Even if you want to make a statement, a simple arrangement can do the trick. Just a few stems of cymbidium orchids (in a low glass vase filled with rocks) looks more elaborate than it is. Remember to use stems with more than one bloom, and if you keep the water clean, this arrangement should last from four to six weeks.
Ideal spot: Place it on the table where the cocktails are served, surrounded by votive candles.
Heady flowers such as hydrangeas take the guesswork out of floral arranging. Leave the stems long and make fresh, diagonal cuts at the bottoms. Keep a few leaves near the flowers but remember not to let any leaves to touch the water, and they will practically arrange themselves in a tall, cylindrical vase.
Ideal spot: Place this lofty creation on a foyer table or kitchen island where it can be admired both from afar and up close.
Flirty, feminine buds such as peonies are more at home in a charming container like this teapot than the nondescript vase that held your last Valentine’s bouquet.
Scour your china cabinet -- or a flea market -- for fun, unpredictable pieces to use at your next gathering. Pitchers, urns, tureens, and even mason jars are fun options.
Ideal spot: A small arrangement is ideal for bringing a little life to a side table and makes a thoughtful gift for a special friend.
Small arrangements of one kind of flower are ideal for the novice. If you are seeking a more dramatic effect, try a grouping of them in similar hues. These range from pink to red and are all in silver containers to create a cohesive feeling.
Ideal spot: A dramatic mass of a single color is perfect for a dinner party when you know guests will linger. Keep the display low so the conversation isn’t inhibited.
This elegantly simple combination uses just three varieties, but adding stems of kumquats to the ‘Coral Charm’ peonies and hyacinths is an exciting and unexpected touch. In a footed urn with a wide mouth, it’s best to let the flowers spill over.
Ideal spot: Placed on a stack of books, this arrangement will lend a stylish, collected feel to your living room.
Sometimes just two or three blooms are all you need to create something sweet, simple, and fragrant. And it doesn’t get much easier than making a cut at the base of the flower and floating it in a pretty bowl filled with water. Try camellias, gardenias, magnolias, or even carnations in glass, ceramic, or silver bowls.
Ideal spot: You’ll want to view this one from above, but since the bowl will be filled with water, make sure it’s safe from being jostled and spilled.