Step-by-Step Instructions for Making a Carnation & Posy Bouquet

Updated April 17, 2017

A bouquet of flowers lends life and colour to any environment, and makes an expressive gift. Virtually any types of flowers can be assembled together to create a bouquet, but scented flowers can result in a bouquet that is as pleasing to the nose as it is to the eyes. Carnations are sweetly fragrant flowers with round blooms of densely packed petals. They come in a broad spectrum of colours, and look nice when combined with other posies. "Posy" is simply an old-fashioned term for a flower.

Make a "C" shape with the fingers and thumb of your less-dominant hand. Hold your hand so you are looking down at the "C," which should be parallel to the floor and the ceiling. Note that you will assemble the bouquet of carnations and posies in your hand; this is the shape your hand will take while it holds the stems of the bouquet as you build it.

Pick up a carnation using your other, dominant hand. Place the carnation in your less-dominant hand.

Grasp a posy. Hold it above the carnation currently in your less-dominant hand. Slide it down gently into your hand at an angle, so that its bloom is nestled up against, but slightly below, the bloom of the carnation.

Add two more flowers---one carnation and one posy---to your less-dominant hand. Slide each one carefully around the first carnation at an angle. The first carnation will be slightly higher than the other three flowers.

Add four more flowers---two carnations and two posies---one at a time into your less-dominant hand. Slide each new flower in at an angle. Place the new flowers so they form a circle slightly below the three flowers you inserted before. Note that pushing each flower in at an angle helps you to achieve the slightly round shape that is desirable in a floral bouquet.

Continue to add carnations and posies, alternating between one and the other, until you have achieved the size of bouquet you want. You should see a round mound of carnations and posies visible above your less-dominant hand, and their various stems emerging at different angles below your hand.

Slip the thickest and strongest carnation stem through the centre of a rubber band. Move the rubber band up to the narrowest part of the bouquet, the point where all the flower stems converge.

Pull the rubber band out away from the bouquet; it will still be connected to the carnation stem you slid it onto. Wind the rubber band once or twice around the entire bunch of stems, then stretch it down to the base of the carnation stem you initially slid it onto. Slide the rubber band up onto that stem again; the rubber band will hold the bouquet together.

Trim the stems of the carnation and posy bouquet to the length you desire using scissors.

Tie a ribbon around the stems of the bouquet. Choose ribbon in a colour that coordinates with the hues of the carnations and posies. Use ribbon to cover just the narrow part of the bouquet where the rubber band is, or wind the ribbon around the entire length of the stems. Tie the ribbon in a knot or bow.

Place the bouquet of carnations and posies into a vase or other container if you desire. Consider omitting the rubber band and the ribbon if you do so.


Posy is a term used to describe a flower, nosegay or bouquet. Flowers that qualify as posies and go well with carnations include the following: small daisies, ranunculus, roses, peonies and stock. These posies echo the round shapes of carnations.

Things You'll Need

  • Carnations
  • Assorted posies (other flowers)
  • Ribbon
  • Scissors
  • Optional: greenery, vase
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About the Author

Rose Brown began writing professionally in 2003. Her articles have appeared in such Montana-based publications as "The Tributary" and "Edible Bozeman." She earned a bachelor's degree in literature from the University of California at San Diego, and a master's degree in English from Montana State University. Brown has been a professional florist since 1997.