A Pillowing Basing Technique for Flowers

Updated February 21, 2017

A pillow made from fresh or silk flowers is often placed at the head of the casket of a deceased spouse or loved one as a symbol that the person is at rest. The pillow is created on a sturdy rectangle- or heart-shaped foam base. The background of the pillow is filled in with flowers using the basing technique. The main flower that is used for the basing of a shaped form is the chrysanthemum pom. The poms are secured with a picking method. The pillowing basing technique is a time-consuming process that produces a beautiful floral tribute.

Cut the stems of the chrysanthemum poms to a 2- to 3- inch height with a sharp knife or floral shears. Regular or daisy chrysanthemum poms work best for a pillow form.

Insert a round toothpick straight up into the centre of the stem of the pom until it is wedged in. Be careful to keep the stick from showing at the centre of the top of the blossom. This is called a picked stem.

Insert the end of the toothpick into the foam of the pillow form by holding the centre of it with your fingers firmly. Plunge it down into the foam to be sure it is securely in place.

Fill the entire top of pillow foam base in with the picked flowers. Stagger the heights of the flowers slightly to create a textured appearance to the base of the funeral pillow.

Cut the carnations stems to a 2-inch height with a sharp knife.

Hold a wired pick against the stem of the carnation.

Wrap the wire around the stem of the carnation to secure it tightly.

Start at the outer edge of the pillow foam form and insert the picked carnation into the foam. Insert carnation picks around the entire outer area of the pillow.

Fill in the interior area of the pillow form with carnation picks.


The base flowers of the pillow form can be sprayed lightly with Design Master colour after it is filled in.


Do not push the toothpicks forcefully into the pom stems or they will split open or shatter the flower head.

Things You'll Need

  • Florist pillow form
  • 3 to 4 bunches of chrysanthemum poms
  • Sharp knife or shears
  • 1 box round toothpicks
  • Carnations
  • 2 bundles of 3 inch wire wooden picks
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About the Author

Suzie Faloon is a freelance writer who has written online content for various websites. As a professional crafter and floral designer, Faloon owned a florist business for nearly 25 years. She completed the Institute of Children's Literature course in 1988.