B is for Bailey – and Broccoli


My niece, Bailey, was born a year ago.  I was thrilled to welcome her to the world and to the family, and rushed to the hospital up in L.A. as soon as I got the call from my cousin/”brother” that she’d arrived. What a precious bit of baby goodness!

Naturally I took some treats to the baby and her parents, including the bouquet above, and I’m oddly proud to say that my gift received some rather strange looks from people as I walked through the halls of Cedar Sinai Hospital.  I guess it’s not every day that folks see a baby bouquet made from broccoli.  Yes, broccoli!

Bailey’s parents decided they’d give their baby a B first name and a D middle name, so though I knew the baby girl’s initials, I didn’t learn her full name until she was born.  How and why they started calling her Broccoli while she was in utero is a long story, but suffice to say that Bailey was known as Broccoli until she made her grand entrance into the world last June.

Given the unusual nickname for this baby girl, and that I had time to brainstorm before her birth, I decided to make a broccoli bouquet.  It came together beautifully, and as I said before, it was attention-getting!  I love the fact that though the broccoli isn’t particularly delicate the bouquet still looks girly, and the green and pink worked well together.

Here are the steps involved in assembling this bouquet:

I purchased a large bunch of broccoli with long stems, and decided on a square vase we had up in the cupboard as the base.  I just happened to have white acetate ribbon that was the same “height” as the vase, and wrapped it all the way around, sealing the two ends together at the back.  Next I selected a vibrant pink ribbon (narrower than the white ribbon) to add a pop of girly pink.

I incorporated Bailey’s initials into the bouquet by stamping BDL onto an oval cut from watercolor paper, and affixed small pink flower stickers in between the initials.  I accented the edge of the initialed oval with black metallic rub-ons, and attached the paper oval to the band of pink ribbon.

Next, I rubber banded the broccoli stems together in the shape I wanted and tucked the broccoli into the vase – with a bit of white tulle peeking out of the top on either side to soften the look a bit.

And finally, as the piece de resistance, I wired fresh water pearls I had on hand (that were pre-drilled with holes) to wooden toothpicks and inserted them into the broccoli tops.  This added another touch of femininity, and also broke up some of the solid darker green of the vegetable.  I used a very thin wire to attach the pearls to the tops of the wooden toothpicks.

What do you think?  Is it lovely, or am I a lunatic?  Or both?!  Personally, I think this is a great example of how you can use a personal detail like a nickname in a bouquet or gift, even if one of the materials is way out of the norm.  This bouquet was a lot of fun to create and I look forward to the coming years, when Bailey is old enough to hear this story and see the bouquet her creative/crazy Aunt Melody made for her!

Questions?  Comments?  I’d love to hear from you…

Warm regards,

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  1. Posted June 14, 2012 at 10:34 am by Jani N. Howe | Permalink

    Superb, Melody! That is true ‘thinking outside the box’! And why not make the gift of something that has been a fun word used in the family already? Bravo!

  2. Posted June 14, 2012 at 11:02 am by Melody | Permalink

    Thank you for your kind words, and for commenting! I had such fun with this, and was excited to present it to the new parents. I was more excited to meet little Bailey though. 😮

  3. Posted June 14, 2012 at 1:52 pm by Ellie | Permalink

    Hi Tia Melody-

    Being the recipient of this awesome bouquet I thought it was great! It was super fun and personal and we still have the personalized case in Bailey’s room.

    Thank you again for being there!

  4. Posted June 14, 2012 at 2:24 pm by Melody | Permalink

    I’m glad the three of you enjoyed receiving the bouquet as much as I enjoyed making it. How nice that you saved the non-perishable part!
    Tia Melody

  5. Posted June 15, 2012 at 10:58 am by Jo Murray | Permalink

    That is fabulously creative Melody!…. and cute.

  6. Posted June 15, 2012 at 1:56 pm by Melody | Permalink

    Thanks so much! I’m glad you enjoyed the post…