It wouldn't be the holidays without magical decorations for both your table and your door. Gaye Drummond, a talented and innovative British floral designer who lives in Savannah, shares her simple yet stylish ideas for freshening your home with flowers. Whether she's preparing for a museum ball or creating bouquets for a wedding, Gaye knows how to work quickly and make blossoms last. Come along and see how she sets the stage for an enchanting evening.
Easy Elegance for Your Table
Gaye chose a vibrant shade of turquoise to accent her table setting. It's a trendy color that instantly updates the most traditional tableware. With a white tablecloth in place, she fills turquoise glass cube vases with white cyclamen plants and arranges them in the center of the table. Between the vases she sets pairs of silvery glass candlesticks containing tall turquoise candles. Place cards are supported by artichokes that are coated with silver spray paint.
To enjoy cyclamen blooms for several weeks, keep the plants cool and slightly dry; don't overwater them.
- Turquoise is a popular accent color for the home, but you can also use vases in another hue; just match the color of the candles to the containers.
- If coordinating vases are not available, wrap clay pots with pieces of glossy gift wrap. Tie the paper in place with silver ribbon or cording.
- To give inexpensive glass candlesticks the look of silvery ones, apply a few coats of spray paint.
Fashion a Gorgeous Wreath
Gaye's wreath features pink roses and pale green lisianthus. With aromatic eucalyptus, she creates a lush background for the flowers. For her door, she chose a 21-inch-diameter florist foam wreath backed with plastic.
First, Gaye conditions the eucalyptus and flowers for several hours by standing the stems in a mixture of water and floral preservative. Then she saturates the wreath form, allowing excess water to drain away. Before she starts adding greenery, Gaye attaches a loop of florist wire through the wreath so the finished product will hang on the door. Then she cuts 2- or 3-inch-long pieces of fresh eucalyptus. She covers the entire wreath form by inserting the greenery stems into the florist foam and angling them clockwise. Next, she cuts rose and lisianthus stems to about 3 inches and inserts them into the florist foam at equal intervals. Once the wreath is hung, she adds a pretty bow, which also hides the wreath hanger.
Keep your wreath cool and hydrated by soaking it in a few inches of water about every three days. Let excess moisture drain before rehanging it.
Pages 88-91: Floral design by Gaye Drummond, Savannah, www.gayedrummond.com or  232-0065; vases from The Fresh Market (R).
"Sensational Flowers" is from the Home for the Holidays 2007 issue of Southern Living.