Monday, April 15, 2013

DIY Bouquet

We had a fantastic submission a little while back that I've been saving for a Mix it Up Monday. Kate sent us her adventure in making bouquets for her own wedding. She ran into snags along the way, but she persevered and ended up with some fun bouquets! She even gives some tips to help make things more smooth for anyone who wants to give this a try. Here is Kate's story:

 I am a bibliophile, a serious book lover. I'm also getting married this summer. My older sister and I have been planning/pinning my wedding since I got engaged. She found a bouquet of flowers made from book pages. I LOVED it and decided I had to have it.
I looked for other pins like this, and on YouTube, and finally after a lot of searching, I found both a website and video explaining how to make one style of flowers. I decided on a few of my favorite books I'd like to have in my bouquet and narrowed it down to four favorites (Little Women, Pride and Prejudiced, Harry Potter 1, and Calvin and Hobbes: Lazy Sunday Book (I thought the comics might add some color)).

I tried making paper roses-major fail. It looked like a paper cat spit up a paper hairball. I tried making lilies-another fail. I tried making carnations-yet another fail. And an entire copy of Little Women wasted.

Then I tired the "kusudama" flower. PIN WIN! 

I ended up making just shy of 200 of these, since they were so easy once I got the hang of it.  All my bridesmaids will have a bouquets as well as the corsage and boutonniere for the families/guys.

Here are my tips for making these flowers:

1. Cut the pages so that the border is gone; cut right up to the words on the page. The flower then is more decorated and there is less white space.
2. Use hot glue. It dries much faster than the Elmer's glue I was originally told to use and it hold together much better than tape.
3. To attach your "stem," squeeze some glue down the center hole and then stick whatever you're using for the stem (I used pipe cleaners) from the bottom up. It's a lot less messy and holds well.
4. Have LOTS of buttons on hand. Luckily for me my mom is a Home Ec. teacher so I had a basically endless supply to "borrow" from, but I used way more than anticipated. It could be very expensive to buy them all.
5. For a normal sized paperback book, cut each page in half. The medium sized flowers are easier to make, and look better too. And if it's any bigger, a pipe cleaner isn't strong enough to hold them up.

In the end I made about 200 "keepers" and about 50 "fails" and the whole project cost me less than $20. 

Also, here's the YouTube video if anyone wants it:

I was excited to see this submission. I LOVE making bouquets. I have a few books I have picked up at the thrift shop that I use for crafting my bouquets. I know some people really don't like the look of the paper bouquets, but some really love it. I'm one of the ones that love it. Making your own bouquet has really grown in popularity over the last few years. I've seen some really creative and gorgeous bouquets that you'd never guess were DIY'ed.

If you're wanting to make a bouquet, there are tons of tutorials around the Internet. Like Kate found though, not all of them are easy and they make take a little practice. Some you need specific papers for, but others you can use just about anything.  I'll share a few of my favorites with you. The first bouquet I made was for our 5th Anniversary Portraits. We were have our wedding pictures "retaken" for our 5th Anniversary, but I didn't have a bouquet (as I had long stemmed lilies when I got married). I decided to try making my own. This was before Pinterest, so I scoured the internet for tutorials and ideas, copied and pasted tons of links into a word document, and got creating.  I ended up making paper flowers, fabric flowers, ribbon flowers, bead flowers, and various other additions with a handful of small dowels as my core/handhold. Here is what I came out with:
I can't find where I got some of the the tutorials for this (and a few I just kinda made up), but a few that I did use are these:

This bouquet of delightfully airy flowers is as easy to make as it is beautiful.

And I already knew how to make yo-yo flowers, but here's a tutorial for those just in case:
The End

I also have my Pinterest board where I keep flowers I want to try making, bouquets that I love, and general flower/bouquet inspiration. You can find more tutorials there...but most I haven't tried yet, so don't get mad at me if you try them and they don't work out great.

Did you or a friend/cousin/sister/dog ( weddings happen) have a DIY bouquet at a wedding? Share it here, we'd love to see it! (again...we will check every link posted in this widget and any link going to anything inappropriate-vulgarity, nudity, profanity, etc-will be deleted). We'll leave the link-up widget open until April 29th. 


  1. Don't forget duct tape for the punk rocker or metalhead in your life.

    1. Oh man...I don't know if you ever watched the New Red Green Show...but if someone ever had a Red Green Show themed wedding (aka Redneck wedding), a duct tape bouquet would be fantastic. There also is a girl here in our town who made her prom dress and corsage completely out of duct tape and it's pretty cool.

  2. Were you about 10 when you got married?! I can't believe that was your 5th anniversary, you both have such baby faces. Lovely bouquets.

    1. Bahaha, I know. We were both early 20's when we got married. Cameron had worn a beard for a year or two prior to the anniversary portraits, but we thought that since he was clean shaven when we got married that he should shave to "match". His freshly "de-bearded" face really is a baby face.

  3. Folding Trees ( is an awesome site, not just for kusudama tutorials but for all sorts of easily made flowers. Not to mention other paper creations.

  4. Thank you so much for this entry! I recommended this to a couple I am planning the wedding for and they loved it. This tips and recommendations will go a long way when I get the bridal party together.

    Pinstrosity rocks!!!

    1. So glad we could help you out! I hope the wedding goes great!

  5. I posted a pic of the brooch bouquet I made for my daughter (link above.) She asked family and friends for pieces, and we also combed the local second-hand stores, craft stores, and ebay for pins, earrings, buttons and pendants as well. The base is a foam ball, covered in batting, silk, and small silk flowers for texture. The jewelry is attached with corsage pins. The handle is a 1" dowel, painted to match and covered in silk ribbon. The only thing more beautiful that day was the bride herself!


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