Monday, May 5, 2008

Silk Flowers + Natural Birch Branches = "Faux-Real" Flowering Branches

Flowering Branches such as Quince or Cherry look spectacular but are perishable and are only available for a short period during the spring. Artificial branches tend to either look, well, artificial, or are very expensive.

How about combining real branches such as Natural Birch Branches, with some inexpensive silk flowers? I picked up some really cheap generic silk flowers over in the Floral District, which cost $4.50 a bundle, after checking out some more expensive options such as Cymbidium Orchids, which cost $36/stem. As you can see, these silk flowers weren't anything spectacular:


Then I got out the glue gun and scissors, grabbed some Natural Birch Branches and went to work.



And after a few minutes of gluing...  

... a pretty spectacular "faux-real" flowering branch. What makes this work so well despite using relatively cheap flowers is the fact that only a small portion of the branch is faux, while the vast majority of it is real. Now the math: One Natural Birch Branch at $.56/stem ($14.50 per bundle / 25 stems per bundle) + a few silk flowers adding up to $.25 or so + miscellaneous expenses = about $1.00. Not too bad! 
   
Here we combined some of the branches with Fountain Grass for a nice, airy display evocative of spring or summer:


8 comments:

theysaywordscanbleed said...

that's just amazing!

Arlene,
Silverdale flowers

Anonymous said...

Wow - I have been searching for months for something exactly like this. I have a wedding coming up in October out of town and in my head this is EXACTLY what I pictured for centerpices for about 8 tables but had no ideas how to go about finding something like this at a reasonable cost. About how much per arrangement would you say this would cost? Would this be easily assembled and then hold up as they would have to be shipped to the reception facility?

Again I LOVE the idea and the pictures! It looks stunning!

Justin said...

Glad you like it! That arrangement has about six of the flowering branches (~$6.00), about half a bundle of Fountain Grass (~$6.25), and although its not shown, it's in a 14" tall, 4" diameter vase ($6-10). So it looks like the grand total for everything should be well under $25.00 (and you and/or your guests can keep them as mementos for a long time to come!). The height is a bit under 4 feet (with everything all the way at the bottom of the vase - you can increase the height by using a taller vase), and it just about as wide. Making the branches beforehand and shipping them should be fine - those fake flowers are pretty resilient and the hot-melt glue secures them to the branches very well.

Anonymous said...

This is awesome, and your branches are some of the best ive seen online. Bummbed you dont ship to hawaii. I can not find anything like this in the local stores here and i really need it for my modern design home interior.

Andrea said...

LOVE this. LOVE LOVE LOVE it. I'm going to try a mockup. However, hot glueing seems hard with such little flowers. Does it get sloppy looking/messy?

Justin said...

Just a tiny little dab of the hot glue works well - don't overdo it. The one thing that was kind of annoying was that when I took the glue gun away from the branch, it trailed a fine little strand of glue like a spider's silk - it was not problem just pulling it off though. We didn't try any other glue, but something like super glue might work. Good luck!

Tara said...

Fantastic! This is what I have been trying to figure out for months but wasn't sure if it would look very good and was not confident in completely fake flowering branches. Thanks for sharing with this post!

philippine gifts said...

Oh' that "Silk Flowers + Natural Birch Branches = "Faux-Real" Flowering Branches" seems so real! Like it. I will also try to make something like that this weekend. Thanks for sharing.

-yumi-