Zen and the Art of Ikebana

Zen and the Art of Ikebana

By Niree Noel

A simple scene from our Secret Supper at Fulton Fish Market. February 2017

For 2017’s wintry Secret Supper, set in the pristinely renovated Fulton Fish Market at South Street Seaport, stylist Nikki Pettus followed the traditional Japanese art of ikebana to create standout centerpieces. A classic illustration of finding mindfulness in minimalism, ikebana flower arranging requires focus, attention, and intention. Nikki says: “In any floral arrangement, you have to think about balance. But it’s particularly important in ikebana, because you actually have to find the balance so the entire thing doesn’t topple over. Every single stem matters.”


Stylist Nikki Pettus makes minimalist arrangements during a quiet moment.

All you’ll need to make your own ikebana creations is an assortment of flowers, a spiked frog holder, and some sort of vessel, such as a cleaned-out candle jar or perhaps a handmade concrete bowl a la Nikki. Simply separate and trim the stems, then mindfully place them on individual spikes, gently bending each stem into position. Et voilà!