Glitter Ball on a Stick: The Making of my Wedding Bouquet

When I told my mom I wanted a brooch bouquet for my wedding, she didn’t know what it was that I was talking about. When I tried to explain it to her, at one point I used the phrase “glitter ball on a stick” and she looked horrified. She thought I wanted spear an Styrofoam ball on a stick, and cover it in craft glitter. But once I showed her pictures of what I was really talking about, she was on board with my plan.

I looked for “how-to” blogs online for inspiration on what materials to buy and how to get started, but I ended up doing my own thing once I got going. I thought I’d share my creative process on this one in case it’s helpful to anyone else who wants to walk down the aisle with their own “glitter ball on a stick”.

Most importantly, for this kind of project you’re going to need brooches. Many of them were gifted to me by my mom, grandmother, sister, and aunts-in-law. I only ended up having to buy three extra brooches when I realized that I was just shy of what I needed. I also used wire – both flora wire and leftover stuff that I had lying around from old jewelry kits. I also used wire cutters and pliers (a must). The internal structure was originally supposed to be a wooden dowel, but I used the internal parts of a broken French Press (reduce, reuse, recycle!). For the Styrofoam components, I used half a sphere and a cylindrical cone. And the whole thing was covered in the fabric of a t-shirt and ribbon; I used a t-shirt because I wanted a very specific shade of blue fabric and the t-shirt was the best match. I also used Styrofoam glue, jewel glue, and a hot glue gun that I had in my craft bin. Bonus materials were rubber bands that I had lying around, and some cute pins that I found at Michael’s while I was buying those extra brooches. Bonus advice: use whatever you have on hand that you think will work. As I mentioned before: reduce, reuse, and recycle!

First thing I did was to cover the top of the bouquet in fabric by gluing a piece of the t-shirt fabric to the half sphere of Styrofoam. Once the glue was dry, I pinned the brooches directly into the fabric. In order to make sure that they were extra secure, I bent some of the wire into staple-like shapes that I used to anchor the brooches. I laid the flat part of the “staples” over the brooch pin that was attached to the fabric and then made sure the arms of the “staples” went into the Styrofoam. Once I was happy with the placement of the brooches, I filled in the gaps with the little pearl-headed pins I got at Michael’s. I’m really happy I bought them because they added a nice touch and helped make the whole thing look less patchy. (Note: I reorganized some of the brooches later on when I came across a few pieces I forgot I had set aside).

For the base, I skewered the Styrofoam cone with the metal bar of the French Press so that the flat sieve of the French Press was on top of the flat part of the cone. Then, I covered the whole thing in more of the t-shirt fabric and glued it all together. While the glue was drying, I had to hold the whole thing together with rubber bands so that the fabric wouldn’t unravel. In retrospect, I may have added too much fabric, but I wanted something substantial to hold on to and to support the weight of the top piece.

Next, when the glue was dry, I removed the rubber bands and began to wrap the base in ribbon. This is the part that I am least happy with, for a number of reasons. If I were to do this again, I would probably buy a different ribbon – maybe one that wasn’t so wide. And I think I would put more time into figuring it out better ways to secure it to the base. My first attempt unraveled and I had to start over. I ended up having to use a rubber band and glue to keep the ribbon in place on the base. I was never too worried about this part, however, because it’s the part my hands were wrapped around. In pictures, this is the part that’s mostly covered. And besides, the important part of the bouquet is the top.

The final step was to combine everything. I used a lot of hot glue to secure the two pieces together. I used pieces of ribbon to hide the join and make the whole thing look as seamless as possible. Although I pinned down the ribbon with little jewelry pins that I had lying around, glue probably would have worked as well. The ribbon is so sheer that some of the pins slipped right through the ribbon; it took a bit of extra care to keep everything stuck together.

When I told Mark what I wanted to do for my bouquet, he told me that he still had one of his mother’s brooches that he would let me have. This was incredibly important as Mark’s mother passed away long before I even met him. If you go back and look at some of the other pictures of the bouquet, this brooch is right on top and in the center. It’s the first one I pinned down and I placed all of the others around it. For me, this was a way to include Mark’s mother in the wedding even though she couldn’t be there with us in person. This also inspired me to add a penny to my bouquet. When I was twelve, my granddad passed away while my family was on vacation. When we went out to dinner that night, our server told me and my sister that he had lost his father many years ago and that if you see a penny on the ground, it means that your loved one is thinking of you. Every time we saw a penny (or any coin after pennies were discontinued), we always said that it was granddad. Once the pandemic hit and we had to downsize our wedding, this bouquet also became a great way to remember everyone else who couldn’t be at the wedding in person. No one from Mark’s family was able to attend, but I had brooches that his aunts had given me. And out of the women of my family, my mom was the only one who could be there in person, so the broches meant that I also had my sister and Granny with me. Not only was this bouquet a crafting achievement and a reflection of my personal style, but it meant that I got to have so many people with me in spirit as I walked down the aisle.

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