everything I've learned about growing, maintaining, styling, and loving long hair

wedding styles #8 – using flowers

This will be the last in my wedding series.  I must admit I had only planned on doing 3 or 4 posts, but once I began sorting through all my collection of photos, I had a lot  more content to contribute than I realized!  I’ve thoroughly enjoyed doing this series and I hope you all have been able to gain something from it.

I’m not going to be showing you how to make flowers to use in your hair, there are tons of tutorials already available on youtube for that.  The purpose of this is to explain how I place them in the hair.  I love using flowers in my hair!  There’s nothing like a beautiful flower to make an average day seem special, or a special occasion feel more special.  I have used fresh flowers, artificial flowers from a craft store, and flowers on clips specifically made for hair.  One of the biggest problems I’ve experienced is a stem that is too short.  Whether you use real or fake flowers, make sure to leave a long enough stem when cutting the flower!  A good length of stem is important for securing the flower in your hair!  You can always trim it if it’s too long.

Fresh flowers in an updo –   Cut the stem about 3 to 4 inches long, and make sure that the cut is smooth.  If it’s jagged, the stem will catch on the hair when you try to insert it.  You want it to slide in smoothly.  If the stem is delicate and bends when you try to slide it in, you may want to use florist wire to make it stiff.

First, decide where you want the flower.  Choose a location that has an indentation, or perhaps the updo has a flat spot that needs to be filled in.  Hold the flower in different places to see what looks best.  Wherever you choose, the flower needs a little nest to sit in.  You want the base of the flower to fit down into the updo.  The ideal look is for the petals to rest against the hair.  Next, slide the stem into the updo.  You may have to work around the pins that are holding your style in place, but try to get the stem close to your scalp.  Place a pin at some point along the stem to prevent the flower from sliding back out.  If the flower isn’t sitting well, you can try using more pins to hold it in place, or try a different location.  If the stem is thick (such as on a rose) you will need to use large pins, normal sized ones will just stretch out and probably fall out.  Smaller flowers usually stay in place more easily and don’t always require pins.  Another option, if you have time, is to attach a large flower to an alligator clip using floral wire and/or tape.

Hawaiian look (flower over the ear) – You will need to use something to hold the flower in place.  If you’re using a flower on a clip, it’s really simple.  The trick is to not place it on top of all the hair.  If you do, it will flop around.  Pull the bulk of the hair back out of the way and secure the flower close to the scalp, then let the hair fall back around it.  If you have really thick hair, you may need to work with it a little to keep it from falling over the flower.  If you need to, discreetly use a few pins to hold your hair in place the way it naturally falls, then attach the flower.  If you’re using a fresh flower, it’s a bit more challenging.  I’ve done this look on a few different people and the simplest way I found is to use bobby pins and a snap clip.  The snap clip works wonders!  As long as it’s big enough to close around the stem, it holds much better and is easier to use than pins.  Using the same technique, place the flower over the ear with the stem pointing to the back of the head.  Behind the ear, slide the snap clip into the hair and over the stem, as close to the scalp as possible. (hint: you can crisscross these the same as bobby pins for extra hold!)  Place a pin or two at the base of the flower if needed.  Make sure the hair falls over the stem and hides it.

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For artificial flowers, I like to get small ones that come in bunches.  These are the easiest flowers to use in hair.  They can be found in most craft stores.    >

The stems are usually wire wrapped with tape.  These wires are usually about 4-6 inches long and very thin.  After you separate the bundle, bend each wire in half  and twist it around itself (as in the pic below).  This will give you a sturdier stem and rounded end so it slides into the hair much easier.

You can also use silk flowers.  They usually have wire coated in plastic as the stem.  The wire is thicker and stronger than the ones above so it’s not necessary to bend it in half.  Cut the stem about 2-3 inches long.   Sometimes these types of flowers aren’t secured on the stems very well and may slide off.  If that’s the case, just use a little glue to hold them together.

Any of these small artificial flowers will usually stay in the hair without the aid of pins or clips.  You can scatter them throughout the updo, or place them in groupings.  You have a lot of options.

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If you want something more elaborate, talk to your florist about making a piece for you.  She should be able to create something (real or artificial) similar to a corsage that would be suitable for wearing in your hair.

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