Wedding Flowers: How to Pin a Boutonniere


One of the first things I teach new wedding planners is how to pin boutonnieres and other personal wedding flowers. Believe it or not, many people find this intimidating, probably because it involves such close contact with virtual strangers. This doesn’t have to be a stressful undertaking, though! Let me give you some tips in the event you’re ever in the position where you need to pin a boutonniere (or corsage).

— First, find out if the boutonniere or corsage is meant to be pinned or if it has a magnetic closure. Many florists are now using magnets to avoid any damage to clothing with stick pins.

–Next, place the boutonniere or corsage in the correct place. For men, it should go on the broadest part of their upper left lapel. This is often also the case for women, but you can ask them if they have a preference.

— Make sure the greenery of the piece rests against the person and the floral faces you.

–For men, lift the lapel a couple of inches so that you can insert the pin through the back of the lapel and into the boutonniere. While it may seem logical to pin the stem, it’s actually better to pin the base of the floral itself, as it’s thicker and less fragile than the stem. After the pin goes through the boutonniere, make sure it goes back through the lapel and that the pin is hidden when viewed from the front. For larger/heavier boutonnieres, you may need to use two pins.

–For women, consider their outfit when determining placement and pinning. If they’re wearing a jacket, ask if they’re planning to wear it throughout the event so you know whether to pin the floral on both it and the garment underneath. Then proceed to pin the floral as you would a boutonniere (outlined above). Make sure the pin is secured in a way that the tip won’t agitate the guest.

That’s it! I recommend having extra pins on-hand in the event the floral is heavier or more unwieldy than anticipated. When possible, request magnetic fasteners, as they’re usually much easier to use and won’t prick any fingers. Also, consider offering female guests the option of a wrist corsage instead. Sometimes, they’re more comfortable with that.

Do you have any questions about boutonnieres or personal wedding flowers? Leave a comment and we’ll be happy to answer them for you!

Photo credit: Rebecca Bridges

Content: Susan Southerland 

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