You know what really brings a room to life? Fresh flowers. You don’t even have to spend a lot of money. If you’re going budget, stick to one type of bloom and buy in abundance. One more thing: make sure you have a fab collection of vintage vases, used vases, and gently loved vases. Different posies want different shapes and sizes, so stock up and bring back flower power! Green things up even more and pair them with vintage planters.
TELL-ALL GUIDE: THE BEST VINTAGE VASE BY FLOWER
When you consider that nothing powers up a room like flowers, we’d all do best have a few vintage vases at the ready. Yet we’re willing to bet that a survey our personal collections would turn up far more of those recycled florist vases than any of us would like to admit. Functional, yes. Classy? Not so much.
Thankfully, secondhand vases are plentiful, with even sought-after designer ones like Wedgwood wearing moderate price tags. In fact, when building a collection of vintage vases, it’s easy to score the basics in no time (by which we mean urns, cylinders, and squat squares). While you’re at it, spring for some dinner party classics like Chinoiserie urns and dainty bud vases too. Trust us, amassing the collection won’t be the hard part. Rather, the question will become: what’s the best vintage vase to buddy up with your blooms?
To help, we’ve created the ultimate flower and vintage vase pairing guide. Snap up the complement to your favorite flower, or refer back to the guide when a life suddenly weighs you down with more peonies than you can handle (hey, it can happen!).
Blue-and-White Chinoiserie Vase + Pink Peonies
You know how black and gold are absolutely meant for each other—like finish-each-other’s-sentences made for each other? Yep, that’s blue-and-white Chinoiserie and pink peonies. A salivation-worthy combo that gives the eyes a serious workout too, the pairing is a fresh take on tradition, perfect for updating a heavy-handed classic like a mahogany dining table, or adding a worldly vibe to a mod staple like a Lucite desk. For a muted take on the look, opt for light pink and white peonies, but to curate the ultimate buzzy bouquet, go for the hottest pink peonies you can find. When it comes to the vessel, don’t discount a ginger jar, either. Just store a ginger jar’s lid into a cabinet when peonies are in season and replace it when the summer doldrums hit.
SHORT & SWEET
Hobnail Milk Glass Vase + Light Pink Ranunculus
If the best bouquets are akin to sweet confections, then a vintage hobnail vase filled with ranunculus is a sleeve of gold-dusted petit fours. The perfect way to punctuate a nightstand or breakfast nook, this combo utilizes one of our all-time favorite secondhand vases: the milk glass hobnail vase. Fenton Glass first began producing the hobnail design in the 1950s, beginning with clear glass and gradually integrating milk glass into the collection. The sweetness of creamy milk glass lends it perfectly to an equally delicious flower, and the ranunculus—with its tight bud head, concentric petals and pastel hue—is ideal. Feather this arrangement with supporting beauties like grape hyacinth or veronica white flower for a more fleshed-out arrangement.
Vintage Tulip Vase + Red Tulips
Developed in the Netherlands in the 17th Century, the tulip vase consists of a large urn outfitted with a series of long-necked spouts. Traditionally, these urns were large in scale and crafted of blue-and-white delft. In the 17th Century the spouts were only intended to hold single tulip stems, as tulips had only recently been imported to the Netherlands from Turkey and were incredibly expensive. While there’s no denying a vintage tulip vase is impressive on its own, once you’ve treated it to tulips—trust us—there’s no going back. Angled spouts lend naturally bowing tulips a chicly tousled feel not normally associated with the prim and proper flower. Plus, blue-and-white delft accented by ruby red blooms is a straight-up vision.
Vintage Mod Bud Vase + Yellow Craspedia Billy Balls
If your lack of a green thumb extends to flower arranging, a vintage bud vase and yellow Craspedia Billy Balls is destined to be your hosting stand-by. A simple, no-think pairing, this one can be thrown together with all the ease of pasta and water. Feel free to use any bud vase, here, but considering the spherical-shape of the Billy Balls, we love a clean, mod bud vase with egg-like leanings. All you need here is two or three stems of Billy Balls, but given their sculptural nature, let your inner artist out and experiment a bit. You really can’t go wrong with this one.
FOR THE LOVE OF FORAGING
Vintage Demijohn + Foraged Branches
While not a traditional antique vase, per say, demijohns shouldn’t be discounted when it comes to showcasing botanicals. Originally used to chauffeur wine around wineries, demijohns are clear, bulbous-based jars with thin necks. They’re also fantastically oversized, making them perfect for adding an element of oh-wow to interiors. While they hold up just fine on their own, we swoon over vintage demijohns filled with branches clipped straight from the garden. We’re talking large, tributary-like branches adorned with gigantic, hand-sized leaves or wind-swept blossoms. The less unkempt looking, the better!