I adore fresh flowers. (Who doesn’t?) There is something so wonderful about having blooms on display in your home. But buying cut flowers has always been a bit intimidating. I can never arrange them in a vase in a way that looks quite right and does the stems justice. That was, until I made a small advancement in my bouquet abilities by using Classtivity to book a class at the Flower School New York
The two-hour session was taught by Meredith Waga-Perez, the founder of Manhattan’s Belle Fleur. The entrepreneur’s success story was just as impressive as the perfect peonies she dolled out to students. While I learned a ton over the course of the three-hour flower bootcamp, these are my three biggest takeaways:
The grid I created with tape for my arrangement.
1. Use Tape: This is probably my favorite new trick. Waga-Perez encouraged us to create a grid across the top of our vases using floral tape before adding flowers. “If you don’t use tape, the flowers just fall messily on top of one another,” said the master florist. I was amazed at how the tape helped my arrangement. Instead haphazardly strewn pretty plumes, the quadrants helped me organize all the stems and create a much more attractive grouping.
2. Add Mint: The smell of fresh mint is incredibly uplifting and Waga-Perez loves adding the herb to her blooms. It was especially helpful in my case since the tree peonies that I was working with—while gorgeous—didn’t smell all that great and the aroma of mint totally offset their odor.
3. Change Water Daily: This was perhaps the most surprising tip: you should completely change the water for your flowers each and every day. That does not mean adding more water to the vase—it means dumping everything out. But how do you keep your pretty arrangement intact? According to Waga-Perez, you don’t. “I encourage people to take everything out and start over the next day, that’s part of the fun of an arrangement.” And here I thought that florists would be horrified if they say you tinkering with their creations—it turns out, that’s what they want!
Read our interview with Hollywood floral designer Jennifer McGarigle to find out LA’s top facialist, a trick for keeping hands soft, and the best blossom-toned blush.