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NB: as of 23 September 2008, all new artSMart articles are being published on the site news.artsmart.co.za.

CREATING FLOWER DISPLAYS (article first published : 2002-11-25)

Jenny Raworth trained as a florist under Malcolm Hillier and is an experienced writer, specialising in flower arranging and indoor gardening.

Her latest book, Creating Flower Displays, aims to show that there is no need to purchase expensive and short-lived displays for the home as it is possible to make lasting, effective decorations for a fraction of the cost.

The contents include fresh displays and their lasting counterparts as well as clever ideas for table displays and wreaths, twig trees and harvest wreaths.

While I must admit that I am not a lover of artificial flowers, unless used where absolutely necessary, this book offers some very unusual floral displays, using basic plants and plenty of twigs - although I think that the latter look very untidy.

There are 120 specially commissioned and excellent full colour photographs and the step by step guides are basic and very clear.

The only setback is that the flowers/berries used seem common in Europe but are not really indigenous to South Africa. The author does state that you can substitute any flowers or berries with whatever is available, but it would be nice to follow a guide where fresh flower/fruit matches are made for you, and you know these will last the same length of time.

I found the section pertaining to winter berry candle pots particularly lovely and simple as well as being very attractive.

I think this book would be a little daunting to a complete novice or amateur homemaker as it requires a certain amount of expertise and technical knowledge. However, those with an artistic eye will be able to capture the essence if not the identical end product.

Creating Flower Displays is published by New Holland and retails at R119,95. Sue Holloway




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