Sunflowers and Magnolia Design

Flower arrangement featured in this article featuring russet sunflowers, dried artichokes, dried magnolia, dried kangaroo paw flowers

Fall Brings the most beautiful elements to us…

and the opportunity to experiment with elements that would otherwise be looked at as less than perfect.

With the changing fashion of flowers, dried elements and dried flowers are making a stellar comeback. We are seeing the use of items last found favorable in the ’80s. This is not surprising as style, whether it’s fashion, interior, or other, is on continuous cycles of use and later recycle.

So of course, I am interested in what is the new now next of the moment. Ferns are one of those items and so are dried flowers as mentioned above. Combine the two and the stage is set for an interesting element.

The Elements

Why does dry fern work so well in this design? Well, it’s all about the rules. The design rules that say contrasting elements look amazing together. Take the dried magnolia leaves; they are smooth yet velvety on one side and smooth and shiny on the reverse. Contrastingly, the ferns are curly, spikey, leafy, and very textural. The juxtaposition helps each look and feel amazing to the observer.


Sunflowers LOVE to be the center of attention. By accenting them with interesting natural items like artichokes or flowers like the kangaroo paws, it helps to enhance the sunflower as a supporting cast would enhance a starring role.

The design contains only 6 items, but they are used in correct multiples for a balanced composition. Not exactly a minimal creation, but when they are added correctly, there is simple magic at play.

infographic outlining all the floral elements used in this design. Russet sunflowers, kangaroo paw, dried artichoke, dried sword fern, dried magnolia, and montbretia pods
Elements Used In This Design



It all started with the sunflowers. Their variegated petals serving as the palette set the color composition rules. 

The gold container was perfect in the sense of color and texture, dried magnolia leaves and Montbretia pods with their sienna tones, the burgundy kangaroo paws, the ferns, and artichoke (both dried) are all sunflower stem and petal colors. This is a classic color rendition in floral design. Using the tones and hues of one featured element dictates the full palette. By using this basic color rule the look is restrained and creates an air of inviting warmth.

I hope you discovered something new in this article. Try designing something similar for your own enjoyment.

In love & style,





Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Hi, I’m Peter,

better known as “Petah”

I create beautiful-living online content for people seeking new inspirations Think of me as a trusted friend with a fabulous eye and intuitive nature.


Copy of LB_Petah_orchids_lookingdown
My Latest Youtube Videos
Watch | Learn | Create
Join me in my studio for more beautiful inspiration and know-how.
The LB Community
Elevate yourself and style
A private facebook community is one of a few great perks for membership
How to Host a Beautiful Dinner Party
A step by step instruction guide written by Petah using his years of event knowledge, designer know-how, planning skills and flair for perfection.
Shop the LB Collection

Petah’s Carefully Curated Collection of Beautiful Items for your home, yourself or to give.

Coral Selenite & Sea Fan Float
Crafted with meticulous attention to detail, by artist Jamie Dietrich

How to Host a Beautiful Dinner Party


A complimentary instructional guide written by Petah using his years of event knowledge, designer know-how, planning skills and flair for perfection.

Reserve your Spot on My List

Living Beautifully Just For you

Receive New Seasonal & Entertaining Guides automatically.  And… receive 10% off your first purchase. *exclusions apply

Become An LB Insider

Elevate your style

Want to know insider designer knowledge? Become an LB ISIDER and receive complimentary seasonal look-books, designer insider videos and entertaining guides sent right to you.

To join, click below