Keeping abreast of botanical trends frequently involves monitoring the size, shape and design of plant receptacles. And when it comes to vases, it seems that stalk-space is shrinking, pushing us into an era of the single-stem flower display. ‘It’s all about the vessels at the moment,’ says Nik Southern of Grace & Thorn, East London florists who design displays for fashion shows, gallery dinners and workshops. ‘There are so many beautiful vessels to be had at the moment, often it is about a gathering of vessels, holding single stems.’

According to Southern, a general rule of thumb is for stems to stand one and a half times the height of the vase. But rules are made to be broken and, in contemporary floristry, a single bird of paradise or elephant’s ear might sit snugly over the rim of a low domed vase, or a spray of cosmos might spray out over the lip. This new floral minimalism sees the stems themselves becoming extensions of the vases, balancing the shape and form of the individual receptacles.

As originally featured in the November 2016 issue of Wallpaper* (W*212)