Western style arrangements typically consist of a free form assemblage of flowers in a container. In contrast, Ikebana is more of a disciplined form of art, governed by well_defined rules, principles and techniques. For example, certain precepts regulate elements like the light and the shadows. There is also what is known as the three points of balance _ shin_fuku_tai in Japanese _ which symbolize man, heaven and earth, respectively, and that have to be in harmonious equilibrium in order to give true life to an Ikebana flower arrangement. This and the fact that stems and branches are used in addition to flowers, are perhaps the most obvious differences with western_style flower arrangement.
Another fun idea is to put a small arrangement together in a holiday mug. Use floral foam as the base of the design. First cover the foam with leather leaf, then add a three white carnations, inserted at different heights, two stems of red pixie carnations, some baby's breath, and red hypericum berries. You could also add some cedar or other evergreen to the design. For complete instructions and a step by step video, please visit the link below to our website, you will find it under the Christmas section. This small design is charming and will delight the receiver of such a gift.