DIY flower bouquet guaranteed to get you dumped on Valentine’s day


[Erik] is a broke engineer.

When this past Valentine’s day rolled around he didn’t have any cash to buy a gift for his girlfriend, so he had to get creative. Every girl likes flowers, but unless he was going to give his lady some day old daises from the grocery dumpster, he would have to make them himself.

He started by bundling together and bending some T-shirt hangers into stems. He then wrapped them in the green & green/white wire pairs from some Cat-5 cable to give them some color. An old keyboard was sacrificed to create the flower petals and leaves, which were presumably colored with markers before being glued to the end of the hangers. He added a reed switch to the flower pot, which illuminates the LEDs he installed under the petals when a magnet-bearing cardboard placard reading “Love Erik” was placed near it.

How did his girlfriend like them?  Well, let’s just say she’s no longer in the picture. He didn’t tell us if the bouquet was the reason, only that she’s gone. (though we happen to think it’s pretty cool).


Keep reading to see a quick video demonstration of the light-up bouquet.


  1. Hackius says:

    I don’t think he got dumped. There’s no mention of that on his site.

  2. Reaper says:

    Had me at ‘old keyboard was sacrificed’ <3

  3. ben says:

    maybe she found out that he spent his money on that ipad

  4. therian says:

    let the bitch go and get yourself a large dog

  5. UserName says:

    How did broke and Engineer get into the same sentence?

  6. Gary says:

    How did girlfriend and Engineer get into the same sentence?

  7. ejonesss says:

    it is march 10 today Valentine’s day is feb 14

    kind of late for this year ( unless there is some religion i am unaware of that celebrates their Valentine’s day on march 14)

  8. asheets says:

    My wife would have loved this, but would get rid of me immediately if I was broke and/or an engineer.

  9. Paul says:

    if he was truly broke, that penny embedded in the carpet would be in his pocket

  10. Bill says:

    I made something very similar several years ago out of hangers and plastic from a milk jug.

    Also, ‘Broke Engineering [Student]‘ makes much more sense. Is that the case?

  11. Mike Nathan says:

    @Bill – Yes, it’s probably engineering student rather than engineer.

    @Hackius – In the email he sent us describing this project, he mentioned that she’s now an ex. I took the 50/50 chance of being wrong and went with the option that made for a funnier title!

  12. JeremyC says:

    If you’re broke and on the East Coast, the company I work for is looking for engineers. Nice hack.

  13. pun says:

    That thing is awesome… Anyone who has a problem with it probbably has other bigger problems anyway… :)

  14. GameboyRMH says:

    Wow do you see the amount of effort that went into that thing? Way more than swiping a credit card at the florist. If she dumped him over that, he should say good riddance.

  15. toojeep4u says:

    Maybe she dumped him because he missed Valentines day building this in his basement.

  16. Spork says:

    I would have received a much… nicer response had I made this for my girlfriend.


  17. GeekyGirl says:

    Heck, i would have been really grateful for those flowers…i’m an unemployed engineer and i could have hacked those LED’s and the reed switch for a project i’m working on!!!!

  18. lincomatic says:

    Even if he got dumped, I don’t think it was because of the flowers. Here are the comments to his blog posting (Belia is the girl they were made for):

    (Feb 23, 2011) Anonymous said:
    Belia said below comment. love .
    (Feb 23, 2011) Anonymous said:
    Thank you for such an awesome gift! Beats real flowers by a million…. to think I wanted to through that old typewriter away. Creativity at its finest. Your the best.

  19. mjrippe says:

    If he’s an engineer, he probably dumped her for her poor grammar and inability to comment properly 8-}

  20. Mr meow says:

    Great now I’m getting a lecture about love from rara…

  21. stunmonkey says:

    How did b̶r̶o̶k̶e̶ girlfriend and Engineer get into the same sentence?

    there FTFY

  22. Fallen says:

    Why can’t girlfriend and Engineer be in the same sentence? I’m not done my degree yet, maybe that makes the difference, but I haven’t noticed any stigma towards engineers from women…

  23. obsoehollerith says:

    Nice! (But I really wanna know who did that cover of The Baby Elephant Walk!)

  24. Mike says:

    How did LED and girlfriend get into the same sentence?

  25. strider_mt2k says:

    You may ask yourself, “How do I work this?”

    -and you may ask yourself, “Where is that large automobile?”

    You may ask yourself, “Am I right? Am I wrong?”

    And you may say to yourself, “My God, what have I done?”

    (same as it ever was)

  26. Aysh says:

    I think she is an idiot if she dumped him. He’s so creative and a genius. If it was me, I would have kept him for life.

  27. Bill says:


    Two things. One could be that most engineers are socially inept nerds.

    Second, depending on your engineering degree, the last year will be the most stressing on your relationship. 18 hours a day in class, studying or in the lab and no weekends free. The majority of my classmates relationships ended the last year of school then made it.

    Lucky my girlfriend was a classmate, so we went through that hell together.

  28. Paul says:

    My girlfriend is an engineer and she broke a led during a destructive test.

    Best flowers ever.

  29. brad says:

    Engineer, Broke, Girlfriend.

    Pick two.

  30. Johannes says:


    “One could be that most engineers are socially inept nerds”

    Pfft, not all of us ;)

  31. Johannes says:


    “One could be that most engineers are socially inept nerds”

    Pfft, not all of us, we just prefer cool girls interested in electronics & hardware.. Sadly girls like that are quite rare to come by… ^_^

  32. Bill says:


    I said most, not all. :P Though the statement is more true for computer scientists then it is for engineers. Hehe.

    “we just prefer cool girls interested in electronics & hardware”

    I know, that’s why I’ve been dating one for years.

  33. Brian says:

    Search “geek dating” on Google. Sadly, single geek girls in their 30’s aren’t common. And no, Jeri Ellsworth wasn’t interested. ;)

  34. Tim says:

    He was broke? What about the ipad that the flowers are sitting on?

  35. this_is_not_a_name says:


    One of my most meaningful gifts from my lover was a simple synthetic blue flower given to me during a Halloween party. I wore it for the rest of the time at the party, as well I have it saved.

    She gave it to me while she was on her knees, looking up at me. There were people in the other room, who didnt even know of our relationship… including my (at the time) fiance.

  36. Martin says:

    I made something like this for my girlfriend on valentines day. I cut up a monster can cleaned it and made a sunflower out of the bottom of the can and added an led to back light it powered by a couple of AA batteries and a switch. It was pretty simple but it impressed her and was my first attempt at soldering so i was proud of it

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