August 6, 2011
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Elizabeth and I reached our creative pinnacle with the advent of her wedding – the goal was a gorgeous wedding on a budget – and we put all our creative energies into coming up with some unique ideas to accomplish this. Everything except the cake, dress and bouquet were done with the sweat of our own brows (even the groom-to-be helped out! )
One of my favorite results were the table arrangements for the reception tables. Being that Elizabeth had chosen the weekend after Valentine’s Day, we weren’t sure what the availability of red flowers would be, but we found a unique assortment of red beauties that worked perfectly in our underwater plan thanks to the helpful florists at Multiflora in Johannesburg.
3 various sizes of clear glass vases (sourced as a rental for the largest, and purchased from a local discount store for the medium and smaller size)
Variety of sturdy bloomed flowers or berries (gladioli worked very well, as did the rose and “berries” which we discovered later were actually round chilies!)
Glass pebbles or clear seed beads
Clear fishing line
Heavy fishing weights (and I mean heavy!)
Tap water, or sparkling water for a bubbly
The day before the wedding, we forced open the gladioli by steeping them in rather warm water. We then pre-tied the heavy weights onto the bottom of the stems with a short piece of fishing line. On the morning of the wedding, with the help of our soon to be new sisters in law and mother in law – the blooms were placed into the vases, the glass beads were poured into cover the ugly fishing weight and finally we poured the water into the vases (making quite a mess on the floor!). A pretty little floating candle on top of each vase added a lovely sparkle to the table and provided that oh-so-important romantic touch.
Things we learned:
- Standard fishing weights are not heavy enough! I ended up on an emergency run to the hardware store looking for anything heavy and ended up with the biggest nuts I could find. These worked very well.
- Beads move when adding water, so plan to have a nice long chop stick or spoon on hand to cover the weights after the water has been poured.
- It takes a little time for the air to work its way out of the pedals of the flowers, so don’t panic if they refuse to sink at first. Once the air is out, it works great!