Looking to add a generous pop of color to your Thanksgiving table? I asked Sonoma County floral designer Jaclyn K. Nesbitt, owner of Jaclyn K. Nesbitt Designs, a boutique floral design studio, to share some of her tips for creating a beautiful autumn floral arrangement. Jaclyn’s pointers, along with photos taken by Sonoma photographer Sarah Deragon, are sure to inspire you to make your own floral arrangement.
Jaclyn encourages us to look around us for material and creative inspriation. She tells us, “Use your backyard (or your neighbor’s if they’ll let you!). All of the materials you see in these photos were grown right here in Sonoma County and all of the foliage can be foraged locally. This time of year is all about fall foliage in rusty reds, copper, bronze, gold and deep plum. Here I used maple, smoke bush, and nandina.”
She adds, “For floral, stick with what’s still hanging on locally before winter takes over. This means the last of the dahlias, garden roses, mums, strawflower, and celosia.”
“Chocolate cosmos are at their peak right now, ” she tells us, “and add a velvety richness to the palette.”
“Throughout the year, consider what might dry well before you toss your old floral arrangements,” Jaclyn suggests. “Here I used dried celosia, strawflower, and poppy pods that I saved throughout the year to add interest and texture to my fall and winter arrangements. Hang your materials upside down to dry, and with our Sonoma County heat, they’ll be perfectly dried in no time. Bonus: dried flowers look beautiful hanging in the kitchen or barn!”
“For me,” says Jaclyn, “the fall evokes rich jewel tones that are so decadent I want to eat them up!”
Of her floral designs on this stunning Thanksgiving table, Jaclyn says, “I added just the smallest splash of light with the ivory garden roses to tie into the linens and plates, but overall I kept to a rich, saturated palette. Orange and yellow tend to feel more traditionally ‘Thanksgiving’, so I opted for more berry and chocolate tones: Two of my favorite things to eat.”
Jaclyn reminds us that design and decorating can truly be a joy. “Have fun! Flowers and food go hand in hand,” she tells us. “Let loose, get your hands dirty, and see what happens!”
Thank you to both Jaclyn for her helpful tips and creative inspiration, and to Sarah for the gorgeous photos.
In my next post, I will share even more table decor and entertaining tips for Thanksgiving. Stay tuned!
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