Knowing the principles of floral design will enable you to make beautiful flower arrangements for your home.  A few guidelines will increase your skills in designing flower arrangements. Below are the primary principles of floral design. Use them to guide your creativity in putting together an arrangement.


Accents are extra decorative objects added to a flower arrangement to create interest.  Accents may be seasonal, such as a small birdhouse in a Spring arrangement, gourds for Fall, and snowflakes for Winter. Don’t overdo the accents, as the main emphasis should be on the flowers or greenery.


An arrangement is harmonious when all of its individual parts come together agreeably and pleasingly. The colors, textures, sizes, and shapes need to fit well together.


A floral arrangement needs to be balanced as a whole. This can be achieved symmetrically or asymmetrically. In an asymmetrical arrangement, both sides are exactly the same on either side of a centerline.  Asymmetrical design can differ from one side to another, but balance is achieved by using color, size, texture, etc., to give equal weight to both sides of the design.


Proportion is the relationship between the parts of the arrangement as well as each part to the whole. Again, color, size, shape, and other elements affect each other. Too much or too little of an element can make a design look out of proportion.


Rhythm is movement. A flower arrangement can show motion in its form or in its individual parts. The arrangement may form a sweeping crescent or waterfall effect. Vines twist and curl, tall spikes of flowers or greenery add height.


Composition is the combining of parts to make a pleasing whole. The parts need to complement each other to achieve this effect.


Unity is the arrangement of parts in a way that is complete and harmonious.

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