Basic Design Class

June 3- 14, 2024 (On-campus Instruction)

(Two-Weeks, Monday-Friday)
9:00 am – 5:00 pm

The Basic Design class is a two-week curriculum that is designed for both beginning floral students as well as professional florists.  There are no prerequisites or degrees required to attend the Basic Design class.

Horticulture and Forest Science Building at Texas A&M University

Because class openings are limited, the instructors are able to provide you with personal supervision at all times. Our students learn about every aspect of the florist business including corsages, sympathy tributes, decorative treatment of potted plants, European dish gardens, all styles of geometric design, wedding flowers, and decorations for receptions and parties.

Upon completion of this 70 hour class, students receive a Certificate of Completion bearing the names of the Benz School and Texas A&M University. Former students have often said that the Benz School diploma is their best recommendation. Advanced courses are available for persons who have completed the Basic Design program.

Upon request, Texas A&M University will furnish a transcript of Continuing Education Units (CEUs) earned through class at the Benz School. The CEU is recognized by employers, associations, and organizations across the nation. The Benz School of Floral Design is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Universities, the agency that provides accreditation for Texas A&M University.

The Benz School also is approved by the National Vocational Rehabilitation Act, which makes financial benefits available to students who qualify.

Major Curriculum Topics for the Basic Class Include:

Floral Arrangements
Students will study step-by-step production methods and participate in hands-on training to make practical designs for home, hospital, church, and business. Design and mechanics are explained in detail – from simple to elaborate, and for special occasions of all kinds.

Elements and Principles of Design
Study of the elements and principles of design are included throughout the curriculum, and a special lecture is devoted to this topic as it applies to floral design.

Living Jewelry
Students make fashionable corsages and other designs for personal adornment.  Orchids, roses, and many other flowers showcase the latest ideas for formal and casual occasions. The practical aspects of styling – whether shoulder or coiffure design, wristlet, or boutonniere – are studied in relation to taste, appropriate design, and profit.

Wedding Design
Students become familiar with all aspects of wedding specialists. Lectures include servicing and conducting a wedding consultation, as well as ceremony etiquette and set up procedures. Lecture and lab participation focus on detailed methods of constructing all types of bridal bouquets, with emphasis on contemporary styling and fresh flowers.

Sympathy Tributes
This important phase of the florist industry receives careful instruction at the Benz School. Students will learn the basics of preparing funeral designs efficiently yet beautifully, from the inexpensive to the more costly. Detailed directions are demonstrated on the construction of each type of floral tribute, including easel and casket sprays, wreaths, and fraternal and conventional emblems.

Potted Plant Trims
Students receive instruction in various methods of display and mechanics of decorating a potted plant to accent a plant’s beauty. Contemporary trends, new materials, and recent techniques are accented in creating memorable designs.

European Dish Gardens
In this popular exercise, you will transplant flowering and foliage plants into a dish garden and use natural accessories to embellish the design form.

Shop Management
The successful operation of a florist shop often depends as much on management as on the talent of the floral designer. At the Benz School, you will learn about profitable buying and selling, percentage mark-up (pricing), salesmanship, and other vital management necessities. Much attention is devoted to ensuring greater profit as well as increased customer satisfaction. In addition, students study an array of business-related topics such as care and handling of plants and flowers, advertising and selling, shop display, and employee relations.


The ShopKeeper, Johnson and McKinley (provided as part of class fee)

Flowers:  Creative Design, Johnson, McKinley, Benz (optional but HIGHLY RECOMMENDED and available from the TAMU Press at the following link.,1907.aspx .  Use the discount code “ag” for a 20% discount.

Classes are held in the floral design studio at Texas A&M University in College Station, TX (Horticulture/Forest Science Building, Room 108).  The tuition is $1695.00 which includes all class materials, supplies, and printed hand-out materials.   Full  payment is required at the time of your registration.

For more information or for questions about technology needed to participate in these classes, please contact:
Barbara Volk-Tunnell, Benz program assistant
or Bill McKinley AIFD, Benz director

Requested refund two weeks prior to scheduled class = full refund less $50.00 admin fee
Requested refund one week prior to scheduled class = 50% refund
Requested refund less than one week prior to scheduled class = no refund

Parking is available in TAMU Lot 74.  Parking permits may be purchased for $25.00/week from the TAMU Transportation Department at the following link:

Parking Link

Students must provide their own set of basic tools that should include a floral knife, stem cutters/snips, wire cutters and ribbon scissors.

Registration Instructions – click the underlined link “Benz School Flywire’ below to register for this course online.

Benz School Flywire   – then click on the “Classes” thumbnail and select the course that you would like to register for.  Registration deadline is May 24, 2024.

There are many motels/hotels in the Bryan/College Station area from which to choose.  Please click the following link for a list from the B/CS Visitors Bureau:
Lodging List from B/CS Visitor Bureau

Additional Information

This course qualifies for 8.0 TAMU CEUs (80 hours)

For additional information, please contact Barbara Volk-Tunnell at 979.845-1699 or