May Flowers

Stunning Flower Arrangement - Seattle Interior Design

Well, we are halfway through spring! It is going to be May, and Mother’s Day is nearly upon us. I know many of you will be receiving or giving flowers for the occasion. But even outside of holidays, decorating your home with fresh-cut flowers is a cost-effective way to elevate your interiors. 

Of course, choosing the most appropriate flowers really depends on your specific interior decor, living situation, and occasion. In a pinch, though, having a go-to flower arrangement that integrates well with your existing interiors can save time and hassle. 

Let’s explore different flowers and discuss which types of interior styles work for each flower.

Best Flowers for your Interiors

  • Lily – Lillies have long been a staple of flower-giving, especially around Eastertime. They come in a variety of bright colors with extraverted blooms that confer vibrant energy to the home. In Greek mythology, the lily is associated with Hera, wife of Zeus. In Christianity, the lily is a symbol of the Virgin Mary. Thus, lilies make excellent Mother’s Day gifts and work especially well with the comfortable interiors of today’s casual lifestyles.
Pink lilies in a contemporary vase brighten up a casual room.
Lilies have a bold brightness that energize any room.
  • Hydrangea – The large, bulbous flowerheads of hydrangeas make them an enticing choice for arrangements. Available in blue, purple, pink, white, and even green, these flowers can be quite charming and textural. They bloom from spring to fall, and so are widely available, whereas other flowers listed here might only be available for a short season. However, their prim character makes them better suited for restrained, traditional interiors. Think East Coast interiors.
Blue hydrangeas in a vase - Seattle Decor
These blue hydrangeas exhibit an icy attitude that works best in rooms with formal decor.
  • Peony – Peonies have seen a resurgence in popularity over the past decade or so. Their large, cabbage-like shape certainly packs a punch, yet they also exhibit a daintiness that makes them well-suited for feminine decor. In the “Language of Flowers” of Victorian lore, peonies symbolize bashfulness, and it’s easy to see these flowers retreating into more innocuous, furtive interiors. Notwithstanding their contemporary Western appeal, they have a much longer cultural history in the Far East, where they symbolize wealth and prosperity (China) and bravery and honor (Japan). 
Peony bouquet in glass vase - Seattle Interiors
Big, fluffy, and saccharine, peonies look great in feminine rooms.
  • Tulip – Nothing says springtime quite like the tulip. These beloved flowers bloom for only a short time and mark the arrival of spring. Of Near Eastern origin, they derive their name from the Persian word for “turban,” which they were thought to resemble. Eventually, the flowers came to evoke the exotic allure of the Ottoman Empire after which, upon their introduction to Western Europe in the 1500’s, they caused such a frenzy that the story of the tulip now has much resonance for the study of economics. Tulips are available in a variety of colors and lend themselves well to any decor. These are truly “generalist” flowers and are a safe bet for many interiors as long as suitable colors are chosen. 
Colorful tulips on a boho window sill - Seattle Interior Decor
Tulips brighten up the window in this bohemian room.
  • Iris – Purple irises are my favorite flower. Their complex character speaks to sophisticated tastes and lends itself well to refined, eclectic decor. This is a flower with a strong point of view and befits well-executed, high-concept interiors. 
Purple, yellow, and white irises in a vase - Seattle eclectic interior design
Moody and full of character, irises look great in sophisticated , adventurous spaces.
  • Calla Lily – A slinky Halston dress in flower form. Brass; chrome; leather; mirrored surfaces; medium-toned warm woods—hallmarks of refined late modern interiors against which a vase of crisp white calla lilies adds the ultimate punctuation. The perfect flower for sleek urban minimalism. 
Calla Lily in a Vase - Seattle 70s Interior Design
Sleek calla lilies are the perfect ornament for polished modern interiors.

Pet-Friendly Flowers

Unfortunately, like many plants, the flowers mentioned above can be toxic or even deadly for pets. Luckily, there are still some beautiful options for those with beloved fur-babies who still wish to decorate with flowers (assuming, of course, that any flowers you bring home are free of pesticides and other chemicals):

  • Rose – Ah, the rose. In folklore, mythology, religion, politics, poetry, literature, and art, no other flower has become so firmly embedded into our cultural consciousness, reverberating through civilizations and time. Indeed, roses are the most traded flowers. Available in an abundance of colors and varieties, there is truly a rose for every occasion. Roses work for all kinds of interiors, making them the most versatile flower for decorating. Long-stemmed roses arranged nonchalantly in a vase look great in casual or bohemian interiors, while tightly-packed buds lined up symmetrically in boxes bring enchantment to the most formal spaces. Their availability, cultural significance, and beauty make roses the ne plus ultra of decorative flowers. Best of all, they are perfectly safe for our curious kitties and doggies to chew on (although we certainly don’t want them doing that!). 
Colorful roses in a large bouquet - Seattle Interior Design
Gorgeous roses are available in many colors and work for every interior!
  • Daisy – These playful flowers come in an assortment of colors and sizes. Their simple shape and whimsical quality make daisies ideal for informal interiors or those with a practical bent, such as those in a Mid-Century Modern style. 
Pink Gerber Daisies - Seattle Interior Decorating
African Gerber daisies are a larger option for fun, care-free spaces.
  • Zinnia – For interiors with Mediterranean or Global Design, the punchy colors of the zinnia cannot be beat. These flowers are like rays of summer sunshine in a vase. Use them sparingly to highlight only the best areas of your house, as such vibrant colors attract lots of attention. 
Colorful zinnias - Seattle Mexican Interior Design
Bring some exotic zest to your interior spaces with punchy zinnias.
  • Snapdragon – These soaring beauties bring vertical dynamism to interior spaces by drawing the eye upward. Snapdragons come in a variety of colors and polychromatic bouquets look quite splendid! I do find, however, that the necessity for taller vessels to contain them means they are best reserved for more traditional interiors leaning towards formal, and especially with taller ceilings. Classical proportions for classical spaces! 
Multicolored snapdragons growing in a field.
Tall snapdragons bring color and height to formal interiors.
  • Orchid – Many people may associate orchids with Victorian hothouses, leading them to believe these flowers require high-maintenance care. However, orchids are actually one of the largest flowering plant families and are found in practically every environment on every continent except Antarctica! So, they are not that delicate or fussy. While potted orchids are most common, you can actually purchase cut stems as well for arrangements. They look quite exotic and architectural, and work well in streamlined spaces. Think Wabi-Sabi, urban industrial, or Asian-influenced interiors. 
Exotic white orchids in a glass vase - Seattle Masculine Interior Design
Orchids have an alluring mystique and look great in minimalist interiors, whether industrial or Asian-inspired.

Hopefully you now have an idea of which flowers will work best in your own home.

Sticking to one kind of flower makes life easier in times when you forget to order mixed floral arrangements on time, or when the occasion calls for something more low-key. 

Happy May!!!  


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