Flower Bouquet Workshop
On Sunday, August 6th, we held a flower workshop at our usual location - the Poughkeepsie Galleria Commmunity Room.
This time, Taeko-san showed us how to make French-style hand-tied bouquets instead of Japanese Ikebana. It was a small class of 4 people (unfortunately the 5th person couldn’t make it for personal reasons), but the intimate group size made for a great learning environment.
We were instructed to first remove all of the leaves and any smaller flowers from the stems, leaving only the flower at the top. Then we chose which flower would be the focal point of the bouquet. From there, we added other flowers while making sure to cross the stems, which is the key to creating a well-balanced bouquet with a beautiful dome shape.
Unlike Ikebana, we were encouraged to pack the flowers together without leaving any gaps. This results in a bouquet that looks beautiful from any angle.
We learned that water-soaked raffia makes it easier to tie the stems of the bouquet together and how to use leaves in various ways, such as taping the tip and base of a long thin leaf together to form a decorative loop, or lining the inside of the vase with wide flat leaves. Taeko-san also showed us how to make accent pieces by gluing seasonal decorations to the tips of a wooden dowel or chopstick. For this workshop, she used seashells since it was summer. To dress up the vases, we wrapped them in a gauze-like material.
While Ikebana is limited to certain settings, bouquets are much more versatile. They can be placed anywhere, from the kitchen table to the bedroom, and can also make lovely gifts.
We were all so absorbed in making our bouquets that we almost lost track of time. After we finished cleaning up, we enjoyed chatting while eating the delicious futomaki that one of our members had generously made for everyone.
A big thank you to our instructor Taeko-san for her generosity with time and knowledge.