After receiving several requests for a how-to on my wedding bouquets, my fabulous Maid of Necessity, Crystal, and I got together to make this tutorial.
Here is a photo of all of the bouquets on the day of the wedding. We used buttons, both new and vintage, feathers, bead spray (from the floral craft department) and branches instead of flowers. You can put pretty much anything you want in these.
Almost everything that went into our bouquets was meaningful. The antique buttons had belonged to my grandmother, who passed away about six months before the wedding. All of the buttons in each one were chosen to reflect each of the bridesmaids and their personal style. My bouquet had pussy willow branches in them because those were always a favorite of mine. My “something old” was my grandpa's dog tags from WWII, which we wrapped around the base of my bouquet.
The tools you will definitely need:
- Needle nose pliers
- Wire cutters
- Hot glue gun
- Beaded floral spray
- Ribbon (for wrapping handles)
- 22 and 20 gauge wire
- Floral tape
The tools we recommend:
- Wine served in plastic glasses
- Inspirational movies for background noise
- Paper towels (for wine spills)
Start by pulling apart and cutting the floral bead spray into pieces that are a manageable size. This depends on how much of this you want to include.
You can lengthen these with wire so that they are long enough to create the handle for your bouquet without being too full or bulky.
Now choose your buttons and start attaching them to the twenty-gauge wire. (For this bouquet we are only using six buttons, but the ones we made for the wedding had ten or twelve in each). Cut wires to about ten inches (give or take depending on how big you want your bouquets to be). Thread the twenty-gauge wire through the button holes so that you have about an inch of length on one side.
Use pliers to twist the wire at the back of the button. Twist until button is secure. Be careful not to overdo it or the wire will break!
If you're using buttons that have the loops on the back as opposed to holes, you can use hot glue to secure it, as it's difficult to wrap the wire tightly on these.
Wrap the wires around your finger to give it a bit of a curl for a softer look (or leave it straight if that's the look you're going for).
WINE BREAK! (Totally optional.)
Get together items for assembly.
Here's the tricky part… Starting from the back and working your way forward, begin putting the items together. This will likely take some adjustment, and it can be difficult (and hand cramp-inducing) to hold everything together. You can use twist ties to help hold things in place as you go.
Once you have things more or less as you want them, wrap the base (you should ideally have at least four inches of length — six is preferable) with the twenty-two-gauge wire to hold everything together. Wrap downward until you reach the end of your handle. If you have excess wires and things sticking out you can trim them now.
Wrap floral tape (from the top down) around the base to further help hold things together, and to make the handle more uniform and softer.
Now, starting from the BOTTOM up, begin wrapping your ribbon around the base, using drops of hot glue to secure as you go.
Now, once you get to the LAST wrap, you want to twist the ribbon when it's at the back of the handle so that the ribbon is facing the opposite direction.
Trim the ribbon so that there is enough excess to wrap around the back and secure with hot glue.
Now you just need to adjust all of your wires and feathers and such to get it how you want it to look.
Here is what mine looked like on our table using a wine bottle as a holder: