How to Make a Trader Joe’s Wedding Bouquet


by Meg Keene, Editor-In-Chief

How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical WeddingHow to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding
How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical WeddingHow to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding How to Make a Trader Joes Wedding Bouquet | A Practical Wedding

No seriously, it’s that easy. Part of me doesn’t even want to elaborate on this tutorial because my instructions would cause more confusion than just following the step-by-step photos above.

What I will talk about is shopping for your flowers. If you’re going to build your wedding bouquet with Trader Joe’s or grocery store flowers, you need to know a few things. First: local grocery stores, even more gourmet ones, don’t stock enough flowers to make all your centerpieces (for that you’d need a flower market or a flower wholesaler, something we’ll cover next week). But, if you’re just buying flowers for bouquets, you’re going to do just fine.

Second, if you’re shopping at a grocery store, you’ve gotta roll with it. You can’t walk in with a pre-conceived idea of what you want, you just have to start grabbing flowers, jamming them together, and see what works. But most importantly, don’t be afraid to mix textures and colors and get some filler. You’ll use the filler for the outside of the bouquet to edge it and to make it cohesive. Also? You could go minimal, get all one kind of flower and be done. (Ta-da! See how easy that was?)

And of course, you can totally use the same prune, build a base, wrap with floral tape, add flowers, keep wrapping, add more flowers, keep wrapping, finish with filler plan with flowers you bought anywhere. But, if you’re doing something super simple, I’ll be over here subtly pointing out that the flowers at Trader Joe’s, a gourmet grocery store, or your neighborhood bodega are not only cheap, plentiful, and look awesome, but all those places also stock WINE. Ahem. You’re welcome.

Graphic Design by Michelle Edgemont (APW advertiser)

Meg Keene

Meg is the Founder and EIC of APW. Her first book, A Practical Wedding: Creative Solutions for Planning a Beautiful, Affordable, and Meaningful Celebration, was published in January 2012, and has been a top three bestseller on the wedding bookshelf ever since. Meg has her BFA in Drama from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and son.

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  • http://landlockedlove.blogspot.com Kelly

    “That shit is pretty, lady friend.”

    THE CAPTIONS SLAY ME.

    Also? I am so using this tutorial to make my bouquet with farmers market flowers. Hell yes.

    • http://fromasmallstep.blogspot.com Kinzie Kangaroo

      That’s what I’m doing too! And we’re getting married on a Sunday, so we’re going to the market Saturday morning, and we’ll have time on Sat to make the bouquets! Love my local flower guy Farmer Evan!

  • carrie

    I read the title as How to Make a Trader Joe’s BANQUET Wedding. And I thought, that’s the best catering idea evar! Cheese plates, gyoza, appetizers…oh, wait…

    Then I realized what the actual title was. And then looked at the pictures. PRETTY!

    • meg

      That is ALSO something you could do.

    • Class of 1980

      At first, I thought the headline said “Trader Joe’s Buffet”. And I was really interested in that! Ha.

  • Sara C.

    We did this with farmer’s market flowers, which were beautiful. Another suggestion? If you’re getting married at your house, or somewhere else where you can prune the foliage, finding filler in your yard is shockingly easy. And then (if matchy-match is your thing) your bouquets will fit into the surroundings. And who doesn’t love going around with a pair of pruning shears on the morning of their wedding? ;-)

    • meg

      You guys are so funny. YARDS. Who has that? I’ve never had one as an adult, so that beyond didn’t occur to me.

      • Aly

        My discussion of wedding flowers with my Mom went something like this:

        Me: I think I’d like Lilies for my bouquet.
        Mom: Why don’t you just use the ones from my garden? Late June is when they bloom, so it will be perfect.
        Me: DONE.

        We spent the morning of the wedding picking flowers and wrapping them. We only had three bouquets to make, so it didn’t take too long. Total cost of flowers for my wedding: $5 (floral tape and ribbon). It was awesome, and we had tons of compliments. It was really fun to respond to people who loved the bouquets with “Thanks! We picked them this morning!”

      • http://theatreprojects.blogspot.com Jessamarie

        For my cousin’s wedding she and I, her fiance and my boyfriend drove around to multiple friends aunts and others houses the night before and clipped lilacs and dogwood blooms for her bouquets. You don’t even your own yard, you just need friends with yards.

        • Holly

          LOL!! Yard ninjas. Awesome, and awesome idea. :D

    • Amanda

      I’ll just add from personal experience — if you choose flowers, filler, etc. from your yard/garden at home (or at the venue), cut the day before and place in vase(s) with water. We found that the filler we used wilted slightly faster than our purchased flowers, and I am guessing because we cut it from the yard that it was not as fully hydrated as it would have been coming from a water-filled vase!

      • http://www.robyntheblogedition.blogspot.com Robyn

        Thanks for that tip – I’m planning to grow all my own flowers (don’t worry, I LOVE gardening, so I’m super excited to learn about cutting my own flowers etc.) and have read a bit about making sure you cut the flowers at the right time and making sure they’re properly hydrated. I’m interested to see how it all turns out but I plan to start experimenting several weeks before the wedding to make sure I have the cutting/hydrating times down to a T.

        My backup plan was grocery store flowers if it didn’t work out but also a very good tip that I didn’t think about was the one about a grocery store probably not having enough for all the centrepieces – thanks!

        • Parsley

          We’re totally doing this too! Yay homegrown flowers. (And yay back-up plans.)

    • http://www.accidentallyyours.com Novice Wife

      We actually just pruned the cedar trees at my mom’s house for our centerpieces . . . so, um, yeah, no flower market even needed!

      Also, I think I desperately want to make “that sh*t is pretty, lady friend!” into my new catchphrase.

      • http://gregalyssa.ourwedding.com Alyssa

        We used cedar branches, too! So beautiful, SO simple, and it made the whole room smell like Christmas!

    • Teffer

      Also, kale! Spinach! Garlic scapes! Brocoolini! Asparagus! You can find all sorts of filler in the produce section!

      • http://unexpected-moments.blogspot.com/ Sheryl

        I have a picture in my head of using a broccoli as a bouquet now.

        Hilarious.

        • http://gonetobudapest.wordpress.com Emily Rae

          Or maybe one of those brussel sprout trees!

  • Faith

    Fresh Market (SUPER nice food store) saved my bouquets and centerpieces! I picked up my flowers the day before our wedding…they used a totally wrong color without telling me. I immediately called the one store close to my venue, explained my situation, and asked if they could put aside all the dark purple flowers they had. I bought $100 worth of flowers and got to work with my mom and sisters, totally remaking everything. It turned out better than the original idea…with lots of extras to make the venue even more pretty:)

    All that to say, DIY flowers at a wedding are my favorite!

  • http://bonnieprojects.blogspot.com/ Bonnie

    I made bouquets and boutonnieres for the weddings of two of my friends! The construction part was easy peasy. Getting the flowers bunched and arranged aesthetically was another story, but I figured it out through trial and error. Also, allot about 3 times the time you think it’s going to take, just so you don’t get stressed out!

    I say, go for it! I wish my bridesmaids would let me do this for my own wedding!

  • http://akc09.livejournal.com Annie in LA

    Yay! I totally did the Trader Joe’s bouquets the morning of the wedding.

    Bonus: my mom still says that one of her favorite memories was making those bouquets with us in the hotel room. So not only is it easy, cheap, and rewarding–it’s a bonding experience too!

  • http://www.roguebride.com Rogue Bride

    This is the best DIY I’ve ever seen. I want to jump up and down and clap my hands like a 6 year old. THANK YOU. I’m making my own bridesmaids bouquets, and when I told The Aunts about that plan, they acted like I was attempting to paint the Sistine Chapel on my kitchen ceiling using only my fingers. My confidence is restored!

  • Gigi59

    Make friends with the Floral Dept manager at most any grocery store and they’ll probably order exactly what you want – at their normal prices. I got my roses for $9.99/dozen in the exact colors I wanted. There was no way I was going to pay a florist to do something this easy.

    And one of our favorite memories is my (step)mother-in-law, my best friend & me putting together the centerpieces the night before under the tent in a pouring, thundering rainstorm.

  • http://theroadto92912.blogspot.com Molly

    GET OUT OF MY HEAD, APW!

    I just got a quote for flowers and almost passed out. I only want bouquets (individual wedding cake centerpieces, say what?), and it was going to be over $350 for me and my 2 bridesmaids. Eff that noise.

  • http://www.christytylerphotography.com Christy T

    And I just realized that if I don’t hear back from the florist I was hoping to collaborate with for my workshop in April – I can totally make the bouquet for the photo shoot myself! So smart. Love this bouquet!

  • http://notsolittlethings.blogspot.com Stephanie

    Love it. Now Trader Joe’s needs to take a page out of Amtrak’s book and become a sponsor!

  • http://www.little-white-dress.com Alexandra

    Ah-mazing! Can’t wait to try this!

  • http://www.koruwedding.com Koru Kate {Koru Wedding}

    Fabulous! If only I wasn’t already married . . . well, I’d love to do it for a wedding client. Whole Foods always has a beautiful selection of flowers too.

  • DKR

    Great tutorial! Question: does anyone know of any changes/considerations I need to make for using artificial flowers? I imagine I’ll want to wrap the stems entirely to hide that they’re fake, but anything else? Any of you lovely ladies have experience with this?

    • http://www.twitter.com/babyinabar Shotgun Shirley

      You’re not going to totally hide the fact that they’re fake, so just own it! I’d add those cutesy little fake birds, or butterflies, in there. But that’s just me. Do what you gotta do.

    • http://theatreprojects.blogspot.com Jessamarie

      You can buy a bouquet holder at a craft store (the cheap plastic ones are like $2 a piece, then cover that sh*t with some pretty ribbon). Cut the stems shorter and push them into the foam (same design concept applies, create a base, add filler, repeat, add edge filler, done). Your bouquet can look fabulous and no fake stems to be seen, and no being poked by or snagging your dress on pointy wire fake flower ends.

    • http://meditatingontherain.wordpress.com Aine

      Also, if you are like me and have trouble with the ‘arranging’ stage (I made my flowers out of fancy paper, and ended up with a huge bunch and no idea how to put them together) you can get a florist to do that, too. It seems silly when I write it now, but it was suuuuch a help in the last run up to the wedding.

    • http://stephenandrachelle.com Rachelle

      Artificial flowers have thin stems. I used a bunch of the extra stems I had trimmed off and filled those in with my flowers to bulk up the handle part. The flowers cover the tops of the bare stems so it’s unnoticeable that you have a few stems that go nowhere.

      Also, if you get nice faux florals the stems look nice and if you trim them they look the same as the stems of real flowers. Leaving the bottom unwrapped helps it look more real.

      I think my bouquet looked very nice the day of and in the pictures (there are some great shots of it here: http://www.elissarphotography.com/2011/daytime-houston-wedding-rachelle-stephen/) Good luck!

      • DKR

        Thanks ladies! I appreciate all the good advice. Rachelle, your bouquet (and wedding!) was beautiful.

    • http://www.missgiggles.com/blog Giggles

      I wrapped the wires of our fake flowers around a few pieces of dowels (the dowels were about the thickness of pencils) and then I trimmed the stems of the roses I’d dried from the bouquet he gave me when he proposed and attached those to the dowels. I wrapped ribbon around the dowels and the rose stems are sticking out the bottom.

  • http://www.twitter.com/babyinabar Shotgun Shirley

    I loved making my own flowers – bouquets and centerpieces. So much fun making a big ol’ mess the day before the wedding with my bridesmaids, family and friends.

    • http://www.etsy.com/shop/rataxodile Irene

      Oooooh… I did this too, in the front yard with my big sister. But I also ended up with a big ol’ painful sunburn. Our town is generally coated in fog, and… lame. Anyway, if you do your lazy girl flowers outside, I recommend sunscreen.

  • melissa

    No wine at grocery stores or TJ’s in Maryland. It’s an awful place.

    • http://lowehousecreative.com/ Elizabeth @ Lowe House Events

      yes, but the liquor stores have *carry out* which is it’s own special kind of awesome (I went to art school in Baltimore)

    • Amanda

      Same here in PA. General sadness ensues :(

      • Emily

        WHAT?!? I am moving to PA at the end of July right after my wedding. No one told me of this! I might not have accepted the job!

        • Rachel

          Here in PA, wine is only sold in state stores. It’s really sad.

    • Janet

      I share your pain Melissa. Grew up in VA where the booze, except for the hardstuff, is in the grocery store. When my family moved to MD when I was a teen, it was like WTF is this?! No booze in the grocery store?!

      This was made even better by living in a dry township that did not allow for the selling of alcohol outside of two resturants that were in town. You’d have to drive 20 mins over the mountains to get to the closets liqour store. And the prices are ridiculous to boot!

      Needless to say, once I turned 21 and was home on my breaks from school my parents would pass me a few extra bucks for my own drinks when they wanted me to run out and get them a bottle of wine or 12 pack of beer to go with dinner.

      • Aly

        One of my bridesmaids was from MD. The morning of the wedding (in Michigan), we asked her husband to pick up some wine (ok, and Tequila) for us while we were getting ready. He asked us where to go to buy it. I told him there was a grocery store right next to his hotel. He responded with “I know that, but where can I buy booze?” I was so confused by his question! I didn’t know until then that you can’t buy alcohol in grocery stores in certain states.

      • Class of 1980

        When I first moved to a tiny town in the most western part of NC, you could get wine from the grocery store, liquor at the ABC store, and for beer, you had to go to the next town.

        “Crazy” doesn’t begin to cover it. There has been progress though. The beer is now in the grocery store too after two rounds of voting over a 10-year period.

        NC keeps debating about those ABC stores. They are state-run, so there is no price competition at all and you are stuck with whatever they decide to stock.

        • Liz

          I lived in Charlotte, NC all my life and then moved to Long Island 2 years ago, and I truly miss the ABC stores! The stores here in NY have much less of a selection than ABC!!! They tend to have a couple of cheap selections and a ton of high end liquors with virtualy no middle range. I miss having a nice selection in the $20 to $30 a bottle range. However the liquor tastings on Friday/Saturday afternoons are quite nice!

    • MEI

      I’m from Utah. We have neither Trader Joe’s nor wine in the grocery stores. It’s hard, y’all.

      [Except the part where we have mountains and all those National Parks. That part's pretty awesome.]

  • Carbon Girl

    Now I want to make a bouquet! Love that the DIY is all photos and no text, that is my way to learn. Hmm . . . can I hold a bouquet for my graduation??

    • meg

      We thought a lot about it, and in the end, it’s just not HARD enough to need text. Some projects coming up have more specific directions, but these are pretty easy projects, all in.

    • Tamara Van Horn

      YES!!! I vote for it wholeheartedly, as one soon-to-be practicing getting hooded.

  • Carrie

    Totally made our own bouquets and boutonnieres from bulk roses I’d ordered online, just like this tutorial. Just roses, no greenery or other flowers, because I was convinced you had to be a professional to handle mixed bouquets. I’d read so many “Design your wedding flowers!” articles/posts that basically convinced me that I couldn’t do it unless I was a professional florist.

    I was super happy with my just-roses bouquets, but this post makes me realize that you can DIY bouquets with mixed flowers & greenery without stressing about it.

    Also, I’m a bit klutzy with crafts like this — I ended up with oddly-shaped bouquets and had to take them apart and start again a few times. (Klutzy but perfectionist. A great combo.) However, you can easily take it apart and start again as many times as you need to. That is what I like about making bouquets — making mistakes is fine. Just unwrap the floral tape and rearrange as necessary.

    • Chris Bergstrom

      Me too! On all of the above!

  • MARBELLA

    These look gorgeous! As does your dress Meg!
    One thing I learned for delaying wilting when making ours was that it is helpful to cut the flower stems underwater or immediately put them in water – because this way no air bubbles enter the system and it sucks up water instead of air – it kind of ‘gasps’ when you cut it.
    Another tip if you have hard stems like roses is to add the flowers in a triangle shape while you are building and keep rotating – this way you’ll end up with stems that stick out in all directions when you are done, but when you tape them together and wrap you’ll get a solid handle.

  • Elisa

    Ooooh this makes me want to get married all over again!

    Wait, I don’t need to get married again to make a bouquet! It’ll just be the centerpiece for the brunch I’m having this sunday! And I will wear a F/$$%/%$/ white dress whenever I want to! :)

  • http://forcause.wordpress.com Sandy

    As a TJ’s bouquet bride, I have a few things to add.

    1) You can’t preorder flowers from TJ, but call them somewhat in advance of your wedding and ask them to pick up lots of one type of flower or color of flower on the day that they usually pick up their flower order. Every store I talked to (like, three) said that they couldn’t guarantee anything, but that they would try to get what I wanted.

    2) Scope out the flower selection in the weeks before your wedding so that you know what type of flowers they’re getting. It obviously varies by season and location and chance.

    3) If you ask them for lots of red gladiolas, be prepared for the chance that none of the gladiolos will be open when you pick them up the day of your wedding, and realize that your vases will be filled with long green stalks.

    4) Be prepared for people to seriously question your judgment. Flowers were the number one thing that family and friends worried about before my wedding. They couldn’t understand how we didn’t know or care what type of flowers we were getting until the day of the wedding. We tried to reassure them, and then ignored them, and in the end we spent $100 on flowers that everybody loved.

    5) TJs or any grocery store *will* have enough flowers for centerpieces if your wedding is small enough, especially if you call the week before and ask them to pick up extra. TJs had plenty of flowers for my 50-person/5 table wedding.

    6) You can make an *even lazier* TJ bouquet if you do as I did and buy one of the pre-made bouquets for $7.99, wrap it with floral tape from Michael’s, and then wrap it again with a wide piece of ribbon, also from Michael’s. Mine had sunflowers.

    • meg

      Awesome tips. As for number of flowers, it depends on the Trader Joe’s. A lot of us in more urban areas have Trader Joe’s with pretty limited flower selections, so you’re going to want to know what your TJ stock is like.

      • Alyssa

        Ooo! Adding to this, depending on the day and the month, you may not be the only person DIY-ing it up for your wedding or event. So even your local store has a great selection normally, it might be thin by the time you walk in there so rolling with it might need to be a mantra if you only do minimal recon beforehand.
        Saw it happen to a stranger in a Central Market once. I also saw about five other strangers offer up other places and choices to get that poor girl to calm down, so she at least had a happy ending!

  • Amanda

    Is APW the best or what?? I was already planning to make my centerpieces with Trader Joe’s flowers and dollar store glass vases. I was on the fence about it, but Meg has convinced me to talk to the TJ’s in advance to make sure that there will be enough flowers for my needs plus other floral customers. Thanks so much!

    • Lucie

      I think you are the best for having darth vadar as your avitar :)

      • Amanda

        Thanks! :)

  • Amy

    This makes me wish I had to make bouquets as a regular part of my life! I too made my bouquet, and had no idea what I was doing…wish I had done some research! It looked okay though except for one dead flower that I hid from the camera.

  • Janet

    We did the flowers (3 bridesmaids, the bride, the groom, 4 groomsmen, and corsages/boutonnieres for the immediate family members) for my sister’s wedding. In some areas it was great and other areas it just sucked. It took way longer than we had planned on and the for the life of us the damn boutinnieres just wouldn’t work. We had even practiced ahead of time!

    Getting the flowers was another fiasco in its own right. She ordered bulk flowers from an online dealer that came with a good reputation and when the flowers came they were the wrong color and not near as big as they claimed they would be! The distributor was in Central South America and trying to straighten out the mess over the phone with a language barrier failed miserably. We wound up cleaning out the local Costco of the same type of flowers to help fill out the bouquet the afternoon before the wedding.

    We received numerous compliments on the lovely flowers, but in the end it so wasn’t worth it!

    When the beau and I get around to getting married next year I’m seriously considering taking a flower arranging class ahead of time and practicing like mad before. Plus a seriously small wedding party and simple table decorations will help immensely. And yes, I love the flowers at TJ’s, Whole Foods, and Costco…bulk cheap beautiful flowers for the win!

  • Emily

    Love it! Next time I’m trying to make a flower arrangement (ok, next time my mom tells me to go pick flowers from the yard when I’m visiting her… someday I’ll have a backyard!) I’ll keep some of these tips in mind. It looks like you guys had a lot of fun making this tutorial too, which is great!

  • http://www.etsy.com/shop/rataxodile Irene

    This is amazing. It really is this simple, and I love that APW owns that.
    What we did was lazy but slightly less lazy – we looked up flower farms and found an awesome one in the area that grows protea. The prices were wholesale, and we got TONS of flowers (enough for copious centerpieces for a 100-person wedding) for $200 or 300.
    So if you do want something specific, and it could theoretically grow in your area, I say check into flower farms! And if you’re in Central California the place we went to is Fynbos Farm, and they were amazing.

  • Emily

    YAY! I am so excited about this series and a simple, easy TJs bouquet is just what I needed! So much so that I am de-lurking after a year or so of reading to comment. I’ve been reading while pre-engaged and just got engaged a month ago and I can’t wait to use this tutorial!

  • http://workoflove.wordpress.com Shaelyn

    Making our bouquets and centerpieces the day before our wedding was seriously one of my favorite things about the whole process, and the only project I allowed myself to have in those final 2 days. I was a bit nervous about making a bouquet, but years of sitting at my mom’s feet when she was at garden club meetings (aka excuses to get tipsy with other ladies and play with pretty flowers) and arranging bouquets given to me after plays and other performances served me well. I loved my bouquet, and it came on our honeymoon with us, and a photo of it was one of the the first we framed when we got the pro pictures back. I miss it still, and when I see florist-bouquets with similar flowers, I always pick them up.

    And all this to say that we had no idea what flowers we’d get until the day we arranged them, and none of us doing the arranging was an ‘expert.’ Flowers are beautiful — it’s pretty hard to mess them up!

  • One More Sara

    mind. blown.

  • Brittany

    Ahhh! This is so perfect…also definitely fits with my deli-daisy obbssession! After talking to a couple florists about bouquet prices I almost died, but the bodega across the street definitely has the flower power to supply for six small bouquets and a few boutonnières :). And these look so easy to make!

  • http://www.jandrfoods.com Rachel

    I must add as I did this for my parents anniversary party a while ago. I found that I was able to pre-order flowers from TJ’s AND able to do it from 500 miles away. I live in Southern California and the party was in San Francisco. Called up TJ’s in San Francisco, told them what I wanted and on what day, and presto I showed up at 8am on that day and the flowers were waiting for me. I love Trader Joe’s and I love their flowers.

  • Class of 1980

    I have to say that bouquet is beautiful and whimsical.

  • Holly

    Hi Meg and the APW community! I have been silently visiting you for many months now, and I have to say, I think you’re all pretty awesome! Two comments in this post tipped me over the edge from silent to vocal reader. “That shit is pretty, lady friend” and “…all those places also stock WINE. Ahem. You’re welcome.” These comments made my day – thank you Meg for providing an awesome perspective on wedding planning: the appropriate balance of pretty shit and wine will certainly get me happily from today through wedding day! I am going to try to make terrariums for centerpieces. Hopefully they will be beautiful and fun to give as gifts after the wedding. Any how-to-terrarium tips?

    • http://www.Actsofbeauty.co.uk ActsofBeauty

      Yes, I am half-way through making a terrarium. Halfway because my first attempt died. But I know why – so you can avoid my ridiculous mistake.

      I was making a mossy landscape inside a lightbulb with a carefully drilled hole in it (present from SO). I thought moss would survive without soil – with just some moisture, but this is not so. For moss, you need soil. That is my tip. I really have no excuse as I come from a nature-loving, gardening, beekeeping, woodcutting family.

      The other thing I noticed is while the moss was alive the glass was covered in quite a lot of condensation. I would test your terraria well in advance because if it was like mine there is a chance you won’t be able to see the plants because they’re doing such a good job breathing!

      When you’ve done it you can submit a how-to for the rest of us!

  • Jenn’s Mom

    Basil makes a great filler – smells fabulous while arranging the flowers and during the wedding and then there’s pesto to be made after the bride and groom are off honey mooning!

    And Trader Joe’s will let you call ahead for wedding quantities of wine.

  • Emily

    Early in my engagement, I brought home a dozen purple mini calla lilies from TJs, just to make myself smile. I think they cost me about $4-$5. I remember looking at them, thinking to myself, “Wow. A florist would charge me at least double what I just paid PER STEM for callas. I could buy four of those and have a $20 bouquet easy.” I’m so glad to know I’m not crazy pants for this idea, and I can’t wait to use this awesomely easy tutuorial!

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  • Ashley

    Yep. My friend Josh put everything together for me but I bought all the flowers the day before the wedding from Trader Joe’s for bouquet and centerpieces for about $300 and I bought A GANG of flowers.

    Seen here!: http://radandinlove.blogspot.com/2012/03/ashley-minh.html

    scroll waaaay down.

    While we can’t guarantee exactly what flowers will come (it’s how we get low prices) any crew worth their salt will be happy to order in extra for you, and then the day of you can take your pick! But it helps if you’re not too picky. I got mostly white flowers but there was a lot of variety. Tons of mums, chamomile, a few winter specialty bouquets, white freesia, and decorative greens rounded out the mix and it was great!

    If you can pick them up a day or two before it will ease the stress a little.

    You can ask months in advance, but your order won’t go in until a few days before you need them, and unfortunately stuff happens so giving them some lead time to help you out or coordinate with other stores to get you what you need is a good idea. Plus, they change order writers every few months so it’s good to keep in touch.

    The flower choices change seasonally, so go in and get a feel for the selection they have during the season of your wedding (or ask if you’re planning for this year), figure out how many bouquets you’re going to need by looking, and chat them up about it. The selection will be more reliable AND you’ll get better deals if you go with seasonal stuff.

    The 10% employee discount is nice too, so if you know anybody that works there take advantage and give them the money to buy your stuff. Every little bit helps!

    GREAT TIP! YOU”LL SAVE A TON!

  • Umpteenth Sarah

    My mama loves gardening and we did our rehearsal in her back yard — when we were done, those who were interested got to do a “make the flowers!” party, where we scavenged her garden and created floral centerpieces. It.was.awesome.best.day.ever. Some people were picking the flowers and greenery, while others were inside arranging them. My Aunt handed me a bunch of flowers to arrange, but they looked so pretty together that I set them in some water, trimmed the bottom, tied some twine around them, and — voila — my bouquet. For the bridesmaids, I spent the very end of the evening watching Top Chef and trimming little mini roses and carnations from a bunch of cheap Safeway flowers and putting them into one of those ‘make your own bouquet’ thingamagigs from Michaels. They came out fabulously, although a very different “look” from the rest of the flowers. So, I am very pro DIY flowers, although the ‘look’ we were going for was… diverse, so the mix-y mix-y nature of how we did things fit the ‘theme.’

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  • Hannah

    Loved the tutorial, although it made me a little sad that our first TJ’s isn’t open yet (but construction is proceeding nicely!). I’m friends with a lady from the floral guild at the church where we’re getting married, so I’ve just delegated it all to her. Flowers aren’t really my thing, but they do amazing arrangements every week on a shoestring budget.

  • April

    Gorgeous – LOVE IT! And the captions are hilariously funny.

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  • http://www.missgiggles.com/blog Giggles

    I cannot remember where I learned this, probably at someone’s wedding. But if you want to wrap the stems completely, get a condom, fill it with water, and put the stems inside it. Then wrap that (of course being careful not to pop the condom). Easy way to keep the flowers watered.

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  • retrojayne

    WHERE is the dress from? I love it!

  • http://nyweddingflowers.net Susan K. Stevens

    Wedding flowers are really gorgeous indeed. I actually wanted a wedding bouquet of my own already. :)

  • Eva

    Where is that amazing gold swiss dot dress from in the final picture? It is making me SWOON!

  • cj

    Lovely. My sister and I are doing the flowers together. She has certification through a highschool course so I am lucky to have her input. We are hitting the floral shop and super markets for discount on sale flowers and going from there! Now turning a beach venue into a vintage rustic country southern chic masterpiece of wedding is my hard part:-)
    Side note, I love the polka dot dress in the bottom picture!

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  • http://www.detallesamatista.com/ flores lima

    Very good pictures, each of which highlights the details of the bouquets, and I see a lot of variety, very good post.

  • http://thehobbyshop.net.ip4.bz/ art ideas

    Hmm is anyone else experiencing problems with the pictures on this blog loading?
    I’m trying to find out if its a problem on my end or if it’s the blog.
    Any responses would be greatly appreciated.

  • Sara

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for the tutorial. I’m going to be making my own bouquet in a few weeks and this is exactly what I need to feel confident that I can do it.

  • Anna

    Thank you SO MUCH for this post! They just opened up a Trader Joe’s in Austin and I am getting married here in two weeks. I got so frustrated being quoted no less than $80 for my single little bridal bouquet at florists all around town. Now I’m just gonna drop by TJ the morning of the day before the wedding and get me one without killing myself over the stress of another contracted service. :P