From Reviewer Mary Ann Newcomer: Home in Bloom by Ariella Chezar

Home in Bloom_by Ariella Chezar
Ariella Chezar is the author of The Flower Workshop and Flowers for the Table and a master floral designer who has appeared in numerous magazines, including Opray Daily, Martha Stewart Living, and Real Simple. She is an instructor and has designed flower arrangements for the White House. Photography by Gentl & Hyers
from Home in Bloom by Ariella Chezar
Left: The seven stems of fritillaria are displayed in three tea glasses on various levels. They complement the painting of a lemon in the background anda, by being displayed separately, make a stronger impression. Right: The copper pots of this New York City loft inspire two dramatic arrangements dominated by assorted Itoh peonies. They are paired with the bell-like blossoms of the martagon lily and, in the larger arrangement, joined by Polkadot Series foxgloves and framed by the blooming burgundy branches of the physocarpus, or ninebark. Clematis vines balance all that height, but it’s the peonies that dominate.

Home in Bloom delivers another captivating, elegant showcase of Ariella Chezar’s floral artistry. I sat staring at the images in awe of the flowers, inspired and, at the same time, blown away by, her gifts of talent and inspiration. For instance, the Julia Rose Itoh peonies paired with the ‘Claude Shride’ martagon lilies. I grow both. I have never considered pairing them. She is a master, too, when it comes to breaking the rules. Abyssinian glads (so fragrant!) are accompanied by Sweet Autumn and Lilac clematis, which trail down the cabinet, tumbling to the floor. Oh my.

from Home in Bloom by Ariella Chezar
This kitchen is decorated with four arrangements that share the golden orange color of spicy-smelling marigolds. A large champagne bucket elevates this humble flower by inviting it to tumble as if still in the garden. Smaller vases hold tiny tangerine gem marigolds, while creamsicle orange nasturtiums spill from a shelf.

I’ve been waiting for someone to show me the way with marigolds. They are in the book. Simple, common marigolds elevated to superstar status when presented in a champagne bucket. Is that what they needed to be elevated to floral art? Limelight hydrangeas with Queenie Lime Zinnias – a match made in heaven and by the hands of Ariella. And the arrangements go on, everyone delightful and captivating. Even the “Pink Punk” ala Barbie!

Echoing Shane Connolly’s comment to “abandon the idea that you are more important than nature,” Ariella embraces the seasons and believes in harvesting locally whenever possible. Find raspberry branches, a branch with apple blossoms, a branch with a few apples or pears, milkweed pods, wild clematis vines. Look for peaches or crabapples. Explore what is growing nearby.  Be on the lookout for wild roses, lady’s bedstraw (really?) The beauty of what is at hand will make you pause and that’s a brilliant thing. Our lives can be so busy – so very busy. But we can also slow down and take this author’s approach to our relationship with the garden.

From Home in Bloom by Ariella Chezar
A gathering of ‘Limelight’ hydrangeas, sea oats, and elderberry branches light up the olive walls of this faded manse. They join an arrangement of ‘Queen Lime’ zinnias on the marble table, evoking an era of plenty.

Friends, it is time for a walk. A walk on the wild side, into the country, into the park. Forage for brambles, berries, and beauty. And remember, beauty is in the eye of the foraging arranger. YOU.


Home in Bloom: Lessons for Creating Floral Beauty in Every Room

by Ariella Chezar (with Julie Michaels)

Photography by Gentl & Hyers

Published by Ten Speed Press, 256 pages, $40.00

“Home in Bloom” Copyright © 2024 by Ariella Chezar. Photographs copyright © 2024 Gentl & Hyers. Photographs by Ingalls Photography pages 6, 40-41, 42-42, 68-69, 90, 94-95, 96-97, 106, 113, 114-115, 116-117, 130-131, 132-133, 180, 192, 194-195, 208-209, 220-221, 223, and 224-225 Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Crown Publishing Group.”

Mary Ann Newcomer

Scribe-Scout-Speaker A daughter of the American west, with great grandparents who homesteaded in Idaho, I tagged along with my grandmother and grandfather as they gardened in the tiny town of Latah, Washington, just across the Idaho state line. I have developed a fierce passion for all things GARDEN. I grow, scout, and write about gardens. My expertise is in the Intermountain West, but I have written for Rocky Mountain Gardening, Country Gardens, MaryJane’s Farm, Fine Gardening, Leaf Magazine, the American Gardener, and newspapers across the region. I’ve designed public, private, and commercial landscapes, and gardens for flower shows. I love encouraging gardeners to get down and dirty. When not tending to my garden, I volunteer my time weeding or planting or doing garden design work at the Idaho Botanical Garden in Boise.

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