You’ve got the blooms, the time, and — most importantly — the passion. But do you have the right tools for professional flower arranging? Similar to other crafts, having the right tools can go a long way in setting you up for success. In fact, using the right floral tools can help prevent injury, increase efficiency, and allow you to uplevel your craft, so that you can create even more beautiful flower arrangements that your customers will love. In this article, we’ll review some of the top florist tools of the trade — from tape to thorn strippers, and more.
Top florist tools for building beautiful bouquets
Set your stalks up for success! Keep reading to learn what floral tool staples should have a permanent place in your florist tool kit and how to use them.
1. Floral scissors
The most important flower arranging tool: scissors. Since most flowers come out of the ground with a few extra leaves and roots, having a good pair (or two!) of scissors is crucial for flower arranging. Make sure to buy scissors that are specifically designed to cut organic material plants — they’ll last longer, and won’t need to be sharpened or replaced as often.
Whether you’re making a Valentine’s bouquet, a homecoming boutonniere, or a memorial service display, a good pair of scissors is key to creating the design of your dreams. Here are some different scissors types to consider for your florist tool kit:
Floral snips: Small, nimble scissors that make it easy to cut away small branches and foliage.
Branch cutters and pruning shears: Bigger, stronger and often with a spring-hinge, these are ideal for slicing through thicker stems.
Multipurpose scissors: Best for cutting non-organic materials, like netting, ribbons, and other accessories.
2. Floral knife
In addition to scissors, it’s important to invest in a quality floral knife for your florist tool kit. You’ll want to use this knife to cut the stems on your flowers — a knife makes a clean cut, which allows the plant to drink more water and stay naturally fresh for longer, compared with scissors, which can crush the base of the stem.
Note: using a flower knife can take some finesse — here are some tips for using one safely.
3. Gardening gloves
When using sharp tools, protection is important. Investing in a pair of high-quality gloves can protect your fingers and skin from cuts, as well as provide a barrier between your skin and any chemicals you use to process flowers.
As with scissors, consider investing in a few pairs that make sense for different parts of professional flower arranging:
Heavy duty gloves: Best for protecting against tough branches and sharp thorns.
Thin gardening gloves: Less bulky, these are easier to work with for delicate arrangements, while still offering protection.
4. Floral base materials
Strong, supportive base materials are key to creating a floral arrangement that won’t fall apart. There are a variety of tools to choose from here, from chicken wire to frogs and more. Since many of these are designed with functionality in mind and not beauty, make sure to hide them in an opaque container, like a ceramic base, so they don’t distract from your beautiful flowers.
Here are some of the most popular and versatile floral base tools that professional florists use:
Floral foam: This is the plush, green material commonly used as a base for professional flower arrangements. It’s flexible but provides a firm base to hold flower stems and sticks in place.
Floral cage or pillow: When you need something more supportive than just floral foam, a cage (made out of plastic, metal, or another lightweight material) can provide an additional level of structure to your flower arrangement’s base.
Flower frog: A flower frog is a small disk, usually made out of metal or plastic, that has sharp pins sticking up. To use a flower frog, secure it to the base of your container and build your flower arrangement vertically, sticking stems directly onto or between the pins to stabilize them.
Chicken wire or floral netting: A favorite of florist Sunny Chu, of the Boston-based Sunny Florists, chicken wire or floral netting is a versatile material that can be molded into organic shapes to create a unique base for flower arranging. She’ll even use it occasionally in her bouquet design, rolling it up into a small pillow shape so that individual stems branch off at a desired angle. “Chicken wire is something we use a lot of,” Sunny shares.
Flower wire: Similar to chicken wire, a spool of wire is a common florist’s tool, helping provide additional support to stalks, stems, and blooms while staying out of sight. There are a variety of colors and thicknesses available, so choose a roll or multiple that make sense for your needs.
5. Floral adhesives
Sometimes one of the easiest ways to get elements of your arrangement to stick together is by using an adhesive. Here are some basic ones to get started with:
Stem tape: A must-have in any florist’s tool kit, floral tape blends into your greenery while providing firm adhesive between bundles of flowers.
Floral tape: Not to be confused with stem tape, floral tape is often called pot tape. Thicker, firmer, and often waterproof, this tape helps lock down your base and connect it to a container.
Floral clay: A moldable adhesive clay that helps stick flower frogs and other bases to a container.
Hot glue gun: For hardy materials like branches and bark, a hot glue gun can provide a strong hold, ensuring your arrangement makes it to its destination intact.
Floral glue (cold): Not all flowers respond well to hot glue, so having a glue designed especially for fragile organic materials is key. Floral glue is especially important for designing things like corsages and boutonnieres, which often showcase flower buds and leaves in close proximity.
6. Flower food
It’s important to nourish your flowers before they reach a customer, ensuring they arrive as fresh as they left. Don’t forget to feed your flowers with these:
Flower food: Available in powder, liquid, or spray form, this provides essential nutrients to flowers, helping them stay fresher longer.
Water: The ultimate flower food, water helps keep your plants hydrated and healthy. In addition to soaking stems in a mixture of water and flower food, make sure to regularly mist blossoms and leaves so they don’t dry out prematurely.
7. Finishing spray
Time for the finishing touch! Using a professional flower finishing spray, such Crowning Glory, is what sets the experts apart. These sprays seal in moisture, helping flowers hydrate and stay intact over time, so that customers can enjoy your beautiful flowers for longer.
8. Specialty flower tools
Depending on the types of flowers you work with and the arrangements you make, you may want to have these tools at your side.
Flower thorn strippers: Working with roses? A thorn stripper can quickly and easily remove pesky (and painful!) thorns.
Container options: Sometimes, you’ll finish an arrangement and realize that the original container isn’t quite right — maybe it’s too small, too large, or not the right shape or color. Having a variety of container options on hand to try out lets you be more creative with your design.
Decoration elements: Bright ribbons, glitter, card holders, and even fake snow can go a long way in turning an average bouquet into something festive. Consider major flower holidays like Mother’s Day to brainstorm creative ways to add to your bouquets.
Add delivery to your florist tool kit
You focus on the flowers — we’ll handle delivery. With a flower delivery partner like DoorDash, getting your beautiful creations in customers’ hands is easy. Simply sign up, set up your business page on our platform, and accept orders through the Merchant Portal. Enjoy the benefits of reaching more customers in your neighborhood with minimal changes to your day-to-day operations. Learn more about how DoorDash works for flower delivery.
We try to be where the customer wants us to be, in a very competitive market — and DoorDash helps us do that.