In England, hand-tied bouquets are traditional gifts for special occasions — the more homegrown ingredients, the better. Learning how to make a hand-tied bouquet is a wonderful way to savor the seasons and spread the bounty from your gardens around.
In this post, we’ll show you how to make a hand-tied bouquet, perfect for gift-giving, in 10 simple steps.
How to make a hand-tied bouquet
1. Gather a selection of focal (showy) blossoms, filler flowers, greens and long wispy flowers like clary, jasmine or clematis. Think about texture and color when gathering your ingredients to make a bouquet with impact.
2. Remove all the leaves except those at the top 6″ – 10″ of the stem.
3. Start by making a small bouquet in one hand with a focal flower and a few greens. Hold the bouquet in the same hand the whole time (if you are right-handed, hold it in your left). Try to keep your fingers at the same spot on the stem the whole time.
4. As you add flowers, turn the bouquet, letting in the stems by bringing your thumb out and then back around the stems. Add the flowers at a 45-degree angle. And once you add them, turn the bouquet. Always turn it the same direction.
5. While building the bouquet, ensure the top part of the bouquet maintains rounded shape; the stems will begin to spiral.
6. Keep adding flowers, greens and wispy bits until you have a round shape.
7. Try to add flowers in at different heights so some are reaching higher than others.
8. Once you have a bouquet you like, bind it together with twine. Now, this can be a bit tricky the first time as it’s a bit of a balancing act. Try to wrap the twine around several times so it’s secure.
9. Now, cut the stems all at the same level.
10. Your bouquet should be able to stand!
Wrap it up in cellophane. and/or tissue, add a card, and you have a beautiful fresh flower gift straight from your garden!
The beauty of the English country hand-tied, is that it is a pre-arranged bouquet for your recipient. All they need to do, is re-clip the stems and toss in their own vase and all the flowers will stay arranged as is because they are tied with twine. Most people have vases hanging around so it’s less wasteful too.
For that English country look, be sure to add lots of greens, wild stems, texture and a variety of ingredients!
Here are some suggestions for your recipe:
Remember the larger scale blossoms like sunflower and lilies will require that you make a larger scale arrangement, meaning you should keep stems longer and find complementary flowers that are also large in scale.
- butterfly bush
- scented geranium
- pine, fir
- bay leaves
- sweet peas
- rose hips
You might also enjoy our post on making autumn flower arrangements.