Posts Tagged ‘DIY’

DIY wedding flowers

Choosing to do your own flowers on your wedding day is a lovely idea. But beware, things can go wrong such as choosing suitable flowers, sourcing quality product, staying on budget (once you add fuel, materials, tools, ribbon, containers etc etc), storage , delivery, setup, flower loss through wilting etc, taking alot of your time and scheduling flower creation into the lead up to big day with everything else going on! (Remember you are working with a perishable product) and finally managing expectations of what you can create.


…..dont let me deter you!! If you are relaxed enough to go with the flow and have the resources, time and space to complete this task it could turn out to be an very enjoyable experience that will be long remembered as a rewarding part of your whole wedding celebrations. (I plan on doing my own flowers next year for my wedding!!!) I have seen many DIY flowers at relaxed weddings and the whole celebration had a really good vibe.

So a little background, this post is inspired by a a reader of “Flower Opera” who is doing the flowers for her daughters wedding and had a few questions.  Thank you for asking Nancy, and first of all, WELL DONE on starting with the most important thing…RESEARCH!

More often than not, DIY brides or mothers will take on one aspect of floral decor, but you my lovely lady have taken on the large task of both personal and reception flowers! So I will attempt to help by answering your questions below

Thank you for offering your help, Flower Opera.  This may not be exactly what you were thinking I might ask but, here goes.  I see so many beautiful bouquets with the stems left bare except for ribbon around the upper part just under the flowers.  I see many different kinds of flowers used this way. 

I love this look! It is definitely for the less formal bride and you could use it for any types of flowers just make sure that you clean all stems by removing leafs, offshoots and thorns. Although relaxed, you don’t want it too look messy, nor do you want leaves to mark the brides dress or thorns to scratch her!

This type of wrap is perfect for a DIY bouquet, because you dont have the stress of making the ribbon flat all the way up and down the stems! Furthermore, there is plenty of stem available to sit in water once the bouquet is made.

I found a tutorial on making a lilac bouquet here with the same style of wrapping in case you want to check it out!  I also think because there is such a small amount of ribbon, you could also have some fun using a contrasting colour or some fabric with an interesting pattern!

How long will the bouquets stay fresh? Is there a special process to prevent the flowers from wilting?  

Buy your flowers as late as possible! If you pick from your own garden then this is especially important and never pick in the heat of the day!

Once you have your flowers, clean the stems, re-cut, then place immediately in buckets of water. (it is best if the water has some flower preservative in it) I am assuming you do not have a commercial flower cooler so instead keep the flowers in a cool room in the house. Do not be tempted to put them in the fridge. I cant imagine they would fit but the fridge is also not set at the correct temperature and there is often sources of ethylene gas that will harm the flowers.

I would recommend making bouquets no earlier than 2-3 days before the big day. Once completed,  get a narrow vase, put a small amount of water in the bottom and recut the stems to the same length then place the bouquet in the vase.

Like I mentioned earlier, the  style of wrapping you have chosen is perfect because you can complete the bouquet ahead of time and keep the flowers hydrated, without getting the ribbon wet. (You will have so much more room to move compared to the image above!) Just make sure every flower stem is in water! (and remember to thoroughly dry the stems before the bride takes it!)

If you follow these steps your flowers should not wilt….just remember to source the freshest flowers you can, keep them cool and keep them hydrated!

Are some flowers better than others for this kind of bouquet? 

I would steer away from delicate flowers and go for ones with sturdier stems.  Most importantly make sure you do not buy dyed blooms….the dye colour will seep from the base of the stem and mark any fabric it comes into contact with!! (Plus, isn’t natural so much more beautiful?!)

Too improve your odds with flower survival, be aware that some flowers are more sensitive than others. For instance Hydrangea is a extremely thirsty and I would avoid it for an open wrapped bouquet.

We’re planning to make the bouquet and boutonnieres ourselves and use cut flowers in small vases for the reception.

First up, set aside in a bucket the prettiest blooms for the bridal bouquet, allocate small amounts for the bouts and then make your centerpieces dividing up the remaining stock. Remember also, with your centerpieces, keep the flowers and foliage low so guests can still talk to each other across the table! Also, if you are trying to keep costs down (who isnt?!) remember that the wider the opening of the container, the more flowers you need to fill it!

Thanks for any suggestions you can offer.

I would recommend buying a little surplus (avoids the stress if something goes wrong and besides…if you are fortunate to have no mistakes, you have extra flowers for the washroom or bar!)

Well done on taking this on, I would love to see pictures of the final product and hear about your experience , I hope this all helps!

Good luck with everything and enjoy the process!!!


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A couple of posts ago, I touched on using herbs (more specifically lavender) at your wedding as a beautiful scented element to your wedding day. (Wedding sights,sounds…..and scents?)

I have been thinking about this idea alot, and how potted herbs as a centrepiece would work. I have come to the conclusion that  really like the idea for the right type of event. It would add a really rustic, country feel to the wedding spread. Imagine if your food complimented the herbs so guests could pick seasoning for their meal straight from the plants in front of them! OK ok, the last idea might is a little crazy, and you would have to have plants completely free of pesticide……but you have to agree its a nice utopian idea anyway!

Idealism aside, I think it could be a really great ‘wallet friendly’ option for brides and also can double as a favor that guests can take home with them. (This post has some cute DIY  lace and burlap herb favors  as shown below)

I have done some searching to see whats out there to inspire me and you!

jules wedding ideas

will you marry moi

I love the lemons in this image too…very Mediterranean

If you want a really simple, and rustic look this wedding featured on once wed went very basic incorporating herbs into the decor. I think its great that the ‘green thumb’  grandma helped with them all too!

Herbs are a cheaper option from a  florist than floral centrepieces…but I think it is a definite DIY option if you have the space, the time and are laid back enough to accept that there will be some deaths amongst your brood of beautiful herbs in the lead up the big day!

When purchasing the herbs, look for small plants in a variety of colors, heights and textures. Sage has a beautiful grey green colour,  thyme are pretty low plants, and rosemary not only adds height, but smells DELICIOUS, and also has a beautful soft colouring in my opinion. Chives, lavender and chamomile all have the potential to add a floral element (check the seasonality) Chamomile looks delightful mixed with vases of poms and peonies at this wedding below I found on once wed

If you cant get the seasonality right with flowering herbs, it would be extra special to mix in some vases of flowers to the grouping just to freshen it up. The extra cost would be worth it I think.

The best post i have found so far that shows how to use herbs at a wedding in a modern and classic way is on project wedding…I love how the photoshoot uses repitition to their advantage for this table spread.  Incorporating the herb into a few elements is gold and with a backdrop of natural fabrics and whites keeps the focus on the beautiful fresh green colour of the herb . I also think it makes a world of difference that the herbs look so  healthy and lush!

I do adore the one above, and other images I have found but I do have to say, I was really hoping to find just a couple of crazy big ideas using herbs…. ones that scream wedding!!! I know that would take it out of the ‘economical/DIY’ category, but its always nice to have a some crazy inspiration. So if you know of any weddings or events where this has been done please send the link or image, I would love to see it and share…I believe the humble herb has it in them to become a feature that really holds its own!!

If you do choose this as your own DIY option, remember to have fun!!!!,  perhaps have a backup plan, and most of all enjoy the process of mixing and matching ….you never know you might discover a green thumb!!

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This bride and her paper flower wedding is to blame for my recent obsession.

I found this delightful wedding on GreenWeddingShoes (Oh! How I love that place!) and had my moment, like everyone else, where I thought holding an oversized paper flower was EXACTLY the perfect bouquet for me.

I have since moved on (and will let Brittany have her utterly beautiful and fun idea to herself). However, my love for handmade flowers has only begun.

With only a few minor successes in making my own, I would rather show of some awesome paper and fabric flowers being made by people everywhere!

Flower by Christina Huh

Patricia Zapata is responsible for these beautiful flowers above, and she has an amazing blog :A Little Hut with so many great DIY paper projects

Flowers by Emerson Made as seen on ruffled

This bouquet is by St Judes Creations

flowers  by Carol Gearing. She has amazing work on her blog and her flickr photostream…check-it-out

this amazing arbor is also from a featured wedding at GreenWeddingShoes

And finally one of my favourites is the work at petal and print

The blog is now featuring some beautiful new pink bouquets an some gorgeous fabric flowers too, definitely worth a look!

ahhhhh….now that has satisfied my paper/fabric flower obsession for one day

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