By Kelly O’Roark
Few things say spring more than a bouquet of fresh lilacs. The beautiful pinkish-purple hues of the delicate blooms and their heavenly scent create a high demand for them at local floral shops across the country when they’re in season. Unfortunately, there’s a very short window of time for bringing real lilacs into your home since they’re only in bloom for two to six weeks out of the year. If you love the look and color of lilacs but prefer to have them in your home all spring and summer long (instead of just a few short weeks), then a silk lilac arrangement will do just that. (The downside is that you won’t have the amazing scent filling your home, but if you light a lilac-scented candle, problem solved!)
While lilacs are beautiful on their own, it’s nice to have other springtime blossoms to add more visual interest to the arrangement. Flowers like roses and crocuses add more color as well as dimension with the different-shaped blooms.
Before you get started, you’ll need the following items for your artificial lilac arrangement:
- Two lilacs bunches (1 light purple, 1 medium purple)
- One red-purple crocus bunch
- One white rose bunch
- One green berry bunch
- One cylindrical metal planter
- One floral foam sphere
- One sheet of light green tissue paper
Step 1: Insert the Floral Foam into the Planter
When creating a lilac arrangement with silk flowers, it’s always a good idea to have some type of stabilizer in the bottom of the planter or vase. Unless you have a very tall, thin vase, the flowers will fall to the side if they’re not rooted in a stable foundation. Floral foam, marbles, or sand can all work well when you make artificial floral arrangements, but floral foam works best when you have fewer stems in a larger container.
Floral foam usually comes in rectangular shapes (called “floral foam bricks”), but it can also be found in other shapes to avoid having to cut it and making a mess. This floral foam sphere is the perfect size for the planter I chose, and all I had to do was remove the plastic wrap and drop it right in. Now onto the next step!
Step 2: Place the Crocus Bunch into the Foam at the 6 O’clock Position
This lilac flower arrangement is going to be placed evenly around an imaginary clock face, and you’ll be inserting the flowers counterclockwise. Take the crocus bunch and firmly insert the stem all the way to the bottom at the 6 o’clock position.
Make sure that when you insert the stem, it’s inside of the perimeter of the foam sphere, meaning, don’t insert it all the way on the side against the inner part of the planter. Make sure there’s some space between the wall of the planter and the stem as seen above.
Step 3: Insert Both Lilac Bunches – One at the 3 O’clock Position, and the Other at the 1 O’clock Position
Insert the first lilac stem at the 3 o’clock position, but this time, push it into the foam about three-quarters of the way instead of all the way to the bottom. The reason for this is so that the lilacs and the berries will stand taller in the back to give the arrangement the proper dimension. Insert the other lilac stem at the 1 o’clock position, pushing it about three-quarters of the way into the floral foam.
When turning your planter to the side, this is what the stem pattern should look like.
Step 4: Insert the Berry Bunch at the 11 O’clock Position and the Rose Bunch at the 9 O’clock Position
Insert the green berry bunch at the 11 o’clock position and push it about three-quarters of the way into the floral foam. The berries should stand just slightly higher than the lilacs. Next, insert the rose bunch at the 9 o’clock position, pushing it all the way to the bottom.
If you want an easier way to see where you’re inserting the stems, you can pull the foam sphere out of the planter to make sure that the pattern is even, then place it back in the planter once all of the stems are in place. The floral foam ball should look like this when all of the flower bunches have been inserted.
Step 5: Insert Green Tissue Paper or Artificial Peat Moss to Cover Up the Top of the Foam
To complete your lilac flower bouquet, cover up the white floral foam that’s peeking through at the top. It’s worth the effort because it’s so simple yet makes the arrangement look more realistic. Even if your floral foam is green, it’s still a good idea to add another layer over it for a softer transition from the floral foam to the stems.
The easiest thing to do is use grass-colored tissue paper, but if you prefer a truly natural look, artificial peat moss works well too. Take one sheet of spring green tissue paper and wrap it around the grouping of stems, making sure that it’s pushed down all the way and covering the floral foam. That’s it! Now that your arrangement is complete, and you can enjoy the beauty of lilacs and other spring flowers for months on end.
What are your favorite types of spring flowers? Are there other blooms that you would use to complement the lilacs? We’d love to hear your unique ideas in the comments below!
Images used with permission, courtesy of Kelly O'Roark