The bridal bouquet gets all the attention. Mementos are pinned to it, photographs are taken of it, and women reach for it. What’s a boutonniere got to do to get a little love? While the bride’s bouquet is planned carefully, the groom may as well be going to his high school prom, judging from the quality of his boutonniere. An overpriced rosebud, a cluster of carnations, and an inevitable pin prick to the chest — that’s typically what he gets.
For the couple willing to get a little crafty, it’s often less expensive, and significantly more personal, to create a DIY boutonniere with a few essential products and some mementos of the groom’s choosing. Thanks to the sage advice of Maddie Eisenhart of A Practical Wedding, this DIY project is so simple that the groom may even want to make it himself.
Hot Glue Gun
If you prefer to use fresh flowers, try out a few more masculine selections, such as succulents, ferns, or cotton burrs. "Making a boutonnière is basically like making a tiny bouquet," writes Eisenhart. "You want to start with your focal flower, then add in two additional flowers in different colors and textures around it." No more lonely rosebuds, these are boutonnieres that leave an impression.
Clay or fabric flowers, as well as feathers, sold at most craft stores, create a perfect non-perishable keepsake from the big day. Added bonus: you can make them weeks in advance. Let’s be honest, for some brides, the days leading up to the wedding may not be the best time to tackle a new project.
1. Whichever ingredients you choose, begin by trimming any stems with scissors and clustering the flowers together. Using floral tape, tightly wrap the stems together. Simple, right?
2. Now, get creative. The floral tape can be covered by anything from ribbon, to fabric, to twine. Marrying a sailor? Twist some thin sailing rope around the base. Laid back rustic wedding? Twine compliments the theme. The possibilities are numerous. Let your groom have a little fun with this — he is, after all, the one wearing it. "To secure the ribbon to the boutonniere, take a boutonniere pin and jam it up into the stem of one of the flowers," suggests Eisenhart. "If part of your pin sticks out, cut the end with wire cutters."
3. For a special touch, a hot glue gun can be used to attach small details. Brides often wear or carry “something borrowed”; a groom can just as easily attach a button from a loved one, a coin, or, for the hops-minded gent, a beer cap. Whatever the token, make it personal.
4. Perhaps the most dreaded aspect of a boutonniere is the promise of a tiny stab as it is fastened to the lapel. Eisenhart has a trick for making that part more pleasant, too. After you attach the boutonniere, “Either cut the sharp part of the pin with wire cutters or put a rubber earring back on it,” Eisenhart advises. Your mind is blown, right? It's a truly genius idea, especially since every woman has a few lonely earring backs whose mates have gone missing.
No longer simply a formality, an inventive, inexpensive boutonniere cuts costs and adds individuality and meaning to the groom's getup. Now if you could just do that for the other 2000 details of your big day...
Images: Getty Images; WeddingBee.com