there are no streaks or discolorations. Keep stirring since I am not sure whether what I have constitutes no streaks or discolorations. Seek second opinion from half-blind cohort. Assume she is right because I am tired of stirring.
Step Five: Add NEW floral tape. Create grid pattern on top of fishbowl, tighter than before, as to, hopefully with fingers crossed, keep flowers from falling to the side. Thank God that new floral tape sticks better than previous floral tape. Ignore husband’s comments on getting the floral tape off once all the flowers are inserted. Frankly, that’s a potential problem that will be handled if and when it presents itself. Excited tape is sticking. That’s good enough.
Step Six: Insert first flower in the center of the fishbowl. Notice as the stem slips to the left and right up the side of the bowl. Okay, this is a problem. Attempt to corral flower using other flowers. Notice that all flowers crawl up the side of the fish bowl. Okay, this is definitely a problem. Ask myself, why in heck did I get the fishbowl. Continue to attempt to arrange flowers so they cross each other and stand. Fail miserably. Have gapping hole in center of flowers. Realize hand is cover Quick Water Simulated Water for Silks, race to bathroom and see if soap takes it off. Go back to Quick Water Simulated Water for Silks box and see if instructions exist for getting it off my hands. Nothing. Go back to bathroom and attempt more soap and scalding hot water. Grab rag and remove as much residue as possible.
Step Seven: Wrangling the Flowers. Taking note that the hour of working time is rapidly disappearing, take desperate measures. Have half-blind cohort hold flowers together as I arrange them so the stems look decent. Take floral tape and wrap multiple times around faux stems to keep them from crawling up the side. Pray since they are wire stems that I can arrange them once Quick Water Simulated Water for Silks is done curing. Wipe forehead and realize the Quick Water Simulated Water for Silks was on my hands again. Repeat part of previous step six.
Step Eight: After waiting overnight, meeting the minimum 8 to 10 hours needed for the Quick Water Simulated Water for Silks to completely cure, unwrap mass amount of floral tape. Carefully, lift off floral tape from around the bowl and pull through arrangement saying to myself, “see hubby was wrong about this one.” Take note that the flowers actually fall in pleasing arrangement. Make a few minor adjustments. Get second opinion from half-blind cohort just in case my opinion of what constituted a pleasing arrangement was delusional desperation. Cohort agrees. Even like the fishbowl again. Text hubby to show him handy work. Instagram and Facebook instantly of arrangement of living room coffee table.
You may think I am exaggerating but it really did happen this way. The project did come out to be less than the $100 and $150 ones I feel in love with. It total around $75 all said and done. Despite my interesting experience, I would definitely do this project again…minus the fishbowl. Straight sides for sure! Hope my epic adventure made you smile a little and gave you at least what not to do, if not, what to do should you attempt to create a faux floral arrangement in simulated water.
Until next post!