My Creative Workbook

Christine de Beer - effortless floral craftsman

Foxtail in a bud vase forest floor

Design note: the big secret to this design is balance. Once done the fern should point away from the vase as straight as possible. It should not look like it is under strain or drooping. The bark creates a sturdy platform for your floral details.

Place the foxtail in a water filled bud vase

Place the foxtail in a water filled bud vase.

Strip bark from wood with a sharp knife

Strip bark from wood with a sharp knife.

Trim away the wood from the bark.

Trim away as much as possible the wood from the bark. The design should be as light as possible.

Newsletter subscribers: I have a really great tip for you this week. It makes placing the bark so much easier... and accurate!
Remember to sign up below this post if you are not yet subscribed so that you do not miss out on the weekly bonus tip.

Glue long strips of bark to run down the fern

Glue long strips of bark to run down length of the fern.

Work around the fern so that it pokes out of the wood at places

Work around the fern so that it pokes out of the wood at places.

The bark platform is now ready to design with

The bark platform is now ready to design with... as you add the heavier floral details it will start to bend over. Make sure you are mindful of this curve as you design.

Book readers turn to page: 317 for a more robust version of this design- this time using my ultimate favourite flowers!

Glue in vine tendrils

Glue in vine tendrils.

And dried mushrooms

And dried mushrooms.

See the Tutorial below for more detailed instructions on how to dry your own mushrooms to use in your floral designs.

Glue in water tubes to keep the orchids hydrated

Glue in water tubes to keep the orchids hydrated.

I make water tubes from drinking straws or tubes. See the Tutorial below for more detailed instructions.

Finish the design with an elegant rosary vine stem twirled around the fern.

Finish the design with an elegant rosary vine stem twirled around the fern and a few dew drop crystals.

Make sure the design elements are balanced

Design note: Make sure the design elements are balanced. Ideally the fern should be horizontal and not at all droopy. Add a few bits of bark (again, use the technique I mentioned in the newsletter so that you do not damage any design details) to adjust the balance.

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


13 April 2012 Drying Mushrooms for Floral Art

I use edible mushrooms in my designs. To preserve them I press a tiny stake into the base and let them air-dry.

25 August 2011 Placing orchids in test tubes

Cut the Phalaenopsis orchid with a bit of green stem attached. This will make them last longer.

1 January 2020 Create a centerpiece foundation with lumber and the cellophane your flowers were wrapped in

A winter themed centerpiece with a secret water source (without a container or floral foam)

8 July 2015 Using a pin to place tiny dew drop crystals

It's sometimes difficult to place a tiny crystal or bead exactly where you want it.

6 March 2019 Snow puddle armature

Connect twigs with puddles of artificial snow to craft a winter armature for your flowers.

22 April 2015 Dowel ring flower holder for the most delicate of stems

The most delicate of stems often disappear in a design. this is an easy way to display really delicate flowering stems without overwhelming them

28 March 2018 Stacked eggshell containers that won't topple over.

Balance a stack of eggshells with a magnet for a tiny Easter design

15 March 2017 Wedding welcome and direction sign

Hang a twig and wood mobile at your weeding as a direction board

2 November 2016 Driftwood base for a floral foam pebble design

The flat surface of a piece of driftwood creates a base to design on

Favourite Flowers

Ceropegia woodii

Rosary vine, Chain of Hearts, Collar of hearts and String of hearts


Phalaenopsis, Moth orchid

Lentinula edodes

Shiitake Mushrooms

Related Designs

29 July 2020 Tail end of the story

Craft a bark platform to design on in a foxtail fern frond.

25 August 2021 Doing a loop tangle twist

oh yes, a light an airy design showing off those very first autumn leaves.

10 November 2021 … any day now

Using dried floral material is so trendy right now. But the longer lasting the design elements the more effort you have to put in to stop it from looking lifeless.

17 November 2021 Ringing in A Very Merry Traditional Christmas… Tradition

A more than just a hint of Christmas tradition design... in a pre-Christmas design.

24 May 2023 everywhere IS nature

A lush wreath that remains green so that you can design once... and cut and cut and place your violas to make sure you have flowers all season long.

11 October 2023 Plenty Glow to Harvest

Glow and sparkle bark armature to celebrate the first signs of Autumn

10 January 2024 Snow Glitters and Mossy Glimmers

A glimmer is the opposite of a trigger... a little uplift. For this design I am lifting up my happiness by starting a tiny mossarium... but enjoying it as a design while it is in...

13 April 2012 Spring Has Sprung!

The sprouts are sprouting and the bees are being and the birds are birding. Tempting as it is new growth is hard to condition. Hard, but not impossible

22 January 2013 It's High Time for Tea: from craft to art, taking a delicious floral journey with veneer techniques

This was my second two designs for my It's High Time for Tea Floral Craft and Art Demonstration at The Capilano Flower Arranging Club meeting.

24 June 2015 Staying connected

My article and a floral cell phone re-charge station design featured in DIY Weddings Magazine

1 January 2020 How to freeze a wow moment

Create a long lasting winter inspired floral design that looks like it is frozen in time.

6 March 2019 It almost happened today!

Craft snow puddles to keep your flowers upright

22 April 2015 Toiling

Convert a dowel stick into a container for delicate flower stems

28 March 2018 Walking on eggshells

Fill eggshells with moss to create an upright container... with a surprising balancing trick.

15 March 2017 Wedding Welcome

My article and wedding direction board design featured in DIY Weddings Magazine

2 November 2016 Pick your poison

A Fun Halloween design with "poisonous mushrooms" tucked between the moss and petals