How To Make a Boutonniere

Boutonnieres should be pinned to the breast pocket of a tuxedo or suit for special occasions. To save a little cash for your special event or just have the freedom to be creative in the design, make a boutonniere at home. Follow these instructions to create your own boutonniere.


  • 1 medium bud
  • 1 stem of leaves
  • 2-3 small flowers to complement the roses
  • 6 inch lengths of ribbon (2 colors)
  • Floral tape
  • Scissors/wire cutters
  • Spray starch
  • Large pin


  1. Choose the flowers. You can select whatever flowers suit your taste as long as they are smaller in diameter than the breast pocket of the wearer’s suit. Traditional and sophisticated flowers like roses, dramatic small orchids or delicate freesia and calla lilies make perfect dramatic statements when used as boutonnieres. Select flowers that are both simple and dramatic.
  2. Prepare the flowers. Cut the stems to three inches in length. You will remove some length once the boutonniere is ready to wear.
  3. Start with two or three leaves. Group them together as the back frame of the boutonniere. Wrap floral tape around the joined stems from the base of the leaves to the end of the short stems.
  4. Group the flowers together and tape them. Hold the stems together so that the ends are together. Place the center flower above the leaves then arrange the boutonniere. Wrap the floral tape around the stems to secure them.
  5. Decorate with ribbon. Use the ribbon to decorate the boutonniere. Try a simple bow at the base of the buds or curl the ribbon behind the bundled leaves to create a nice swirl or loop to provide a splash of color.
  6. Spray the boutonniere to stiffen. Spray with starch or floral spray to set the boutonniere and keep the ribbons straight and stiff.
  7. Insert the pin through the suit lapel or pocket then through the stems. Secure the boutonniere so that it does not shift or sag.

Boutonnieres are traditional decorations for men’s suits for weddings and other special occasions. Make your own boutonnieres for special events. Remember that suits tend to be dark in color so the boutonniere should be brightly colored and dramatic to make a statement.


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