Focus on Sogetsu

From the Sogetsu School of Ikebana website – “In 1927, when everybody believed practicing ikebana meant following established forms, Sofu Teshigahara recognized ikebana as a creative art and founded the Sogetsu School. Anyone can enjoy Sogetsu Ikebana anytime, anywhere, using any material. You can place Sogetsu Ikebana at your door, in your living room or on your kitchen table. Sogetsu Ikebana enhances any hotel lobby or banquet room, shop windows and huge public spaces. It will suit any kind of space, Japanese or Western and enrich its atmosphere.”  

If you wish to submit a picture of an arrangement for this page, please send your arrangement photo with details as to the style of the design, materials used, your Sogetsu rank and I.I. chapter affiliation to

Stephan Eberhagen, Miami Chapter, Sogetsu, created this video depicting the “50 Principles of Sogetsu”. Each principle is interpreted by a design by Stephan. Just click here or on the image on the right to view it.

This design was created by Inge Johansen, Somu, San Diego chapter.
The video was created by San Diego’s Patricia Fuchs

Stephan Eberhagen of the Miami Chapter was inspired by the quote below by Teshigara to create this free style using palm and lotus seed pods

It is not enough – there has to be a creation of form. We often associate the phrase “formative arts” with the word “form”, and this suggests an awareness of the artistic aspects of the process. This awareness, along with the formative aspect of ikebana, should be obvious”
(Sofu Techigahara, Kadensho 19)

Joanne Caccavale, Riji, Boston Chapter created this “All Green” arrangement using Bromelia, Solomon Seal, Mayflower and Hosta.

Joanne Caccavale, Riji, Boston Chapter also created this arrangement in a metal container using Bridal Veil Spirea, Orange Star of Bethlehem and Hydrangea

Donna West, Sogetsu Teacher, Ist grade Jonin Somu and member of the San Diego chapter created this lovely free style arrangement. Her materials include Liquid Amber leaf branches, Ring of Fire Sunflowers, Purple Cabbage Rose, Penny Cress, green Poke Weed berries, Pompon Mums, Sorghum, and Eucalyptus berries. She was inspired by the magnificent red colored Liquid Amber leaves expressing the changing autumn season.

Shelley Galloway, Chicago Chapter
This arrangement highlights the use of unusual and common materials to create your ikebana.  It is a freestyle arrangement created in a self-made container made from flexible, plastic aquarium tubing held in place with black plastic zip ties.  Water tubes inserted into the tubes provide a water source.  Alstroemerias, grasses, birds nest fern frond and lily leaves provide the mass, color, line and movement.

Miho Ito, Chicago Chapter, created this arrangement with Curly willows and colorful French tulips following “Intertwining plant materials” from text book 3.

This arrangement was created by Jean Stewart, San Diego Chapter following the lesson “Color of the Container.”

The purple/blue hues of this container with its matte finish is a great background for any material, particularly pomegranates, persimmons, lemons or other colorful hanging fruit. Having five pomegranates in the design (some are in the back and can’t be seen in the photo) made it enjoyable to view from all angles.

Sue Smith, Somu; Dallas Chapter used these 2 handmade vases and the spring design is our lesson, Maze-zashi, using five or more materials, mostly flowers. She used Snow willow with Japanese Quince, Ranunculus, Jasmine vine, and greenery.

Lin Ko, Columbia Chapter; 
Curved pussy willow and red carnations representing a young woman with her arms raised in prayer.  

Anne-Lise Whitescarver from our Minneapolis chapter made this design.
The Architecture of a Bird’s Nest – Inspired by a bird’s nest and an arrangement featured in Ilse Beunen’s book Inspiring Ikebana.Materials: flax and bird of paradise.