My Creative Workbook

Christine de Beer - effortless floral craftsman

A Floral Art Demonstration by Floral Trends Design Group

Based on the poem:"Water, water everywhere, nor any drop to drink" from "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner" by Samuel Taylor Coleridge

A Floral Art Demonstration by Floral Trends Design Group The Rime of the Ancient Mariner.jpg

All the designs demonstrated by members of the Floral Trends Design Group focused on the fresh water crisis around the world.

My theme: Desalination
This design was inspired by a Shishi Odoshi tipping fountain

Floral Art Demonstration:Desalination Design

Desalination Design

Desalination is the method of cleansing and purifying salt water into drinkable fresh water. Sea water is slowly filtered through a bed of bamboo charcoal to remove all the impurities. It is then boiled. As the water boils steam rises and condensate. These drops of clean fresh water trickle down into a separate base leaving the salt crystals behind.
The Shishi Odoshi fountain
The Shishi Odoshi fountain or bamboo deer chaser was historically used by rice farmers in Japan to chase away animals from their crop.Today you will find the Shishi Odoshi fountains in meditation centres and Japanese tea gardens as a spiritual cleansing and purifying element. The fountain slowly trickles water into a diagonal tipping spout. When the spout is filled with water it tips over spilling the water into a fountain base and when empty it tips back up and hits the base to make a loud clack sound.

My Shishi Odoshi fountain from PVC pipe, sprayed green.jpg

I made my Shishi Odoshi fountain from PVC pipe and sprayed it green. During the demonstration water slowly trickled down the design to fill the tipping spout.

Christine de Beer Floral Art demonstration- Desalination

The first of my plant material was two twig blinds that hang down the Shishi Odoshi fountain. You can see how I made the twig blinds by following the link below to my Tutorial

Christine de Beer Floral Artist

Beautiful Blue Iris flowers hangs down (and up-side down) on my twig blind to emphasize the trickling water

Adding strands of kelp.

Adding strands of kelp.

Floral Art Demonstration- Desalination

Water slowly trickled down the design as "sea water" over the kelp to tip into the large glass vase as "fresh water" to sustain the Lucky bamboo

If you look carefully at the pictures below you will see how happy I was the moment my fountain tipped to neatly spill the water in the glass vase- its always nerve wrecking trying something like this on stage!

Floral Art Demonstration- Desalination in South Africa

Shishi Odoshi (tipping fountain) with Iris flowers, Kelp and Lucky Bamboo and two twig blinds that I made out of sticks and wire

Floral Art Demonstration: Iris falling like water down the design

Design detail: I used water filled reeds as "test tubes" to keep my Iris flowers hydrated. I also made wire hooks for each flower so that I could hang them upright or upside down in the design.

Floral Art Demonstrator Christine de Beer

Floral Art Demonstration: Floral Trends Design Group, Western Cape Association of Flower Arrangers, South African Flower Union

A photograph of this design was included in the 2011 South African Flower Union Calender (October).

Every week I add a new design with related tutorials. Be sure to subscribe to receive an email notification with design inspiration.


26 April 2011 Weave a willow twig blind

Weave twigs in parallel to create a twig blind with strong but natural horizontal lines.

14 January 2011 Beaded wire

Thread thin wire with tiny beads

7 September 2012 Hanging flowers rightside-upside-downside

I love hanging flowers to loosely dangle and move in a design

Favourite Flowers


Dutch Iris or widow iris are the best known varieties used as cut flowers

Dracaena sanderiana

Lucky Bamboo, Ribbon Dracaena, Belgian Evergreen, Ribbon Plant

Related Designs

1 January 2011 South African Flower Union Calendar 2011

My design "Desalination" featured in the 2011 South African Flower Union Calender

3 February 2016 Connect the dot

Connect snippets of grass to create a shelter for your flowers

30 March 2016 Floral Designs From Around The World

A demonstration presented at Canada Blooms, Toronto, Canada I was invited to share the stage with designers from Bermuda, United Kingdom, France, South Africa, Barbados, United...

18 May 2016 Because I think I am making Progress

Create a floral ceiling

9 November 2016 All things Autumn (by which I mean all things chocolate) floral art demonstration at the BC Floral Art Society

A design demonstration looking at preparing for competition designs: thinking bigger

18 January 2017 Look at you!

Tie twigs to shape a hanging armature

28 June 2017 Somewhere in the Middle

Skewer Dracaena leaves into a roll that supports a tiny water source for the Oncidium orchids

22 January 2020 Spacer

Armatures are great (budget friendly) spacers for creating large floral designs without using an enormous amount of your resources.

27 December 2023 A Very Merry Dried Orange and these from My Greenhouse to yours Trendy Christmas Cheer

And of course I would add the environmentally friendly-estest floral design option to top all the rest. Reusable and upcycled... and smells wonderful.