New and Nutty

Once again this was a class where we could only use roses as the “flower” component of the design. In addition this was designated a “Contemporary” design. In other posts I have talked about the confusion surrounding the definition of “Contemporary” and how it is often confused with “Modern” even by experienced designers.

The easy way I remember it (and because I also remember the era) is that modern relates to the 60s and 70s predominantly so bright colours with minimalist structures, usually timber or metal.

Contemporary is generally judged as using new and emerging techniques and plant materials. This, at present, seems to focus on paper and fabric made from plant materials.

All that said, for this design I wanted to use nuts that might be less commonly found in floral design – pistachio shells, coconut fibre and gumnuts (although not truly a nut but rather a seedpod!)

The base is a piece of timber covered with pistachio shells glued on with hot melt glue. This was for speed as I had so many designs to put together but if doing it now I would use PVA. Holes have been drilled in the wood for the vial extensions which are simple bamboo skewers.

Each of the skewers has either coconut fibre or handmade paper to cover the vial taped to the top of the skewer. You can see the technique for making these by clicking here.

These are interlaced with paper covered horizontal skewers and wire to which each vertical skewer has been attached for stability.
Two colours and sizes of roses are in the vials along with some gumnuts.

A wire trail of pistachio shells is draped across the top of the design and gumnuts are placed in two remaining holes in the base.

Side note : Yes, I did drill holes in the pistaccio shells…..not a job I would call easy!!

This design placed first.

Judges Comments: A design that reflects the class title in a new and contemporary way. Some coconut fibre on the base as well would have carried that element through the design as has been done with the other nuts.

A design using the same techniques can be seen by clicking here (Class Title: Bridging the Gap)

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