My wedding is just over 5 months from now. (Don’t worry, not all of my posts will be wedding-related). We’re trying to be as creatively frugal as possible (e.g. making our own chalkboard sign for engagement photos and printing and putting together our invitations instead of paying someone else to do it for us).
I decided early on in the wedding planning process that I don’t want flowers at our wedding, no floral bouquets and no flowery centerpieces. But long before Blaine proposed, I saw some pictures of brooch bouquets floating around Pinterest and I just knew that’s what I wanted instead of real flowers. I found someone to make a custom brooch bouquet for me on Etsy (https://www.etsy.com/shop/nicolasacicero). I told her my color scheme and my overall vision and I couldn’t be more pleased with what she created for me.
But what about my six bridesmaids? I tossed around a lot of ideas (decorative lace fans, fake tulips, nothing…), but eventually I decided I want them to carry brooch bouquets too. Great idea, right? You know what’s not a great idea? Spending $1500 on six bouquets. So I realized if I was going to have my ladies carry a brooch bouquet similar to mine, I would have to brush up on my crafting skills and make them myself. I figured out I would need about 20-25 brooches per bouquet, so I started at places like Michael’s and Hobby Lobby. Turns out those brooch things are expensive. The cheapest price I found was $2.99 and those were the small, weird-looking ones. So…I spent all summer going to yard sales, garage sales, estate sales, and church rummage sales looking for used brooches, earrings, buttons, and fancy costume jewelry.
I found great pieces and had many conversations with little old ladies all over Kansas City. Then about mid-July, a newlywed posted on a Wedding Swap Shop page that she was selling leftover brooches from her wedding. I jumped on that and was able to meet up with her later that week. She offered me a sweet deal: for $70, she gave me about 75 brooches, several rolls of wire (to attach to the brooches), 4 rolls of fabric tape (to wrap around the finished bouquet stems, mini pliers, and a tote bag to carry all my newly-acquired merchandise.
Next came the hard part, putting the brooches together. After doing some research, I found it’s better to wire brooches together instead of gluing them if you’re hoping for it to be strong and sturdy. It’s tedious but worth it. If I do it all in one sitting, it takes about 2ish hours to attach wire properly to 20 or so brooches. I’ve definitely had some sore fingers throughout this process. After the wire is attached to the brooch in 2 places then twisted together, I wrap fabric tape around it so there’s a somewhat smooth surface to wrap ribbon around later.
Then I had to figure out exactly how I want each brooch arranged. It’s frustrating.
Eventually I figured out how I want each brooch placed and ended with this:
This will be the one my maid of honor carries. It’s about half the size of mine. I’m still searching for the exact color of ribbon I want to wrap around the stem, but I’m happy with this so far. I’ll post about this again when all six are finished.