Flower Arranging Preparation and Equipment

Most keen flower arrangers end up by being collectors of some item related to the art. One can happily go on looking for the right kind of container for ever. But there are other types of equipment which once you have used you will always want again and again, in as much variety as possible.

Obviously the first in importance are stem-holders, for unless the flowers are going to stay exactly as we have placed them there is no point in spending time arranging them in the first place. Quite the most versatile and cheapest holder is wire netting of If in. to 2 in. mesh. This is important, for the smaller mesh is nothing like so malleable and not only do we want to be able to push the netting down inside any kind of vessel, but we must also be certain that it will hold slender stems yet give way to a stouter stem should this have to be inserted in the crumpled mesh.

Sometimes it is possible to buy small, narrow rolls of netting, but if you have to buy a large roll it is a good plan to share it with several other Flower arrangers. The galvanised type is better than the plastic covered simply because it is not so thick. On the other hand, the covered wire will cause no damage to precious containers which must not be scratched. This wire tends to slip, even if the cut flower-arranging-equipmentends are hooked over the rim of the container. It is best held in place with a few strips of transparent sticky tape passed over the wire and on to the outside of the container, just below the rim, where it will not show once the flowers have been arranged. It is convenient to keep the netting inside the container for which it has been cut once this has been emptied and cleaned. This saves time and patience.

When a tall, heavy branch of blossom or foliage is arranged you will sometimes find that the container is too light and is liable to tip over, even when water has been added. When arranging materials of this kind I first half-fill the container with sand and rest the netting on this. Besides helping to adjust the balance this also aids arrangement, for the thick stem can be passed down through the netting and into the sand where it usually becomes well and truly anchored.

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