Crocheting my wedding bouquet
Today I would like to share with you the story behind my most treasured crochet project to date: my wedding bouquet.
I had only been crocheting for a couple of months when my husband proposed to me just before Christmas in 2014. I had made a couple of very wonky projects and had recently discovered that you were supposed to crochet under both loops of the stitch. But nevertheless, when I got a book of crochet flower patterns for Christmas, my first thought was 'I wonder could I crochet my wedding bouquet...'. The book was 100 flowers to knit & crochet by Lesley Stanfield. While I was flicking through it, a pattern for a rose caught my eye. It jogged a memory of a blog post that I had seen previously from A Boy & Bunting, and I knew I wanted to try and achieve a similar style using the rose pattern from the book.
We hadn't decided on a colour scheme for our wedding, but I began whipping up some crocheted flowers and pinning them to a polystyrene sphere leftover from a sweet tree - and I loved how it looked!
We had set a date for 1st October 2015,
and as soon as I had chosen the purple bridesmaids' dresses, I started gathering up yarn in shades of purple, dusty pink and neutrals. I chose to go for cotton yarn (as I loved the stitch definition) in a mix of weights, and using both mercerised and unmercerised cotton to give differing textures. I used Sirdar Cotton DK, Rico Fashion Cotton Aran, Rico Essentials Cotton
DK, Debbie Bliss Eco Baby, Rico Essentials Crochet thread and DMC Natura.
I was probably one of the most laid back brides ever. I had three bridesmaids, and I wanted them to have crocheted bouquets too. So I started to crochet the flowers about five months before the wedding - looking back, I'm horrified by the tardiness of my past self! Thankfully, each rose only took me 15-20 minutes to make. My idea was that my bouquet would be an almost equal mix of colour and neutrals, and the bridesmaids' would be slighter smaller and more neutral with little pops of colour. Fortunately, one of my bridesmaids could crochet too, and I taught another the basics so that they could both help. It was important to me that I made my own bouquet entirely myself, so I tasked them with making neutral-coloured roses for the three bridesmaids' bouquets while I
crocheted my own flowers and some colours and extra neutrals for theirs. At that time, I worked for a wedding stationery and venue styling company, and seeing so many different weddings and styles gave me pretty clear ideas about what I wanted for our own wedding. This included making our invitations and doing my own fresh flowers for the table arrangements, as if crocheting bouquets wasn't enough work!
As for assembling the bouquets, I didn't really have a plan. I had bought four polystyrene spheres from a craft shop, and had been saving the sturdy cardboard inner tubes from tinfoil and cling film to use as the handles for the bouquets. I decided that I wanted to use satin ribbon around the base of the bouquet, combined with some vintage lace that had belonged to my late Nana. Our wedding was to be on a Thursday, and on the Monday I finally sat down to put the bouquets together - in hindsight, I can't believe I left it so late! My dad cut the polystyrene spheres for me so that they were slightly bigger than a semi-sphere, then I glued a cardboard circle to the base to neaten it up. I didn't want to use glue to attach the roses, so I ended up just using pearl head pins to pin them to the polystyrene. I used ivory pins for the coloured roses, and lilac pins for the neutrals.
This helped break up the texture a little and add some variety. Once I had covered almost the entire top with the roses, I then added some layers of ruffled lace around the base of the sphere and attached the handle, which I had covered with satin ribbon. Considering my almost total lack of planning, I was really surprised and pleased by how they turned out!
I had also planned to crochet the buttonholes for the men in the bridal party - just a simple rose with two leaves - and of course, I was crocheting leaves and gluing on brooch backs the night before our wedding! I was so grateful for my bridesmaids helping me the whole way through, I couldn't have done it without
them. Thankfully it all came together in the end, and I received so many compliments on the bouquets on the day! The best part is that I have my wedding bouquet to treasure forever and remind me of our special day.