It was right around Thanksgiving, and there was quite a turn in the weather between Weeks Forty-Seven and Forty-Eight.
And right around then, as I walked through the Pike Place Market, I noticed that the bouquets were becoming strangely sparse even since the week before. Only a few contained fresh flowers, although cabbage flowers were still much in evidence.
On some tables, the only flowers offered were dried ones, at $10 per bouquet.
Sadly, I knew this meant that the fresh-flower season was coming to an end. Which also meant the year-long Bouquet-a-Week Project was coming to an end.
It had been an exciting almost-year of choosing a fresh Pike Place Market bouquet, bringing it home, and rearranging the blossoms into my own designs.
I admired the farmers who were so dedicated to grow and drive into the Market so locals such as me, as well as travelers from around the world, could enjoy such a glorious natural display of colors, shapes, and textures.
And now, I have a collection of thousands of Pike Place Market blossoms captured forever by my iPhone 6 Plus and, more recently, my iPhone X Max, then “painted” in the amazing Waterlogue app.
I hope you have enjoyed this journey of floral discovery with me and will continue to return to the Braiden Blossoms website time and again for inspiration and respite from the everyday cares of life.
Have you ever heard the childhood rhyme, “Red and yellow, catch a fellow?” That’s the phrase that ran through my head when I spotted this Pike Place Market bouquet on sale for $20. This brimming bounty of blossoms contained two red gladiolas, two deep-pink Asian lilies, six scarlet dahlias, six yellow dahlias, petite white flowers, purple statice, and green leaves as filler.
Spencer brought home a gorgeous bouquet for Week Thirty-Seven, rife with mahogany Asian lilies, dark dahlias, perky sprigs of purple static, and tall fronds of lilac-colored flowers. Here is the gorgeous Pike Place Market bouquet in all its natural glory.
And here is the Bouquet-a-Week Project Week Thirty-Seven bouquet “painted” in Waterlogue.
I love to assess each fresh bouquet by laying the flowers in a row, arranged by type and color.
Then it’s always fun to see how they pop up in Waterlogue.
The dramatic mahogany lilies and three dark dahlias, crisscrossed just so in a tall rectangular glass vase, really come to life when backlighted in crimson.
My favorite celadon Asian vase (a former Chinese wine bottle!), seemed to call out for orange dahlias and an orange-y backlight.
I bunched all the purple flowers into a glossy black Asian-leaning vase.
And backlighted three more of the red dahlias in my mother’s cut-glass decanter (which I wrote about in the Bouquet-a-Week Project, Week Twenty-Six) for a simple monochromatic arrangement.
Leftover leaves look lacy and lovely in this interesting maroon vase scrawled in black lines.
More of the purple statice and a few other flowers stand tall in a blue Buddha vase that serves as this week’s small bouquet.
I have to confess, I “defected” during Week Thirty-Five of the Bouquet-a-Week Project and bought my flowers at a farmers market other than Pike Place.
I felt mildly guilty, but sometimes convenience and expediency are more important than political correctness. And my guilt was assuaged since the bouquet I purchased that sunny, yet cool, Saturday in early September was particularly spectacular.
The farmer who sold it to me was a lovely young Asian woman who explained that, even though it cost $15 (her most expensive bouquet), it was really a bargain since it contained purple statice, small globe thistle (a branch with five seed pods that looked like small balls), and several sprigs of eucalyptus. Since those parts of the bouquet were dried materials, they could be reused indefinitely.
I was especially drawn to the fresh blooms because they included my favorite color of deep purple along with pristine white. Three towering gladiolas, half a dozen dahlias (many with “babies” or smaller blossoms), purple flowers with yellow centers, and prickly greenery with small pink and white flowers formed the crux of the fresh portion of the bouquet.
Because of the plethora of both fresh and dried flowers, I was able to create three truly “major” bouquets and two smaller ones during Week Thirty-Five.
Here are the fresh flowers that I picked up at the Shoreline Farmers Market. You can get a good sense of the five balls and eucalyptus sprigs from this shot.
I couldn’t decide which of the three “major” bouquets from Week Thirty-Five was my favorite, but finally chose this one since it was the most ikebana-like among them. The flowers are in one of my all-time favorite vases, an Asian-inspired, matte-black vase made by Paddy McNeely that I bought years ago at the Northwest Flower & Garden Show.
The second major bouquet from Week Thirty-Five is more conventional.
The interesting thing about the third major bouquet from Week Thirty-Five is that is is mostly composed of dried blossoms including the small globe thistle. It was so tall parts of it touched the ceiling!
I rarely use this simple matte-white vase, but it did the trick this time to offset the pretty purple blossoms.
Here are three of the smaller bouquets I created during Week Thirty-Five.
For Week Thirty-Three of the Bouquet-a-Week Project, I returned to the Pike Place Market and chose the bountiful bouquet myself, versus having my darling husband pick one out.
Because it had been several weeks, I went a bit crazy, spending my entire budget of $20 on a SPECTACULAR mosaic of periwinkle, deep purple, and pristine white flowers. Here is the big bouquet in all its raw glory.
And here it is “painted” using the Natural Mode of the Waterlogue app.
I couldn’t resist laying out the individual flowers, placed together by type and color, to see just how many I had to play with during Week Thirty-Three. Here they are!
And these are the same flowers “painted” in Waterlogue.
Because of the sheer number of dramatic blossoms I had to work with, I was able to create four major bouquets for Week Thirty-Three. Here is the first one and interesting to note that the “greenery” this week is actually curly kale. You might say this is an edible arrangement–ha!
I fell in love with what I call pom-pom dahlias and felt they would look the most impressive in my Ikebana Vase from Design Within Reach. Backlighting in pink ups the drama.
More curly kale and the white dahlias, with just a touch of pink, fill this beautiful bulbous crystal vase to the max. I used a Perfect Arrangers stainless-steel “frog” in the bottom of the vase to hold the stems just how I wanted them to appear.
Another big-boy dahlia and a single pom-pom dahlia, when paired with pussy-willow stems in my favorite Asian-inspired celadon vase, really “sing.”
A single pom-pom dahlia and pussy-willow stalk look stupendous in my pink Buddha vase.
Shooting Week Thirty-Three’s trio of small bouquets becomes even more dramatic than usual when “painted” using the Waterlogue app’s Bold Mode.
I thought it would be instructive during Week Thirty-Three to show just how much of this bouquet was made up of dried pink and purple flowers as filler. This is one clever way that the flower farmers at the Pike Place Market manage to make their bouquets appear so full and also sell them at such reasonable prices.
As mentioned in Week Twenty-Five of the Bouquet-a-Week Project, I sometimes end up making “extra” bouquets mid-week when the blossoms begin to fade and I rearrange the surviving ones using new vases and decorative fillers.
Week Thirty-Three “extra” bouquets included three interesting bouquets. The first shows a bunch of the smaller dahlias (“babies”) clustered together in a pretty rose-embossed vase that I don’t use nearly enough. It originally held an FTD bouquet I sent to my mother-in-law and that I inherited when she passed away.
To help the flowers stay upright and not flop against the lip the vase, I used a round kenzan (a.k.a, a “spiky frog”) that is used in the Japanese art of ikebana. I bought the kenzan at the Seattle Cherry Blossom & Japanese Cultural Festival but they are widely available online if you want to purchase one.
A second “extra” arrangement is presented in my tall, baby-blue vase which makes any flower assortment look impressive.
Finally, more “baby” dahlias and some of the dried purple flowers fill my pink Buddha vase to good effect.
The Pike Place Market bouquet for Week Twenty-Nine of the Bouquet-a-Week Project came from one of my favorite long-time flower farmers called Flower Garden.
Erlinda is Flower Garden’s friendly floral designer. This week she created a beauty that included a half dozen pink peonies (several with “babies,” i.e., smaller blooms), white snap dragons, and white and pink golden arrow. A plethora of dried pink and purple flowers served as filler.