How to Make a Modern Flower-Covered Arch

This white-and-black arch relies on very few floral elements to make a big impact. Learn how to make this high-drama garden archway.

“I love the drama of its asymmetrical floral arrangement,” floral educator Alicia Schwede says. “This could be a lovely structure indoors, too, such as in a ballroom or reception space.” Schwede publishes Flirty Fleurs, a floral design blog, and this arch is one of her and her husband's creations. This structure is perfect for a modern, backyard wedding, and fits well into any black-tie event.

  • Working Time 3 Hours
  • Start to Finish 3 Hours
  • Difficulty         Projects Kind of Easy
  • Involves Carpentry Skills

What you need

Tools

  • Saw
  • Drill and drill bit
  • Shovel
  • Staple gun

Materials

  • 2x4-foot boards cut to 7 feet, stained black (x4)
  • 4x4-foot posts cut to 7 feet, stained black (x4)
  • 5/16x6-inch lag bolts (x8)
  • 5-foot U-channel fence posts, stained black (x4)
  • Box of 1 1/2-inch wood screws
  • 3x2-foot sections of black or green chicken wire (x3)
  • Floral wire and floral tubes
  • Dogwood branches
  • Mock orange, Philadelphus coronarius, branches
  • White peonies (x12)
  • White fabric for canopy

How to do it

Step 1 Build Arch Frame

Cut a 45-degree miter at each end of the 2x4-foot boards to form a corner seam for the top boards. Predrill one hole at each end (about 1 inch from mitered edge) to accommodate lag bolts. Predrill corresponding holes in the top of each 4x4-foot upright post, lining up holes with the matched corners. Attach the top boards with lag bolts to create the arch’s overhead “frame.” Sink fence posts securely into the ground and fasten them to wood posts with several 1 1/2-inch wood screws through the holes in the fence posts.

Step 2 Attach Chicken Wire

Prepare the front posts for attaching flowers. Loosely wrap the lower portion of the left front post with a section of chicken wire; staple the seam on the back and leave at least 1-inch clearance so there is space between the chicken wire and post. Wrap the full length of the right post in the same manner with the remaining section of chicken wire.

Step 3 Add Flowering Branches

Attach water-filled floral tubes to all stems. Begin designing on left front post by inserting dogwood and mock orange flowering branches through the openings of the chicken wire; use floral wire to secure branches to the post. Continue adding and layering with additional branches until the chicken wire is obscured. Add peonies to the design in groups of 3-5 stems.

Repeat this process with floral materials on the right post, covering the full length of the post. Reserve the largest and most dramatic branch for the top-right corner, placing it to follow the shape of the arch’s top beam.

Step 4 Attach Canopy

Add the white canopy by stapling edges of fabric to upper beams of arch.

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