“Flowers can be very personal choices that reflect our nostalgia or our urge for self-expression, and everything in between,” says floral designer Emily Thompson who has worked with some of the most popular fashion companies such as Chanel, Bottega Veneta, and Proenza Schouler.
Thanks to her ability to create beautiful flower arrangements for different types of interiors, she was also tapped to be the resident floral advisor at one New York City’s new luxury condominiums—Tribeca’s 30 Warren where she works directly with residents on designing custom arrangements for their homes.
“For me, flowers are a way to engage with the natural world. It's my very strong opinion that they should bring a sense of place and of time to a setting—they are not interchangeable paints in a palette, they are living things, with specific needs, who thrive in some landscapes and not others,” she says. That’s why Thompson always uses seasonal flowers in her arrangements. “This allows my clients a way to forge a stronger relationship with the natural world and with their own spaces.”
She suggests starting off with the kitchen since it’s “the heart of every home.” Don’t be afraid to go big—an oversized arrangement made out of freshly picked branches will become an immediate focal point.
“Flowering branches are some of the most lovely of all—we live in a haze of flowering quince, cherry, plum and more until it's gone. Even in December, we see our first quince branches. The first flower we see in our gardens is the Hellebore or Lenten rose,” she adds.
You can create continuity by having some of the flowers repeat throughout your home. If you live in a modern home, opt for single stems of large and exotic blooms such as proteas or Fritillaria imperialis. For boho-chic interiors, Thompson recommends loose bunches of grasses or a single Snowdrop in a bud vase, and for traditional homes, choose large masses of mixed Narcissus or Checkered Lily.
Thompson favors a simpler aesthetic when it comes to home interiors. She likes flowers to feel a bit understated even in grand settings.
“To me, there is nothing more luxurious than an uncultivated and wild specimen— something beyond commerce. I particularly love branches for the home. For ornate interiors, something wild from the forest can be just the thing—a story you tell yourself about your vast gardens and forests where you might have grabbed an overhead branch from horseback,” she says.
And when it comes to the color palette, the sky is truly the limit. Experiment with different hues, create contrast, and always keep in mind the season.