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Which Vase Shall I Choose?

Mixed size turquoise bottle vases displaying some dried flowers

Kate Blott |

The Best Vases For Your Fresh or Dried Flowers

If you want some fresh or dried flowers in a vase to brighten up a space, how do you go about making the best choice?

Perhaps you have been given some flowers, or you picked some up when you went shopping but now you remember you don’t have anything suitable to put them in. What now?

9 Tips for Matching Your Vase and Flowers

Our guide below will help you get the perfect match. Don't be afraid to experiment!

  • Try to keep stems no more than twice the height of the vase.
  • Ensure the neck of the vase is wide enough to take the arrangement whilst still offering support.
  • Check the base section will offer good support to the stems. If it’s much wider than the top, stems can slip down and be hard to arrange.
  • Complex vase designs are not always suitable for flower arrangements.
  • Check capacity before you buy.
  • Choose complementary colours for a harmonious look.
  • Select contrasting colours for bold statements.
  • Match muted tones with natural-coloured dried flowers.
  • Contrast bright colours with the rich tones of fresh stems and foliage.
  • Alter the look and feel of an arrangement with different vase material, colour, texture, shape, and size.
At Atlas, we have expanded our range of vases and vessels to include a wide variety of different styles, shapes, and colours.

Vases and Flowers for the Office

There are lots of options available to brighten up working environments. Think about the existing aesthetic, human, and environmental factors that could affect your choice:

  • High-traffic area? Prevent accidents by using stable, flat-bottomed vessels that are harder to knock over.
  • Dried flowers are less likely to trigger allergies than fresh - great for communal or waiting areas.
  • Full sun? Why not choose some interesting coloured glassware to make use of natural light? Light-stable faux flowers will last longer.
  • On the dark side of the street? Add LEDs to the vase or its surroundings to create nice effects.
  • No time for maintenance? Go faux!
Trio of tall bud vases in mixed colours
These coloured glass bottle vases reflect light beautifully. They work as pure decoration, or with a few floral stems.

Choosing your Flower and Vase Combination

Ask yourself what you’re trying to achieve:

  • Are you looking to make a statement?
  • Do you want to create something rustic, bold, or minimalist?
  • What is the colour theme?
  • Are the flowers fresh or dried?
  • Do you want to see the stems or hide them?

Choosing the Right Vase

Vase construction is important. For instance, a large, statement bouquet of fresh flowers will require a tall, sturdy vessel with a wide opening: A small bunch of dried flowers will not. Don’t forget to check whether the vase is watertight, as unglazed vessels are usually porous and won’t hold water.

Glass Vases & Vessels

Vases For Fresh Flowers

For tall and medium to large fresh flowers, choose heavy or medium-weight vases that are capable of taking long stems, and plenty of water.

For Example:

Flumet Vase, Glass, Magenta, 16x30cm
Colourful, moulded glass vases that accommodate tall stems and reflect natural and artificial light beautifully.

In a similar vein, medium or medium to large arrangements will need some sturdiness and to be capable of supporting water weight and a degree of height.

For Example:

ight Brown / Orange Balancing Stone Glass Vase, H19cm
These glass vases are designed to look like balancing stones, and their asymmetric design has a contemporary feel.

For small arrangements, lighter, short, small to medium vases are great. They will have to have enough structure and integrity to cope with water but usually, delicate vases will be suitable.

For Example

Glass Vase with White Pattern Detail
Clear glass with some opaque spots give this fine vase quirky charm. It's perfect for delicate arrangements.

Where only a few stems, or a little posy is being displayed, miniature bottle vases are a cute option. These products are often only a few centimeters tall, and look great as occasional table, or windowsill decor.

A collection of glass vases in different colours
Petite and colourful, these bud vases take only a few stems, and yet they are a complete display!

Vases For Dried Flowers

As with fresh flowers, a tall vase with some degree of weight will help support stems with height. Should the stems be top-heavy, it may be necessary to add some weight to the vase in the form of glass or acrylic stones. It is important to ensure that the vase's construction is capable of taking the additional weight.

For Example

a blue-green glass bottle with an intentionally imperfect finish, showing air bubbles within the glass, and a slightly distorted finish, displaying dried bullrushes and fluffy pampas grass.

Heavyweight, clear, glass bottles are ideal for this kind of display.

When it comes to something slightly smaller, weight becomes less important and more delicate designs are viable.

For Example

The coloured, textured glass of this vase makes for an interesting contrast to many types of dried flower combinations.

By the time you are looking at single stems, or petite posies, a bud vase comes into its own. These products can be mixed and matched to suit your decor, the flowers, and other decor. They look great just as decorative items too.

Trio of short bud vases in mixed colours

Candy-coloured glass bud vases look dreamy and fit in with so many different floral designs.

Ceramic Vases - glazed inside and out

Alternative textures can be achieved with ceramics. These come in different finishes, some with glazing all over, and some only with glaze inside or outside. This will affect what the vase can be used for, as unglazed vessels will not be watertight - choose carefully if you want to use a vase for fresh flowers!

Ceramic Vases For Fresh & Dried Flowers

As mentioned above, for fresh flowers, it's important to have a glazed interior to provide a watertight seal. Typically this is evidenced by a shiny, non-porous surface. If in doubt, check with the retailer or manufacturer as to whether the product is suitable for holding water.

As with the glass vases and vessels, tall and large arrangements need a sturdy container with plenty of height and the appropriate weight to take both the flowers and water.

This sliding scale of construction and design applies down through medium and small arrangement sizes. It's possible to use the glass guide above to aid choice of ceramic products as the principals will be similar for both fresh and dried products

Ceramic Vases - External Glaze

Due to the lack of internal glazing, these vases are not recommended for fresh flowers.

Perfect For Dried Flowers

Stick to the rule of thumb of combining height and some good weight to prevent toppling over, and you can't go wrong here. Remember if the construction allows for adding additional weight to hold up exceptionally tall stems, you can add glass or acrylic stones.

For Example:

Elsa, Ceramic Vase, Frosted Blue, H20cm
These vases are great for large and medium arrangements.

Small arrangements look great in ceramics with an outer glaze, such as this retro-looking leaf design, which is also available in medium and large designs.

Lyndon Leaf Vase, Brown, 15.5x15.5x32.5cm
Mix and match or keep a similar style to create a harmonious look.

For posies and a few stems, ceramic bud vases come in a wide range of styles and colour options.

Vase, Ceramic, Dark Blue H20cm
Vase Trio, Ceramic, Blue Mix H9.5cm

Unglazed Ceramics

These products are not suitable for fresh flowers as they are porous but they do work extremely well for dried flowers and foliage. Some are beautifully textured and patterned, and come in a great range of colours and styles.

Some examples of different unglazed vases and vessels for dried flowers available from Atlas Flowers:

Brown Vase, Lucat, Height 45.5cm
Cream Balancing Stone Ceramic Vase, H25cm
Ridged Patterned Porcelain Vase in Sand, H13.3cm

Metal Vases

Metal can work well for fresh flowers, as long as there is a non-ferrous finish internally, or it will rust and potentially kill the flowers prematurely, or eventually develop holes and cracks.

Dried flowers look great in metal vessels, and can cope with tarnished or those with a rusty patina. Distressed metal containers actually help achieve a distinctive look.

For Example:

Battambang Metal Vase, Copper, 22x36cm
Whether you opt for something plain, or intricately patterned and style, metal is a versatile and attractive material for vase construction.

Vase Shapes and Styles

The scope for differently designed and styled vases and vessels in varying colours and finishes is huge. Whether hand or machine-made, it's possible to add product(s) that suit any aesthetic or interior design brief.

Traditional Tall Vases

Simple designs allow for the flowers to be the focal point with no distraction. Clean, crisp lines do not compete with the beauty of the arrangement and a plain, uncoloured glass reflects light toward the flowers, enhancing the shape and form.

For some drama, and to add a pop of colour and texture, moulded glass is fantastic. Great for dramatic, tall stems like pampas grass or artificial roses, they also work for fresh products.

Hourglass Shaped Vases

Such a vase design is great for displaying a bunch or bouquet in a uniform shape, as the nipped in neck and flared top work together to support and flare out the stems.

Grey Glass Double Bowl Vase, H17.2cm

Spherical or Circular Shaped Vases

Terracotta is a porous material, so no good for fresh products. Dried and artificial stems look amazing in it however and you can achieve a very satisfactory result with little effort.

For something that has visual interest, these 'doughnut' vases are a charming design, and great for displaying a few individual stems.

Square & Cuboid Vases

Angles and straight lines within a design provide a structured and contemporary look. These can completely change the vibe a bunch of flowers eschews compared to soft lines and curves.

Which Vase For What Flower?

Choosing the right vase may not be as simple as just plucking an old jam jar from the cupboard and putting flowers in it, but with some thought and consideration, creating a variety of looks with a single vessel is possible.

Ultimately, it’s down to personal preference and a few simple design principles, so experiment! Don’t be afraid of trying different colours and textures and don’t forget to have fun with the process!

We offer a variety of glasses & ceramics, dried flowers and pre-made bouquets here at Atlas Flowers and we are always adding new styles and trends so check back regularly to see what’s offered - better yet, sign up to our newsletter and follow us on Instagram or Pinterest to keep up with all of our latest products.

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Whether it's our vases in your shop displays or as part of your floral designs, share the love on our socials - we love to see them!

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