Okay, so I know the peony blooms themselves are not over 100 years old, but the plant from which they bloom is and this particular peony is very special to me. The peonies in the below photos are from a peony plant that has been dug up and transferred no less than five times with success and it is waiting to be transplanted once again. I hope I did not just jinx myself about "success", since it is currently in a pot in my sister in-laws garden, waiting to be introduced to its new home.
Why is this pink peony so special to me? It is due to a tradition that started almost 45 years ago. At the end of each school year, starting with either pre-school or kindergarten, my mom and I would cut a few blooms from one of the two peony plants (one was pink and one was white) to bring to my teacher on the last day of school. Some children would bring apples... not me!... I brought flowers! I remember going outside the morning of the last day of school and cutting a few blooms from the bush. We would then wrap the stems in wet paper towels, then place the wrapped stems in a plastic baggie. After that was done, I would get the job of squeezing tinfoil around the stems to hide the ugly paper towels and plastic. Who knew decades later I would be doing the same bouquet to carry in our garden wedding.
I love adding bling whenever I can!
I am still searching for photos I took on how I created this simple floral bouquet with jewelry, but for now I will explain what I did below. Oh and keep in mind, I have worked for a florist, created many bouquets, and I know the way I created this wedding bouquet is uber unconventional, but I was determined to follow a childhood tradition and carry a bouquet that I created for many years.
How to make a floral bouquet with gems
Collect jewelry or gems that can be attached to long pieces of sturdy florists wire - I used wire that was covered with a soft material as not to damage the jewelry (not thin green floral wire). - The jewelry I used was in hues of periwinkle, opal blue, cobalt blue, and that of tanzanite. the large flower jewel shown is a cocktail ring I like wearing sometimes and I included vintage beaded earrings which were easy to attach to the wire.
Collect your flowers of choice
Arrange flowers and jewels to your liking then wrap the stems in wet paper towels.
Cover the paper towels with a plastic sandwich bag and adhere by wrapping the bag with elastic bands or tape.
Wrap tinfoil around the plastic if desired before wrapping with ribbon.
Wrap the stems with a decorative ribbon. For my something blue, I used blue satin fabric taken from a vintage hat of my mother in-laws. I started at the base of the flowers and went down the stem.
Insert decorative pins to hold the ribbon in place and to also create a pattern if desired. I used pearl headed floral pins.