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A flower (wall) grows in Portland

by timber press on November 18, 2016

in Craft

04bHow we turned a neglected corner into an office bright spot with Plant Craft: 30 Projects that Add Natural Style to Your Home.

At our office in Portland, Oregon, there was a corner which had been sorely neglected. Home to some advanced reader copies, shipping materials, and a colorful but diminutive portrait of Deborah Harry, this space was clearly in need of a makeover.

01aBook publicist Katlynn Nicolls (seen here deciding on a color palette) had an idea. Why not build a flower wall, one of the many fun projects in Caitlin Atkinson’s book, Plant Craft? We agreed this would brighten up the place, especially during our gloomy Portland winters, and off we went to the flower shop!

02aThe good people at Sammy’s Flowers helped us understand how each of our choices was likely to behave during the drying process.

02bWith our bouquet of dahlias, delphinium, strawflower, scaviosa and hydrangeas, we were ready for the next step.

02cRemoved from the stems, our flowers would spend the next two weeks drying out in these handy shipping boxes.

02dWe used both horticulture (washed) sand and aquarium sand. Each one worked nicely, although the aquarium sand was considerably less expensive.

02fDry well, little flowers!

02gWe chose colors that would match the brick walls in the office. The flowers darkened during the drying process but we were still pleased with the results.

02eNext, we made a rough map of our flower wall using sticky notes.

03aNow came the hard part: pinning the flowers. For particularly delicate flowers, we used seamstress pins poked through the flower, but for the others we found the most sensible thing was to glue the flower to the head of a common stick pin.

03bHere, Katlynn gets a laugh out of marketing associate Brian Ridder trying his hand at adhering flower to pin.

03cJust follow the map!

03dThe pins add a bit of distance between flower and wall which creates visual depth thanks to the shadows.

03eNo offense to Debbie, but this is a definite improvement.

04aMinus drying time, this project was completed in a couple of hours and cost less then $60 bucks. A small price to bring a little natural spectacle to our office!


Caitlin Atkinson has worked in floral design and at Flora Grubb Gardens as an interior merchandiser. An accomplished freelance photographer, she captures gardens, interiors, and still life. See more of her work at caitlinatkinson.net.



This project and many more can be found in Plant Craft by Caitlin Atkinson.

Click image for a look inside!


“Delivers lush, knowledgeable, and surprising ways to beautify your home and bring nature into your life—so accessible, you’ll want to start right away!” The Horticult

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