Tiger Times

The Student Newspaper at Analy High School

DIY Prom Flowers

Written By: Tiger Times - Apr• 22•13

If you are going to Prom, you are no doubt excited. The ladies might be endlessly poring over dress options, color schemes, and hair ideas. Or maybe it’s just me. In any case, you may have come across boutonnieres and corsages. For those who don’t know, it is a custom for the gentleman to give his date a corsage (which can be affixed to the bodice near the neckline or tied around the wrist) and for the lady to give her date a boutonniere (which she pins to the gentleman’s jacket lapel). For those of you who have begun looking into Prom flowers, you may have been shocked at the price—I have seen corsages for as much as $20 to $45! But never fear—it is simple and cheap to make your own.

Now, the supplies for this lovely little project (it might make a nice date for you and your gent or lady on the Friday before prom) are easily found on a high schooler’s budget. The Dollar Tree claims to be the place for flora supplies, and at one dollar each for a bundle of floral wire, floral tape, and a spool of ribbon, it’s hard to beat. Also, near Ochoa’s in Sebastopol, there is a crafting thrift store: the Legacy. You can get floral supplies for a couple bucks (even pretty little doodads) and the proceeds go to the Senior Center, so your Prom flowers can support a good cause.
1.   Assemble your Prom flower supplies: focal flowers (the big, central ones), filler (leaves and smaller flowers), doodads like feathers or rhinestones, floral wire, floral tape, ribbon, and wire cutters. Make sure your flowers are dry or the tape will not stick (this will be important later).

2.   Take a focal flower (good ones include roses, camellias, and other large flowers with herbaceous stems), cut the stem to about ¼ inch long and push piece of floral wire through the stem. With the wire cutters, cut the wire down to a size length you like for the new stem.

3.   Cut a piece of floral tape about 4 inches long and begin winding it around the wire “stem” beginning at the top, where the wire pierces the stem. Make sure to pull tight on the tape and to try to get it to go on smoothly.

4.   Now, it’s time to add the trimming! Try different groupings of leaves, other filler, and any thingamajigs that you like, to see which way looks the best. Remember to look at it head on so you can see what it will look like on someone’s lapel.

5.   Tape these other flowers, leaves, and assorted beautifying doohickeys to the focal flower securely.

6.  Wrap the floral-tape covered “stem” with pretty ribbon (it can match your clothes or it can be a complementary color). You may want to use a dab of glue gun glue to keep the ribbon on securely. I finished my boutonniere by tying the loose ends in a bow.

7.    Your boutonniere is done! I am sure it is lovely!

8.    Now on to the corsage: choose your focal flower(s)—I used 2 camellias, but 3 or 4 or more look nice, too—and pierce them with the wire as in step 2.

9.   Take the flowers and arrange them in an eye-pleasing way looking top-down (this corsage will be worn on the wrist and so it is important that it looks nice from the top rather than the side), twist the wires into a single “stem”, and tape your new stem. (Alternatively, you can glue gun your focal flowers to a piece of felt that matches your ribbon.)

10.  Now is time to add the trimmings to the corsage. A corsage can handle more bulk than a boutonniere, so feel free to be a little more creative here—use loops of ribbon, other flowers, leaves, feathers and anything else you fancy. Then, tape it all down. (If you glued the focal flowers, you could glue your trimmings to the felt).

11.  Now, curl the stem into a circle and either tie the ribbon to the circle (if the corsage is small and light) or glue this circle to a piece of felt. If you are using felt, orient the corsage to how you want it to look on the wearer’s wrist (assuming her arm is extended directly in front of you). Then, on the left-right axis, cut a slit just as wide as your ribbon in the felt on either side. Slip your ribbon through the two slits and it is done!

Now that your corsage and boutonniere are finished, you need to keep them each in a large Tupperware container (with plenty of room so that neither will get squished) in the refrigerator until show time so that the flowers don’t wilt.

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