Thursday, August 30, 2012

Don't kiss the flower frog...

Don’t kiss these frogs….not one Prince will appear.  Before the invention of Oasis floral foam, flower frogs of all sorts were the beginnings of every arrangement. In the 1920’s, 30’s and 40’s, these holders for the stems of cut flowers often took fantastic forms and were as pretty as the flowers themselves.
Stems were inserted in the holes provided.  Although some of them actually were frogs, they all were called frogs because they sat in the water.  They were made of ceramic, metal and glass and can be found on Ebay, Etsy and other sites.

Today’s utilitarian pin flower holders have many sharp needles on which to impale a stem.  They, too, come in many shapes and sizes.   Some above have a cup to hold the water.  The plastic one, right front, has suction cups so it can sit in a tight spot.

These lead holders were wonderful gifts.  Artistically shaped into bouquets of wonderful leaves, they are made of lead and very heavy.  They have neither individual holes or needles so the stems slip into the spaces between the leaves which is excellent for tulips or other bulbs and branches which don't like to be in oasis. 

Why not let them take center stage and do the work (see "The vase stands alone" July)?  I have placed them on an asymmetrical steel tray that is deep enough to hold some water, allowing one floating gardenia to fill the air with that amazing fragrance.

Substituting clematis for the gardenia allows the vine to move among the holders.  This close-up shows the turtle holder.  What would fit in that?  Hyacinth or other fat stems?

Moving everything to a large celadon shallow bowl (invaded by an iron bug),  I have used the beautiful patterns of coleus leaves to create some rich color.  They look even more beautiful underwater which makes the color sing.

Sometime I will try and kiss, er, use the frogs for flowers!  


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