How My DIY Wedding Project Destroyed Friendships

Illustrated by Mallory Heyer.

M.E. Kinkade

You, too, can make a beautiful paper-flower wreath to enjoy at home! Most of these steps are not required nor recommended, but here I’ve included all of my steps for making a wreath. Happy crafting!

1. Get engaged. Amid all the planning enthusiasm, spawn the idea of mixing paper roses with all the decorations as a nerdy-but-pretty nod to your love of reading.

2. Nervously and gleefully ask two of your very best friends to be bridesmaids, as is traditional. Dance in circles when they accept.

3. Become overwhelmed with the difficulty of making paper roses by hand, and panic over the price of florist services.

4. Ask your bridesmaids for help, assuming they will enthusiastically join you for a craft night or two to produce paper flowers.

5. Bridesmaids will not answer your request. You make a step-by-step tutorial to explain how easy, if time-consuming, this project is.

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6. Bridesmaids refuse every dress you suggest they wear. They finally respond to your paper-flower request by saying you probably won’t like the results anyway, and shouldn’t you just buy live flowers instead?

7. Reiterate that you really, truly don’t have money for real flowers because you’re paying for this wedding yourself. Spend night after night alone, watching old Disney movies, gluing your fingers together while you make these yourself. Complain about it on an online wedding forum.
Illustrated by Mallory Heyer.

8. Through a miracle, have strangers and long-distance friends volunteer to make paper flowers for you. Get amazing, lightweight boxes in the mail, and it is better than Christmas. The flowers are beautiful.

9. Check in with your bridesmaids again; acknowledge that they are busy people but tell them how you’ve been feeling, how you don’t feel like they’ve got your back, and how you’d like some help.

10. Your bridesmaids, the people who are your closest friends locally, drop out of the wedding and no longer speak to you.

11. They’ll also talk to tangential friends, who will suddenly have mysterious business trips the same weekend as the wedding. Then, they’ll vanish from your Facebook feeds. You won’t hear anything else from them.

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12. Cry until it feels like your heart will fall out.

13. Suck it up.

14. Get married to the partner you love and adore. Use the paper roses in your decorations; guests will repeatedly comment on how beautiful they are and what a magical touch they bring. Feel beautiful and happy and dizzy with love.

15. Months later, on a quiet, lonely Sunday afternoon, gather supplies: the roses, which you’ve saved in a box on a shelf; scissors or pliers; some ribbon; a trusty hot-glue gun; and a Styrofoam wreath form.

16. Wrap the ribbon around the wreath to make a hanger; secure with hot glue. Trim down the wire stems with your scissors and stab the short stems into the wreath, layering until the Styrofoam is completely covered with roses. Glue liberally, burning your fingers at least once.

17. Hang your finished wreath somewhere you can see it, and think back on all the kindness of those who helped make it and all the sadness for those who didn’t.

18. Keep your paper-flower wreath indoors and away from moisture. Paper, like friendships, can be fragile and fall apart easily.

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