Hi! I'm Michelle,
owner and designer
Aime Retzlaff Photography
It all started back in 2011 for my own wedding. I wanted to carry a bouquet that held a lot of meaning for me; something that would never die. Something that I would be able to take out in the years to follow to remind me of that fairy-tale day.
So, I asked a number of my closest friends, family members, and patients (I was working in the medical field at the time – oncology), for a brooch or a piece of jewelry and clothing that I could use to create my “forever bouquet.” The result was breathtaking! I had the most beautiful, meaningful cluster of memories to walk down the aisle with. The pieces of jewelry given to me spanned the ages: a brooch from World War II that a patient’s husband gave me, jewelry from my mother’s collection, some new pieces from my sister. One was even from a patient's four-year-old daughter - a pink butterfly.
...It was the ultimate memory.
Fast forward five years...
After I had my second daughter, I decided to be a stay-at-home mom. One afternoon, while reminiscing about my wedding, I took my bouquet down from the shelf, and looked at all the brooches.
Then it struck me! Why not do this for other brides? Custom floral designs and accessories using up-cycled clothing and jewelry;wedding dresses, ties, blazers, baby onesies, t-shirts...the possibilities, I realized, were endless.
And so it began.
Forever Brooch Bouquets was born.
To date, we have made many unique and custom floral designs and accessories using a late friend's cardigan, a late Mother's 50 year-old wedding dress, a late Father's button-down shirt, vintage jewelry, a Purple heart from Vietnam
...the list goes on and on.
We have been published in BRIDES UK Magazine, in addition to full 6-page spreads in multiple issues of Manhattan Bride Magazine.
We are the recipients of "Best of Manhattan Bride 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021” awards in addition to the prestigious "Manhattan Bride 2020 Hall of Excellence award".
We were also recognized as the knots "best of weddings 2020 and 2021"
We love what we do. We love making people smile. We love being able to hand-make an heirloom that a bride will be able to keep for a lifetime.
Allow us to do it for you as well.