Reciting the poem that we learned from school-day parties long ago is no problem. Roses are red, Violets are blue…

But are they? Red roses likely receive the most “place your order here” clicks for February’s candy-and-flower holiday, but this beloved flower emits the sweetest of scents and deserves attention beyond that which it commands for the year’s most lovey-dovey day.

I’m talking roses here and invite you along for a new look at this budding beauty.

Rose first, color second. Don’t settle for red roses. The state of Texas didn’t when it embraced the folk ditty that alludes to a rose of a yellow coloration. Pick a warm tone, such as orange, coral, or the aforementioned yellow. If you’re really daring, the almost silver tinge of lavender roses or chartreuse-color roses that appear to still be in the growing stage are sure to add sweet twists to a display.



You’ll need a mix of roses and accompaniments:

  • Chartreuse roses. Chartreuse’s existence in nature might be rare. But ask the light neon hue for impact, and it delivers. There’s no doubt that this color provokes questions. Is it still in the budding phase? Is it fully mature? Will it change color? Add chartreuse-color roses for a pop of brightness.


  • Apricot and peach roses. These feel-good colors come alive with a warm, flattering glow. You know the glow I mean. That one we long for when our favorite celebrities walk the red carpet with that perfect luminous lighting-and-makeup combo.


  • Lavender roses. This variety hints at romance but in a far more fashionable way than go-to saccharin pink roses. With a color like this one, numbers matter. Buy in large quantities to make a statement that’s on trend.


  • Eucalyptus. Every floral project requires a few bunches of filler. Eucalyptus is the green of the moment. We’re going to focus on this gray-green beauty in a later post, but here, it’s used simply to enhance.


  • Containers. We used three types of vessels to help the roses shine. Small bud vases are intended to hold just a few stems, and oftentimes, that’s plenty to add a bit of feminine sweetness. A low, modern glass square secures roses of a single color in a geometric shape that references contemporary sharpness. A sculptural vase with detail adds interest to stems in a trio of colors.


Now we’ll talk about arranging these beauties.



Arrangement 1: A Rose By Any Other Vase

Just a few. That’s all a bud vase needs to give the day a little extra kick in the “special” department. On my desk or bedside table, a bud vase adds a moment of pretty without getting too feminine. We anchored two contrasting pieces—one glows in brushed brass, the other with a maker’s hand in two-tone ceramic—on a wicker placemat. But get creative. Think trays, platters, or large plates (chargers are an easy solution) that are typically intended for dinner party feasts. Gather these little moments of happy. And here’s a tip: Roses tend to last longer than other flowers in the grand arrangements that you receive. Once your arrangement starts to deteriorate, pull the roses and repurpose in dainty bud vases for extended life.



Arrangement 2: Bed of Roses

If you made this bed of roses on the human scale, it would be an absolute dream to lie in it. At this point, we’ve all had the pleasure of seeing graphic creations like this one from visionary stylists. Meanwhile, at home, we start stuffing roses into a vase and wouldn’t think of cutting the stems to bloom-only status. The good news is this isn’t about the vase, it’s about the length of each stem. Find a low inconspicuous form (this isn’t the place to spring for a fancy crystal or porcelain vessel). Cut the roses down to the bloom, define a layout, and start positioning. Add greenery around the edges or leave roses on their own for an ultra-modern look.



Arrangement 3: Rose-Colored Roses

Again, I’m not here to push pink. And I’m not here to push red (not that I will complain if the love-charged charmers show up at my door). But I do want to nudge the idea of roses in colors and palettes that you least expect. I’ve noticed a return in design to honey as a neutral. Don’t worry, I’m fairly positive that its resurgence will knock our socks off and not cause us to cringe (anyone who moved into a house with honey-colored oak kitchen cabinets will understand). But it led me to create a bouquet using an array of roses in similar values with hints of vibrancy. Apricot and peach recede while chartreuse and lavender say, “Take notice.”  A tiny ceramic vase with loop details leaves plenty of room on the whitewashed square tray. Hmm…I feel like a plate awaits (hint: breakfast in bed).