The fabulous Amanda Heer talks brooch bouquets


Brooch Bouquet by Amanda Heer. Photo courtesy of Jim Kennedy.

I am oh so fascinated with brooch bouquets these days. As I am always on the lookout for the best of the best vendors, I am excited I had the opportunity to interview Amanda Heer of Fantasy Floral, the woman who started the brooch bouquet trend. Amanda is an accomplished innovative Southern California florist who has done work for several shows including Say Yes to the Dress, Housewives of OC, and My Fair Wedding with David Tutera.

Amanda created the first brooch bouquet for her own wedding in 1994. When her bouquet was accidentally discovered during a photo shoot at her home and prominently featured in Romantic Homes magazine, Amanda knew she was on to something. Fast forward to today, Amanda skillfully creates these gorgeous bouquets for brides all over the globe. This Sunday, her work will be featured on My Fair Wedding with David Tutera.

Amanda not only creates beautiful brooch bouquets,
she takes brides on an emotional journey of their life.

The design process starts with brides collecting 50 to 60 items to create the brooch bouquet. The pieces could be old jewelry, cuff links or even a watch set to the time of the wedding. “It’s not about going out and buying brooches,” Amanda says, “I tell my brides to use items that mean something to them. It could be a button off your grandmother's sweater. Anything that reminds you of your life.” Amanda suggests looking in old jewelry boxes, including money from foreign countries you’ve visited, having relatives donate sentimental pieces or going shopping with your fiancé to have him pick out a piece. She also suggests websites where you can order a few brooches, but says the more you add of your own, the better.

Putting all these pieces together artfully and securely so the bouquet doesn’t fall apart takes time and skill. The result is well worth the effort, Amanda says. Many times, because of the significance of the pieces, the bouquet becomes more important than the dress. Usually, brides and their family can’t wait to see the bouquet and it becomes an emotional moment. “It doesn’t matter what type of bride you are,” Amanda says, “a rocker with a tattoo sleeve or the most traditional bride. The bouquet is about you. It’s your life. It’s your family’s life.”

This bling brooch bouquet was created by Amanda Heer the wedding of Yankee pitcher Chad Gaudin and Syndal Gordon who was featured on Say Yes to the Dress in 2011.

Move Over Videography... Hello Cinematography!

Wedding videography has come a long way. Many brides today are choosing cinematography, the new trend that produces wedding videos much like a movie. It is heavily edited usually to 20 minutes (and may include a shorter "trailer"), has smooth transitions, and typically tells a story. This video, shot by Cinevent of Chris and Melisa's destination wedding in Bellagio, Italy, is one of the most moving wedding films I've seen. Was it the way they captured the exquisite beauty and grace of the bride as she made her way down the aisle? The fact that the setting happened to be my favorite old stumping ground when I lived in Europe? Or was it Cinevent's decision to end the video with the most earnest speech I've ever heard a groom make to his bride. I don't know. You tell me.