Decisions, Decisions . . . right flowers, right vase?
January 7th, 2012
Choosing the appropriate vase for an arrangement is like finding the right pair of shoes to compliment your cocktail dress, right? There’s good, better and best. A critical eye is required to make the right choice!
Today, not able to decide which vase to use for my New Year’s arrangement, I photographed my silvery-winter ingredients in three different vases. Please vote for your fav!
- Pussy willow from J. Foss Garden Flowers in Chehalis, Washington (grower Janet Foss tells me the cultivar of her unique, multi-branched form of pussy willow is unknown; she took cuttings from a customer’s garden and began propagating them). The stems are truly stunning and way more interesting that your typical ramrod-straight pussy willow branch
- Two forms of Dusty Miller (Centaurea cineraria) — lacy and broad, grown by Charles Little & Co. of Eugene, Oregon
- Plus, a few sprigs of feathery Artemisia arborescens from my garden.
We’re all a little tired of evergreens and red berries, right? That was my thinking when I came up with a metallic, pewtery vibe, which seems fitting for the New Year.
Option 1: Stripes of bronze, brass and pewter embellish this substantial urn, inherited from my father-in-law. It’s the only shiny-metallic vessel I own.
Option 2: Basic white. Going for the simple statement. The foliage definitely looks snowier against this glazed vase.
Option 3: More textures, this time in a ginger jar with a raised, circular pattern. Its color is arguably mauve or pale lilac. Or maybe gray with a tinge of purple.
Please vote in the comment section – and tell me WHY you prefer a particular vase for this combination!
January 7th, 2012 at 11:11 pm
Definitely Option Two. Unless you put Option One on a white tablecloth.
January 7th, 2012 at 11:22 pm
Option 2. It highlights the arrangement by making it appear snowier and more wintery, but it does not distract you from it either.
January 7th, 2012 at 11:40 pm
If it’s more informal, I like option 1 for bringing out the contrast of the branches & the earthiness. For a more formal, I like option two for the simple elegance it brings.
January 8th, 2012 at 1:29 am
I like Option One because the brown line on the vase really draws your eye to the stems of the willow. I think it’s important to draw out the unexpected in an arrangement—and not necessarily the expected. Great arrangement!
January 8th, 2012 at 4:08 am
Option Two. The silver of the arrangement against the white (and style) of the vase, makes a big statement.
January 8th, 2012 at 6:31 am
Love this pristine celebration pf winter’s largesse. I agree that Option 2, the monochromatic choice reinforces the design concept. I like the idea of texture but the texture in Option 3 somehow fights with the design . If you wanted to further experiment with other container shapes or sizes you could wrap them Japanese gift style with a white or geige linen napkin for harmonious texture and secure it with a sparkly brooch or ribbon or twine in another simple or sparkly texture. Amongst the three choices though 2 is elegant and refined. Thanks for this refreshing celebration of the winter season!
January 8th, 2012 at 6:48 am
Option 1 does the better job of highlighting the muted colors of the arrangement. The silver arrangement gets lost in options two and three. No question here.
January 8th, 2012 at 7:20 am
Number one. One of the stripes picks up the stems in the bouquet. The Pewter stripe picks up the white foliage and buds. It’s pleasing as a whole.
The vases in 2 and 3 do nothing for the whites in the bouquet. What I see in the total pic of 2 is a big white shiny vase. In 3 I notice the pattern of the base rather than the flowers.
What do I know? I’m just an observer.
January 8th, 2012 at 8:52 am
Number 2 for sure! First of all–I think the height of the taller, slender vase is most complimentary to the arrangement and then the simple white exterior tops it off without distracting and serving an understated elegance. NICE!
January 8th, 2012 at 9:45 am
I like option one. The other two vases don’t have enough contrast and I find them boring.
January 8th, 2012 at 11:01 am
Option One is a standout! The contrast complements the hues of the arrangement.
January 8th, 2012 at 11:06 am
Option 2. With all that texture of the plant material my eye needs the rest of the simple white vase.
January 8th, 2012 at 11:24 am
I like option #3 for exactly what you state, I love textures. I would have added something to the bouquet to pick up whatever color (lilac, mauve, purple) the vase looks like to me, in person.
I tend to like eclectic, funky collections, in vases and bouquets too.lol
January 8th, 2012 at 12:33 pm
ever the iconoclast… or maybe just incapable of following instructions… I took a different spin on the assignment.
#1 – centers the dining table of a sophisticated, enlightened guy with an eye for comfortable, pulled together interiors, delicious home cooked meals, and authentic conversation with plenty of laughter (please see me about meeting my lovely daughter…)
#2 – adorns the sideboard in the entry hall of the design-conscious, pulled-together, enlightened locavore we all aspire to even though life, family and colors besides pure white often color the soothing palette (and life!) that exists only in our aspiring minds.
#3 – is where I actually live… solid, slightly plump, sturdy and grounded. I’ve no doubt tracked mud into the kitchen after gathering my backyard cuttings but I’m trying to challenge myself to take notice and celebrate what the garden has to offer TODAY and this admittedly solid container is slightly better than my usual go-to vintage blue mason jar!
Oh my gosh, this is a fun game! Create an arrangement and then write the character description of its imaginary owner! You’ve got me started on something, Lorene….as always, it’s better than anything I could have imagined on my own!
January 9th, 2012 at 5:27 am
“on taste and on fragrance, there can be no debate” (it rhymes in Hebrew) . I guess that’s what makes a horserace….some of us crave the contrast and some of us (at times) enjoy the quietude of monochrome/textural differences , ESP in winter when the color palette is limited. It’s the same with the popular Belgian Interior look . The restrained color range plays off either contrast or texture -and sometimes both. At other tes of the year, do we find ourselves limiting our flower arrangement palettes except of course for greens? Not that often . I love blues and someone always wants to know why I haven’t put any yellows with all those blue and white spring bulbs. It’s what makes us human…..
January 9th, 2012 at 1:38 pm
at first glance it was #2 but when I closed my eyes and imagined the home cooked meal #1 won.
January 9th, 2012 at 1:53 pm
Although I like the color echo of the vase in number one, the number two image is by far my favorite. I like the clean vertical lines against the busy round moundy shape.
IMHO, image one focuses on the arrangement + the vase as the composition, while image number two gives primary focus to the stunning arrangement while the vase is a supporting player.
January 10th, 2012 at 8:00 pm
Hope it’s not too late to get in on this.
#2 is my choice as well. The arrangement has a lot going on, it seems like the simple vase allows the arrangement to take center stage as opposed to trying to wrestle away the attention. I go through the same thing when I bring cuttings in from the garden. A well chosen vase just makes me happy.
January 11th, 2012 at 12:28 am
Option 2! White looks the best and loot at it.. its soothing to your eyes, yet looks so elegant! I am sure you all will agree that it really looks classy.
January 11th, 2012 at 6:54 am
I’ll say option 1, I like the proportions better! All would be pretty for a New Year touch!
January 15th, 2012 at 3:43 pm
Option 1 is more “real”.
January 18th, 2012 at 12:25 am
For me, it’s between #2 and #3. I like the white vase, but it seems too tall. But I love #3 best. I like the texture and sturdiness of the way it looks with the flowers. #1 doesn’t do much for me, and I think all the stripes distract from the flowers.
January 18th, 2012 at 3:33 pm
I like the simple, mono-chromatic look of option 2. Also the tall vase for a relatively short arrangement makes a striking contrast.
Hey Lorene, love your take on this. Always outside the box!
January 26th, 2012 at 4:14 pm
All have their individual merit and so much depends upon the setting where the vase will sit. I like #1 for the way it catches the stem color of the bouquet. But my favorite is #2. The monochromatic approach is very classy. I like the balance created with the taller pot. And, subtle texture is appropriate for a wintertime bouquet.
January 29th, 2012 at 7:23 pm
Well I like that option one makes the flowers pop but I also like the simplicity of option two. So my vote would be option two vase in a darker color.
January 31st, 2012 at 4:58 am
They all look great but Option 2 without a doubt…