KC Home Design
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|The Trade: Fresh or Faux?|
Words and inspiration by Kenny Beall from The Trade
For as long as I can remember, one of the things my mother always taught me was that natural was always better than artificial. “If God didn’t make it, it’s no good,” she would say with authority. Whether it was sweetener in my coffee, artificial preservatives in the kitchen or adding MSG to spice up an Asian meal, it was all bad. Mom always knew best.
During my latest visit to my parents' home, I noticed something interesting about my mother’s home décor. It appeared to me that her no-no to all things artificial only applied to things consumed. The use of artificial products in home décor was completely acceptable, evidenced by her affinity for faux florals. Her silk arrangements have multiplied over the past year, finding themselves in just about every corner of the house. It was obvious my mother had been frequenting the local arts and crafts store, and her selection included a variety of silk and plastic florals featuring hydrangeas, spray roses and dahlias. Their hues ranged from the pale pink to white––mom's preferred colors for most things in the house.
Artificial florals can meet the needs of many households in Kansas City, and it’s easy to see why. Cost is the probably the biggest factor because replenishing fresh cut flowers can be a hefty weekly expense. Artificials are also maintenance-free, keep their form and are easy to swap out with the seasons. And when the faux look so real, why not, right? The details of some of these florals are truly remarkable. Even today, the trained eye sometimes can be fooled into believing it’s real fresh flowers. I, myself, have touched some fakes, embarrassed that I fell for their trickery.
Because of their uncanny resemblance to fresh flowers, I strongly feel that artificial arrangement can be a great boost for a room, though kept to a minimum in a household. When you choose to go faux, go with the “less is more” mantra. One or two arrangements should meet a home’s décor needs. Be certain that you make a statement; be bold and keep them full and arranged in a decorative vase. If possible, choose an opaque vase so the stems don't show through. For the rest of your home, decorate tables and surfaces using small silver bud vases, clustered picture frames, stacks of coffee table books or other accessories that speak to your style. Don’t feel the need to cover every surface, and keep your décor in small groupings and with varied heights to add interest.
As far as my home goes, I prefer only fresh flowers, and whenever budget allows, you should, too. Our city is filled with great florists who have a large selection of different varieties. Visit Matney Floral Design (2708 W. 53rd St.) in Fairway, Trapp and Company (4110 Main St.) downtown and Bergamot & Ivy (520 W. Pennway) in the Crossroads. When you the visit your florist, ask for their recommendations in regard to what colors they suggest for your home, which flowers compliment one another and which will last the longest. Yes, some florals have a longer shelf life than others.
The presence of fresh florals has proven to trigger happy emotions and increase our sense of enjoyment in life. I’m not privy to the effects of faux florals, but they simply has to be positive. After all, mom always gave her stamp of approval.
*Photos of the beautiful faux florals are courtesy of The Flowers Company