The Art of Japanese Flower Arrangements Inspired Tom Dixon's Latest Collection of Vases

Peer Lindgreen/Courtesy Tom Dixon

The tradition dates back to the 7th century, but the pottery is very modern.

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Artists and designers gather inspiration from all over. So, when self-taught British lighting, furniture, and accessories designer Tom Dixon was looking for a creative idea for his latest spring project, he turned to an ancient art: Ikebana, aka the art of Japanese flower arrangements.

The practice started in the seventh century when Buddhism was first introduced to Japan and has since become secular and used as a living artwork. However, it’s more than merely creating a Pinterest-worthy flower arrangement. Schools have developed, and it’s meant to be a spiritual process of bringing the outside in. 


Courtesy Tom Dixon

However, to break it down from a practical standpoint, the arrangements include several key factors to make them stand out, including minimalism, shape, and line and balance. The result is three common styles: upright, slanting, and water-reflecting. And Dixon took all of this to create his new SWIRL vases.


Courtesy Tom Dixon

“Inspired by Ikebana, the Japanese art of flower arrangement, we created this collection by stacking a series of geometric forms upon one another to form multi-dimensional and functional vases,” said Dixon. “The vessels are grounded with a heavy base, allowing branches and florals to cantilever out, which creates more varied and dynamic arrangements. The process involves recycling the powdered residue from the marble industry, mixing it with pigment and resin to create substantial and sculptural vases.”


Courtesy Tom Dixon

As the season brings in bouquets of bright florals, the vases are meant to inspire you to bring outside pleasantries indoors. Plus, the eye catching-vases with a colorful psychedelic design add the perfect modern touch to the ancient practice. 

While you could certainly take classes to understand the true art, Dixon’s inspired design makes it easy to have a standout arrangement. Opt for the small, medium, or stem vase to create your own Ikebana and use tall, minimal blooms like a couple of lilies or peach blossoms.