Human Flower Project
Wednesday, December 02, 2009
Saved by the Eryngium
Seduced again by tulips, an amateur flower arranger reaches for something rubbery and something wild.
Pittisporum, tulips, and (praise be) eryngium
Photo: Human Flower Project
Hubris, failure, luck: The annals of amateurism are filled with these.
May we add another chapter? Today is a friend’s monumental birthday, a milestone we have yet to reach. Another great chum and world-class hostess is having the quasi-surprise party, a dinner at her home, and we volunteered to bring the flowers. Earlier in the week we hit “Family Thrift” and the St. Vincent de Paul store looking for some low, matchable-ish vases and today set out at noon to shop for flowers.
The hostess’s domain is saturated in bold rich colors: black, deep purple, reds, greys and dark greens. We had those regal shades in mind browsing the plants and flowers at the market. Five big purple and white orchids would have been swell but we pulled back. They’re pricey and so tall guests would be craning for conversation during the meal. The market was especially well stocked — many shades of roses, proteas buds (looking a bit too much like medieval flame throwers), lilies, lots of berries, even big purpling bouquets of kale.
There were also loads of tulips—white, red and purple—some tear-drop tight, other beautifully open. That was it. We bought five bunches and, on added impulse, several stems of a thistle-looking plant. As several tulip petals flew off in the wind on the way to the car, hubris began chafing.