Make Derby Day Floral Arrangements Like A Pro

Don’t you just love fresh flowers? Adding them to any event really makes the experience feel lavish. Get ready to “wow” your guests on Derby Day when you create a gorgeous floral centerpiece like a professional! I want to give you a few tips to add to your own creativity that will help you build your own design masterpiece.
To create the perfect Kentucky Derby floral arrangement, I began with a large gold urn-shaped container. I wanted something that would have a slight resemblance to the shape of the winning trophy to coordinate with the Derby Day theme. Choose anything you like to go with your decor. Next went to my local florist and bought fresh flowers by the stem. It is important to choose a range of large, medium and small flowers as well as a type of greenery. (Tip: Purchase a few extra flowers incase there are casualties.) The official flower of the Kentucky Derby is the red rose, so I was sure to include them. I also chose white roses, white hydrangeas, and white snapdragons. This really made the red roses become a statement in the piece. Lastly, I decided on seeded eucalyptus for greenery. 
What You Will Need:
  • Container/Vase
  • Floral ‘Wet Foam’ (found at craft stores)
  • Floral Tape
  • Floral Food (optional)
  • Small, Medium & Large Fresh Flowers (by the stem)
  • Fresh Greenery
  1. Soak the floral foam in a sink or bucket of water until it is saturated. Do not force the block underwater. Allow it to absorb naturally (typically only takes 3-5 minutes) to avoid air pockets inside the block. You may add floral food to the water prior to soaking the foam if you desire a longer-lasting arrangement. 
  2. Once fully saturated, cut the block to fit the container for your design. You will want the block to just reach the top of the container. If stabilizing the block is necessary, use floral tape stretched across from rim to rim to help keep it in place.
  3. Choose whether you prefer a symmetrical arrangement or a more free-form, organic shape. I chose to give my design a fresh, Southern garden look, so I chose something more free-form.
  4. Start by adding the largest flowers first. Decide where you want your focus to be. Cut each stem one at a time before you press them into the wet foam block. They will need to be anchored 2-4 inches or more depending on the size/weight of the flower; the larger ones needing the deepest anchor. Add the medium and then smaller flowers to accent the larger ones to your liking.
  5. As you add in flowers, remember to turn the vase as you go to observe the look from all angles.
  6. After all varieties of flowers have been combined, it is time to add the greenery. Use it to fill any holes or gaps in the design, and to give your piece of floral art it’s final “pop”!
  7. Finally, be sure to display your arrangement in a place where your guests can enjoy it most. 
Remember, practice makes perfect. But the most important thing is that you have fun! Make the most of your time with friends and family as safely as possible this year, and enjoy celebrating #DerbyAtHome!
Catherine Jones

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