Vases have been around since people first started making things. Of all the arts, ceramics has the longest history, and you’ll find vases in almost every museum in the world, each one telling the story of an age. Poke around on the internet a bit and you’ll find in-depth histories of vase shapes, like these Greek styles from the 5th and 6th centuries BC. The Greeks painted elaborate scenes depicting important cultural narratives on their vases. Then there are stunning carved lacquer vases from 15th century China, with knock-offs available today.
There’s so much significance tied up in each vase that I almost feel guilty with my plain glass vases from IKEA. But here’s the thing: the availability of flowers is much greater now than it ever was, and the simpler and less distracting the vase, the better the flowers look, usually. Consider an elegant, tall cylinder filled with orange lilies, a few sunflowers, liatris and seeded eucalyptus. With all that color and texture, who needs a complicated vase? This week I did a little experiment at home, placing that exact flower combination in a glass cylinder as described fr the first half of the week, and moving it to an ornate ceramic vase for the second half. I was the only test subject because no one else in the family noticed or cared. My opinion was that the former outshined the latter, if that helps you at all.
On the other hand, when I’m looking for a vase for a cluster of a single type of flower, a more decorative vase is nice. I also love the clever bud vases (see our Pinterest board on vases for the ones shaped like little birds) collecting in my pantry.
What about you? Do you have a favorite vase? We have several customers who have made an annual tradition of bringing in a special vase for Christmas, Valentine’s Day or Mother’s Day, and it’s a great joy to fill those vases in unique ways each year. Do you have a vase like that? We’d love to see it and suggest some creative ways we can design a floral arrangement for you.
Photo by Media Fashion Group