Dried arrangements are increasing in popularity for home décor, and we can understand why. Whether your style is boho, traditional, farmhouse or contemporary, dried arrangements look stylish in any home…and not just for fall.

Why Use Dried Materials

Bringing nature into the home can soften a room and add an organic element to the design of a space, but using live plants isn’t always ideal. Here are just a few reasons we love using dried botanicals in home décor.

Low Light Needs

Dried materials should be kept out of direct sunlight as UV exposure can cause colors to fade. That’s what makes dried arrangements the perfect choice for adding a touch of nature to a room where live plants would not thrive.

No Maintenance

Watering or pruning is not required. In fact, it’s best to keep dried materials away from moisture. Dried botanicals are a great choice for those hard to reach places up high or in nooks that are not easily accessible. Plus, you don’t have to worry about someone watering these plants while you’re on vacation.


Using dried botanicals for an arrangement is more sustainable than faux plants that use synthetics. You can even find dried materials right in your own yard to add to your arrangements, which is good for the environment and economical. Plus, you can compost dried materials when you’re done using them.

Range of Uses

Nancy Dobbs, one of our container designers, loves using dried botanicals for its versatility. “They can be used in wreaths and swags or added to corn stalks and straw bales with an ornamental bow,” says Nancy. Dried materials can be pressed and framed as wall art, added to homemade candles, or used as potpourri. “They look great in a vase or as a centerpiece design, as well,” Nancy says.

You can also add things like millet, pampas grass, wheat, tarwe, lotus pods, pinecones, and more to your outdoor fall containers for fun accents mixed in between your mums, ornamental cabbage and peppers!

How to Create an Arrangement

Creating a beautiful dried arrangement isn’t complicated when you follow a few simple design rules.

Start with the Vessel

When creating an arrangement for a vase, it all starts with the vessel. The vase should be proportionate to the size of the overall arrangement. A good rule of thumb is keeping the vase one-third the size of the arrangement. You can pick out a new vase, or use a vintage piece. Repurpose a kitchen pitcher, or bring new life to an old or outdated vase by painting it. Get creative! Metal tins and woven baskets work great, too.

Pick a Color Scheme

You can choose a group of colors that are next to each other on the color wheel (analogous), such as green, yellow and orange. For a more contemporary look, go monochromatic keeping everything the same color, or choose one color but use a variety of tints and hues.

Arranging Your Design

For a more modern look, you may want to choose several stems of the same variety, such as pampas grass, or even a single stem in a vase can provide a contemporary look. For a more traditional look, it’s still best to keep it simple. Similar to our “thriller,” “filler,” and “spiller” concept of container design, there are three components to a dried arrangement design. Start with a focal point. This could be the tallest, biggest or your most favorite piece in the arrangement. Don’t use more than one or two other varieties as an accent. These are usually smaller in form to match the color scheme or fill out the shape of the arrangement. Finish with branches or grasses to add structure and texture.

Creating Wreaths and Swags

Creating a wreath or swag with dried botanicals is similar to creating a bouquet arrangement. Using some florist wire, pruners and a grapevine wreath you can create a beautiful fall display, or make a fall swag to add to your lanterns. Start by deciding where the top of your wreath will be and use some floral wire to create a loop to hang your wreath.  Next, create your foundation. Pampas grass, wheat grass or flax make a good base to a wreath or swag. Add in your one or two accent botanicals and finish it off with your focal point. Try using odd numbers for your focal point. For example, three dried seed pods and one sola berry stem.

Check out our Gift Shop in Aurora and Naperville, where you will find a great selection of dried botanicals, grapevine wreaths, and more to make beautiful natural décor for your home.