Today we’re tapping into some of the traditions that have been associated with wedding flowers for many years and how they were once an expectation with links to spiritual beliefs but are now changing, with couples putting contemporary twists on them or leaving them out altogether…
The tradition of only having a couple of colours in your palette generally went out the window quite some time ago! With so many hues, shades, tones and tints to choose from, you can use as many or as few colours as you want in your wedding palette. From brights to pastels, jewels to just greenery, work with your florist to decide what you really like, what works well with your venue/decor, what’s within your budget and whether you want particularly creative floral designs or you’d prefer to keep things simple.
There is a long history of brides having some form of bouquet. In Ancient Rome, brides carried or wore flower garlands as they were believed to signify new beginnings, fidelity and fertility. In the 15th century, brides carried bouquets consisting of herbs, garlic and spices to ward off evil spirits and bad luck. But perhaps this tradition started having the most significance when Queen Victoria chose a snowdrop bouquet when she married Prince Albert.
Today, the flowers for bridal bouquets are mostly chosen for their beauty of their colours, fragrance and shape. There may be some special significance also. Unless you choose to do so, there is no need to go for a traditional bouquet. In fact, you don’t necessarily need to carry a bouquet at all. There are lots of options - from a single bloom to a wide and wonderful arrangement. It’s completely up to you!
Tradition says that the bridesmaids should all be dressed the same or very similar and should carry identical bouquets in order to confuse and distract any evil spirits that try to spoil the bride’s happiness. Unless you are superstitious, or if you choose for the bridesmaids to have the same bouquets, each bouquet can be different (as can what they wear). They don’t have to include the same flowers in each bouquet (although having lots of different designs can work out more costly) but ideally should have something in common - whether it’s the colours, shapes or flowers. If the bouquets are all the same, you could perhaps add some different accessories or different colour ribbons to make them more individual.
In ancient Roman times, young girls would carry sheaths of wheat up the aisle, which was believed to bring wellbeing and good fortune to the newlyweds. In the Victorian age, a flower girl would spread flower petals on the ground along the wedding aisle rather than wheat sheaths. This was so the bride would live a healthy, happy life with her husband. You don’t have to have any flower girls or you can have as many as you like. We personally love to see flower girls with pomanders or floral wands included in weddings!
For years it was tradition for the bride’s parents to pay for the wedding - everything from the dress, venue, flowers and transport to the photography, catering, cake and entertainment, but from our experience, it’s a rather outdated belief now. Many couples who come to us are financially independent and wish to pay for their own wedding, or family/friends contribute to some aspects like their own flowers for the big day.
Tossing the bouquet
This tradition dates back to the 14th century. At the end of the wedding ceremony, guests would rush up to the bride and try to grab/rip some of her dress as they believed it would bring them good luck. As a distraction tactic, brides started to toss their bouquet into the crowd of guests. It soon then became believed that whoever caught the bouquet would be lucky and next to get married.
Although this tradition is still followed by many brides, there are more and more brides who don’t want to follow this tradition, preferring instead to give their special bouquet to their mother, maid of honour or even wanting to keep it themselves. Lots goes into your special bouquet so don’t toss it if you don’t want to. If you would like a few people to share it, why not break up the bouquet and give out flowers to your closest friends; unless you really are superstitious, they don’t have to be single and hoping to get married! If you do want to keep the flowers from the bouquet yourself, there are a number of different preservation methods which your florist can advise you about.
If you would like to find out more about how we can help you to create your dream wedding, event or photoshoot through floral design, then why not get in touch today? You can also click here to learn more about our process or follow us on Instagram / Pinterest for more ideas and inspiration.
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