Gathered and Foraged Flowers for Winter Arrangements you can DIY on a Budget

Do you have any hobbies? As I get older, the more interested I get in learning new things. It's probably because for decades I was learning constantly; from days at school, to college, to wife-ing and then parenthood. I haven't had the introduction of anything new in my life really, so it was time for a class. If you followed me on Instagram this summer you know that I took one of my raised vegetable garden beds and turned it into a cut flower bed. I planted even more flowers in it recently and I'm hoping for a bounty come spring and summer! In the meantime, I knew I needed a class on flower arranging. I cut a bunch of stems this summer, but mostly I just popped those stems in a vase and called it good. I knew I could do better! I just needed a trick or two on how to do it, so I took a flower arranging class. Friends, I took one class and now I think I'm an expert! But I'm not going to lie, I was pretty impressed with these gathered and foraged flowers I found and used to create three winter arrangements {plus a bonus upcycle on a wreath}. It was so easy, I knew I could share it with you too! Want to learn how to gather and forage for your own winter arrangements? Read more!

gathered and foraged winter arrangements tips to make your own holiday flower centerpieces

Gathered and Foraged Flowers for Winter Arrangements: DIY Your Own Flower Arrangements on a Budget!

winter flower arrangements foraged and gathered

If you are new here, you may not know that I do just about everything on a pretty tight budget. I like free and cheap. I could buy an expensive flower arrangement, but where's the fun in that? So with $13 worth of flowers from Trader Joe's, my new skills from my flower arranging class, and some garden shears, I set to work creating three gathered and foraged winter arrangements. 

Each one of these would cost upwards of $75 at a local florist. I made each one for around $3.

Here's how you do it!

foraged and gathered plants for winter flower arrangements

Get yourself a nice pair of garden shears. Keep a pair in your car because you never know when you find a plant you want a cutting of. 

I went on a walk in my neighborhood and cut down a few plants. You want to do this first before you get any filler flowers just so you know what you are dealing with.

Buy Local Flowers When you Can

I went to my local Safeway flower department. I was so disappointed. I chatted up the florist there and she said she's been disappointed in the flower selection too. Not only that, the flowers they were getting just weren't lasting. Most of the grocery store flowers are shipped from far away {did you know most roses come from Ecuador?} and with the way shipping has been lately, there are a lot of delays. The flowers you buy at the grocery store might have been picked weeks ago.

It reminded me of how important it is to source flowers locally when you can. 

I actually had flowers I got in my flower arranging class that lasted two weeks. The florist sources locally from Washington, Oregon, and Northern California. The Safeway florist was saying she can't get even the carnations they were getting in to last more than five days. 


In the winter, it's hard to buy flowers locally without some contact, so I find that your local Trader Joe's is the next best thing. Not only are the flowers reasonably priced, each store usually sources {relatively} locally. 

I put together a little video, so watch that first and then I'll share a few tips with you.

Tips for Making Budget Flower Arrangements



Tip 1: Sort out all of your greenery on a large table

Tip 2: Use chicken wire inside of a vase to help give your arrangement structure.

Tip 3: Start with the larger greenery first around the edges, then work your way around deciding what kind of flow your arrangement will have. Then poke in flowers in the gaps and allow the flowers to take on a similar shape as the greenery.


Never one to waste anything, I had some red berries left so I poked them into the plain fresh wreath I had on my door. I also added some of the greenery to the fake garland I had on my fireplace mantel. 

upcycle a winter wreath

You can make a real statement this holiday season without a whole lot of money. Why not give these tips and try! 

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