Historic delight

Inspired by an ancient Japanese ikebana, an orchid bloom

My museum, the Museum of Floral Culture, was opened to the public on Aug 12, to commemorate the 80th birthday of HM Queen Sirikit, whose caring and benevolent acts for the arts and culture community have brought the nation prosperity, including in the flower culture community of Thailand. The Museum of Floral Culture is the first and the only one of its kind that celebrates the floral culture of humanity.

The second exhibition of the Museum of Floral Culture is called "The World of Floral Culture". The exhibition takes visitors on a magic carpet ride to a beautiful world.

The pride of the exhibition is a hand-written ancient Japanese scroll dating back to 1756. It is now 256 years old, 26 years older than Bangkok. Named "The Secret Book of Ikenobo Shoka Ikebana", the scroll is a long strip of paper filled with sketches of Japanese floral designs of the time.

Inspired by "The Secret Book of Ikenobo Shoka Ikebana", I've come up with today's delightful floral design that has a foliage "scroll" as its base. I use ti leaves and blossoms of the vanda orchid. I used a plastic tube as the axis of my foliage scroll, which also doubles as the water receptacle for the flower.

To begin, I cut the stem of the ti leaves from its blade so that it will be easily rolled. After that I simply roll the ti leaves one by one over the plastic tube until the diameter of the leaf roll reaches approximately 7cm.

Then I tie the foliage roll with a piece of string, cutting both ends to make it look nice and tidy. Filling fresh water into the plastic tube at the centre of my leaf scroll is my next step.

After that I proceed to cut the blossom from its inflorescence with the whole length of the stem attached. The final step is to put the stem of the flower into the plastic tube. And there we have it, delightful foliage scrolls completed with beautiful blossoms of vanda orchids that are inspired by the ancient Japanese secret scroll of flowers.

TIPS

1. Be careful to choose a length of plastic tube that matches the width of the foliage.

2. Orchid blossoms of different forms and colours can be introduced to create a varied look.

3. Other long and flat material such as colourful pieces of paper can also be used to roll over the plastic tube as an alternative to fresh leaves.

Sakul Intakul is an internationally renowned Thai floral artist whose portfolio includes commissions for HM the Queen and conceptual designs for Bvlgari Hotels and Resorts in Bali. He can be reached at sakulintakul@yahoo.com or by visiting www.sakulintakul.com. Enter his wonderful world of flowers at www.facebook.com/ fansofsakulintakul.

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