Q&A with Paper Florist Janita, of My Woolly Mammoth

As you may have read in my other wedding post, we did our wedding on a budget. It turned out perfect in my eyes, but there were things we went without or did differently to stay in the range we wanted to and were able to spend. We kept the wedding and reception very small, skipped programs and a guestbook — just to name a couple things. But one of the biggest expenses we saved a ton on was flowers.

Making it official. (Photo/Chelsea Houseman)

Fresh flowers are gorgeous and aromatic, but I wanted something I knew would last long after the wedding, a keepsake the whole party could have forever. We did have some real lilies incorporated into our beach ceremony but went a different route for bouquets, boutonnieres and corsages. I thought about just buying artificial flowers online and putting them together myself, to try to have something that looked realistic, but upon Pinteresting and searching around Instagram I stumbled upon origami flowers.

Flowers at the reception
Entering our reception as husband and wife, dancing to Rock Lobster. (Photo/Janeen Redman)

To me, this idea seemed really unique. Nobody I knew had origami bouquets at their wedding, and they were just so cute. I did some Googling, then searched Etsy (where I also ordered a lovely bouquet charm with a photo of my mom, from charm shop Smiling Blue Dog).

Some of my favorite ladies. (Photo/Chelsea Houseman)

After a couple months of conversations with Janita Court of My Woolly Mammoth, who specializes in different types of paper florals, I got the colors right to match up with our theme and my bridesmaids’ mismatched dresses, and we ordered them. They were perfect and I love how they turned out, so today I’m sharing a q&a with Janita so you can learn more about why she does what she does.

bouquet and veil
In addition to having a charm with her photo, wore my mom’s veil. We found a small rip in it right before the ceremony that was done by my felines, and my bridesmaid and one of my best friends, Clare, said it was also a way to have the cats with me on my special day. 🙂 (Photo/Janeen Redman)

1. How long have you been making paper flowers, and how did you become interested in them in the first place?

I’ve been making paper flowers for over 7 years! I was looking for something I could make and sell while my son was still little so I could stay home with him. I stumbled upon paper flowers online and fell in love with them.

2. Did you start with origami, or crepe paper?

I started out making origami flowers called kusudama. For about the first year that is all I made. Then I explored other cardstock paper flowers. About 4 years ago I discovered crepe paper flowers and dove head first into botanical recreations.

One of the corsages. (Photo/Janeen Redman)

3. What are your favorite kinds to make?

I love to make complete botanical replicas out of crepe paper. I don’t have a favorite flower but love deconstructing a real flower to recreate it petal by petal.

4. Tell me about what is most popular in your shop, and also what events people typically look for paper flowers for the most.

I would say the kusudama has been the most popular in my shop. Especially mixed with a variety of other simple flowers. Most of my clients are brides but I occasionally have husbands buy bridal bouquet replicas for first anniversary gifts.

5. Have you always lived in Washington?

I have!! I was born and raised (and now raising my son) on the Olympic Peninsula.

6. Tell me something interesting about yourself.

My absolute favorite outdoor activity is to go hunting for mushrooms not only the edible kind but to take pictures of all the crazy ones that pop up in Spring and Autumn. You could say I’m a little obsessed with them.

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