Design Development, Journal

August Special Flower Design: A Celebration of Colors and Diversity


The Malaysia Flag: Jalur Gemilang (Stripes of Glory)

The Colors of Malaysia: Jalur Gemilang

August is the month we celebrate the National Independence Day (Merdeka) which falls on 31 August. So, our team thought of doing a design that pays a tribute to our homegrown country, Malaysia. We thought of using the colors of the Malaysian Flag, Jalur Gemilang (Stripes of Glory) to design the flower arrangement of the month.

The Malaysian flag was designed in 1950 by an architect, Mohamed Hamzah through a Malayan Flag design contest. However, the name of the flag ‘Jalur Gemilang’ was only given in 1997, 40 years after independence by Redzuan Tamin, also through the selection of entries from another contest. The word “Gemilang” carries the meaning of bright, brilliant and excellence. Jalur Gemilang symbolizes the excellence of people and the nation, as well as loyalty, persistence and unity in upholding the country’s image. The red, white, and blue colors used in the Malaysian flag represent that the country belongs to the Commonwealth. The star and the crescent symbolize that Islam is the country’s official religion. The yellow color is a reminder that the Malay Rulers are independent of foreign control. The thirteen stripes and thirteen points on the star represent the equality of the country’s 13 states. The 14th stripe and the 14th point on the star is a symbol of the unity between the entities.

Flower Recipe: A Celebration of Colors

We decided to use the colors from the Jalur Gemilang in our design. The main colors of the design are blue, red, white and yellow. Blue, red and yellow are the primary colors in the color palette. In color theory, primary colors are the parent of every color. Secondary colors can be derived through the combination of primary colors, while tertiary colors can be derived through the combination of primary and secondary colors. As red, yellow and blue are at the extreme ends of the color spectrum, we will need other secondary and tertiary colors to blend them together in the design. This is why our design consists of 15 different varieties of flowers and foliage!

Below are a list of flowers we used sorted by the color types:

Primary Colors Flowers

red rose, maroon eustoma, pink eustoma, cortinus

clematis, centaurea

aster, dried yellow broom

Secondary and Tertiary Colors Flowers

The combination of two primary colors produces the secondary colors. The combination of primary and secondary colors produces the tertiary colors. The tertiary colors are the in-between colors, for example, a combination of red and purple produces a red / purple color.


Red + Blue
fuschia statice, fuschia caspia, lilac rose

Blue + Yellow

Yellow + Red

Finally, we have white which is a neutral color. Neutral colors are not part of the color wheel, they include colors like white, black and gray. They are sometimes called the ‘earth tones’.

aster, white spray carnation

In selecting the flowers, we also take in to consideration the texture of the flowers. Blue clematis looks like tiny butterfly while blue centaurea looks like tiny flower fairies. These two flowers look animated and they look like they are in motion, so adding the flowers to the arrangement will add liveliness to the design. Thlaspi and cortinus (smoke bush) are selected to give a wild and natural touch to the arrangement. We have also added yellow dried broom in the arrangement. Yellow dried broom is a dried flower and it adds a different form of life and character in the design. Finally, for the wrapping of the design, we decided to go with something very simple as we want the focus of the design to be on the colors and flowers. So we decided to go with a brown kraft paper outer wrapper and khaki color tissue inner wrapper for the arrangement. Putting together the flowers, we have our design ‘Gemilang’!
This design is truly a celebration of colors and diversity! The colors that made up the design are all very different individually, yet when they are put together the colors blend together really well. This is just like our nation Malaysia, which is a melting pot for the many race and religions. Each of the flowers in the design are equally important and they are all the main characters of the design. This design reminds us that diversity is a strength and not a weakness of our nation.

Colors of National Pride Took Over Our Social Media


An early celebration of National Day took place on our Instagram as our Instagram posts are swarmed with the colors of blue, red, white and yellow from the Jalur Gemilang!

Express Yourself: Unity in Diversity

Flowers are very expressive, they have very different colors, textures, lifespan and scent. When these flowers are put together, they can tell a very compelling story. Inspired by the theme of the month, we decided to do a social commentary on the nation through a floral art piece.

In chaos, there is order; in noises, there is peace. Corruption, racial tensions and religion issues are what strain the fabric that weaves us together. We have been through one of the most tumultuous times of our nation history.

This floral piece is arranged in a chaotic manner, yet if we observe closely, the flowers have a motive of inward motion as if there is a force that pulls the flowers towards the center. The flowers represent the different characters like you and me, but what is it that pull us together? Is it our food that we love so much? Or is it our common childhood? How about our national language? Do you remember the time we come together to cheer for our national sports hero, Dato Lee Chong Wei in the momentous game in the Olympics? Or the time when we walk hand in hand to cast the fateful vote in the polls that change the course of the nation forever?

There is no storm that will last for an eternity. After chaos, there will be beauty and there will be time we will rebuild and harvest the fruits of our labor. The blue clematis flower represents the butterfly that come to visit after a storm.

Gemilang Project: The ‘Gemilang’ Team

Perhaps the social commentary was a bit heavy, so we also did something light and fun with our team. We asked our Scentales team (ScentBees) what flowers in our ‘Gemilang’ design that best represents them. Here are what our Scentbees say!

Creative Director

Calimero. I’m a cheerful and optimistic person. I can survive in any situation, just like Calimero, which is tough. I’m grateful to have a great team of fantastically talented ScentBees!

#baokaliaobee #ketuakampung #全村的希望

Business Adviser

Blue Clematis. I am an introvert who takes a while to warm up to people. This is quite similar to the mystic and mysterious features of the Clematis flower.

#mysteriousbee #jejakakorea #小鲜肉


White Spray Carnation. I’m an easy going person who can blend in to any group just like white spray carnation, which can be used easily to match with other flowers in many arrangements.

#busybee #kuli #暖男担当

Floral and Product Designer

Blue Centaurea. Centaurea has the power of healing and it symbolizes hope. Just like this flower, I wish that I can give positivity to the people around me. I wish to be a florist who have the power of healing and gives hope to the one that needs it.

#creativebee #ketuadarjah #解憂花藝師

Floral Designer

Red Rose. Red rose is symbolic of love and beauty. As a lady, I love beauty. I like to be surrounded by all things beautiful. Red rose also symbolizes passion, as a florist if i don’t have passion in doing my artwork, it will be meaningless.

#fashionistabee #adiksukapink #甜美花艺师

Floral Designer

White Aster. ‘Everyone’s a star, and deserves the right to twinkle.’ – Marilyn Monroe. ‘Hey, you, Aster (also known as “Star” in Greek)! Let’s twinkle twinkle together and go live our dreams and never think that we can’t! Twinkle twinkle little star.

#superstarbee #dayungsangon #欢乐花艺师

Floral Designer

Eustoma. Just like the flower language of the Eustoma, I enjoy peace and contentment, enjoying the finer things in life.

#vintagebee #gadisdari1950 #佛系花艺师

Customer Service

Pink Caspia. Soft color shows femininity and Caspia means remembrance. Definitely me as a sentimental girl.

#sweetbee #gadissuaramanis #温柔担当

Finance Analyst

Lilac Rose. We are like lilac roses, unique and enchanting. Let your heart blooms as it wishes to.

#turbobee #cumicumi #泥娃娃

IT Specialist

Statice. I play a backend role in the team who keeps our website up and running smoothly. I think Statice represents me well. Although it’s not the main flower in ‘Gemilang’, but still it has an important role to play to complete the design.

#geekbee #pakarIT #宅男担当

Selamat Hari Merdeka (Happy National Day)

Any of us who have grown up in the 80s or 90s would remember what Wawasan 2020 is. Wawasan 2020 is the brain child of our Prime Minister, Tun Dr Mahathir. It is a vision for Malaysia to be a developed nation by 2020. We are now in 2019 celebrating the 62nd National Day and we are only a few months from the 2020.

Here is our Scentales team wishing an advanced ‘Selamat Hari Merdeka’ to all Malaysians. We hope that we as we go in to the 2020, we will march in to a new ‘Gemilang’ era for the nation.

Remember to wave your ‘Jalur Gemilang’ or decorate your house with our ‘Gemilang’ flowers to express your pride this National’s Day!

Written by: Kyle Tan
Co-written by: Clory Tan & Sharon Lam
Photography by: Sharon Lam