Exactly what do those floral craft supplies look like? What are they called? What are they used for?
Here's a PICTURE GUIDE to the products you'll need for making a silk flower arrangement or bouquet. There are photos, descriptions and usage tips, too.
Most Needed Floral Craft Supplies
The items in this group are considered basic necessities for making a silk flower arrangement.
Styrofoam serves as the foundation for a silk flower centerpiece.
It comes in large sheets (3 ft. x 1 ft. x 2 in.) or packaged bricks
(varying sizes), in white or light green colors. Unless a transparent
container is used, color makes no difference since the styrofoam will be
covered with moss in most cases.
DO NOT USE OASIS for silk flower designs. Oasis is specially formulated for fresh flowers to retain water and is less dense for easy insertion of their delicate stems.
Adhesive of some sort is needed to secure the styrofoam inside the container. There are several ways to do this.
Most popular: a gummy, adhesive clay-like substance that comes on a roll. It’s called Floral Clay, Cling Clay or other names. (Double-sided foam mounting tape also works very well for securing styrofoam.)
Some floral craft enthusiasts prefer to use a hot glue gun for strongest, permanent bonding of elements. Glue sticks are inserted at the back.
Moss can be used to cover the styrofoam for a natural look. Dried
sheet moss (top image) comes in loose pieces or flat mat shapes, in
shades of green and brown. You can buy it by the bag.
Spanish moss (bottom image), which looks like curly spaghetti, is also available in several colors.
Containers of various types, such as baskets, vases, bowls, etc., produce different visual effects.
For tips and ideas, read this article on how to prepare a container for a silk flower arrangement.
Silk Flowers, Foliage and Greenery
requirements vary with each floral design project.
See the article on buying silk flowers for advice and ideas.
Floral Tape or Paddle Wire is used to bind single loose items,
such as leaves, to a stem. Or, to bind a group of items together before
attaching to a stem. You can also bind an extension (either stem wire or
remnants of trimmed stems) to a stem that is too short.
The floral tape (top image) is made of a sturdy paper, which when slightly stretched, releases a light-tack glue from its pores and sticks to itself. It works very well and looks nice. It commonly comes in green and brown, and some floral supply stores may offer other colors.
Paddle wire (bottom image) is similar to stem wire, except it is one very long length coiled around a paddle. It comes in different thicknesses ('gauge'). The higher the gauge number, the thinner the wire is. Higher gauge is recommended for wrapping or binding floral elements together. You can also find cloth covered floral wire on spools, like sewing thread.
You don't need to buy both right away. Choose the one that you feel comfortable with. I started with, and stuck to, the floral tape. :-)
Cutting Pliers or wire cutters are needed to trim stems. Any hardware store should carry them.
A Knife is needed to cut and trim the styrofoam. A metal steak or butter knife with a serrated edge is fine. A plastic knife might snap and is not recommended.
Occasional Floral Craft Supplies
You may need these floral craft supplies to make a silk flower wedding bouquet, wreath, swag, or topiary display on occasion.
Bouquet holders are generally available in only two sizes — small
(2.5 inch diameter) and large (approx. 3 inch diameter) with a slightly
Can be used to create any bridesmaid and bridal bouquet styles.
Bouquet Collars can add a touch of elegance. Generally available in lace bouquet collar (pictured) and tulle netting collar.
Simply slide it up the handle into position.
Can be glued in place if desired.
Wreath Rings and Swag Forms are available in different materials and shapes, such as dried grapevine or straw forms, styrofoam, and wire frame. Lots of choices for you to decorate.
Topiary forms vary in size and shape.
They are a great time saver — insert stems, stand back and admire your artificial topiary creation!
Ribbon could be the floral craft supply item you need for a finishing touch. A fancy 'Look at me!' ribbon bow can work wonders.
Ribbon can also be wrapped around sections of wreath, swag and topiary forms to dress them up a bit.
Least Needed Floral Craft Supplies
In my opinion, the floral craft supplies in this group are rarely needed to make a silk flower centerpiece. But it's nice to have options!
Stem Wire can be used to lengthen stems. It comes in different
thicknesses ('gauge'). The higher the gauge number, the thinner the wire
is. Lower gauge is recommended for better stem support. Secure to a
stem with floral tape.
(Tip: try using a straightened paper clip instead.)
Wired wood picks are little green sticks (about 3 inches long)
with a piece of wire attached, which would be wrapped around a stem to
secure it. Can be used to lengthen stems, but will make a large hole in
Use sparingly, if at all!
Greening pins are U-shaped tacks which can be used to fasten moss
or small items, like single blossoms or leaves, to styrofoam or topiary
forms. Also called floral pins or U pins.
I've never used them.
So there you have it — pictures and descriptions of just about any silk flower arranging supplies you would really need to make a faux floral arrangement of your choice. Go get those floral craft supplies!
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