Monday, November 14, 2011

Rittners School of Floral Design

A couple of years ago, I decided to attend floral design school. I have always enjoyed working with flowers but wanted the opportunity to learn more about the intricacies of floral design. It was yet another way for me to expand on my design knowledge.

Roundy Moundy

As I learned, there is much to know about the mechanics of a good design. From flower care and handling to pricing, and most importantly to designing. I spent three and a half months traveling into Boston two nights a week to attend the evening session. I chose Rittners School of Floral Design from a friends recommendation. Rittners is a family owned business on Marlborough Street, and is currently under the direction of Steve Rittner. I found Dr. Steve to be passionate about the subject of floral design, and enjoyed his rather interesting sense of humor. The evening was never a dull one.

Long and Low
Most of the designs pictured are typical floral designs seen in the business. Learning these basic designs, and the mechanics behind them gave me the ability to apply the skills to creations of my own.

Inverted T
Flower placement is very important to the scale of any arrangement or design. As Dr. Steve would run through the specifics of the evening's design, the students would wait in anticipation for their turn. When I would start to apply the techniques to my own design it was never as easy as he made it appear. A true professional in any business has the luxury of experience, and the ability to make it look effortless. As I get closer and closer to having a level of comfort, I look forward to the day when I too will be able to design as effortlessly as Dr. Steve.

The elegant cascade design is making a come back with today's brides.

These designs had a rough ride home as you can see.

As cold weather settled in for a long winters nap, the six block walk to my car became a dreaded event. On most nights I transported an awkward, and very heavy arrangement while the cold winds whipped through the streets. As you may have noticed above some arrangements did not always make it home in the same condition in which they left Rittners that night.

Try driving this top-heavy baby home, I dare you.  I gave this topiary-style design to my mother-in-law to enjoy over the holidays. Her interior colors where a perfect match and it made for a perfect early Christmas gift.

We had some fun making silly arrangements like this dog. My daughter thoroughly enjoyed waking up in the morning to see my evening creations on display. She especially loved this one!

Teacup Diagonal Line Arrangement

This petite teacup arrangement was a fun design. We had the opportunity to use Stephanotis which is the white star flower you see. It is a tricky flower to design with, and I have a new appreciation for arrangements that are made strictly of Stephanotis. I also began to appreciate designing with carnations, poms and some of the more affordable flower varieties. I learned that those types of flowers tend to hold up well in designs, and come in a variety of colors. Designs where you mix premier flowers with the more affordable varieties make for more interesting arrangements. It shows versatility in your designs and the ability to produce a high end product while still maintaining a reasonable budget.

Contemporary  Linear Parallelism Design
Moss comes in handy when hiding the mechanics behind your design.  I LOVE moss!

As you can see, contemporary designs do not require much in the way of floral material. They speak more about shape and space. It is the less is more philosophy.

L Shaped Design
Floral designing is a form of creative expression that I really enjoy. The ability to design around a theme when working on events, can really get those creative juices flowing. Designing doesn't have to be an expensive endeavor, as you can use available materials right outside your door. Even when it's cold outside you can pull greens from your yard to create something beautiful.

Until next time...L.


  1. Hi Laura! Great page! Would you recommend the 6 month course for someone right out f high school?

    1. Thanks for stopping by. In regards to your question, and without knowing the specifics or the end goal, I might take the 6 month course. Let me know if you have any other questions.



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