idea exchange

Mini Flower Arrangements

There is no doubt that large flower arrangements make a statement!


This lovely Mother’s Day arrangement was designed by Sweetwater Floral and delivered to a deserving Mother.

I was able to fill several other containers with the leftover flowers.

Over the next week and a half these extra arrangements have brightened up my house.
Now…..alas….as the roses and lilacs faded and drooped…they were removed.

The greenery (salal and ruscus) still look great.

The carnations are doing what carnations do…..lasting for an amazing length of time.

The little white rice flowers dried up, but still look nice.
I can never throw out flowers that still look good.
I decided to make a bunch of tiny little arrangements to use the salvaged blooms.
The first step was to find some mini vases.

Then a trip outside to find a few additional flowers and filler greens.
Not much is blooming because it has been so blasted cool and rainy here.
I did some pre-emptive trimming of the bedding plants.  I know if I do this, it will encourage these flowers to branch out and set more blooms.
Now the fun begins.
These mini bouquets in mini vases don’t need floral foam or frogs.  The greenery supports the stems.

 Hard to believe that all seven of these little mini vases were created with old flowers and a few garden blooms.

They are little bright spots all over the house….

Lessons for you:

You can use all the flowers from your big flower arrangements long after some of the flowers are droopy.

You can take small blossoms and greens from your garden.

Flowers make any space a little better!

Have A Great Day!

A New Look For Sweetwater Style!

Sweetwater Style is getting a new look!
The purpose of “Sweetwater Style” has always been about showing ways to combine style and elegance in economical ways.

That won’t change.
BUT….the focus will change.

See if you can figure out the new theme for Sweetwater Style!

I continue to believe that “Style is the perfection of your point of view”.
I know that the things that I enjoy most almost always have something to do with flowers.

Whether it is creating little bouquets for around the house or full on wedding decor, flowers make me happy.

I realize that some of my favorite posts are about arranging flowers and sharing tips with you my fabulous readers.

The revamped Sweetwater Style will be mostly about flowers! 

I will be sharing:
  • ideas and tips to make flower arranging easy
  • inspiration from floral designers 
  • sharing Sweetwater Floral Consulting events 
I am sure to add other things as I go along….maybe even some of my thrifting finds and DIY projects.
To get things started, I thought I would link up to some old posts about flowers that you might enjoy. 

I am excited to get restarted with this new look for Sweetwater Style.
I hope you get inspired to make flowers part of your lives!
Have A Great Day!


Decor Items to Transition from Christmas to Winter!


 I thought this survey was pretty interesting because I always struggle with when to take down “Christmas”!

I love all the glitz and sheen and red and green.
But as soon as the big day is over… starts to feel cluttered.

When we entertain between Christmas and New Year’s Day it is easy to make the case for leaving things looking festive.
Since we have no parties planned this week.  I am starting to get twitchy about taking things down and getting it packed away.

One strategy to use when “undecorating” is to ease out of full on holiday into a comfy cozy winter look.

You can actually leave a lot of the holiday decor items out and achieve that look just by tweaking things a bit.

Here is a list of the “stuff” NOT to put away.

 Pine Cones

The natural look of pine cones make them perfect for your woodsy, cozy theme. Tuck them into a big basket.  Tuck in some realistic looking artificial pine branches and a few white or silver orbs to complete the look.


The birch in the porch pots look nice all winter. Why not replicate that indoors?  Chunky birch sections can be placed on a bookshelf or mantle.  Skinny birch looks great in a vase with some greenery and flowers.

All those branches and twigs that looked so wonderful in you holiday arrangements can be turned into minimalist natural decor.  Curly willow, red dogwood, skinny birch all work this time of year.  Think of them as “no care” plants.

 Airy Greenery

Put away all that greenery that screams “Christmas Tree”.  The greens that look feathery and airy give a fresh look to winter decor.  I especially like these Lemon Cypress trees.  I am giving myself big pats on the back for keeping them from drying out….they need lots of hydration.  White Pine is another type that looks more wintery than Christmas!


Search Yarn wrapped antler on Pinterest

If you have access to antlers, they make a great accent in baskets or on a shelf. Mixed with pine cones and greeneryThis is my next craft project!  Yarn wrapped antlers just make me smile!

Cozy Throws

Layering throws on sofas and chairs is an inexpensive way to add color. Those throws also invite you to curl up and enjoy some down time after the flurry of activity of the holidays.

Candles and Twinkle Lights

I will bet that most of your candles are white or off white.  Put away the obvious holiday themed items and find a way to use your neutral candles in a new way. 
Those battery powered twinkle lights can continue to add sparkle around your house.  This time of year it is dark when I get up and dark by 4:30 in the afternoon.  A little twinkling can be mood changer.

 Holiday Plants
Those Pointsettias can still work as lovely accents if they are off white or if red is a color that works in your decor.  Take them out of the holiday foil and get rid of the cute little ribbons.  Find a ceramic pot or even bunch them together with some other plants.  They will last as long as you remember to keep them watered.  (Note to self: keep them watered.)


Holiday Themed Family Photos
Take a minute to have some of those amazing holiday snapshots printed.  The deals for photo prints make this a particularly good bargain this time of year.  Frame them in simple frames or display on a chalkboard.  Seeing those reminders of the holidays is a great way to extend the season without leaving the tree up until February.

Winter Birds

There is something so cheery about a cardinal.  If you have any redbirds that are part of your christmas stash, they can make a nice wintery vignette.  Look for these when you are shopping the after Christmas sales.  This lovely glass friend was a find at a “before” Christmas mark-down sale. The cardinals inside are almost as fun as the ones on the bird feeder outside the front door.  

 And a few other holdovers!

Hey, if the Amaryllis bulbs are still blooming for real, then this Amaryllis tea towel can still “hang” around for a few weeks.

This “permanent botanical” seeded Eucalyptus I scored at the thrift store looks nice and wintery with some glass winterberries which were another thrift store find.

This year I am gradually “undecorating” instead of big marathon undertaking.  That means a big mess in the storage area while I gather and put away.  My goal is to do a lot(or little) weeding out as I go.  It always seems so hard to part with holiday decor even if I don’t use it all each year. 

In the meantime…..remember when you take your tree down:


Have A Great Day!

Foiling the Felines!

Marvin the cat has developed the most annoying habit/craving!

Back in the day….”cute little Marvin” just slept in the green grass and DID NOT eat it!

 He seems to NEED to eat almost any foliage that is in any floral arrangement in the house.
He doesn’t bother the house plants….just the greenery in flowers.
And of course…..after munching….there is the puking that follows!

In fact….he even tries to eat the husks on the sweetcorn if it is sitting on counter….go figure!!!!

Now…you know I am NOT going to give up having flowers in the house!!!
And….you know that a flower arrangement needs green filler to look pretty!!

What to do?
Wanna see?

 These lovely Sunflowers just cried out for Hosta leaves…..Marvin’s absolute FAVORITE greens to munch on….
Since that wasn’t an option…..

 I headed to the craft store and bought the best looking “permanent botanicals” that I could find.

I looked for things that are often used as fill at the florist shop.

Total investment: $18.00

But….the proof is in the photos.

Look again at the sunflowers.
You have to look really hard to see that they are not real.

In fact….Marvin keeps sniffing them…and then turning to give me his best “stink-eye”!

Here are some more examples.

These Zinnias are tucked into some Dollar Store ferns and spiked grass.  There is a little real pachysandra too….that is one that Marvin doesn’t eat.

Now obviously, I would rather use real greenery.
But given the choice of using artificial greens with real flowers or cleaning up cat vomit….I bet you can guess which one I pick.

Have A Blooming Great Day!

Hosta Flowers: Pretty or Not?!

Hosta plants are abundant here at Sweetwater. 

I wish I was one of those people who knew all the names of the different plants and labeled them.
I am NOT that Hosta gardener!

I do love all the gorgeous leaves of the many kinds of Hosta.

These plants are great fill for the shady gardens that are way to big for any good purpose!  The varied colors on the leaves brighten up the shady spots. The textures are interesting.

Now, let’s talk about the flowers on Hosta!
The flowers have always seemed to be sort of a nuisance….hanging around on the top of the plant in a way that looks out of place next to the great foliage!

You can probably tell that I am not a Hosta flower fan!

I decided to change that this year.  I started to look….really look at the flowers and see them as possible cut flowers for the house.

I did a little google image searching….and found these examples of other people’s arrangements.


This one looks like it uses Snow on the Mountain flowers as well as Hosta…hmmmm….I have lots of that too!


This is so pretty.
Once you isolate the flowers and treat them with some “respect”, they have a look that is almost like an orchid.


This is almost Zen like…

So off to the garden I went with new eyes focused on the flowers on the Hosta instead of the leaves.

BTW….have I told you that I can’t have Hosta leaves in the house anymore….
Why???  Marvin the cat has decided that if you eat the leaves of the Hosta….you can thoroughly annoy the “help” by vomiting in a variety of inconvenient places!!!

 ANYWAY….here is the result of my new appreciation for Hosta flowers.

I am definitely going to start using them more often……
HMMMM….we are going to dinner at some friend’s tonight….
Maybe I will make that Zen looking arrangement….they DON’T have a puking cat to worry about.!

Have A wonderful Day!