As a furniture and homewares designer, Craig uses shape, texture, and colour to make a place look and feel a certain way, and you can apply the same principles to plant styling.
Craig’s plants are all growing in lightweight plastic pots so that he can give them “great drainage, customise their potting media and change their look anytime I like.” Planting directly into heavier decorative pots makes it harder to move them around and you’re stuck with one look.
Grouping plants in odd numbers creates a balanced effect that makes it more pleasing to the eye. You can also use the ‘pyramid principle’ to group plants – imagine a triangular shape and put tall plants at the back and smaller plants to the side and front to create height and depth. Another way to group plants is by colour, such as those with tones of purple, to create cohesion among plants with different leaf shapes and textures.
Craig has created “vertical drama” in what would otherwise be a bare stairwell void. Plants are used instead of artworks, dripping down the walls and making use of all spaces. To attach plants to the wall, Craig has simply used clear fishing line attached to white shelf brackets drilled into the wall, which doesn’t distract from the plants. For renters, you can achieve the same effect with the highest-rated adhesive hooks you can find – some will hold up to 7 kilograms.
When it comes to more colourful pots, Craig uses the “one or the other rule” – either the plant is the feature, or the pot is the feature. A simple green leaf philodendron can look great in a bold pot, whereas something with colour like the purple Oxalis triangularis, stands out best in plain white.
Designer planters can be pricey, and the cost can add up if you want a dense indoor jungle. Craig suggests upcycling pots you have around the house or from op-shops by painting them with two coats of chalk paint in neutral tones to create a matte finish and so they look like they all belong together.
To create a DIY pot platform, to give height to some plants, Craig uses two similar shaped hand painted pots, and turns the smaller one upside down to act as a plinth. Put the larger one upright on top and glue together with a heavy-duty adhesive.
Plants will naturally bring life into your space so don’t stress about following the rules, focus on how they make you feel!
Purple Shamrock Oxalis triangularis
Begonia ‘Connie Boswell’ Begonia cv.
Rhipsalis Rhipsalis cv.
Philodendron ‘Golden Dragon’ Philodendron cv.
Filmed on Boon Wurrung & Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung Country
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