Brooch bouquets can make your special day everlasting. These bouquets can be kept for years to come as a reminder of the love you share. And since this is your special bouquet, heirloom and family pieces can be incorporated into the finished product as a reminder of those who are there to support you every step of the way.
To make a brooch bouquet, you will need: 30 to 60 brooches (or jewelry pieces- clip-on earrings, pendants, strands of pearls), silk flowers of your choice (hydrangeas work best), floral wire (22 gauge or larger), floral tape, wire cutters, scissors, hot-glue gun, finishing ribbon (satin, burlap, linen, silk), gold /silver paint and a small paintbrush.
Pull all of the leaves off of the stems of the silk flowers. Where the leaves were, cut off the plastic nubs that come off of the stem. Once all the greenery is gone, cut the flowers to create the handle of the bouquet; leave at least 6 to 8 inches from the base of the flowers to where you cut.
When all the stems are cut, start arranging the flowers into a tight bouquet. A normal bouquet size is usually 8 to 9 inches across and can incorporate numerous types of flowers. Silk hydrangeas are easiest to use because they make a solid crown for the brooches to sit on. When the arrangement is set, wrap the stems with floral tape starting from the top, closest to the flowers. Wrap downward, overlapping the tape each time you wrap around the stem until you make it to the bottom.
Choosing your brooches is the best part of the project. Incorporate family heirlooms, themed pieces or specific colors. To make your bouquet full of memories, ask family members or friends to each donate a piece that will be included in the finished product.
Cut the floral wire into lengths that are 2-1/2 times the length of your bouquet stem. Fold each wire in half for a reference point. For brooches and pins, use the clasps at the ends (where the pin is attached) to wrap your wire around the nubs. Cross the wire in the middle and twist wire tightly together to make one solid stem. For clip-ons, open the clip and wrap the folded wire around the base of the clip a few times. Then cross the wire in the middle of where the clip sits, and then close the clip. Twist wire together to make a solid stem.
After all the brooches have been wrapped, begin to insert each one into the floral arrangement. Place 8 to 10 brooches at a time and then use floral tape to wrap the entire stem to hold them in place. Make sure they are tight to the flowers before wrapping. Keep feeding the brooches in small groups and continue wrapping until all brooches are incorporated into the arrangement.
You are going to want to hide all of the wires from the brooches. Cut a piece of the finishing ribbon about the length of the bouquet stem. Depending on what type of ribbon it is, you are going to make a ruffle for the underneath of the flowers. If it is a wired ribbon, pull the wired ends from both sides to start gathering the fabric. As you pull the wires, push the fabric towards the middle and you will see the forming of the ruffle. If the ribbon is not wired, weave a piece of the floral wire in and out of the ribbon until the ribbon starts gathering into a ruffle. In both cases, once you have your ruffle formed, push it up under the flowers and twist the wired ends together. Hide the wired ends up into the flowers and hot glue the ruffle in place.
At the bottom of the bouquet’s stem, fold a small square of finishing ribbon in half to make a triangle and then hot glue the middle of the triangle to the tip of the stem. Wrap the two side triangles around the sides of the stem and secure with hot glue. Now that the tip is covered, start spiraling the ribbon up the stem, hot gluing as you go. When you reach the top, cut the ribbon at an angle and tuck it up under your ruffle and finish with a dot of hot glue.
Add a strand of pearls by wrapping them around your brooches. If any of your brooches are loose, hot glue them into place. If any of your green wires are showing, take your gold or silver paint and your small paint brush and lightly paint over the green so that the wires blend into the brooches. Once these small steps are finished, you are done with your masterpiece.