good prom, bad prom

Remember these?

You know, 20 years ago when you were invited to Sr. Prom.   Your date walked up to the door and  pulled a corsage out of a plastic coffin that rivaled an 80's wedding bouquet?  Well it's now 2011 and if we can do heart transplants, we can come up with a dainty and flattering wristlet that doesn't require it's own weather system.

This year I was asked to make some prom flowers for a few couples I adore.  I was determined to create a one-of-a-kind sentiment that could be worn with some dignity.  In case you have kids, friends, or neighbors who might need a corsage this year, I documented the making of one so you could DIY.! 

By the way, I priced these little babies out at the closest market and it cost 45.00 for a boutonniere and corsage.  Plus, they're just not good.  Me to the rescue!!

Here's what you'll need. 

Cut the stem off of three baby roses (aka spray roses) and insert a 10" piece of  22 gauge wire through the center.  Fold in half and pinch wire at the fold.

Tear off a long piece of floral tape.  To get it to stick, you pull it apart ever so slightly, being careful not to tear it.  Keep twisting it around the wire all the way to the bottom.

Do the same to the other two flowers and then stagger them in thirds and wrap all together with another piece of floral tape. 

Grab your foliage and wrap it together with floral tape.  I like to use wax flower, leather fern, and salal (aka lemon leaf).  They're inexpensive and easy to find.

Put the foliage with the roses and wrap them all together with floral tape.  Are you loving floral tape yet?

Make a bow out of ribbon (usually 1" or less in width).  Don't know how to make a bow?  There are lots of tutorials on you tube so  go knock yourself out.  Are you back?  Ok, twist some wire around the center of the bow and leave a wire tail.  I've used a very thin, white, covered wire that you can find at any craft store.

Use floral tape to incorporate the bow into the roses and foliage.

Feel free to embellish to your heart's desire.  I put some little rhinestones in the center of each rose, and a little sparkle in the center of the bow.  Who doesn't enjoy a little bedazzle on prom night?

Then I came up with a crazy idea....a ruffled cuff for the floral to nest on. 
I cut a piece of 4" x 18" (guessing) sparkly tulle and ruffled it on my sewing machine. 

I spent about 1/2 hour trying to decide how to get it to stay on a wrist and after messing with elastic, velcro, glue, etc. (I didn't want it to turn into a hot mess on the dance floor) I decided to sew on some thin, black, ribbon that would tie into a bow.

I attached the flowers and tulle together by wrapping wire around the floral stems, around the back of the corsage, and poking holes through the tulle, twisting the wire together under the whole thing.  I glued a round piece of felt on the wires so it wouldn't poke the princess all night long.  (If you don't want to make the ruffled cuff, you can simply attach the flowers to an elastic band).

Then I took the straight, floral wrapped ends of the roses and curled them around a #2 pencil like a pig tail. 

Here's the finished product.  It's lookin' kind of gigantic in this picture, but trust me, it was the perfect, dainty size for a high school senior. 

Oh, and the boutonniere is a piece of cake.  Just follow the first few steps and wrap the stem with ribbon before you curl the pig tail.  Don't over do it for the boys, less is more!

Here are a few others I made.  Lovin' the feathers?   

I put this one on a sequined, stretchy band found at Hobby Lobby, our local craft store. 

These can be made a couple days ahead and stored in a corsage bag in your refrigerator.  Lightly mist the buds with water to them to keep looking fresh.

Last weekend I made corsages and boutonnieres for Mason and Kyle who live down the street.  They've picked Brody up for school every single morning this year and I LOVE them!  I can't help thinking this time next year I'll be making a corsage for my own 16 year old boy.  I figure it's just enough time to teach him how to wear a shirt at the dinner table and stop holding his fork like a shovel.  I can't wait!

Stay tuned for wrist corsages- part 2 later this week.  I'll show you how to make this Mother's Day wristlet for under three dollars.


  1. That's adorable! Good job!

    Now if you could just find a way to revamp my gaudy homecoming mum from 1989. It was so heavy, I should've had it attached to an iv stand!

  2. So pretty, thank you for sharing this. I wish I'd had it for my prom back in the day, but the boutonnieres are also for a wedding I'm helping with soon.

  3. Your blog inspires me to do more than just sew. I want to take on projects that perhaps my daughters & grand daughters might enjoy learning about. Make that grandsons as well - that chicken recipe is one they'll enjoy with scouts! Thanks for all your info! And especially, thanks for being so willing to share. Grandma Truck

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  5. What a beautiful corsage and well written instructions. I have two teenage boys, and as an avid craft lover it kills me that I never got to sew them frilly dresses or design a dream dollhouse. With their homecoming dance this weekend, your corsage idea is the perfect way to express my creativity, and add to the magic of the night. Thanks so much!

  6. I just bought my supplies today to attempt making both. Thanks for the easy instructions!

  7. I wanted to chime in even though I'm late to the conversation..Lovely work on the corsage! Clever idea using the ruffled cuff too. (You can also run a couple matching ribbons up through the back and tie the corsage on) it's a shame but you're right, some corsage work out there being offered by professional florists seem to be thrown together in a rush. That lack of professionalism casts a bad light on all florists even the talented artists I feature on my blog.

  8. Pretty helpful information on prom parties. Couple of weeks ago, I arranged a bridal shower party of my sister at one of best venues. Bought flowers from a florist who provided Same Day Delivery Flowers service and had good time.


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Mia & Jilly

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