Wedding Flowers - Who has them?
I am so often asked by couples ‘who’ in their wedding party should they be providing flower for? What is the tradition, and do they need to keep to it? My answer always is – it’s your day so you do what you’d like to do and what is realistic within your budget. And, gone are the days of handing out a box of buttonholes at the church for any of the guests to take and wear!
To help answer this question, I’ve put the following together to give you a helping hand….
So, let’s start with the bride(s)
Dare I say it, but the leading role of the day is the bride and traditionally she will carry or wear flowers in some form or another. This may be a long trailing bouquet, a posy bouquet or maybe a flower crown to name just a few. Many same sex marriages may see both brides carrying bouquets or just one with the other wearing a corsage or buttonhole. The most important factors are that it compliments the dress and the couples personal style.
Carrying a bridal bouquet dates back to ancient times when brides would carry bouquets of herbs and spices to ward off evil spirits and any bad luck. Later, in the Victorian era, these traditions developed to reflect flower colour meanings. For example, white (representing purity) and orange (representing happiness and fertility) became popular choices.
These days, brides usually choose bouquets based on their personal taste and/or wedding style/theme. I feel very strongly that it should represent the couple and that the flowers and style shouldn’t be determined by tradition.
Most grooms will wear a buttonhole that matches the colour and style of the bridal bouquet. A rose is still a very popular, traditional and classic choice, although, I am seeing more grooms who are wanting something a little different and more personal to them.
Usually, bridesmaids carry smaller versions of the bridal bouquet. They don't need to be exactly the same as the bridal bouquet, but they should complement the bride's bouquet, their dresses and the overall style. Sometimes the Matron of Honour / Chief Bridesmaid may have a different bouquet to the bridesmaids, be it larger or a different colour, but again the choice is completely up to the couple.
The Flower Girls
Flower girls traditionally carry a basket of petals which they scatter on the aisle in front of the couple. For many reasons this isn’t always practical or even permitted at some venues! There are so many other options available, a small bouquet, a pomander, a wand to name just a few. A factor I always ask couples to consider is the age of the girls and what suits their personality and habits best. An older flower girl may like feel ‘grown up’ and be the same as the adults so a smaller version of the bridesmaid bouquet may be best. However a younger girl may like to be a princess for the day and therefore hold a decorated wand. Whatever you do decide, just remember that they will be extremely cute and are likely to steal the show!
Just to clarify, traditionally the following are included in the wedding party and therefore wear a buttonhole alongside the groom.
Best man / men / woman
Father of the Bride
Father of the Groom
The groomsmen usually wear a buttonhole, but not necessarily the same as the groom. Theirs are often a little different, or at least smaller than the groom's buttonhole, whilst keeping to the same style and colour theme.
The Ring Bearer
The ring bearer is most often the best man or best woman or maybe be even a page boy but regularly, pets are involved in this part of the ceremony so don’t forget to make sure he or she is also suitably adorned!
Mothers and Grandmothers
Although not usually part of the actual wedding party the couples’ mothers and grandmothers shouldn’t be forgotten! Traditionally they would wear a corsage which is a small spray of flowers worn on the lapel of a jacket but can also be worn on the wrist or even placed on a handbag.
So, that’s the bridal party flowers for you! I hope you have found this useful and if I can help in any way at all then please contact me and I’ll be more than happy to answer any wedding flower questions you may have.