I’m really excited for the DIY I’ve whipped together for you guys today. I’m not a fan of traditional roses, but I absolutely can not – emphasis again on can not – get enough of David Austin roses (I’ve also seen them referred to as garden roses or cottage roses) and adore the idea of pairing them with dusty miller for a really romantic and refined shabby chic look. I was so happy when my contact at one of our sponsors, Blooms by the Box, offered to send me over some of their gorgeous garden rose stock to play around with for the project.
What You’ll Need
David Austin Roses (this variety from Blooms by the Box were used)
Dusty Miller Leaves (from my own plants)
White Container (this urn from Blooms by the Box was used)
Gardening Gloves (Optional)
Fill your vessel halfway with lukewarm water. Set the container aside and begin to remove the greenery from the stem of each rose. Please be careful – as with other roses, garden roses have thorns, so you may want to remove the greenery with gardening gloves.
With gardening shears, trim each stem to a length that suits your vessel. You want the flowers to sit just above the edge of the vessel when laid against the container wall at an angle, as shown above right. Continue cleaning and trimming stems, then placing each flower in the container as you make your way around the perimeter of the vessel.
After you’ve made your way around the perimeter of the vessel, begin filling the center. You’ll want to cut the stems slightly longer so that the arrangement begins to dome in the middle. Work your way around the center in circles (how many depends on how large the vessel is – ours only needed one additional ring) until there is only room at the center for a single additional rose.
Clip off longer leaves of a dusty miller plant carefully, cutting close to the main stem of the plant to have as much of the leaf as possible. Poke a piece of floral wire (about 6 to 7 inches long) carefully and cleanly through the center of the stem about a half an inch below the last set of lobes on the leaf – if you don’t have that much space on the stem, put the wire halfway between the bottom of the stem and the last set of lobes. Bend the length of floral wire in half to extend the “length” of the leaf. Set aside and quickly repeat the wiring process on the remainder of the leaves.
Insert your dusty miller around the lower ring of roses, placing them to your taste. I recommend you do them unevenly, skipping roses and adding multiple leaves in some spots. When you’ve decided on your placement, remove the rose closest to your dusty miller while holding the leaf in place by pinching the floral wire to the rose stem. Tape the dusty miller to the stem of the rose with floral tape to hold the dusty miller in place, then reinsert the rose into position. Tape the other dusty miller leaves to finish the centerpiece.
TIP: The roses will keep fresh longer than the dusty miller will. If you want to make these in advance, my recommendation is to strip and set the roses while they buds are still tight a day before, then wire and place all the dusty miller the morning of your event or party.
Images by Maddy Hague.
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Blooms by the Box is a sponsor of the Inspired Bride, but no financial compensation was received for this post. Samples were provided for the project at our request. For more information on our editorial policy, please click here.