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When I was young, I took a floral arranging mini-course at a local community college. I learned about favorite flowers, keeping things balanced, and how to arrange flowers similar to my local supermarket. When I saw The Flower Workshop, I could see that it could take me to the next level. The author, Ariella Chezar, has worked on both coasts while creating arrangements for the White House, Martha Stewart, and the like. Her arrangements are open, asymmetrical, and look like the lavish displays I’ve seen in grand still-life paintings by the Dutch masters. In fact, there is even a display covering these amazing floral displays entitled, “Dutch Masters”.
The photos are plentiful and I found them to be stunningly beautiful. The steps she gives are clear and straightforward to create my own centerpieces, although, I think the book is geared towards advanced (or would-be advanced) floral designers. There are several chapters of introduction, which include the basics, essential techniques and tools, and suggestions to grow your own flowers and plants, and also sourcing flowers seasonally and locally as much as possible. I think the seasonal flower guide, at the end, would be very helpful for anyone.
Specific chapters describe tonal arrangements, branch arrangements using fruits and berries, handheld bouquets, and much more. I especially like how the author not only tells what to do, but explains the underlying principles driving those choices, which is very valuable information for me. Some of the displays may need to be adapted to a person’s local area, as certain elements might only be available in a major city’s flower market, or perhaps on a specialized farm (which Chezar happens to own). For example, the stunning Dutch Masters display asks for 15 different branches and flowers. Regardless, this would be a must-have book for anyone who wants to excel at flower arranging, or is a professional who wants to take their work to the next level.
I received this book from BloggingforBooks.com, for an honest review.