Make a Garden-Inspired Corsage and Boutonniere

Add a touch of natural beauty to prom night with nests, blooms and butterflies.
Butterfly Blooms

Butterfly Blooms

Grapevine nests hold the blooms.

Grapevine nests hold the blooms.

Today corsages and boutonnieres are typically reserved for life's special occasions, but it wasn't always that way. In fact, their history dates back to the 1700s. Boutonniere is the French word for "button hole." Early boutonnieres were simple, often comprised of a single stem. Men would traditionally wear these to ward off evil spirits, illness, bad odors and misfortune. Many men even took to wearing one on a daily basis. Nowadays, the daily boutonniere has been replaced by lapel pins.

Hundreds of years ago, women would wear flowers in the center of their dresses. Corsages were originally called "bouquet de corsage" and took their name from the bodice of a woman's dress. Eventually the name was shortened to corsage. They too were worn for the same reasons as boutonnieres, in addition to being a tradition at weddings. Since their origin, corsages have migrated to the wrist and hair. Nowadays, corsages and boutonnieres are given as gifts for dances, weddings, Mother's Day and even birthdays.

The creative process in creating boutonnieres and corsages is endless. Assorted flowers, succulents, natural elements such as pinecones, decorative twigs and a lovely array of ribbons allow for diverse, unique touches. Designing them is almost as fun as wearing them!

The design for this corsage and boutonniere was inspired by a bird's nest. The rounded flowers reminded me of delicate eggs which would eventually bloom to reveal beautiful colors from within. The nest could also be filled with succulents, mosses, twigs, pinecones or even seashells. The butterfly adds a special touch of whimsy, but you could also add some small birds. With some simple crafting skills, you can easily make your own. Be sure to store your boutonnieres and corsages in the refrigerator until they are ready for use. This will help to keep them fresh.

Supply List:

  • Fresh flowers
  • Grapevine bird nests — a large and small one
  • Floral tape
  • Floral wire
  • Scissors
  • Ribbon
  • Floral pin
  • Butterfly

Now take a peek at the gallery below to create your very own: 

Boutonniere & Corsage How-To

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Nest Corsage and Boutonniere

Create a beautiful corsage and boutonniere inspired by the garden.

Gather Your Supplies

For this project you will need: 1 large and 1 small nest /ranunculus /floral tape /floral wire /ribbon /a floral pin /scissors.

Ribbon First

Cut a 5-foot length of ribbon. Center the larger nest on the ribbon, then thread the ribbon through the nest and tie a knot.

Flip it Over

Turn the nest upside down and weave the ribbon through the outer portion of the nest to add stability.

Wrap the Flowers

Cut three to four stems of flowers. Trim the stems to approximately 3 inches. Wrap the stems with floral tape.

Secure the Flowers

Cut a four inch piece of floral wire (gold was used for illustrative purposes). Thread the wire through the nest and wire on the flowers.

Fill the Nest

Repeat the last two steps until the entire nest is filled with flowers.

Wire the Butterfly

Cut a 6-inch piece of floral wire. Push it through the backside of the butterfly body and twist it like so.

Butterfly Blooms

Position the butterfly and then wire it onto the nest.

Tie on the Corsage

Wrap the ribbon around both sides of the nest corsage on the wrist and tie it into place with a lovely bow.

Build the Boutonniere

Select three flower stems. Cut the stems to approximately 6 inches and wrap them with floral tape.

Add Ribbon

Cut a 3-foot length of ribbon. Starting at the bottom of the stems, center the ribbon. Wrap the stems tightly with ribbon, alternating from the left and then the right side of the ribbon as you move up the stems. When you reach the blooms, tie a bow.

Through the Nest

With the sharp end of the scissors, poke a hole through the small nest and insert the ribbon wrapped flowers. The fit should be snug.

Pin It

Finish the boutonniere off with a floral pin for securing.

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