Flower rooms are some of my favorite spaces to design and in my opinion, proof that utilitarian rooms can feel special and fun! I love using saturated color, whimsy wallpaper and stained woods — these elements make them feel substantial and give the impression of a more solid working space.

A great deal of these spaces rely on decisions that drive functionality. It’s necessary that this space is near access to the outdoors. In one flower room we recently designed, it is contiguous to a large laundry and office space that has access to the kitchen garden. The parquet floor floral space is also at the end of a lovely enfilade with a window at the other end bisecting the back hall of the home. It really draws you through the home.

It’s super fun to have your floral supplies and containers within reach as well — though not as necessary as access to the yard. Since we often bring in a ton of floral material from the floral terminal, it’s great to have access close to the garage or where you come in from the home. In one space we incorporated herringbone floors, making them ideal for spills and such.

In making selections with respect to fixtures, faucets and sinks, a big sink — and if not wide, then deep, is a must! I am also particular about using bridge faucets, any type of faucet with a wristblade where the water needed is either hot or cold — tepid is really never called for with flowers. Gooseneck faucets of any height are a great selection. They can reach over the material and are much more practical for filling buckets. Equally critical is to design the space for storing containers and floral food, shears, etc. if at all possible.

We keep our low baskets near the floral space, as well as a few types of clippers — bypass and typical floral shears. Chicken wire, frogs, and floral food can all be stored in a floral sink area. I keep big buckets outside the house where we tend to take them back to the floral terminal. I think vases are so helpful to keep stored together. It makes the entire process more of a fun hobby than a chore when everything is displayed together and accessed at once.

Ask Hillary!

Q: What are some of your favorite flower rooms you’ve seen other design luminaries create?

A: Carolyn Roehm’s is the ultimate. She even lines her drawers with a lovely floral paper — it’s divine! Bunny has such a great storage situation — I think the sheer volume of her collection looks so lovely all piled in together. I also love the look of Kate Rheinstein B’s floral space — painted green floors with mulled windows above plenty of counter space looking out to the garden — no upper storage, just windows. It’s so chic.

Q: If you could spend an afternoon arranging flowers with a notable floral designer or gardener, who would that be?

A: I love Willow Crossley. I love her personality and her approach. She’s also just darling. And her English floral product is second to none in the world! I’d go back to any floral specialist at the Chelsea Flower Show any day of the week. The British are truly masters of gardens… I’d sit at their feet any day. And of course, if I’m focused on Dahlias (which certain years I AM!!! This summer was a dahlia bust for me unfortunately) then I’d like to follow Frances Palmer in her garden glory.

I also think there is a lot to learn from Cake Atelier Amsterdam who makes the arrangements from sugar flowers. She really studies the Old Masters and knows how to put together an arrangement. I’d love to sit in there with her! And of course Paulette Tavormina — I’ve long loved her work and placed her fine art photography in a client’s kitchen years ago. She also knows how to build an arrangement the old master way — I LOVE it!

A good floral arranging room needs plentiful clippers! I adore the beautiful ash handles on this pair — buy in multiples!

A proper sun hat should be in arm’s reach for darting back and forth from the garden. Lola Hats makes beautiful raffia hats that are as functional as they are attractive. A wide brim is key.



I love having a flat basket with me when foraging in from the garden. This is the real deal — made in France in the mid 20th Century.

My collection of vases is quite extensive ranging in various shapes and scales, however some of my prized pieces are ceramic. In the mountains, I adore collecting blooms and placing them in a large pitcher akin to this piece.

One can never have too many terra-cotta planters and I am constantly repotting ferns for our photoshoots or potting something for a hostess gift. The whimsical ripple design on these aged pots is the epitome of happiness!

I find a dustpan (and broom!) to be a trusty companions when cleaning up leftover stems and floral bits. Flower rooms are pretty utility rooms, afterall!

From one of my favorites…the flower frogs from Willow Crossley’s shop are a staple in any floral working space. Small or large, they help bring shape and structure to any arrangement.

Back to blog