Tall Vases Make Your Decorations Standout

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Tall vases are wonderful for making a dramatic statement.What statement would you like to make? Have a hobby you would like to show off? Enjoy holidays and changing seasons? Maybe you like themed decorations that fit in with each room individually. Get ready to let your imagination and creativity take off.

Ever wonder what to do with a large collection of small objects? Try a three or four feet tall clear glass vase. Fill it with your matchbooks from all over the world. Stand the vase on the floor to add some interest to a boring corner. Collections of shells and sea glass go great in tall clear vases, too, especially if you happen to live near the beach or choose an ocean theme for decorating your home. Rock collections can find a good home in tall clear vases as well. Gift wrapping paper and ribbons seem too pretty to throw away, but how many times can you actually use them? Collect all your pretty bows and shiny paper and arrange them casually into your vase. As they get old remove them and replace them with wrapping from the latest birthday or holiday. Pine cones are a fun thing to fill a tall clear vase in the mountains or as a decoration for the holidays.

Permanent botanicals are a good idea for tall vases because they do not require water. Water would make a tall vase too heavy to lift and it would be difficult to empty when the flowers died. Standing water, especially with real stems and leaves, can get unpleasant, so take a trip to the nearest retailer where faux flowers are sold.
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In spring use light, bright colors such as pink and lavender. Find fruit tree branches with spring flowers that will fit your spring theme as well as being long enough to stand in a tall vase.Summer warmth naturally fits well with tropical themes.Tropical arrangements lend themselves well to tall vases because flowers such as ginger, heliconia, and bird of paradise have long stems. Use palm fronds or ferns leaves to make your warm colored flowers “pop” against the green. Bamboo also comes in tall sizes and will give your arrangement a great tropical look. In the fall stand birch branches up in your tall vase and glue on faux leaves in bright fall colors. Stand inside your front door for Thanksgiving guests to admire. Long curly willow branches can also be used for big, bold arrangements, and make another good holder for fall leaves. Pampas grass with its feathery white seeds and long, straight stems is another plant that looks great in a tall vase in autumn.In winter fill your tall clear vase with tree ornaments. Use simple orbs for a modern look, or use more elaborate decorations for a more traditional look. Decide upon a theme such as sweets and fill with faux treats such as gingerbread men, red and white candies, or cookies.

To decorate a bathroom intersperse transparent plastic orbs that shine like soap bubbles with colorful guest soaps throughout your tall clear vase. Match the soap colors to your towels to tie the look together. For your sewing room gather all those fabric remnants you’re never going to use but that are too pretty to throw away. They’ll make a lovely display filling your tall glass vase. Add some bobbins and some old wooden thread spools to support the theme.

Tall ceramic vases come in all colors and textures. Fill them with tall branches such as grapevine and tie with raffia for a natural look. Find milkweed vines growing over fences. When they die carefully unwind them, taking care not to break them. Their interesting shapes go well with the earthy look of clay vases. If your ceramic vase is glazed in a bright color, make a grid of tape across the top. Cover your tape with permanent botanical ferns and place colorful flowers throughout the grid. The general rule of thumb for making vase arrangements is to have the flowers stand above the vase about twice as high as the vase, but with tall vases this can be difficult to make and to find a place for it, unless you happen to have high ceilings . Instead, try placing the same amount of foliage and flowers out onto each side of your vase. The weight will be the same, but you will have an arrangement that does not take a stepladder to make and that will not bump into your chandelier. For a simple modern look use the same color flowers as the vase. This is known as a monochromatic design. For a more traditional look use a contrasting color or several contrasting colors that harmonize with each other and your vase.

Sometimes the most difficult thing to do with a work of art or craft is simply to leave it alone. Many craftsmen design their tall vases to stand as beautiful structures in their own right. But you wanted to craft your own unique design. No problem. Many community colleges, studios, and art schools offer classes in glass blowing and pottery. Learn to make your own tall vase. First take enough instruction so that you are confident enough with your new skills. Then decide where you want your new tall vase to stand. That will help to determine the size, shape, and color for your new decoration. Hold up a tape measure in the spot where your tall vase will stand. What shape goes with your interior decorating scheme? Is your furniture basically square-shaped? Perhaps some curves would add more interest. What color will match the furniture or contrast with the wall color to make your creation stand out? Are your walls painted in warm colors? Perhaps turquoise or green would make your tall vase stand out. Plan what you will make by drawing sketches of your design. When you have chosen your favorite sketch, go to it. You’ll have a work of art like no other on the planet.

Eiffel tower vases can be used for a variety of decorative purposes

eiffel-tower-and-orchidsJudging by the name one might imagine an eiffel tower vase as a model of the famous Parisian tower, but the resemblance is actually rather vague. Actually the vases are made of glass and have a tall thin appearance, with four corners at the base to keep them steady, reminding many of the famous landmark..

Eiffel tower vases can be used for a variety of decorative purposes. The long stem can be filled with items to make it an elegant decoration in itself. Fill with California crystals and an LED light source for a romantic lwer vases themselves come in different sizes, so you can make a grouping with taller vases in the back and shorter ones in the front if your arrangement is against a wall. If your arrangement is at the center of a table, place the tallest vase at the center and arrange the shorter ones all around it. ook. Die your crystals with food coloring or leave them clear. Acrylic “crystals” also make a beautiful filler. Powdered rainbow floral foam is also lovely. Use sand in a variety of colors for a rainbow effect. First pour in purple sand, followed by a layer of red, then orange, yellow, green, blue and purple again for a spectral effect. Some florists like to layer various media into the stems of Eiffel tower vases to give their arrangements a variety of textures and colors.

Holidays are good times for filling stems of Eiffel tower vases with various colors. One florist used blue acrylics, white California crystals, and blue powdered rainbow foam for Hannukah. The same could be made for Christmas with red and green acrylics floral foam, or California crystals. For Thanksgiving use fall-colored sand for a less glittery look. For Valentine’s Day alternate pink, red, and white. Pink is also traditional for Mothers’ Day.

An Eiffel tower vase filled with decorative materials can be used alone for a simple modern look, or in combination with other vases. If your grouping is going to have a front and a back, such as an arrangement of vases on a buffet table, place the tallest vase at the back and shorter vases in front . If your arrangement is going to be seen from all sides, place the tallest vase at center and arrange the shorter ones all around it.

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Either fresh flowers or permanent botanicals can be arranged to make a dramatic arrangement in your Eiffel tower vase. If you have filled your vase with some of the suggested decorative media above and want flowers as well, you will need a shallow bowl with a wide flat bottom. Drop floral foam into a bath of water and allow it to absorb water until it is all dark green and floating slightly below the surface. Do not push it down, but let it sink naturally. Place floral foam into your bowl and secure it with bowl tape, available where floral supplies are sold. Cover your foam with greenery such as leather leaf, allowing leaves to hang over the sides, hiding your bowl completely.Next place some of your favorite flower into the foam, arranging the stems to make a round shape. Add smaller flowers, such as baby’s breath, throughout, just below and to the sides of the other flowers to fill in space and frame your larger flowers. Flower colors can be selected on the basis of color for the appropriate season or holiday. For spring choose colors such as pink and lavender. For summer choose some yellow or blue. For autumn choose orange and brown. White is good for winter. Pick blue for Hannukah and red for Christmas. For the latter add some pine needles or cedar. When your bowl arrangement is complete place it onto your Eiffel tower. Add amaranthus to the sides of your bowl and drape it over your vase for a poetic effect.

You can do much the same thing with permanent botanicals , buy, of course, they will not need a water source. Glue styrofoam into your bowl and begin covering with permanent foliage. Add your flowers in the same way as for your fresh flowers.. Place your bowl on top of your Eiffel tower and you have your finished arrangement.

If you prefer you can fill your vase with plain water and arrange longer stems into it. The advantage of this kind of arrangement is that the stems will absorb more water all through their lengths. Some flowers that work well for this kind of arrangement include roses, lilies, and allium, all of which grow on long stems. Tangle their stems with a few stems of leather leaf to hold them in place, then place all the flowers and leather leaf into your vase at once. Remove the stems every few days and replace the water with fresh water.

Eiffel tower vases are often used at wedding receptions because the flowers can be high enough not to interfere with conversations that take place across tables. Choose the tallest Eiffel tower you can find, fill it with water, and soak spherical floral foam in water. Again, allow the foam to fill completely with water without touching it. Pave the foam all around with flowers such as Kermit poms and place your sphere onto your Eiffel tower vase. Rotate the sphere from time to time so that all the flowers are exposed to the water in the vase. For a round table use one arrangement in the center. For a rectangular table place a row of vases into a line down the center. Mirrors or runners will emphasize your arrangements and give them depth. Another way to use Eiffel tower vases in a row is to fill them with water and place curly willow or a decorative grass such as bear grass or steel grass into each one. Now bend your curly willow or grass and place the top end of each into the next vase in line, so that your line of vases will all be connected.

These are only a few things that you can do with your Eiffel tower vases. Gather your ideas and materials and make your own individual creation.

Crystal Vases For Engagements Weddings and Anniversaries

wedding crystal vaseCrystal glass is not really crystal like quartz or gems, but comes from the Italian word “cristallo”, meaning a certain kind of imitation glass. Crystal glass today is glass containing lead, used to make the glass clearer and more sparkly than ordinary glass. In the United States crystal is defined as having at least 1 percent lead, while European crystal has 10 to 30 percent lead. Among florists a vase is a container taller than it is wide, but among non-florists it can be pretty much any container used to hold flowers.

Crystal vases can be used as decorations alone or to show off particularly beautiful floral arrangements. For engagements, weddings, and anniversaries a gift of flowers in a crystal vase provide not only the flowers that the occasion deserves, but a lasting beautiful heirloom.

Crystal vases are available from several makers. Some of the best known names in crystal are: Baccarat, Godinger, Lalique, Lenox, Nambe, Orrefors, Swarovski, and Tiffany.

Baccarat has the distinction of making several modern crystal vases, such as its Spirale designs and its Passion clown vase. The latter is composed of a simple shape ornamented with dots. The Objectif bowl is named after the French word for camera lens, due to its simple lens-like shape. Many other interesting designs await the shopper.

Godinger is among the most affordable crystal, and offers a good variety of containers. Its Impressions set of five crystal vases combines simple, modern lines with a whimsical note. The vases’ necks are tilted at different angles to give the set motion when all five are lined up. The company’s Colonial crystal basket can be used to hold Easter eggs or flowers for any time of year. Godinger’s Pumpkin biscuit box is not strictly designed for flowers, but would be good for fall-colored flowers or for holding candies at Halloween. That’s just a small sample of what is offered.

Lalique’ Tourbillons vase was designed in 1929 in art deco style and has become a classic today. Lalique offers several crystal vases in midnight blue, amber, red, purple, light blue, green, gold, and turquoise. The Poseidon vase with its seahorses would be great with an arrangement of flowers that look as if they should be underwater–braziliensis, dusty miller, proteus, and spider lily. The ornate Versailles vase would make a great foil for a simple monofloral arrangement of calla lilies. A whole catalog of Lalique allows the creative decorator to find something for every taste.

When we think of Lenox fine China often comes to mind, but the brand has a lovely collection of crystal vases as well. The Marchesa painted camellia vase was inspired by designer ball gowns. Several more simple modern bud vases are also available in shapes such as cylinder, ginger, and urn. Ruffled vases are available in clear, smoke, turquoise, purple, and amber.

Nambe has some truly original crystal vases.River vase, with its twisted shape, is designed to give the impression of running water. The Planar vase combines flat surfaces with lines to vary its texture. Can-can and Lovebirds are just two more of many interesting and eye-catching crystal vase designs.

Orrefors has collections of both glassware and crystal ware. Vases seem to take on a life of their own with combinations of straight and curved sides. When free-form vases, bowls, and candle holders are clustered together they can be arranged to make perfect cylinders and square. The wave vase has undulating lines to symbolize ocean waves. An excellent piece to decorate a beach house or a room with a pelagic theme. Display a conch shell nearby or fill with sea glass. The Cathedral bowl, although a simple modern design, was inspired by the arches of European cathedrals. That and much more await in fine crystal shops.

Swarovski is known for perhaps the most elegant of the crystal collections. The company’s Crystalline vase has a stem filled with thousands of glittering chatons, or Austrian crystals. Fill the top with flowers or add more Swarovski crystals in a contrasting color. Swarovski’s wine glasses are also good used alone or in a group holding small, perfect roses. Swarovski also makes crystal flowers and statues of birds and other animals in colored crystal, so use your creativity in putting together an entire display. The Swarovski collection is easily accessible since the company has its own retail stores in many malls.

Tiffany enjoys a well-deserved reputation for delicate, beautiful things. Tiffany’s Lily of the valley vase needs no flowers to detract from its tiny representations of white coral bells. Or choose the Mediterine trumpet vase with its lovely little depictions of sea creatures. Tiffany’s Tulip vase has depictions of delicate vines climbing up its sides. The Floral vine rose bowl has similar vine depictions around a perfect sphere. Fill with water and float roses on top, or hold roses under water for a few seconds until water permeates them and they stay underwater. The company’s Lillian jug, although designed to hold wine, would make an elegant statement with a single stem of white orchids.

When buying crystal vases save the containers they come in. They are carefully designed and built to keep their contents safe. On moving day you will be glad you still have the ideal container for packing your beautiful piece. If you live in an earthquake-prone area, velcro sticky pads can be placed on the bottoms of your vases as well as to the surfaces under them to keep them from falling.

Crystal vases should not be washed in dishwashers and should not be exposed to extreme hot or cold, since extreme temperatures will cause them to lose their luster. Wash crystal under a stream of running tepid water and dry with a soft clean dishtowel. Some people use a little vinegar to prevent water spots.

Crystal vases should be displayed with plenty of space around them so that they will be shown to full advantage. Place your vases near sunny windows so that sunlight meeting the crystal will split into rainbows on the walls behind it. We have covered only a little of what is available and what you can do with crystal vases. Now go and see the real thing.

Bamboo Plant Glass Vase

Bamboo-shoots-in-Glass-jar_edited-450x450Bamboo appeals to crafters, gardeners, and environmentalists alike, so if you are any one or all of them, you are definitely in luck. Being stronger than steel, bamboo is a wonderful building material for decks, ladders, tree houses, birdhouses, and anything else you can imagine, so let your imagination go wild.

Bamboo grows in warm, mild climates, so those of you in zones 7 and 8 see your nursery for the kinds of bamboo that grow best in your neighborhood. Let the nursery people know whether you want your bamboo for crafts or merely for ornamentation, because that will influence the size and appearance of the variety you choose.

Bamboo likes to grow in the sun in well-drained soil. Keep the soil moist but do not allow the roots to stand in puddles of water. Harvest bamboo during the summer when it is driest. I strongly recommend a powered hand saw, unless you have a very sharp saw and very good muscles. Otherwise you could be there a long time.

Once your bamboo is harvested it will need to be cured to keep it from cracking. The curing process removes resins and dries out the wood. One way is to use a propane torch or charcoal fire to heat your culms until the resin comes out of them, then wipe it off and store the culms in a cool, dry place for a few weeks. Or you can soak the bamboo poles in water for 90 days, then remove them and allow them to dry away from the sun. The easiest way is to stand your cut bamboo vertically until it turns light brown, then store in a cool, dry place indoors.

Once your bamboo is cured it is time for the fun part. What to make? Bamboo makes a pleasant, hollow sound when two pieces are hit together, so they make a great musical
toy. Your local kindergarten or high school band might appreciate a pair for its rhythm section Drinking cups are another simple thing to make. Simply place your bamboo onto a hard surface and cut out a section Cut to the right of the closest node on your right and just to the left of the closest node on your left. Stand up your cup and you are ready to go. You can make vases using the same technique, although if you make them too tall they are likely to be unstable.. Cut the bottom of the vase carefully to make it even with the surface where it will stand. If it still has a tendency to fall over, make a stand using a split bamboo culm. Cut out a length of bamboo and split it evenly lengthwise down the middle. Place it with the concave side downward and cut out a hole into the center just large enough for your vase to fit into it. Place your vase into the hole and secure with glue. Ikebana floral arrangements especially lend themselves to bamboo containers.

Split lengths of bamboo are also good for making horizontal containers if you leave nodes at both ends. Stabilize with “legs” made from more split bamboo lengths, attached so that their convex surfaces are facing upward. Use your containers to store office or crafts supplies, or put them out at a party with candies or nuts.

Hang bamboo poles horizontally under your roof’s overhang and hang containers of plants from them for a green look. Another lovely outdoor look is a bamboo fountain. The number of poles you will need will be determined by how large a fountain you would like to make. Choose one large diameter and one diameter pole. Cu a length off the smaller diameter pole with a slanted cut. Cut hole into your larger poles for the smaller pole to fit in, at a slightly downward angle. Insert your smaller pole into your larger one and stand the larger pole next to a pond or pool, with the spout facing the water. Install a pump to recirculate water from the pond to the fountain. Plant bamboo around your pond for a natural look. Japanese maple overhanging your pond also goes with an Asian theme, although having any kind of tree overhanging a swimming pool would make it difficult to keep clean.

There are two basic ways of making a bamboo birdhouse. You can bolt several lengths of bamboo together side by side and use the resulting boards just as you would plywood. Or you can use a large-diameter birdhouse (how large depends upon the kind of bird you want to attract) for the main body of the house.Cut your large diameter pole just above one node for your ceiling and just below another node for your floor. Cut out a round hole (again the size depends upon the species of bird you want to nest) for the entrance. Make some scratches inside your birdhouse just under the entrance, to provide a toe hold for fledglings just leaving the nest and fluttering up toward the light. Split some smaller poles and glue with their concave sides down over the top of your birdhouse for a roof. You can either slant them all in the same direction for a “shed” style roof, or slant them in opposite directions for an “A” style. Loop a piece of fishing line between your roof and your upper node and tie it together firmly about an inch above the roof. This will serve to hang your birdhouse from a tree branch. Choose a place where predators will have difficulty finding and reaching it. Place some split bamboo containers around and fill them with bird seeds.

Building a bamboo tree house, ladder, or deck is beyond the scope of this article. It obviously takes a great deal of expertise to make your structure safe , so don’t try it at home before you know what you are doing. Courses in building things are often available from large hardware chains and community colleges.

Once your project is built you might want to paint or stain it to change its color or protect it. Lightly sand your structure to remove the natural wax from the bamboo. Choose the glossiest spray paint you can find or use a wood stain or varnish. When painting a birdhouse choose a light color to keep it from getting too hot inside . Choose a natural color such as green or brown to blend into the background and keep the residents safe from cats.

I hope you have picked up a few interesting ideas. What will you make?

Aloe Vera Plants Make Great Ornament Plants

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Aloe vera plants are succulents, meaning that they have thick leaves and roots that hold in water. Their long, pointed light green leaves grow in concentric circles. Long vertical branches give rise to tubular reddish-orange flower, with several flowers growing outward horizontally from their central stem.

Aloe vera plants grow only in cultivated conditions, although relatives of aloe vera grow in the wild in Africa. The plant has been cultivated at least as early as ancient Egypt, where is was put into the tombs of the pharaohs. Aloe vera is often grown as an ornamental plant in gardens in the southwestern United States, where water conservation is a consideration .Aloe vera plants can be grown outdoors in a mild climate. Due to their succulent nature aloe vera plants do not tolerate frost or temperatures of 32 degrees or cooler. The water in their leaves and roots can freeze and destroy the plant’s cells. If it freezes where you live you can grow aloe vera in pots near a sunny window and take them outside in the summer.

To grow aloe vera plants outside you will need moderately rich, well-drained soil in a sunny location. Although aloe vera is drought-resistant, it will do best if watered during the summer when it is growing. Allow the soil to dry completely before rewatering. Aloe vera roots grow near the surface, so small, frequent waterings are better than deep watering. Aloe vera plants can be found in most nurseries, as can a wide variety of other succulents.

Esthetically aloe vera plants work well with other succulents and cacti. For variety plant aloe vera near escheveria rosettes, ice plant, jade plant or barrel cactus to make an interesting succulent garden. Sand or gravel and pretty rocks will give your garden a Southwestern theme. You can find interesting rocks at a rock show or garden center, but it is more fun to visit the desert and go rock hounding. There you can pick and choose just what you want to personalize your succulent garden.

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To raise the plants indoors provide wide pots where the roots can spread horizontally. Terra cotta pots are good because they are porous, allowing excess water to escape. Terra cotta pots also usually have a hole in their bottoms where excess water can run out, and fit in well with the desert theme. Standard potting mixes are available from the same nurseries that sell the plants. Aloe vera plants will thrive near a window where they can get plenty of sunlight. If you don’t have a window with enough sun exposure, a fluorescent lamp will do. Again, water during the summer months and allow the soil to dry between waterings. Arrange several pots of different sizes near your window, and plant aloe vera in one or two, along with some other species of succulents and cacti . Plant the tallest plants into the tallest containers and place the tallest containers nearst the window and the shortest in front so that all plants can be seen. Be sure not to allow the tall plants to overshadow the shorter ones entirely. Remember, they all need some sunlight. Terra cotta pots can be painted, but do not cover the entire container with paint. Leave the majority of the surface bare so that it will stay porous. Paint small shapes or droodles of color that will contrast nicely with your brown pots. Simple paintings of the sun or clouds go well with your desert scene. Southwestern colors such as sand, light green, or peach will look nice, or pick your favorite colors according to your individual taste or room decor. Abstract shapes in bright colors are easy to paint and go well with a modern theme. If you want to be really creative try standing an old Western boot or hat alongside your succulent display.

Aloe vera plants produce plantlets, offspring that grow from the sides of the mother plant. Remove the babies from the mother with a knife and replant them into their own pots or corners of your garden.

Aloe vera gel is thought by many to have medicinal value, although the research is scant and sometimes contradictory. It has been studied for use in helping to heal wounds and combat dental plaque because of its antimicrobial properties. It is used in hand creams and cosmetics as a soothing emollient and has shown some promise for local treatment of psoriasis, genital warts, frostbite and acne. A study from Ohio State University, reported in March of this year in Veterinary Ophthalmology, found that aloe vera might help to hasten eye wound healing in dogs. Last year the journal Nutrition reported a study on aloe vera and diabetes. Researchers there found a possible use for aloe vera for weight and fat loss in prediabetic individuals and patients newly diagnosed with diabetes. In June of 2013 the journal Metabolic Syndromes and Related Disorders published an article on the subject from Baylor College of Medicine in Texas. Researchers there discovered that aloe vera preparations could possibly prove useful for lowering blood sugar levels in prediabetes some day.

Some gardeners swear by aloe vera as a treatment to soothe burns and insect bites. For external use cut the leaf at the bottom and collect the gel. Apply to the affected skin.

Aloe vera is used in making certain commercial desserts when a gel is needed. It is used to make pectin, used in jams and preserves instead of gelatin. There are also recipes for preparing aloe vera at home. Some cooks put diced aloe vera leaves into smoothies along with their favorite fruits and vegetables. Vegetarian Times suggests making a pineapple-aloe cocktail with ½ cup pineapple juice, ¼ to ½ cup aloe vera juice, 2 tablespoons unsweetened cranberry juice, 1 tablespoon agave nectar or honey, and a lime wedge for garnish. The drink contains 114 calories per serving.

Aloe vera plants can make an attractive and easy-to-grow addition to your garden or indoor plant collection. There is some possibility that the plants could have health benefits as well, and should be used with caution upon the advice of a physician. Enjoy.