[AD - This is a paid collaboration with Marks & Spencer. However, all thoughts, opinions and advice are my own.]
If there is one thing that I love just as much as interiors (not counting my child and y’know…gin..) it is fresh flowers. My home does not feel complete without fresh blooms perched in the middle of the table or presented on the mantle. People often ask me what is the quickest and most budget-friendly way that they can make a room feel inviting and homely and I always tell them to invest in a beautiful vase brimming with blossoming new stems. What is even better than buying your own flowers is having someone gift you them, so I was delighted when Marks & Spencer popped round with a number of their new gifting bouquets for me to review, as well as give advice on what bouquets are perfectly suited to certain celebratory occasions throughout the year. It is important to remember that flowers are very personal, so you should always pick the right bouquet that will match your recipients personality as well as the occasion. If this all sounds very confusing then don’t worry, read on for my top tips for picking the perfect bunch….
Timeless and elegant with connotations of extravagance and luxury, red roses are suited to the sharp and sophisticated person who has a more traditional and conservative style. While they are the absolute perfect choice to make big statement about how you feel on Valentine’s day, I would advise that you don’t just limit red roses to those in your life that you are trying to romance! If you really want to show someone you care, a large bunch of voluptuous red roses is a great way to do it. Buy red roses for your partner on Valentine’s, but also think about a grandparent or parent that would love a dozen red roses just for being another special person in your life.
Roses are hardy flowers that do not tend to wilt and will last you a minimum of 5 days if cared for properly. Marks & Spencer’s Dozen Red Roses come wrapped in delicate red tissue paper to emphasize the vivid red of the rose and should be styled in a vase which is slightly wider at the bottom than the neck so that the roses are supported, yet the heads spread perfectly with a couple of centimeters between them. This conical vase, pictured below, is a perfect choice.
Pink is a colour which is still taking the interiors world by storm two years after it was highlighted as a ‘trend’. No-one can get enough of pink right now and my personal favourite from Marks & Spencer’s new range of gifting flowers is this colossal bunch of Avalanche roses, double pink Lisianthus, pink Antirrhinum and Green Bell. Stylish with a twist of vintage, this relaxed bouquet of garden flowers is a fail-safe option as it will be loved by both younger and older generations. I’d gift this bouquet to friends on their birthday, give them to my mother on Mother’s Day, while they also make great anniversary flowers. You can’t go wrong with this bouquet to mark any relaxed, happy celebration. As this bouquet is so abundant, they need to be displayed in a tall, wide vase to let the flowers spread evenly. A lofty cylinder vase is a good option.
Scented spring flowers are perfect to celebrate new beginnings, a fresh start or to mark significant occasions. It is well known that we associate scents with our memories so this bouquet is a perfect choice to welcome a new baby or to celebrate a special anniversary. Flowers with a scent not only look beautiful, they also fill your home with fragrance. Spring flowers are especially significant to mark the beginning of a brighter start as we come out of winter, so they make great gift flowers to send the message ‘get well soon’. Marks and Spencer’s Scented Spring Posy contains 16 elegant white tulips and 12 small but powerful white Narcissus, along with some dyed Gypsophila to add some yellow spring colour. White tulips are very classy and would suit recipients who have a subtle, more minimalist style. As tulips tend to move around a lot (some days they will be slightly bendy in the vase, other days more perky) they suit being styled in a jug or decanter where the curved lip of the vessel gives them more room to maneuver.
Flowers that are delivered in a gorgeous gift bag are perfect if you are sending someone flowers not directly to their home. The gift bag provides an elegant way for your floral recipient to carry home the flowers from the office or to the train station. Marks and Spencer’s beautiful and bright arrangement of cerise and yellow roses, plus vivid orange Germini, are the perfect ‘thank you’ flowers or a bright and breezy welcome to a new home. This Spring Bright Gift Bag is the perfect choice for neighbours, friends, work colleagues and teachers.
Spring Bright Gift Bag, £30, Marks & Spencer
I’m a life-long customer of Marks and Spencer and regularly purchase gifting flowers for my friends and family members as you cannot beat M&S for quality and price. When you are having flowers delivered the condition that they arrive in can be a concern, as well as if they are delivered on time. I can honestly say I have never been disappointed with Marks and Spencer flowers and they always arrive on the nominated day, looking like how they are advertised online. They are also perfect for urgent last-minute gift ideas as Marks & Spencer offer a next day delivery for most postcodes (check your postcode online before purchase).
Marks and Spencer offer a guarantee that their flowers will remain looking beautiful for 5 days, or you get your money back. However, to keep them looking their best and make them last longer, you need to follow a few floral tips:
On arrival remove your flowers from the packaging and use secateurs or scissors to cut 2- 3 cm off each stem. Make sure you cut the stem at an angle as this will allow the stem to absorb more water in the vase.
Remove any leaves from the base of the stem that would sit in the water. Rotting leaves will create bacteria in the water which is not good for your flowers.
Place your flowers in a clean vase, filled with fresh water and flower food, following the instructions on the sachet. Try and update the water in the vase daily.
Avoid placing your display in direct sunlight or next to a radiator. Flowers live longer in cooler conditions.
Re-cutting the stems every 3 to 4 days may make your flowers last longer.
I loved the four bouquets that Marks and Spencer shot in my home, however, there is also an abundance of choice online. See below for all my favourite Marks and Spencer bouquet choices for Valentine’s Day, birthdays, anniversaries and to say ‘thank you.’
All photography shot in my home is owned by iCrossing. All birds-eye shots of floral bouquets are used courtesy of Marks & Spencer.