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The Best Flowers to Use for DIY Corsages & Boutonnières

Florist at work: Steps of making wrist corsage for autumn wedding. Woman making beautiful bouquet of pink roses and heather.

Corsages and boutonnieres are mini bouquets of flowers worn for a variety of occasions such as weddings, proms, dinner parties, special events, and anniversaries. If you enjoy crafting and want a go at creating your own corsages and boutonnieres then the first step is to know which blooms are best suited for these wearable works of art. The floral experts here at Cascade break it down for you to ensure you’ll have hearty blooms that will last and remain looking fresh and fantastic for your corsages and boutonnieres. 

Girls heading to prom with their flower corsages

Best Types of Flowers for Corsages 

Corsages are typically composed of three to five flowers that complement the wearer’s dress or the color theme of the event. Hardy flowers that can stand up to heat, constant movement, and no water source are what you’re going to want. 

Florist at work: Steps of making wrist corsage for autumn wedding. Woman making beautiful bouquet of pink roses and heather.


Roses are a popular choice for corsages because they are beautiful, come in a large assortment of colors, have hardy stems that can hold up to wear and tear, and have a lovely, sweet scent. Different-colored roses also symbolize different emotions and sentiments, so they are perfect for adding a “secret” or symbolic message to your corsage. Roses, or their smaller cousins, Spray Roses, can be used in bud form or fully opened with smaller blooms surrounding them for a classic, traditional look. 

Florist at work: How to make a wrist corsage. Step by step, tutorial.


Carnations are also widely used in corsages due to the wide variety of single and two-toned colors they come in and their long-lasting quality. Corsages made up of all carnations in different colors or in the same colors are attractive and popular. As with roses, certain colors depict different emotions so use them accordingly. 

Florist at work. Steps of making wedding boutonniere with pink rose, ranunculus and white chrysanthemum.


Mums are a classic choice and have been used for decades in corsages and boutonnieres due to their hardiness, wide array of bright colors, and shape variations. A striking bloom with numerous elongated petals, mums draw attention for all the right reasons. 

Ladies Floral Corsage of White Dendrobium Orchids and Decorative Materials. Wedding Flowers.


If you’re going for a more elegant and exotic look, choose an orchid flower for your corsage.  Beautiful Phalaenopsis orchids come in bright hues such as vivid pinks, yellows, and purples, as well as white, soft pinks, light greens, and lavender. Orchid blooms look striking against a white or light-colored gown or a dark blue, gray, or black lapel. Due to their delicate petals, orchids are typically pinned directly onto the garment instead of worn on the wrist. A large orchid bloom surrounded by smaller accent blooms such as baby’s breath and trimmed with ribbon offers an elegant touch. 

Orange Calla Lily boutonniere on black suit

Calla Lily

Another lovely and striking bloom that should be directly pinned to the garment is the Calla lily. Typically available year-round, this beautiful bloom comes in white, red, pink, peach, and dark purple. 

Australian native wild flower pink Geraldton Wax, chameleucium uncinatum isolated on white

Wax Flower

A charming small flower with a waxy appearance, these pretty blooms are excellent accent flowers surrounding larger, stand-out blooms in corsages and boutonnieres. In shades of light pink, white, or lilac, wax flowers provide subtle color and texture making your piece more attractive. 

Wedding Boutonniere Lisianthus


The elegant and lovely lisianthus are often compared to roses but are much more delicate looking. Don’t let its appearance fool you though, as this bloom is known for its hardiness and long vase life which make it a great choice for corsages and boutonnieres.

All of the above flowers are great choices for making boutonnieres as well! Wearing flowers to dances and festive occasions has been done for centuries and it’s a great way to make any event stand out and extra special. For all your flower needs and corsage-making materials, visit Cascade for the very best quality and freshest blooms. 

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How to Make a Boutonniere in 5 Easy Steps

For those who like to take on DIY projects, or if you’re looking for a way to save money on your wedding, then you may want to consider making your own boutonnieres and corsages. It’s not that hard and you’ll have a completely unique design all your own being worn by the bridal party and getting captured in pictures. Just follow the below simple instructions and let your creativity take over. 

Top view of wedding boutonniere for the groom and bridesmaids on wooden background, free space. Wedding details outdoor with copy space. Wedding morning preparation

How to Make a Boutonniere

Before purchasing materials, decide just how many boutonnieres you will be making. The guide on who wears them is pretty flexible and up to the bride and groom, ultimately. Just having the groom wear a boutonniere is acceptable, or one for every groomsman or all the important males in the wedding, from dads to ringbearers. If you’ll be making a lot of them, you can save upwards of $20 per boutonniere! Here’s how: 

Choose the best blooms for boutonnieres

Hearty flowers that can hold up without a water source are best for boutonnieres. You’ll also want to select flowers and colors that will blend in with the overall floral design of the wedding. Blooms such as Spray Roses, Pansies, Ranunculus, Tulips, Mums, Calla Lilies, Billy Balls, and Carnations are all good options. Greenery and smaller accompanying flower choices include Baby’s Breath, Ivy, Eucalyptus, Heather, Italian Ruscus, Queen Anne’s Lace, or Wax Flowers. 

Materials Needed for Making a Boutonniere

Once you’ve selected your preferred blooms, there are a few more items needed to pull everything together: floral scissors or stem cutters, pins, floral tape, and ribbon (optional). The floral tape is a must-have as it is used to wrap around the flower stems sealing them which helps prevent wilting. If you want the floral tape covered up, adding a ribbon is a great way to hide it. 

Make a Boutonniere in 5 Easy Steps

Close up of florist's table as she is working on a groom's wedding boutonniere

1. Gather your flowers and greenery. Decide on 1 or 2 statement blooms, 2-3 smaller accent blooms, and greenery.

Process of making a boutonniere for the groom from cream and pink roses, ruskus leaves and pink gypsophila, top view

2. Cut all the stems to your desired length for the boutonniere. (A stem length of 2-3 inches is ideal for working with). Make sure stems are clean and any leaves from the lower parts have been removed. 

Close up of hands of female caucasian florist as she is working on a groom's wedding boutonniere of white and pink roses

3. Create your arrangement. Start with the statement bloom and add additional accents and greenery behind it. Play around with the arrangement, put an accent flower in front, for example, until you like what you see. 

Florist at work: How to make a wrist corsage. Step by step, tutorial.

4. Once you’ve settled on your design, wrap all the stems tightly with the floral tape. Neatly trim the stems of your boutonniere to the one-inch mark. If desired, wrap a ribbon around the floral tape starting at the bottom and continuing until the base of the flowers. Tie a knot and secure with a pin. 

boutonniere with white rose

5. Use the pins to affix to the boutonniere to the lapel of the wearer’s jacket, step back and admire your work!

When to Make Your Boutonniere

If you have time in the morning of the ceremony, that’s the best time to make your boutonnieres, just store them in a cool, dry place. Do not put them in the fridge. If you need to make them the night before, leave the stems exposed and place the boutonniere in a shallow cup of water. Leave in a cool, dry place overnight avoiding the fridge.