My beautiful sis got married a month ago. Before her wedding she sent me a picture of a felt bouquet that had appeared in a magazine. She said that she would love to have something like this for her bouquet. I took one look at the picture and stated "I can do that". That started a project that lasted months and was quite a labor of love.
Before I could begin I had to figure a few things out. My sis gave me these paint chips as her wedding colors. I picked out felt (and some flannel) to use as my color palette.
I invested in a Big Kick from Sizzix, because I didn't want to be cutting a zillion flowers by hand. I purchased this and the die cuts from JoAnn's during a 40% off sale. I have nothing but good things to say about the Big Kick. I could cut two layers of felt at at time and the whole thing was a breeze. It's definitely a good investment and something I will use for years.
After I had my cut flowers, I had to figure out how to assemble them. The example bouquet used vintage buttons. I also used buttons, but went with abalone shell as my main buttons, because they added a nice shiny fancy look. I used smaller acrylic buttons to help round things out. I also set up rules about what colors to use when and how I was going to embellish the flowers with embroidery. Having boundaries to work within helped make the flowers gel together even though each flower was unique.
This is the demo I mocked up to get a sense of what the heck I was doing. I used floral wire as my stem. This flower is about 2 inches wide. I ended up making most of the flowers smaller than this.
Once I realized that this project was actually going to work, I put flower combinations together in individual zip lock bags. In the end, I changed almost every single flower that I had previously put together, but having them set up like that really helped me to visually figure out what I was doing. I ended up not using the blues because the fabric was not cooperating with me.
Here are the first three flowers that I made and Atty who wouldn't stand still. After I had gotten this far, it was just a matter of making lots and lots of flowers.
Once I had lots of flowers made, I started to wire groups of them together to figure out how big each bouquet should be. I also realized that I needed some smaller flowers to fill in gaps. I didn't embroider the smaller flowers. I think it added a nice dimension to the bouquets.
My sis had the added request of a special flower to represent our grandmother who passed away a few years ago. I made the white flower and used my grandmother's turquoise beads. This flower also served as something old and something blue.
Wrapping the bouquets was a challenge of its own. All the tutorials I could find online about wrapping bouquets used an open stem wrap. This wouldn't work for me since my stems were wire. Finally I just dove in and figured it out on my own. First I wrapped the bouquets in felt to add some cushion to the handle and give it a better feel. I also wanted to take away any possibility of wires poking people.
Then I wrapped the stems with floral tape. This worked really well because the final ribbon stuck to the tape well and made wrapping the ribbon much easier.
Here is a finished bridesmaid bouquet.
Here are all the finished bouquets. I'm overjoyed with how these turned out. They came out much better than I had expected. I had very few dead ends and mishaps. I am so happy I could make this present for my sis. Now every time she looks at her bouquet she will remember her beautiful wedding.
**I'm happy to answer any questions that you have. Leave a comment and I'll respond directly back to you.