How To Create A Flower Curtain, Because It's Actually Way Easier Than You'd Think
This is probably one of the floral installations I am most well known for. It all started with an installation at Topshop, and blossomed from there. Flower curtains create a petally perfect photo backdrop. Guests love getting a snap in front of them for Instagram, or they can be used in a doorway to mark the entrance to your soirée. Save this for a super-special celebration and wow your guests, all for minimal effort. Here are my tips on how to create a flower curtain.
No matter how small your home is, there will be a spot where this could work — you may just need to think creatively. It must be able to bear the weight of the installation, so plan carefully. If you’re having your party in the garden and have a big tree, a flower curtain would look beautiful dangling from the branches.
I have two techniques for this sort of installation, one using ribbon and the other using coloured metallic reel wire. The steps show both together, but feel free to use one or the other. In terms of ingredients, you'll need:
- Pole. You need a support from which to hang your flower curtain. Here I am using a wooden broom handle, but you could also use a curtain pole or any other length of wood or metal.
- Ribbons. Work out how much you need by measuring the space you are installing in and adding a little extra to allow for the tying. I tend to use a ribbon width of 2.5cm (1in)
- Metallic reel wire
- Paper-coated florist wire
- Flowers. In the example below I've used carnation, chrysanthemum, ranunculus, rose, spider gerbera, sweet william, and tulip.
The flowers used in this installation will be out of water for the duration, so choose things that are going to last. They will also be hung upside down, so it seems a shame to waste a flower with an incredible centre, like an anemone, on this. Tall stems with lots of flowers, such as delphinium, foxglove and stocks, work particularly well aesthetically, as they follow the linear nature of the curtain. Before you begin, cut all the flowers down to an inch or so below the bloom. Too much stem adds unnecessary weight and can make it trickier to attach the flowers.
1. Hang Your Ribbons
Using ribbon gives the installation a greater density and acts as a backdrop for the flowers. This is great if you plan to have people walking through the curtain, as the ribbon is silky and tactile and won’t tangle as much as wire. Tie the ribbons to the pole, 3–5cm (1.25–2in) apart.
2. Add Wire
With wire, the process is a little quicker and there is a lighter, more magical quality to the installation because you don’t see the mechanics. I think this technique works best installed in front of a wall so that you create a cool backdrop for photos.
3. Adding Flowers To Wire
When adding flowers to the wire, start at the top and work your way down, as it can get very tangled if you try to add one flower above another. Wrap the wire around the stem a couple of times. It should be tight enough that the stem doesn’t slip out, but don’t be too zealous, as you could snap it.
4. Adding Flowers To Ribbon
The benefit of using ribbon is that you can add flowers at any space on the length, in any order. Place the stem against the ribbon and wrap with a small piece of coated florist wire, twisting tightly to secure. I usually do this in quite an ad hoc way, in contrast to the methodical process for the wiring.