Floral Arrangement: Long Center Piece (Western Style)

He(She) is happiest who hath power to gather wisdom from a flower” ~ Mary Howitt

Display position:
The design is usually displayed in the middle of a long table (that can be either in a shape of a rectangle or an oval). Bouquet size depends on the size of the table and other concurrent displays on the table e.g. gifts, dishes etc.
Design Concept:
From front view, the shape of the arrangement is an isosceles triangle (both angles that form from horizontal line towards peak are equal). For full length Long Center Piece, the top view resembles a diamond shape (refer to Diagram 1). In the half length Long Center Piece, it looks like a triangle as illustrated in Diagram 1.

Diagram 1


. For Long Center Piece arrangement, the tails on horizontal or the sharp ends are encouraged to touch the table to instill softness and portray natural atmosphere. And the fillers extend slightly further compare to the flowers as shown below.

Extended Filler

Tips for this arrangement: Firstly, compose the arrangement at one side of front view. Then turn to the opposite side, and compose while observing the opposite side of another front view.

Fundamental requirement for this design:
1. Main or primary flower. Commonly used are Rose and Carnation unless for a bigger bouquet, then bigger flower can be considered. For this example, total primary flower: 13 stalks.
2. Supporting or secondary flower. Common example: Chrysanthemum.
3. Fillers are used at the last step to close any blank, empty or visible corner/area. Common example: White peacock, Yellow peacock, Forget-Me-Not, Coffee Beans
4. Leaves or foliages. Common example: Fern leaf, Japanese Bamboo.
5. Container shape: rectangle

In western style arrangement, the most essential criteria are the shape of the composition.
Next criteria, it is the color mixture among primary flowers, secondary flowers and fillers. Some tips on pleasant color combination.
* Vivid Red + White + Yellow Peacock as fillers
* Pink + Light Purple + Purple Peacock as fillers
* Pink + Yellow + White Peacock as fillers
* Pink + White + Purple Peacock as fillers

Getting started:
1. Equipped with water soaked rectangle container, at top view, arrange the leaves/foliages according to illustration in Picture 1. Picture 2 shows an on-going leaves arrangement from front view. In Picture 3, it shows a complete foliage composition from top view. In this example, foliages are fern leaves.

Picture 1
Picture 2
Picture 3

2. Next move on to primary flower. For this instance, it is carnation. At front view, place the longest stalk of primary flower towards right and left with an equal length on both sides. Then, arrange the third stalk of primary flower (number 3) in the center of the container at the height that is about half of one side’s length. To compose half length long center piece, the move the third primary flower slightly behind to stabilize the structure as illustrated in Diagram 2.

3. Move on to place the 4th stalks straight pointed to front and arrange the 5th stalks directly on the opposite side. Refer to Picture 4.

Picture 4

4. Move on to place the next flowers according to the numbering in ascending order as illustrated in Diagram 1. All the primary flowers are placed from an equal distance from center. They are also equally positioned on both ends as shown on Picture 5 (Top View) and Picture 6 (Front View) or Diagram 1 (Top view and Front view).

Picture 5
Picture 6

5. Upon completing primary flowers, move to compose secondary flowers whereby in picture below are light purple chrysanthemums. At front view of one side, continue to place the secondary flowers. The smaller buds are placed nearer to each tip or tail end or apex at those sharp pointed ends. Rule of thumb to manage the tail ends, always ensure the buds of secondary flowers chosen are positioned pointing down on table (refer to Diagram 3). After one side of front view is filled, move on to compose secondary flowers on the opposite side. Always use the length wise front view to judge the composition and maintain the shape of an isosceles triangle. The completed arrangement with secondary flowers is shown below, Picture 7.

Picture 7

6. Last but not least, add in the fillers. Purple peacocks are used and being placed around the flowers/ferns to add the soothing atmosphere. Refer to Picture 8 (Top view) and Picture 9 (Front view) for the complete arrangement.

Picture 8
Picture 9

I also wish to take this opportunity to thank our dedicated instructor, Brother Yap for his valuable time, sharing his floral arrangement skills and knowledge besides entertaining us with jokes when we were attending his class. He also shared some great general tips on floral arrangement. Please be patience as I compile and will be shared here soon. Stay tuned!

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