My son was getting married! When my future daughter in law mentioned that their Las Vegas wedding plans did not include fresh flowers I offered to make her a vintage brooch bouquet…sparkly and perfect for Vegas.
I had admired the opulent bouquets in some Etsy shops, and I could hear my mother’s coaching “You could do that.” Eleven months later, as I was wiring in the last rhinestone, I had a great respect for the prices that these bouquets demand.
Some of the pins had special meaning…the “C” for the bride’s name, family heirlooms, and donated items from my Etsy vintage teammates, the Vesties. I was thrilled to score the little bulldogs in honor of their handsome boy, Tank.
Before I started, I researched a few DIY posts to help me understand the basic technique. The post on DIY network site was very helpful.
My supply list:
3 large silk hydrangeas
dozens of vintage brooches, pins, earrings, buttons
24 gauge wire
needle nose pliers
1 yard 1″ wide white grosgrain ribbon
The base of the bouquet was 3 large silk hydrangeas. Best advice I found was to to wire each large brooch at either side of the backing and twist the long ends together to stabilize each wire “stem.” I used 18″ sections of 24 gauge wire at each side, twisted the two ends and then gathered those two ends together and left the ends long.
The more brooches I added the more I liked the idea of entirely covering the blossoms. After feeding dozens of the largest wired brooches through the spaces between the hydrangea stems, there was no more room to push wire.
It was clear that the rest of the smaller pins were going to have to be wired to the top brooches which worked great to stabilize the bouquet. Some of the exposed tie wire ends were strung with pearl or crystal seed beads as tendrils.
I trimmed the plastic and wire stems to about 10 inches, double wrapped them with white grosgrain ribbon and secured with pearl stick pins. The finished bouquet weighed well over 4 pounds!
In addition to the brides bouquet, I also made 3 bridesmaids wristlets using dark plum silk ranunculus on an elastic band with purchased rhinestone brooches from craft stores.
Guest contributor Barbara Hauger is a country gal that longs for an urban cabin close to a coffee shop. She makes her home in Minneapolis, and sells her true vintage online at Ione’s Attic. Check out these fun things she found: