This week we are talking about arranging. Arranging means to “put (things) in a neat, attractive, or required order.” When working with sola wood flowers, it is important that we understand the best way to arrange. If you are using wooden wedding flowers for your bouquets, you want them to be arranged so that they add to the beauty of your big day, not distract from it. Or maybe you are using sola flowers for a piece in your home. There are certain rules in arranging flowers made from sola wood, as well as greenery and fillers. But, there is another side to this business – arranging your life! Today, we are going to look at 3 basic principles that apply to both floral arranging and life arranging!
In a floral arrangement or bouquet, you want your eye to be able to flow through the piece naturally. This means it shouldn't get stuck in one area. It's all about flow. Are your flowers naturally flowing in size, style and color? If not, try to make sure you stay away from color blocking or grouping too many of the same kinds of flowers together. Evenly space them without building an exact symmetrical pattern. Does your greenery flow in texture, shade and theme? In order for an arrangement to reach its fullest beauty potential, there must be rhythm.
Rhythm – a harmonious sequence or correlation of elements; a measured flow of events, actions, or processes. Do you have rhythm in your life? Do your days flow from one thing to another seamlessly? If you are like me, the answer is NO. I get stuck, blocked, out of place, and my brain bounces from one thing to another. Anyone else's brain and life feel more like a pinball machine rather than the smooth rhythm of the ocean or a symphony? What are the things that make us disoriented? Can we clear some things away? Can we organize better? Can we arrange our lives in a more harmonious manner so that it flows instead of running around bouncing from one thing to another? Maybe you can delegate, maybe give up some of the unnecessary extras in life, or maybe you can just make time to get grounded before you face the day. Consider rhythm in arranging your flowers and your life.
Every piece, although there is flow and rhythm, should also have a focal point - one place that your eye goes to first before it makes itself around your whole piece. Maybe it's a specialty sola flower. Maybe it's something you hand-painted or embellished. It could be the size (something larger than the rest) or color (a pop of something bold) or placement (something placed tight to the center while other things flow further out). Focal point brings the attention and focus into one area and draws the viewer in. It's the “hot spot”, “main deal”, “#1 attention grabber”. The rest of the arrangement should be its compliment, its support, its leading lady.
How about in life? Are you focused? Have you set priorities and values? Do you allow other things to pull you away from your priorities or do you live life building up only things that compliment that which is most important to you? I know sometimes I lose focus on what's most important to me. In my head I know what means most, but I allow things that should be on the sidelines force its way to the front. I have to constantly remind myself what needs to come first. So, I ask myself, “Is everything I'm doing complimenting or hindering me from keeping my priority the focal point?” Name your priority and make it the focal point once again.
Beginner sola florists may think that balance means that everything has to be symmetrical - that every side looks exactly like the other. This isn't the case. Having balance in your arrangement simply means it shouldn't look lopsided when you're done. If any one side looks heavier than the other, then you still have some rearranging to do. For instance, if you have a heavier element on one side, you need something of equal weight on the other side – even if they're completely different things. When building an asymmetrical piece, there is still a balance in flow, color, texture and size.
THE NUMBER ONE QUESTION I GET ASKED is “As a busy entrepreneur with a Master's degree and 4 jobs, mom of 2, pet mom, Sola artist, video tutorialist, friend to many, daughter, sister, aunt, etc... HOW DO YOU KEEP BALANCE IN YOUR LIFE?” You know what my answer is? “Please don't ask me because I haven't figured it out yet.” I'm a self proclaimed workaholic. I do/ start-up everything I want to and I don't stop until I am successful. I love to work. I never settle down. I'm an introvert and don't need much socialization. I could stay in my house 24/7 and work, work, work. I mean, that's what I kinda do. But, I know in my head and in my heart, it's not what is best for me. Aaaannnddd.....I'm working on it. I'm working on balance. Maybe if I labeled it a career to work on balance, I'd be more successful. Ha! We need balance. We need time for people. We need time for tasks. We need time for ourselves. How to get there – eh, I'm still trying to figure it out. It's a journey that's necessary. Take the journey to find balance with me and let me know what you learn! I'll let you know what I fumble through....
Rhythm, focal point, and balance - keys to arranging our wood flower pieces AND our lives!