Summer Wildflower Bouquet

If you love flowers you must relish the summer season. Flower Shops, Farmer’s Markets, Your Garden plus the Fields and Forest are filled with beautiful flowers. Yes, some might call these flowers weeds, but a weed is just a flower growing in the wrong place. In this video how-to demonstration Leanne mixes commercially grown flowers, garden flowers and “weeds” to create a spectacular vase bouquet using the French Weave technique. Enjoy!

Welcome to the video library. I'm Leanne Kesler, director of the Floral Design Institute and today I want to share with you a fabulous bouquet made with summer wildflowers. Now, some are purchased, commercially grown and others are foraged right here locally in Portland, Oregon. 

As I prepared for this design, my first stop was the wholesaler. I found these fabulous garden roses from a local farmer. Purchased those. Then the tansy, that's another local farmer that I just love. Then I stopped and looked at foliages and purchased some Oregonia, some gold dust plant or Aucuba, and then I started my foraging and I found some great Queen Anne's lace, some fennel, camellia leaves, and then these grasses that are sort of dried. Then this is from a maple, that I just cut off some new growth. So, even here in the city, I can find fabulous weeds. Then I found a bit of ivy growing up on a tree. Now, all of this needs to be processed. Just as if it was a purchased flower because you still want it to be fully hydrated, with flower food. Let it drink and then let it sit for a couple of hours before you start designing. 

When working with a bubble bowl, it can be a little tricky. Sometimes the mechanics are challenging. Some people use an armature, others do a taped grid. Personally, I love to do a French weave and just start with the foliages. So, maybe the Aucuba, little bit of Oregonia, and a little bit of camellia. Much like a hand tie, breaking them down, removing the lower foliage, giving it a fresh break. And maybe one more piece there. Then weave it in your hand, cleaning it up as you go. Creating a nest of foliage, which will then support all of your flowers. Crossing it through to lock it in place. So it's lush and full, even before you began. Then just give it a clip and set it in the vase. 

Next, I add in my roses. They're so grand. You can see the buds on them. The lower buds are going to be stuck down inside the vase so I pull them off, maybe use them for something else, a small little arrangement. Give it a fresh cut and then just setting it right into the weave. Since everything's woven together, it will support it beautifully. Again, removing lower foliage, fresh cut, feeding it through. They still have their thorns on them so you just have to kind of twist, figure out where it fits in. I have a couple of different colors here. So, scattering them a bit so that I get both beautifully places and then working in a radial format all the way around so that I have a front, a back, that equally are beautiful so it doesn't end up looking one sided. So, bring it over my direction, turning it so that you can see and you just keep scattering them through 'til you get a full, lush look with the roses. 

Now, to add in the fabulous foraged materials. Now granted, I live right here in the city, but these materials were right here on my walk to work, which is really a blessing living in Portland, Oregon. I know students always tell me, "You guys are so lucky. You have things right here." And yes, we are because look at these weeds that I gathered that are so grand. Tucking them in. The grasses, to add a little bit of height. Just clustering in my hands, kind of lining them up the way I want and then giving them a cut. Then sliding them right down in through the center. They fan out naturally. Little bit of the fennel. This has such a great aroma to it. When I first grabbed it, I thought it was dill and then I realized, no, it's not dill, this is fennel. Has a great aroma that I like actually far more than the dill, so I was pleasantly surprised. Some of the Queen Anne's lace. Give it a lightness over the top. Then the maple, maybe letting it come out to the side. Then just again, scattering the materials in to give it a full lush look and that wild, foraged, on trend style. 

Wild flowers or weeds, you decide. Either way, it's a beautiful summertime bouquet. For more creative inspiration check out our website Flower The website contains hundreds of floral design how-to videos, floral design classes, online floral classes and DIY Flowers. 

You've got questions, you can reach us through there or by telephone at 503-223-8089 and of course, you can always reach out through my personal email Now, I'd love to see what you create. Take a photo, post it on social media and tag Floral Design Institute, let us all see because now it's your turn. Have fun and do something you love.

  • Fresh Flower Food Individual Pack 10 ounce tub
    Fresh Flower Food Individual Pack 10 ounce tub
  • Quick Dip Individual Pack One Pint
    Quick Dip Individual Pack One Pint
  • Crowning Glory Individual Pack 32 ounce spray bottle
    Crowning Glory Individual Pack 32 ounce spray bottle