WORDS:: Chyka Keebaugh
PHOTOS:: Lisa Atkinson
Carnations are a very underrated flower; because they are inexpensive and available almost anywhere they can be seen as an 'uninspired' option. However, en masse in a presentation like this definitely adds a wow factor.
Let’s make some floral pom pom balls, shall we?These gorgeous balls are so easy to make and remind me of big floral pom poms, so I thought they would be perfect to share. We have created these for past functions and yes, I did spend an afternoon hand making nearly 60 of these so I am confident to say I am an expert at them now!
Let me introduce you to the oasis ball! You will find these in a florist supply shop, or your local florist can get them for you. I created mine by using a combination of carnations which is a little daggy and old fashioned but oh so cheap and easy to get hold of. I am convinced they will come back into fashion, and I just love how they look en masse. Before you start creating your ball, it’s critical for the balls to be soaked for at least a couple of hours, overnight if possible. They need to be thoroughly wet as to continue to keep feeding the flower once it is on the ball. They do become quite heavy, and you need to keep them moist so your flowers don’t die, the ball acts like a water filled vase that feeds nutrients to the flowers so keeping it hydrated is a must.
After the ball is nice and soaked, it’s time to get the flowers in! I use a glass vase for the oasis ball to sit on because then I can clearly see what I am doing and be able to move it around easily. I use about six bunches of carnations per ball and like to keep it tonal. I have focused on the pinks and reds for these balls but in the past have created a table full that were all white, and they looked stunning! Go ahead and mix your colours, but keep it tonal, don’t go crazy, though, mixing up red and whites will look dated so beware!
Cut the flower stem short, about 15cm from the head of the flower and stick it firmly in the oasis ball, slowly work your way around the ball. It doesn’t matter where you start just to make sure you have fun with it. It is such a straightforward and fun arrangement to make; you really can’t go wrong just make sure you are turning it all the time making sure you are mixing in all the colours evenly.
One of the great things about having a gorgeous floral centrepiece is that it’s the perfect conversation starter, as simple as it is - they take under 10 minutes to make, is that they look so intricate, and people are always interested in how they are made. Personally, carnation oasis balls remind me of an old ladies swimming cap; it’s just so cute, and I love that!