Ode to autumn: Larimore, N.D., flower shop brings nature inside
LARIMORE, N.D. -- Autumn's rich burgundies, vivid oranges and brilliant yellows are ripe for decorating. Whether dolling up the front entry way, bedecking the yard or simply adorning the dining room table with a centerpiece, natural and artificia...
LARIMORE, N.D. -- Autumn's rich burgundies, vivid oranges and brilliant yellows are ripe for decorating.
Whether dolling up the front entry way, bedecking the yard or simply adorning the dining room table with a centerpiece, natural and artificial pieces in an array of fall colors are available.
Larimore Flower and Gift Shop owner Joleen Landis harvested fall vegetables and fruit, flowers, corn and gourds to create a display in front of her downtown store. Bright orange pumpkins and Chinese lanterns, yellow gourds, dark green squash and a basket of red-cheeked apples sat atop two bales of yellow straw. A cloth scarecrow with a friendly smile was tucked in between the bales and a pot of bronze chrysanthemums and decorative kale sat in front of them. Corn stalks, pampas grass and red, bearded weeds provided a backdrop for the display.
Other options that could be included are rainbow corn and artificial blooming sunflowers.
"There's nothing wrong with mixing artificial in it," Landis said. "The artificial sunflowers look really good."
This time of year many decorative items also are easily accessible in the natural world.
"I went scavenger hunting," Landis said. "You just kind of drive around and see what's out there." She found the weeds and grass, for example, growing in a roadside ditch, the corn ears from a friend's field and the apples from another friend's tree.
A basket of red apples also is a festive way to decorate a fall table, Landis said, noting that tying a bow around the handle of the basket will dress it up. Fall ribbon choices include patterns with sunflowers and grape vines and plain ones in dark reds and greens.
"If you put a bow in, you want the bow in first, so it's an accent, not a focal point," Landis said. Besides making bows, ribbons also can be used to decorate vases and intertwined around the vines of a wreath.
Container alternatives for fall centerpieces can range from ceramic bowls to old tin buckets to crocks.
"You could carve out a pumpkin and use a pumpkin," Landis suggested.
Natural items such as fresh fall flowers from the garden, wheat, grasses and leaves can be used with faux berries to create vibrant centerpiece. Wheat can be added to give the arrangement a more country look and baby's breath, greens and goldenrod, Landis noted. Pheasant feathers also add appeal.
For a more elegant table top, a monochromatic-colored flower arrangement with a candle in the middle is a good choice. A spray of fall leaves, jarred candles or a string of faux apples placed around the centerpiece will add depth to the arrangement.
If decorating the interior of your home for fall consists of more than a single center piece, you can enhance walls with wreaths made of grape vine purchased at floral or craft stores or real vines that you've cut yourself. The vines are pliable when they are first cut, so they can be bent into shapes, such as hearts or circles, and then dried.
After they're dried, the vines can be decorated with dried or artificial flowers, leaves, faux cranberry and orange berries or a combination of all three. There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to designing a centerpiece or arrangement.
"You can mix dried and real and artificial," Landis said. Acorns and pinecones also can be added to fall wreaths. Spraying the natural items with hairspray will help preserve them.
If worrying about what the outcome of creating an arrangement is paralyzing you from getting started making one, remember that florists also once were novices and experience is the best teacher.
"Practice, practice, practice," Landis suggests.
If you still prefer leaving the job to professionals, have your florist create an arrangement or wreath. They will be happy to follow your design suggestions or come up with one of their own. Landis, like other florists, enjoys creating autumn décor for homes.
"I love fall. I just love the colors," Landis said.
Bailey writes for special features sections. Reach her at (701) 787-6753; (800) 477-6572, ext. 753; or send e-mail to email@example.com .