The Tips and Tricks Every Floral-Novice Needs to Know

This article was made possible from our Alice’s Table blog – your source for tips and tricks for a simply joyous life.  These are the kind of tips you can look forward to in my classes. Check my events tab for the March class list!

Friends are coming over after dinner and you’re desperate to get fresh flowers on the table –  they’re the perfect little touch that pulls everything together and shows your guests that you’ve thought of every detail. So, you rush to the store to grab some flowers after work, you grab a pre-made arrangement, run home, stick it in a vase and voila… a very lackluster arrangement that could be diagnosed with a case of flower flops…trust us, we’ve all been there.

Relying on pre-made arrangements can quickly add up, and let’s be honest, it always takes a little too long to find a bunch that matches the aesthetic you entered the store with in mind. Plus, if you’re lucky enough to make it home with an arrangement you love, it always seems to end up in a sadder state than is started.

Today we’re here to tell you that even the freshest of floral novices can turn Whole Foods hydrangeas and Trader Joe’s lilies into a professional looking bouquet with these simple tips.


While the “English hand-tie” technique is seen as a classic technique in the floral world, it can be a little tricky to master because you have arrange and hold the bouquet just right before you tie it up forever. One of our favorite hacks for creating a sturdy centerpiece with no expert hand-eye coordination required, is a good ol’ tape grid. Using scotch or floral tape (either will work well, but floral tape is more water resistant), make a “tic tac toe” pattern on top of your vase. The grid will keep flowers upright as you start to build your arrangement, and best of all, will give you the flexibility to play around with different placements as you build out your centerpiece.


Designing your own arrangements can be overwhelming, but we always start with greenery and go from there. The benefits of greenery are endless! It usually lasts a long time, it’s inexpensive, and it makes your arrangements look more lush and full without having to load them up with flowers.

One of our favorites is ruscus, which works well in a water-based arrangement because of its waxy leaves. It won’t deteriorate quickly and bring your other flowers down with it. For a winter arrangement (or Valentines Day!), hypericum berries are a great touch because of their festive, holly-ish look. They come in a variety of colors, including holiday-ready red.

We recommend adding your greenery to your vase first, and from there, threading your flowers in between the greenery stems. This helps keep your flowers upright and also creates a base against which your flowers will pop.


It’s a common misconception that flowers need cold or room-temperature water to thrive. Pretend you’re making a bath for a baby, because cold water will actually shock the flowers’ stems and keep them from lasting. Warmer water will coax the flowers into opening up, really upping the wow-factor of your bouquet.

To make sure your flowers stay hydrated, cut them approximately one inch from the base at a 45 degree angle. Doing this before building your arrangement will give your flowers more surface area to absorb water.

And don’t forget to check your water frequently, especially in the beginning! Fresh flowers drink more than older flowers, so you’ll want to make sure you’re keeping the water supply up in the early days.

Welcome to Alice’s Table – My New Business

I am so excited to share my new business venture with Alice’s Table.

“Alice’s Table brings women together to learn new skills, and live a social and creative lifestyle. Our goal is to be the bright spot in the modern busy woman’s life – the thing she looks forward to at home and on the town. Modern women don’t have time to be Martha, they need lifestyle delivered.”

Here’s how it happened.  I was on Facebook one evening and saw something in my feed for Alice’s Table.  I wondered what it was so I started clicking through until I came to their events page and saw they were hosting a floral arranging class in my area and I registered.  When I started reading their site and blog I was intrigued.  I love flowers.  I love to arrange flowers.  I love pretty things.  I love meeting new people.  I love making people feel special.  I love being up in front of people and I love teaching people new things to make them feel empowered.  So, basically this checked all my boxes.

My friend Andrea and I took the class together

I asked my college friend Andrea to join me.  The host teaching the class led us step-by-step through the basics of taking flowers you would find at the grocery store and transforming them into works of art you’d see in a florist shop.   Did you know hydrangeas drink from their stem and from their flower clusters?  To prolong the life of the hydrangea spray them everyday with a water mister!  I never knew this.

It was fun to visit with Andrea while we created and sipped wine, all the while I was observing what it would like for me to be the person leading the class.  What I did observe were the smiling faces of women who were genuinely proud of themselves for creating something lovely that they could take home to enjoy!  I went right home and scheduled an information call with their headquarters.  It was a delight to speak with Brooke and they invited me to join their team.

This is my centerpiece I created at the class!

So, what is it?  Have you ever looked at a photo in a magazine or on Pinterest and thought the floral arrangement was beautiful but you didn’t feel you possessed the skills to create it on your own?  Well, I will be teaching you how to design beautiful bouquets in a snap!  Each guest will craft an exquisite arrangement that they will take home or give as a gift.

How can I schedule a class?  There are all sorts of ways  — want to bring all your friends together to host a wedding shower, birthday party, girls night out, or women’s group we can do a private class.  Have a company that has a budget for team building and appreciation, I can do corporate classes.  Own a venue, boutique, or restaurant and want to invite 10-20 women on a slower night of the week to show off your space, food or boutique we can do that, too.   Planning a wedding, we can bring all your friends together to create centerpieces for your wedding day event!  If you are a blogger, we can arrange for you to attend a class so you can share the content with your readers!  The ideas are limitless.

The best part is that my company does everything.  We collect payment through our website, I bring all the supplies and high quality fresh flowers and we promote your company and the class on social media.  For about two hours guests can enjoy a cocktail or iced tea while they get lost in the atmosphere of flowers!  And maybe enjoy a bite to eat or a little shopping afterward.

My flowers from the class six days later!

Visit Alice’s Table and look around at more photos and get ideas on events we can create for you and sign up to receive 10% off your first class.  You can also like my Facebook page here where I will be posting all kinds of fun ideas.  You can also see our Founder, Alice Rossiter, on Shark Tank here

I’d be honored to receive your support by sharing what I do with your friends!