The only thing I bought during my recent experience at the Dane County Farmers' Market were some exquisite and inexpensive gladiolas. They make a perfect arrangement all on their lonesome, because their fluttery petals nicely balance their spiky stalks. Stick them in a trumpet vase and you get an arrangement with some flare.
I've been watching the light from my big picture window play on these gladiolas for a couple of days now, and I just had to take a picture. In fact, I usually take pictures of the flowers I arrange, like I need photographic evidence that I actually created something worth looking at. This arrangement of carnations I remember took me quite awhile. I was trying for a perfect dome of tightly-packed flowers and in the end I wound up with a vaguely circular shape.
I was somewhat more successful with this arrangnement of daffodils. My secret was leaving the rubber bands from the florist on and putting the flowers together as bunches instead of individual stems.
A much more (intentionally) free-form arrangement uses the same fishbowl vase to create a similar domed shape. This one mixes deep purple lilacs with some feathery chartreuse something or other.
I'm always keeping cut flowers out longer than I should. Once the petals start to drop my roommates hesitantly start asking me when I'm going to throw out the dying flowers and I start insisting they still have a few good days left. The arrangement above mixes thistle with virbinum, and while it wasn't my most successful it was long lasting (part of it anyway). I ditched the virbinum and kept the dried thistle around for months. In an even later incarnation I cut off all the dried green outer petals and put the purple cones in a little white teapot.
One of my favorite arrangements from the past year peppered dark carnations with ranuculus in shades of red and yellow. But of course you don't have to mix flowers to get color variations. What could look better with mauve tulips tinged in white then their own spring-green leaves and stems?
Let me know which arrangement was your favorite . . .