Early autumn gardens offer a big bounty of blooms, but that doesn’t mean your flower arrangement has to be equally massive. Smaller grouped arrangements deliver a fresh perspective to seasonal decorating. We asked local florists to share advice for maximizing their impact.

Photo by Adam Finkle

Floral designer Amanda Hansen of Decoration Inc. staged burgundy dahlias in a trio of gold-dipped bud vases to bring an easy elegance to autumn arrangements. “Using repetition is an easy way to create cohesiveness among multiple arrangements,” says Hansen who explains that identical flowers, similar colors or like vases, can each make multiple arrangements come together as one. Small bowls and deep purple figs add dimension and expand the simple, single-hued display.

Photo by Scot Zimmerman

Floral designer Jessica St. Thomas capitalized on contrast by casually arranging hanging amaranthus, white calla lilies and a single chocolate sunflower in a trio of elegant cut crystal vases. “The flowers’ masculine hues and rich textures make the crystal look less formal and add a sense of surprise,” she says.

Autumn Flower Arrangement
Photo by Adam Finkle

Decorative stone discs serve as a stage for Amanda Hansen’s simple arrangements. The designer’s combinations rely on contrasting colors and forms to create the visual impact: A wine-colored dahlia pairs with an olive branch and colorful coleus leaves join black calla lilies.

Autumn Flower Arrangement
Photo by Adam Finkle

“Multiple containers allow you to highlight flowers and foliage individually, but complement each other when grouped,” Amanda Hansen says. Scabiosa pods and garden roses join for minimalist splendor in her contemporary grouping of arrangements. Because Hansen chose vases in a variety of sizes and shapes, she selected only two florals to maintain the desired simplicity.

Photo by Adam Finkle

“It’s fun to style vignettes in your home,” says designer Pam Olson who looked beyond blooms for this eye-catching display. Unexpected pheasant feathers, dried mushrooms, cacti and golden owl accents join more traditional flame calla lilies, football mums, dahlias and a cymbidium orchid to shape the arrangement. A gold tray and stack of books anchor the individual pieces and unite them into a cohesive collection. Vases from Native Flower Company.

Autumn Flower Arrangement
Photo by Adam Finkle

“Autumn needn’t always be brown,” says Native Flower Company’s Pam Olson. Inspired by the tones of an antique hydrangea bloom, the designer selected soft green stoneware and a green bottle to anchor the individual arrangements of hanging millet, wheat and a single leafy branch. “The height and lightness of the branch balances the weight of the large-scale hydrangea bloom,” she explains.

Autumn Flower Arrangement
Photo by Scot Zimmerman

“Grouping smaller arrangements creates a big look while keeping it simple,” says Jessica St. Thomas, who added dimension to a display of two teardrop-shaped vases by staging one filled with maidenhair fern on a stone block. Below, two thick-stemmed peonies contrast with the ferns’ delicate sprigs. “”Use a piece of stone, wood, or stack of books to add height and dimension to similar shaped containers,’ she says. “By elevating one of the arrangements, you also elevate the entire presentation’s interest.”


You can find more floral inspiration here.