When I was a little girl, I was a part of my local 4-H club (for those who weren't lucky enough to be a part of it, 4-H is a community club where kids take classes and can present their projects at their local county and state fairs and it was SO MUCH FUN). One of the 4-H classes I took was floral arranging. When I signed up for the class, I thought, "Piece of cake. Flowers in a vase. Boom, done." Not so. There is so much more to arranging flowers than I initially thought. Color, seasons, care... it's a complicated art that I was not immediately skilled at. So, as I'm planning my upcoming wedding (I'll be getting hitched next winter!), I've been deciding what to buy and what to make myself. Bridal bouquet? That's a buy. But a DIY boutonniere? I can tell you right now that is a total reality.
And boutonnieres are something you should DIY, even if you don't consider yourself a particularly crafty person. Why? Because it's easy, cheap, doable, and there's even a formula you can follow. I wasn't great at arranging flowers, but I can borrow elements from an already-existing bouquet and make a mini one! Plus you can make enough boutonnieres for your entire wedding party from one additional bride or bridesmaids' bouquet.
I'm going to show you an easy way to make a simple DIY boutonniere that anyone can do, but this is just a guideline. There aren't really rules to making boutonnieres. You can add as many or as few flowers as you like, you can use any materials you like, and you can go crazy depending on the theme of your wedding. However, if you're like me and enjoy working within certain guidelines, then keep reading!
For my fellow visual learners out there (holla!), I put together a short video of me putting a buttonhole bouquet together. I'm also demonstrating how to pin a boutonniere to a jacket in this video too (hint - pin through the back!).
- Fresh flowers and greenery
- Floral tape
- Floral wire
- Corsage pins
- Wire cutters and floral snippers
Start by picking one large flower to work around. This will be the shining star of your boutonniere. Pair it with some greenery and smaller flowers.
When cutting the stems of live flowers, cut them under cold water (like in a full sink or bucket), and snip the stems at an angle.
Arrange your florals with the bigger flower in the front. I found that mine looked great with the big flower in the front, smaller flowers behind or to the side, and greenery in the back. Don't let the greenery sit too much taller than the flower. Keep them at about the same height.
Cut a 3-inch piece of floral wire, and add it to the stems of the bouquet for support.
Wrap floral tape around the stems, including just underneath the flowers where the head of the large flower starts. Wrap three inches down the stems, then cut the floral tape. Cut off any extra stems.
You can make DIY boutonnieres for your wedding ahead of time, too. Preserve them by sealing them in a plastic bag, and keeping them in the refrigerator. Keep in mind that some flowers keep better than others, and do your research.
The easiest way to pin a boutonniere is from the back of the lapel rather than the front. I centered the DIY boutonniere in the front, flipped the lapel over, and stuck the boutonniere pin in through the back. And no, it didn't stab me! Although, if I were having smaller kids wear these at my wedding, I might use a very large safety pin instead of a pin.
I'm glad I took the time to figure out how to make a DIY boutonniere before my actual wedding day. While they were easy (and ridiculously fast) to put together, I'm definitely the kind of person who needs fool-proof plans for her wedding. If you are planning on making boutonnieres for your big day (and you totally should!), make one or two before the wedding, just to get the hang of it. Boutonnieres aren't just for weddings, either! Knowing how to put a buttonhole bouquet together is a good trick to have under your belt come prom season too.
Looking for more ways to save money on your big day? Check out this list of things to borrow instead of buy for your wedding!