we like it wild: father’s day talking bouquet

With Father’s Day nearing, we wanted to put together a memorable floral gift for our favorite man that wasn’t too “girly.” With a vintage codfish box found on a trip to Vermont as the base, we created a collection box filled with symbolic treasures and our version of a talking bouquet, personalized just for the dad in our life. Check out our tips after the jump to create a simple, creative and thoughtful Father’s Day treat. Your box can be as lovey, manly or sentimental as Dear Old Dad would like! — Studio Choo

The full how-to (and more pictures) continue after the jump…

The tussie-mussie or “talking bouquet” is a key ingredient in our collection box. These small posies were carried and worn by folks from ancient times to the Middle Ages. They were meant to not only mask unpleasant smells (not that your dad smells or anything!), but also were presented as floral messages, most notably in Victorian times. Each flower and herb was assigned a symbolic meaning, and the recipient would decode the bouquet. Over time and through different cultures, some plants acquired more than one meaning. Don’t forget to include a key to help your dad understand your “bouquet.” (There are many books and websites out there dedicated to the language of flowers that can help you compose your message!)

The collection box is easy to put together with any ingredients and sentiments. We first found all the items we wanted to include and divided the box into small sections using chipboard and hot glue. To house the tussie-mussies, we cut a small plastic cup to fit under the lid of the box and nestled the flowers inside with a small amount of water. The other sections of the box were filled with small pillows of moss to bring everything closer to the surface. We made tiny gallery numbers (using hole-punched numbers glued to pins) to label each item in the box, and on the bottom of the lid we typed a note explaining the symbolism behind each item. Happy Father’s Day!

  1. Blayne says:

    This is absolutely fantastic! I teared up! I will definitely have to do something like this for my daddy :). Thanks for the ideas!!!

  2. Oh I love this! I have an ever-long fascination with small wooden boxes.

  3. MB@YarnUiPhoneAppv1.5 says:

    I love miniatures…ever since I was a kid and I was into dollhouse (still am I have a 1930s Art Deco house sitting on a shelf wall). This really cute and combines the vintage ness of a box and then florals. Would work with a cigar box, I would think…

  4. Annika says:


  5. oh my goodness the sweetest little box ever. I love it.

  6. patricia says:

    what a truly lovely idea.

  7. Jennifer says:

    So sweet! A great idea.

  8. i adore this idea! super sweet!

  9. Colin says:

    On the fourth from last image, the one with the typewritten legend/key, do you know what that font is called and what typewriter was used? I have been looking for this font forever. http://new.myfonts.com/WhatTheFont/forum/case/198761/

  10. Rachel Jones says:

    This is such a wonderful idea! I really like how the Victorian’s liked to give gifts with code–from what symbolic stones they put into rings to symbolic bouquets and things like that. I’m also in love with this codfish box–I’m going to have be more picky about where I buy my codfish if they can come in boxes like that!

  11. Josefina says:

    So thoughtful, lovely and creative. This would make any dad feel special!

  12. Georgia Dunn says:

    This is such a great idea! My father had an empty bee’s nest (entirely intact and still laced delicately over a thin branch) shipped to me for Christmas, so I know he would love this box filled with nature.

  13. This is the sweetest and cutest idea ever. I’m in love with it.

  14. What a WONDERFUL idea….thank you, you just solved my dilemma of what to do for my dad. He’s an artist, and would *really* love this gift.

    Poetry in a box. ♥

  15. Kim B says:

    Love this idea, I’ll need to remember if for next year. What a great gift for anyone at anytime, just to let them know their importance to you. Thanks for sharing!

  16. Caroline says:

    So beautiful! What’s the name of the little white flowers?

  17. Caroline says:

    Owp! wait, i figured it out, for some reason I thought the numbered label read ‘6’ i just realized it’s a ‘4’ :)

    I also love the box itself!

  18. Amber says:

    What a unique and memorable way to show Dad you care. I absolutely love this! Thank you for sharing.

  19. Love love love! Will be searching for a wooden box of this style, it could have endless uses! You could do something similar with an old style wooden cutlery drawer perhaps?

  20. Monique B says:

    So amazing and very thoughtful!!! Thanks for sharing it!

  21. Elli says:

    You ladies are amazing!! So sweet and sentimental!! I absolutley in every way adore this!! I love you ladies!!

  22. Kate says:

    Hi, I am working on one of these and I was just wondering if you actually planted teeny tiny sprouts of each herb/plant/flower of if they are actually cut and arranged bouquet style. Originally I thought they were planted so that they wouldn’t die but then I just started thinking that is so complicated in terms of getting a baby version of everything.

    Help me make it as perfect as the one shown here!! :-)

  23. Doreen says:

    A great desing for Dad. I guess they are planted, if not, they won’t last for a long time. Did you put the bowl on the box for the plant to grow and last? Thanks.

  24. Lauren Farris says:

    This is perfect! Does anyone know of a place online that would that have a similar box? Also, where would one find those greens to put in it? I’m from a small town, so we don’t have much of anything when it comes to floral shops/greenhouses!


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