Tag Archives: ikebana

In A Vase On Monday – Ikebana Study

In A Vase On Monday – Ikebana Study

Each Monday Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share a vase of cuttings from our gardens.

Foliage was my starting point for this design. Ginger lily is blooming beautifully this year. It is sending up many new stalks, some of whose tips I harvested for today’s vase.

The dahlias are thriving in the cooler weather and seemed unfazed after quite heavy rain Friday. For this Ikebana-style arrangement I chose creamy white Dahlia ‘Tsuku Yori No Shisha’ paired with a purply pink one whose name I do not know. The latter was included as a bonus with this year’s spring order and I failed to record it.

Dahlia ‘Tsuku Yori No Shisha’

Dahlia sp.

Both flowers and foliage went in easily and I was satisfied with the placements until I began photographing. The flowers themselves were grand but the overall effect was underwhelming.

In A Vase On Monday – Ikebana Study

I kept coming back to them during the next hour and finally began experimenting with adding to the vase.  Eventually I was happy again with the design. The color of the deep pink zinnia adds surprise. The zinnia stem arches gently away toward the back left.  An added piece of ginger lily foliage continues the curving line down through the right corner, where a few sprigs of gardenia leaves help anchor everything.

In A Vase On Monday – Ikebana Study

With the movement created by the changes I think the design is more graceful.

In A Vase On Monday – Ikebana Study

Materials
Flowers
Dahlia sp.
Dahlia ‘Tsuku Yori No Shisha’
Zinnia
Foliage
Gardenia sp.
Hedychium coronarium (Ginger lily)
Vase
Porcelain Ikebana vase, Georgetown Pottery, Maine. Rectangle Blue Zen (6.75L x 3.75W x 2H inches)

Zinnia

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower-filled vases across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place in a vase this week.

In A Vase On Monday – Dahlia Bowl

In A Vase On Monday – Dahlia Bowl

Each Monday Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share a vase of cuttings from our gardens.

Dahlias have seemed cheered by a few rains and some slightly cooler days the past couple weeks.

Dahlia ‘Tsuku Yori No Shisha’

I cut all available flowers to encourage them to keep up the good work.  These are arranged into a low flat bowl with a hint of columbine foliage.

In A Vase On Monday – Dahlia Bowl

Although I have cut the plants back several times the stems are still quite short.

In A Vase On Monday – Dahlia Bowl

In A Vase On Monday – Dahlia Bowl

In A Vase On Monday – Dahlia Bowl (no ID for this dahlia)

Materials
Flowers
Dahlia sp. (no ID on the magenta)
Dahlia ‘Cafe Au Lait’
Dahlia ‘David Howard’
Dahlia ‘Gallery Art Deco’
Dahlia ‘Tsuku Yori No Shisha’
Foliage
Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern red columbine)
Vase
Black Matte Dish With Red Interior

Stay safe from impending hurricanes and propaganda this week.  Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower-filled vases across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place in a vase this week.

In A Vase On Monday – Orange Deconstruction

In A Vase On Monday – Orange Deconstruction

Each Monday Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share a vase of cuttings from our gardens.

I chose a surprise late-blooming gladiolus as the focal point for today’s flowers. I find the reddish-orange waxy petals deliciously compelling.

In A Vase On Monday – Orange Deconstruction

With the gladiolus always in the forefront, or a time the design drifted from my original plan for a spare Ikebana look.  Here is the initial work—the first stage.  I liked this but it left exposed a lot of floral oasis.

In A Vase On Monday – Orange Impression

To conceal the mechanics I began adding other flowers. Eventually the design looked totally different and off-balance in composition and weight of materials.  I also thought the gaura stems began to look cluttered, detracting from the flowers.

In A Vase On Monday – Orange Impression

Surrounded by dahlias, clematis, buddleia, salvia and lantana, the gladiolus maintained its presence but looked out of place. The shape of the gladiolus was awkward and heavy in relation to everything else, yet it was beautiful in and of itself.

In A Vase On Monday – Orange Impression

In A Vase On Monday – Orange Impression

In A Vase On Monday – Orange Impression

Cutting the sword into smaller and smaller pieces I finally worked my way back to a design that speaks to the essence of the starring flower. Switching vases made a big difference. In my hand portions of the gladiolus seemed perfect but were still heavy.  Almost satisfied with this stage the jutting piece to the right created too much tension.

In A Vase On Monday – Orange Impression

At the expense of the design’s height, when I trimmed the wayward section and repositioned the stems, the overall result was more harmonious.

In A Vase On Monday – Orange Deconstruction

Against the black glaze the gladiolus essence is on full display.

In A Vase On Monday – Orange Deconstruction

Materials
Flowers
Gladiolus
Foliage
Gaura lindheimeri ‘Passionate Blush’ (Butterfly Gaura)
Vase
Porcelain Ikebana vase, Georgetown Pottery, Maine. Triangle Black Wave (6.5 W x 6.5 L x 2H)

In A Vase On Monday – Orange Deconstruction

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower-filled vases across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place in a vase this week.

In A Vase On Monday – Color Burst

In A Vase On Monday – Color Burst

Each Monday Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share a vase highlighting what is growing in our gardens.

A snow storm passed through Thursday, flattening most of the daffodils. I picked a few for a vase today but actually I had a different flower in mind to feature. I planted 100 Anemone De Caen ‘Mr Fokker’ last year and disappointingly only 5 or 6 survived. The first bloom emerged from the snow unscathed. It opened Sunday and I designated it star of today’s vase, pairing it with hellebores.

Anemone De Caen ‘Mr Fokker’

In A Vase On Monday – Color Burst

Modest in size the anemone was nearly overwhelmed by its taller and bulkier companions but I liked the rich color palette the hellebores added.

In A Vase On Monday – Color Burst

The shorter hellebore in front is Helleborus x ericsmithii ‘Pirouette’ and the taller one at back right is Helleborus x hybridus ‘Frostkiss™ Penny’s Pink’.

Helleborus x ericsmithii ‘Pirouette’ PPAF

Helleborus x ericsmithii ‘Pirouette’ PPAF

Helleborus x ericsmithii ‘Pirouette’ PPAF

Helleborus x hybridus ‘Frostkiss™ Penny’s Pink’

Helleborus x hybridus ‘Frostkiss™ Penny’s Pink’

Helleborus x hybridus ‘Frostkiss™ Penny’s Pink’

The white/green with pink touches is an unnamed hybrid.

Helleborus x hybridus With Helleborus x hybridus ‘Frostkiss™ Penny’s Pink’

Materials
Flowers and Foliage
Anemone De Caen ‘Mr Fokker’
Helleborus x hybridus (Lenten rose)
Helleborus x hybridus ‘Frostkiss™ Penny’s Pink’
Helleborus x ericsmithii ‘Pirouette’ PPAF
Container
Porcelain Ikebana vase, Georgetown Pottery, Maine. Triangle Black Wave (6.5 W x 6.5 L x 2H)

In A Vase On Monday – Color Burst

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower-filled vases across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place in a vase this week.

In A Vase On Monday – December’s ‘Passionate Blush’

In A Vase On Monday – December’s ‘Passionate Blush’

Each Monday Cathy at Rambling In The Garden encourages us to share a vase highlighting what is growing in our gardens.

December has arrived with the garden in a soggy state. Camellias are beleagured from successive bouts of cold and rain. Snapdragons and violas that were planted to add color to bleak November (and December) refuse to bloom. For Thanksgiving I had purchased a couple of mixed bouquets and created a table arrangement which I considered calling into duty for today’s vase, but I decided to explore the garden first.

So for inspiration this week I returned to ‘Ruby Slippers,’ the oakleaf hydrangea featured several weeks ago. Its deep red leaves are cheerful and welcome this time of year. Everything else seemed woefully unusable until several plants of Gaura lindheimeri ‘Passionate Blush’ offered up possibilities—flexible and energetic stems of burgundy with a few flowers and a few leaves. I do not remember noticing gaura at this time of year before, but this day the stems danced in my hand, begging to star this Monday.

Using an Ikebana vase I inserted the hydrangea foliage low in front, then added several multi-branched stems of gaura. The gaura flowed gracefully. It was limber enough I could wrap and twist pieces into shapes of circles and ovals. I liked the rhythmical effect and felt it was done, but could not resist adding a lime green chrysanthemum plucked from the Thanksgiving bouquet.

In A Vase On Monday – December’s ‘Passionate Blush’

Chrysanthemum, , Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Ruby Slippers’ and Gaura lindheimeri ‘Passionate Blush’

In a second Ikebana vase I clustered a bunch of gaura stems to the right side in back, placed the remaining red hydrangea leaves low to left and center, pleased with the breezy looseness.  This time I wondered how some red alstroemeria from the Thanksgiving vase might look against the red stems and leaves. Fine, yes that will do.

In A Vase On Monday – December’s ‘Passionate Blush’

In A Vase On Monday – December’s ‘Passionate Blush’

Alstroemeria, Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Ruby Slippers’ and Gaura lindheimeri ‘Passionate Blush’

Materials
Flowers
Alstroemeria
Chrysanthemum
Gaura lindheimeri ‘Passionate Blush’ (Butterfly Gaura)
Foliage
Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Ruby Slippers’ (Lil’ Ruby dwarf Oakleaf Hydrangea)
Container
Porcelain Ikebana vases, Georgetown Pottery, Maine. Rectangle Blue Wave. Triangle Blue Wave (6.5 W x 6.5 L x 2H)

Alstroemeria, Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Ruby Slippers’ and Gaura lindheimeri ‘Passionate Blush’

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower designs across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place In A Vase On Monday.

In A Vase On Monday – Late November Selections

Each Monday Cathy at Rambling In The Garden encourages us to share a vase highlighting what is growing in our gardens.

The garden’s seasonal transition away from floral abundance left me unenthusiastically inspecting stems and sticks yesterday. Finding a bright leaf here and there lit my spirit, small clusters of berries brought a smile.

Spiraea prunifolia (bridal wreath spiraea)

Cornus florida (Flowering Dogwood)

Cornus florida (Flowering Dogwood)

Callicarpa americana (American beautyberry)

When from among my large planting of passalong chrysanthemums left raggedy from cold and rain, I was able to glean several fresh blooms, I felt encouragement enough to assemble a vase and then another.

In A Vase On Monday – Late November Selections

In A Vase On Monday – Late November Selections

Verbena bonariensis (Tall Verbena)

Spiraea prunifolia (bridal wreath spiraea)

Materials
Flowers
Button Chrysanthemum
Verbena bonariensis (Tall Verbena)
Foliage
Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern red columbine)
Callicarpa americana (American beautyberry)
Cornus florida (Flowering Dogwood)
Itea virginica ‘Sprich’ LITTLE HENRY (Virginia sweetspire)
Spiraea prunifolia (bridal wreath spiraea)
Container
Porcelain Ikebana vases, Georgetown Pottery, Maine. Triangle Black Wave, Triangle Blue Wave (6.5 W x 6.5 L x 2H)

In A Vase On Monday – Late November Selections

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower designs across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place In A Vase On Monday.

In A Vase On Monday – Red And Glad

In A Vase On Monday – Red And Glad

Each Monday Cathy from Rambling In The Garden invites us to share a vase assembled from materials collected in our gardens.

In A Vase On Monday – Red And Glad

Only a few gladioli have returned this year, but there should be more soon. Proper record-keeping has gone by the wayside this year so I am not sure when, but I planted several bags of new corms from Longfield Gardens: Gladiolus Large Flowering ‘Espresso’ and ‘Purple Flora.’  And of course there is one more bag to plant should I get around to it this summer.

In A Vase On Monday – Red And Glad

In today’s vase are two red gladioli planted June 2016. They came into flower Thursday. I had planned to do something adventurous with them, creating an abstract design using a small brass sculpture my husband created around the time I met him. (We celebrate our 42nd wedding anniversary Tuesday.)

I will save the sculpture for another time as the flowers were so perfect they needed no support to embellish their virtue.

In A Vase On Monday – Red And Glad

In A Vase On Monday – Red And Glad

In A Vase On Monday – Red And Glad

Materials
Flowers
Gladiolus
Foliage
Gladiolus
Container and Mechanics
Florist frog
Shallow, round, black dish
Black polished stones

In A Vase On Monday – Red And Glad

Many thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower designs across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place In A Vase On Monday.

In A Vase On Monday-Accent On Green

In A Vase On Monday – Accent On Green

Each Monday Cathy from Rambling In The Garden invites us to share a vase assembled from materials collected in our gardens.

In A Vase On Monday – Accent On Green

The garden has moved on from irises and peonies, bringing a temporary lull in color. Dahlia tubers are coming up; zinnia seeds need to be planted. Meanwhile, the garden is greener, quieter, subtler.

Greens form the foundation of today’s vase. With Verbena bonariensis being the exception, flowers in this floral design are just coming into bloom.

Verbena bonariensis (Tall Verbena)

The design is a base of green with accents of color from the violet-hued verbena and from red leaves and stems of Husker’s Red.

Penstemon digitalis ‘Husker Red’ (Beardtongue)

The soft gray-green of lamb’s ear is specked with a few pink blooms.

Stachys byzantina (Lamb’s Ear)

Rich blue flowers will soon appear on Black and Blue salvia. Its tender young lime-green leaves form a stark contrast.

Salvia guaranitica ‘Black and Blue’

The salvia’s leaves echo the light green inflorescence of Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Ruby Slippers.’  Ruby Slippers will evolve its color into pink and burgundy.

Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Ruby Slippers’

Materials
Flowers
Penstemon digitalis ‘Husker Red’ (Beardtongue)
Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Ruby Slippers’ (Lil’ Ruby dwarf Oakleaf Hydrangea)
Salvia guaranitica ‘Black and Blue’
Stachys byzantina (Lamb’s Ear)
Verbena bonariensis (Tall Verbena)
Foliage
Container
Porcelain Ikebana vase, Georgetown Pottery, Maine. Triangle Black Wave (6.5 W x 6.5 L x 2H)

Happy gardening!

Many thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower designs across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place In A Vase On Monday.

In A Vase On Monday – Winter Wonders

In A Vase On Monday – Winter Wonders

Each Monday from Rambling In The Garden Cathy invites us to share a vase assembled from materials collected in our gardens.

A few blooms gathered Sunday afternoon went into one of my favorite Ikebana vases.

In A Vase On Monday – Winter Wonders

Included in the Ikebana arrangement is a Camellia sasanqua ‘Yuletide.’ The red Yuletide camellia opened in late October (as I recall) or at least by November 8, 2018, and despite the recent cold snap it continues to offer a few flowers. The small size of the camellia made it perfect for pairing with the creamy double-form hybrid hellebore purchased several years ago at Pine Knot Farms near Clarksville, Virginia. It is just scrumptious.

Camellia sasanqua ‘Yuletide’ and Helleborus x hybridus

Hellebores opened in my garden in January, 2019, a little later than in some years. They usually bloom well into April.

Some of the hellebores have been in the garden since 2001.  A few years later a garden club friend, Vicki, passed along a large quantity of her volunteers. They took about 3 years before flowering, well worth the wait.

Helleborus x hybridus (Lenten rose)

Several tiny flowers of Daphne odora burst open this year on January 12. Very few have opened since then but warmer weather this week may encourage them. These fragrant shrubs usually peak late February-early March.

In A Vase On Monday – Winter Wonders

While Daphne is long-lasting in a vase, the hellebores’ beauty is fleeting. I chose not to singe the stems or try other methods to preserve them.

Materials

Flowers
Camellia sasanqua ‘Yuletide’
Daphne odora (Winter daphne)
Helleborus x hybridus (Lenten rose)
Container
Porcelain Ikebana vase, Georgetown Pottery, Maine. Rectangle Blue Zen (6.75L x 3.75W x 2H inches)
Fiesta soup mug

Left with quite a few extras after finishing the Ikebana, I tucked the remainders into a lime green soup mug. I liked their cheerful spirit so much I decided to share both designs today.

In A Vase On Monday – Winter Wonders

Daphne odora (Winter daphne)

Helleborus x hybridus (Lenten rose)

In A Vase On Monday – Winter Wonders

In A Vase On Monday – Winter Wonders

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for hosting and giving us an opportunity to share flower designs across the world. Visit her to discover what she and others found to place In A Vase On Monday.

In A Vase On Monday—Summer Song

Each Monday brings the chance to join Cathy’s In A Vase On Monday to share an arrangement using materials gathered from the garden. As a special challenge Cathy has suggested we create an Ikebana-style floral design this week.

In A Vase On Monday - Summer Song

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Song

Ikebana is a fascinating art form, a centuries-old, Japanese flower arranging discipline with strict rules that followers may spend a life-time trying to master. Though not having that background, I admire the aesthetic, which emphasizes asymmetry and open space and seeks a harmonious balance among  the container, materials and overall surroundings. There is a quiet, meditative component to Ikebana as well that I find appealing.

This design began with a stalk of canna with two large leaves. I made parallel cuts into one side of the darker, shorter leaf to create a fringed effect. The idea was for the fringe to fall evenly spaced along the right-hand side of the design. It looked beautiful for a very short time before it began shriveling and curling. Unlike Aspidistra which can withstand this type of manipulation, the canna leaf displayed distress immediately but retained an interesting character nevertheless.

Canna Leaves, Fringed

Canna Leaves, Fringed (back view)

 

The canna stalk was inserted first, positioned in the kenzan to the right at a slight angle and back. Next several thin stems of pure yellow Rudbeckia laciniata were secured slightly left and forward. Additional rudbeckia flowers were placed low to meet the edge of the container.

The open and playful form of the rudbeckia is in contrast to the broad, heavy leaves of the canna, yet they hold equal weight in the composition.

In A Vase On Monday - Summer Song

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Song

A small amount of orange Asclepias works as an anchor and helps tie the design to the container.

Rudbeckia laciniata (Green-Headed Coneflower)

Rudbeckia laciniata (Green-Headed Coneflower)

Materials
Flowers
Asclepias tuberosa (Butterfly Plant) (Orange Glory Flower)
Rudbeckia laciniata (Green-Headed Coneflower)
Foliage
Canna
Mechanics
blue/brown ceramic circular dish
black, round self-contained Kenzan (flower arranging frog)
black stones

 

Thanks to Cathy for hosting this weekly chance to express our flower arranging interests. Visit her at Rambling In The Garden to discover what Ikebana inspirations she and others are placing In A Vase On Monday. Feel free to join in.

In A Vase On Monday—Sweet Pea Reduction

In A Vase On Monday - Sweet Pea Reduction

In A Vase On Monday – Sweet Pea Reduction

Each Monday brings the chance to join Cathy’s In A Vase On Monday to share an arrangement using materials gathered from the garden.

Though the house is filled with a cheerful and lively abundance of Shasta daisies, echinacea and gladioli, for today’s vase I chose to concentrate on making a design that would be spare and constrained.

A long shallow dish with a metal interior was the inspiration and starting point, countered by a fan of gladiolus foliage standing upright at one end. A small but heavy Kenzan vessel was used to hold the leaves in place. One leaf was bent into a loose, circular shape, while another was manipulated with angular cuts. Small black stones were scattered out from the base of the Kenzan.

Next a lemon yellow celosia was added near the base, followed with a flower from a Ruby Slippers oakleaf hydrangea and the top of a white gladiolus holding three blooms.

Hydrangea, Gladiolus, Celosia

Hydrangea, Gladiolus, Celosia

A long stem of Lathyrus latifolius (Perennial Sweet Pea) with new and aging flowers was inserted close to the gladiolus stems, its position secured into the Kenzan at the base and reinforced higher using a couple of the wispy sweet pea tendrils to latch on to the gladiolus stems.

Finally a woody stem of chrysanthemum foliage was bent and added to swing out across the dish to the left. One improvement I would make is to increase the length and arc of the line formed by the chrysanthemum, perhaps replacing the chrysanthemum with flowing bear grass.

In A Vase On Monday - Sweet Pea Reduction

In A Vase On Monday – Sweet Pea Reduction

Materials
Gladiolus
Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Ruby Slippers’ (Lil’ Ruby dwarf Oakleaf Hydrangea)
Fresh Look Mix Celosia (citrus colors)
Lathyrus latifolius (Perennial Sweet Pea)
Foliage:  Gladiolus, Chrysanthemum
Mechanics:
shallow, oblong footed dish, metal interior and black matte exterior
black, round self-contained Kenzan (flower arranging frog)
small, black stones

The photographs tend to flatten the dimensionality of the flowers, especially that of the sweet peas.

Chrysanthemum leaves and Lathyrus latifolius (Perennial Sweet Pea)

Chrysanthemum leaves and Lathyrus latifolius (Perennial Sweet Pea)

They are reduced to shape and color creating pattern in a most interesting way.

Lathyrus latifolius (Perennial Sweet Pea)

Lathyrus latifolius (Perennial Sweet Pea)

Thanks to Cathy for hosting this weekly chance to express our flower arranging passion. Visit her at Rambling In The Garden to discover what she and others are placing In A Vase On Monday. Feel free to join in.

Art In Bloom For Spring

Meadow Near Front of North Carolina Museum of Art

Meadow Near Front of North Carolina Museum of Art

Vernal equinox March 20, 2015, 6:45 PM EDT. Earlier in the week it was sunny and 80°F. Now, following a rainy afternoon yesterday, our first day of spring is overcast and 46°F. Tomorrow the weather should be nice again and warmer, 70°F.

Given yesterday’s rainy forecast it was a perfect time to travel to Raleigh to view a special floral show on opening day at the North Carolina Museum of Art.

Outdoor Display Near Entrance -  North Carolina Museum of Art

Outdoor Display Near Entrance – North Carolina Museum of Art

For this 4-day inaugural event called Art In Bloom, 45 floral designers each were paired with works of art from the museum’s permanent collection and invited to create interpretations of the art using flowers. (This has been done in other cities for a few years, but it was the first time for our state museum).

The displays were fascinating. They were large, rich in color and texture, featuring familiar and exotic materials (such as anthuriums, calla lilies, orchids, roses, proteas, tropical leaves) and they were presented in an array of interesting containers and frameworks.

Included among the 45 designers were my two teachers who, for the last several years, have offered flower arranging classes through the local garden club. Seeing their work in this exhibit was particularly exciting.  Unfortunately the quality of the dozens of photos I took were extremely disappointing and does not show their work to best advantage.

Jinny was assigned a Roman statue of Herakles. She responded to the white marble by using shiny and rough metal sculpture and anthurium with foliage. Sorry I cut off the top of the design–I could joke about where my eyes were but I truly was trying to include the description on the front of the stand.

Jinny Marino's Design

Jinny Marino’s Design

'Herakles' - Inspiration for Jinny Marino's Design

‘Herakles’ – Inspiration for Jinny Marino’s Design

Jinny Marino's Design

Jinny Marino’s Design

 

In a different gallery, Betsy’s arrangement was facing a different work of art than her assigned inspiration piece, Sunset (Medusa) (1945) by Eugene Berman. She seems to have played off both works of art.

Design by Betsy Ninninger

Design by Betsy Ninninger

‘Sunset (Medusa)’ – Inspiration Artwork for Betsy Ninninger’s Floral Design

Design by Betsy Ninninger

Design by Betsy Ninninger

Ikebana

This morning I returned to the museum for another Art In Bloom event.

Ikebana: Classical to Modern. Kyoko Petersen of the American Institute of Floral Design is a professor in the Ikenobo Ikebana school in Kyoto, Japan, the birthplace of ikebana. The presentation highlights classical ikebana arrangements along with newer styles introduced in the 20th century.

The demonstration was marvelous. It was enlightening to watch and listen as Kyoko created a dozen spectacular designs. She worked with many beautiful flowers, including orchids, anemones, peonies, quince and her favorite, camellias.

In some arrangements she strictly adhered to traditional principles set out hundreds of years ago, where nine elements of nature are represented (such as shady side, sunny side, waterfall). There are specific instructions for placement that cannot be altered. She began with this traditional design representing landscape.

Classical Ikebana - Landscape

Classical Ikebana – Landscape

Several of her designs illustrated 20th century adaptations made by the head master of the Ikenobo Ikebana school where she teaches. (The head master is forty-something generation.) The newer style takes into account people live not in castles, but rather in smaller houses. Also today the designs can take advantage of a wider repertoire of materials than those historically available. Kyoko also demonstrated free-form creations.

This design illustrates the modern simplification the master created in the 20th century.

Modern Ikebana

Modern Ikebana

This was one of my favorite designs. I tried to remember what the unusual leaves are called, perhaps begins with “Renaissance”? The surprising use of yellow pansy at the bottom adds finishing touch.

Modern Ikebana With Three Elements

This final design of the morning was an effusively abundant celebration of Spring, using camellias, peonies, variegated pine and orchids over a framework of weeping willow and weeping cherry. (Sorry for poor photo quality but perhaps you can get an idea.)

Ikebana: Homage to Spring

Ikebana: Homage to Spring

Ikebana: Homage to Spring

Ikebana: Homage to Spring

Ikebana: Homage to Spring

Ikebana: Homage to Spring

Kyoko’s presentation has inspired me to try to learn more about Ikebana.  Another event today that was sold out but would have been fascinating, was a hands-on master class with Shane Connolly, Royal Florist. He designed the flowers for the wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.  If you happen to be local to the Raleigh area, Art In Bloom is well worth your time.

So that is how I welcomed the changing season. And tomorrow I hope to back in my garden.