Fun With Flowers

If you’ve wanted to go to a Paint and Sip but know that you couldn’t draw a straight line with a ruler – maybe flower arranging will be your jam? Take a trial run with The Arts Center of the Capital Region at the Aug. 19 “Crafty Hour” at the University Club.

This isn’t the first time the Arts Center has sent their instructors across the river from Troy to the University Club. Photography, wreath-making and chocolate mix-ins have all been explored. There’s also a workshop focused on natural beauty products in the works.

Each Crafty Hour starts with 30-minute mixer where you can have a drink and a snack to get those creative juices flowing. During each workshop, participants create something to take home – in this case, a unique arrangement in the style of the Sōgetsu School of Japan.

Led by Ellen Rook White, the workshop promises to help participants learn to apply Ikebana principles of simplicity of design and harmony to bring out the beauty of flowers in the spirit of the season. White has studied Ikebana for 29 years and is authorized in the Sōgetsu tradition. She gives flower arranging demonstrations and classes in upstate New York and New England.

Ikebana is the art of “making flowers alive,” and it dates back to 7th century Japan. The Sōgetsu school of floral arranging was founded by Sōfu Teshigahara in 1927. The credo of the Sōgetsu school is that “Sōgetsu can be done by anyone, anywhere, anytime with any kind of material.”

One of Sōgetsu’s central ideas is that an arrangement should have three strong elements, each with certain proportions and arranged at a certain angle. But there is considerable latitude to work with whatever materials are available and to express the spirit of the moment as it strikes you.

This workshop promises to help participants learn to apply Ikebana principles of simplicity of design and harmony to bring out the beauty of flowers in the spirit of the season.

The cost for the workshop is $40 and includes materials and instruction. Registration is required by close of business on Thursday, Aug. 15 (tomorrow) and may be made by calling the Club at (518) 463-1151 or online at www.universityclubalbany.com .

Located on Monument Square in the heart of downtown Troy, The Arts Center of the Capital Region, a non-profit organization, houses studios for pottery, culinary arts, jewelry, woodworking, painting and drawing, printmaking, stained glass, dance and fitness, writing, and more. Its 36,000 square feet of fully-accessible space also includes a 104-seat performing arts theater as well as three galleries noted for their critically acclaimed exhibits.

Colleen M. Ryan has always been a storyteller. An innovative communications professional with experience in government, nonprofit and business sectors, she recently launched CMR Communications.

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