Hanging floral installations lend themselves beautifully to family-style gatherings. Not only do they make for memorable decor, they also free up table space for more food! This showstopper here looks complicated, but it’s actually quite simple to assemble. Designed by Rebecca Simms of Wylie West Creative for a spring entertaining story I recently shared, its secret lies in selecting the right mix of foliage for a lush and lazy effect. Of course, a little patience helps, too! Depending on the size of your installation, the process can take up to an hour. —Anne Sage
Gather a selection from each of the following:
-Drapey greens such as sword fern leaves
-Bendy, delicate flowering branches or spires like spirea and larkspur
-Flexible, long-stemmed blossoms such as calla lillies, tulips, and garden roses
-Clustered, bunchy blossoms like sweet peas, jasmine, and spray roses
Next, round up the additional materials:
-Circle forms in desired size and quantity. We used barrel rings that had been salvaged from the flea market, but embroidery hoops or wire wreath frames in a variety of sizes would work, too
-Green floral wire
-Garden sheers or sharp scissors
-Rope, twine, or monofilament for suspending installation
Step 1: Lay circle forms on the floor in your desired quantity and pattern. At each point of intersection, fasten the forms together with zip ties.
Step 2: Then tie your rope or twine to the two uppermost points the network of circles you’ve made and suspend the structure over your table at the desired height. (We had the advantage of ceiling beams for this, but for a smaller and lighter installation, screw hooks in the ceiling would work.)
Step 3: To build out the florals, start with the greenery and cover the rings entirely by fastening stems of fern, ivy, etc. to your forms with floral wire.
Step 4: Then tuck flowers into the greenery, working in order of least to most delicate and filling holes as you go along. If your installation will be viewed from both sides, be sure to adorn each side evenly with flowers. Let stems drape here and there for movement and interest!