Flowers are an important part of your wedding day, they are as integral as the bride’s dress. This guide will help you understand the basics of wedding flowers and give you a wonderful starting point to start planning.
Why are flowers important at a wedding?
They can first trace flowers being used in weddings all the way back to the Ancient Greeks. Believe it or not the Greeks made the flower crown popular all those years ago. The tradition of using flowers at weddings continues because flowers are so good at convening feelings and expressing emotion and moods. Flowers also bring natural beauty into your wedding space unlike nothing else can. Flowers accent and elevate everything else in the wedding, including your pictures, the venue spaces, and your bridal party.
What flowers do I need for a wedding?
Florist typical break wedding flowers into the following categories- Personal Flowers, Ceremony Flowers, and Reception Flowers. Let’s talk about each of these categories and provide examples of each.
Personal Flowers are the flowers worn and carried by the bridal party. These include the Bridal Bouquet, Bridesmaids Bouquets, Boutonnieres, Corsages, flower crowns, and flowers for the flower girl. Most Bride’s choose to have boutonnieres for the groom, groomsmen, fathers of bride and groom and often times the officiant. Corsages are often provided for the mothers of the bride and groom and sometimes for grandmothers as well.
Ceremony Flowers are the flowers used to decorate your ceremony space. Examples of these would be flowers for the aisle or on the rows of chairs. Flowers are often placed up front where the ceremony is held and often times at the entrance into the ceremony space as well. My favorite type of ceremony flowers is a floral installation on an arch or arbor. This provides dramatic effect and the perfect back drop for the ceremony and pictures.
Reception Flowers are the flowers used in the reception area of the wedding. These include centerpieces for the tables, an arrangement for gift or guest book tables and flowers for the cake and dessert table. Something that I see trending is photo booths for the reception that include flowers and neon signs.
You have a lot more options when it comes to your ceremony and reception flowers. These are areas that you can either choose to cut back and go with less or really amp up the flowers for a statement. Consider your venue and the spaces that will be used for the ceremony and reception, this will play a factor into what arrangements will work best. As a floral design studio this is where Sarah’s Petals can help make suggestions and provide guidance to the Bride.
What flowers should I choose?
Sometimes we have Brides come to us with specific flowers that they want used in their bouquet and we can normally make that happen. Some flowers are only available at certain times, peonies are a good example of this because there are several months out of the year they are just not available. We like using our own flowers the most since we know they are super fresh but sometimes we do have to buy flowers in to meet certain requests. You don’t have to know everything about flowers to have great florals for your wedding day. As a flower professional we know what flowers will be in season at the time of your wedding and what flower choices will be best, so no worries. Most brides come to us with a mood and what colors they are using, and we translate that into beautiful florals that are just right.
Getting Married? Want to learn more?
Next week we will take a deeper dive into Personal Flowers and the all-important Bridal Bouquet
Where do I start? It has been more of a journey and a process then something that happened in one singular moment. The journey begin when I was living in an apartment in the city recently divorced taking care of two kids. My mom gave me a book on organic gardening and I started day dreaming of living on a farm and growing my own food. I started vegetable seeds inside and planted them in the flower beds up front. I didn’t get to see them grow up because another opportunity had arose. A house for rent in the country, not just a house but a yard and garden space. An old farm house on a beef cattle farm that was right beside my parents house, where I had grown up. I felt it was a wonderful place to raise my children. I moved in at the beginning of summer and started working in the garden. The first summer I felt like I did nothing but pick rocks out of the garden. At the end of summer I visited the Harvest Heritage Festival in Charlottesville and attended a presentation by Lisa Ziegler from The Gardener’s Workshop. She was talking about soil blocks and fall planting. I was fascinated by the idea of planting in the fall with the plants not just surviving the winter but actually coming out stronger. The day after the festival I double dug a bed in the garden and planted seeds. Love in the Mist, Calendula, Corn Cockle, all tucked under a row cover, ready for the winter. I had seen vegetables as necessary and flowers as a luxury but I was starting to rethink that view. Especially when I learned that all most all flowers used in the US are actually from another country. Or how so many chemicals are used in the process of growing cut flowers when massed produced. The small flower grower that was doing it organically was just as necessary. I spent the winter pouring over Lynn Byczynski’s book The Flower Farmer. A lot of that winter was spent learning every bit of information I could about cut flowers. I also got soil blockers and started seeds indoors under florescent lights. When the flowers came up strong the next spring I was hooked. I still have Love in the Mist in my garden from planting them that one time, they have continued on with all their volunteer seedlings. It is one of my favorite flowers with its airy quality, heirloom appeal and because it was around from the beginning.
Last year was the start of the Botetourt Farmer’s Market, what better time for me to start selling my flowers. It was exciting and terrifying all at the same time. No more time for day dreaming about what I wanted, it was time to make it happen. I would fluctuate between feeling good with what was getting accomplished in the garden to freaking out that I wouldn’t get everything done in time. I worried that there wouldn’t be enough flowers or that no one would want them. But all the worry and the work paid off, the flower’s beauty spoke for themselves. I would get repeat customers- they were coming back for more flowers. I had one lady tell me that the flowers were the bright spot of her week. It was awesome! I felt good about things at the end of the season and was already thinking about the next year. Last fall I planted around 500 plants down at my parents - my garden space was overflowing and I was wanting more, more, more flowers. So here we are at the beginning of another growing season and I have a feeling its going to be even better then the last.