Fabulous Floral Flat Lays

Got broken stems? Don’t cry! You have the building blocks for a hot new trend: floral flat lays.


Actually, flat laying’s origins date back to 1987 when Andrew Kromelow, a janitor at the Frank Gehry furniture store, picked up stray items around the store and arranged them on a flat surface at 90 degree angles.

Thirty years later, it’s transformed into a design trend, in which people organize products (be it food, makeup, or flowers) on a flat surface and take an aerial photograph.

Shutterstock, a provider of high-quality licensed photos and videos, discussed flat laying in its 2017 Creative Trends Guide. Shutterstock blogger Eleanor Innis hypothesizes there are two psychological reasons driving the trend:

  • People love things.
  • People love order.

“It’s no secret that humans love stuff,” she writes. “Like seagulls dive-bombing the sidewalk in pursuit of a shiny candy wrapper, we gravitate towards things. We all choose different things to have and to hold, whether it’s a stuffed animal from childhood or the next wearable tech device.” At the same time, “our love of order is a function of our brain’s immense information processing abilities,” she says. “From the time we are small children trying to fit a square peg into a round hole, we are learning to organize the slew of data that bombards us daily. Anything that can help us order information faster, like listsicles or a rainbow flat lay of objects found washed up on the beach, is like candy for our brains.”

A few weeks ago, Mayesh Wholesale Design  held a flat lay contest on Instagram. Marketing director Yvonne Ashton says the inspiration come from Bridget Beth Collins, a botanical artist who goes by Flora.Forager on Instagram. “I’ve been following her for a while and really admired her work,” Ashton says. “I also had seen flat lay pictures being used for other things, like makeup, and wanted to get into the game. I thought this would be a fun way for our floral community to flex their creative muscles and make good use of leftover flowers!”

Having scrolled through many of the entries, I’d say participants succeeded with flying colors. Below are some truly sensational designs from Mayesh florists, as well as Collins. If you find yourself with some spare time and flowers (after Administrative Professionals Week and Mother’s Day, of course), why not give this trend a try? You can use the photographs in social media posts, marketing materials, shop signage, etc. Heck, you might be able to sell the photos like Collins does!

Want tips for creating a floral flat lay? Click here.