Eat & Drink

November 21, 2013

Fabricate a floral framework

Rely on a professional florists’ technique to create a lush arrangement with ease for your Thanksgiving table.

The turkey certainly deserves a starring role on the table at Thanksgiving. After all, he’s the reason family and friends will be salivating to sit down at your holiday gathering. But Tom’s appearance is short-lived when you consider how quickly he’ll be carved into submission.

To ensure the picked-over carcass doesn’t end up as the centerpiece of your holiday tablescape, adorn it with a bounty of autumnal blossoms before anyone even sits down for the meal. Doing so is a cinch with our how-to tips using a florist technique that starts with a tape grid. With it, you can create a flower arrangement that is as much a feast for the eyes as your culinary skills are for the palate.

Floral tape attached in a crisscrossing pattern across the lip of your container makes it especially easy to use containers with wide openings. And low-slung vases are perfect for full, lush arrangements that don’t block guests’ views of Grandma on the other side of the table. Plus, tape grids help novice floral designers space blooms evenly and help stems stay put as you build the arrangement.

We created our Thanksgiving showstoppers using old-school vases, a variety of blossoms purchased from local floral retailers and some extra foliage harvested from the backyard. Then we mixed in some artsy picture frames, gold-painted sticks and leaves, and dried gourds to add depth and interest. You can use these same steps for any low, wide container you have. Or scour local thrift shops for vintage finds.

Floral tape is available at local craft stores. (Cellophane tape can work in a pinch.)

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the second installment in an ongoing instructional series by Gina B. Kellogg that focuses on using fresh flowers to create arrangements and décor for your home. Kellogg is former editor of Super Floral Retailing, a national trade publication, and a regular contributor to

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