How to Make a Topiary for a Wedding Reception

Amy Hoover
Make your own topiaries to save money.

Learning how to make a topiary for a wedding reception can end up saving you a lot of money on your reception centerpieces. Although a silk arrangement is the easiest to do, you can make a live topiary with a bit of time, patience, and a green thumb.

How to Make a Topiary for a Wedding Reception Using Faux Flowers

Making a silk topiary for your wedding reception centerpieces allows you to experiment with various arrangements, colors, and flowers before choosing a final design. You can finish them well before the wedding without any further worries about pruning, watering, or feeding live plants.

Flower Topiary Supplies

The following supplies are needed when making a silk flower topiary:

  • Green Styrofoam shape (heart, star, ball)
  • Small pot
  • Silk flowers (hydrangeas, rose buds, lilacs, etc.)
  • Green leaves/fake moss
  • Green wooden dowel
  • Scissors/wire cutters
  • Glue gun
  • Accent ribbons, paint, or other decorations for the pot

The amount and kinds of supplies you need may vary depending on the look you want your centerpiece to have. You may want to paint the pots, or glue ribbon around them for a decorative accent.

Beginners may want to stick with one flower variety, while those with more experience working with silk flowers could try to mix up several kinds. If you have a lot of skill, you could even make large scale reception decorations, placing them at the ends of the head table or on the floor near the wedding DJ booth, cake table, or other focal points.

Steps in Making a Faux Flower Topiary

To make the flower topiary, follow these steps:

  1. Decorate your pot or vase. Wait for any paint to finish drying or glue to harden before moving on to the next step.
  2. Fill the pot with the fake moss and place the wooden dowel inside. Set aside.
  3. Cut the flowers from their stems in small clusters. Glue them and then stick the cut end into the Styrofoam shape securely. Continue doing this until the entire foam shape is covered.
  4. Place the shape onto the wooden dowel.
  5. Add a bow or leaves to the dowel as a finishing touch.

Live Topiaries

Because live topiaries require a lot of time to fully cover their frames (up to six months), they are not usually a typical "do-it-yourself" project for most couples. However, if your thumb is a little green, you may feel like giving it a shot. Use the following information as a starting reference, and get help from your local greenhouse, landscaper, floral experts, home improvement stores, and online gardening forums.

Live topiaries are done with two types of frames: two and three dimensional. In a three dimensional frame, sphagnum moss is used to fill the form and a climbing vine (usually ivy) is place in and around it; in a two dimensional form, the climbing vine is wrapped around the form.

Making a 3-Dimensional Topiary

Before making the moss-filled topiary, be sure the frame is held strongly in a pot. The moss will be heavy, especially when wet, and you want to be sure your topiary does not topple once assembled.To make a moss topiary, you will need to soak sphagnum moss until saturated. Place the moss inside the frame, using fishing line or wires to hold in place. Once filled, use your finger or a small dowel to make a hole and put the roots of a vine into the hole. Wind the vines around the frame.

Making a 2-Dimensional Topiary

Place a climbing vine into a pot. Put the topiary frame in the middle. Wrap the vine around the wire. The vine on the frame stem should not have leaves on it, so carefully pull or cut them off as you wrap it. Leaves should begin at the base of the shape. Be sure you wrap the base in only one direction.

Caring for Topiaries

Topiary favor

Artificial topiaries should be covered or stored until use so they do not collect dust. Pack them so the base does not move, but loosely around the frame so the flowers are not smashed. Live topiaries require water and some sunlight. Ask your greenhouse specialist for care regarding the variety of vine you choose, or check into its care at an online gardening website. Check your plants for insects and be careful not to overwater them.

Topiaries are a modern centerpiece option for your wedding reception. Save money and feel proud of the fact that you learned how to make a topiary for a wedding reception yourself. You may even want to make miniature topiaries as your wedding reception favors and then place them in the middle of the table for guests to take as they leave.

How to Make a Topiary for a Wedding Reception