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Expressing Thoughtfulness created the Floral Design Council as a way of celebrating and emphasizing the innovative thinking and artistic talents of floral designers across the nation. The Design Council also provides an opportunity to envision and develop truly original, next-generation floral products today’s consumers are looking for.


In addition, many products that are imagined and brought to life during the Design Council events are incorporated within the Local Artisan program (, further highlighting the vision and creativity of designers from coast to coast while also generating opportunities for local florists to increase their sales and revenue.


The most recent Floral Design Council was held at the beginning of the Spring season at’s Long Island headquarters. Waneita Bovan of June’s Floral Company and Fruit Bouquets in Mt. Morris, Michigan and Donna McTee of Dublin Floral Design in Dublin, California were among a group of designers who participated in the event. Both of the arrangements featured on these two pages reflect thoughtful ways to express sentiments of sympathy.


Waneita’s gently flowing design was inspired by her experience in creating a sympathy arrangement for the passing of a young child in her local community. Waneita met with the child’s mother who was of course devastated by the loss. “I took her hand, asked for her trust and said let me just create something for you. All I wanted to do was help express her sorrow,” says Waneita.


The design shown here includes purple dendrobium orchids, Italian ruscus, eucalyptus, curly willow, and butterfly picks arranged in a pastel lace ceramic planter. “The color is so customizable and the accents can be personalized. Butterflies are used to signify loss,” adds Waneita.


For her design, Donna combined an extensive assortment of florals including pink roses, green cymbidium orchids, green dendrobium orchids, pink stargazer lily, pink ginger, heliconia, purple liatris, purple limonium, aspidistra leaf, anthurium leaf, eucalyptus, Italian ruscus, leather leaf, and lavender stock. The design is set in a graceful pedestal vase.


“The tropical feel makes it different,” says Donna. “My inspiration was to create a higher-end, colorful sympathy don’t see a lot of sympathy arrangements with two kinds of orchids mixed together.” She adds that the versatility of the design would also enable it to be a beautiful botanical accent at a wedding.


To learn more about sympathy floral design, consider registering for Floriology Institute's "Celebrating Life Everyday" class.  This is a lecture and hands-on design course bringing you the latest trends in celebrating life’s special occasions in today’s markets.

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