Wedding Flowers…Fresh or Alternative

Wedding Flowers…Fresh or Alternative? That is the question.
Second Column

As if your head wasn’t already swirling with all of those wedding planning details, now there are more decisions to make. Do you go with fresh flowers, some type of alternative or a combination? Maybe I can help by breaking it down for you.

Fresh flowers are beautiful, traditional and smell great! They can be inexpensive if done DIY or can be as expensive as your budget will allow. There are, however, a few limitations with fresh flowers. You will have to be aware of what flowers will be available at the time of your nuptials. Many varieties of flowers are seasonal and can be very expensive if purchased out of season. Also, fresh flowers last a relatively short period of time and then will be discarded. If you are using fresh flower centerpieces I suggest giving them to family and friends to take home to enjoy or arrange for them to be delivered to a local hospital or nursing home. If you would like to preserve your bouquet then I would recommend finding a floral preservationist prior to the wedding so that your bouquet can be preserved in a display frame or case as a permanent memory of your wedding day.

When you think about alternative arrangements you probably think about artificial or “fake” flowers from your local craft store. However, there are many alternatives out there. A quick search of the Internet will help and/or search sites like ETSY for a variety of alternatives.
1. Brooch bouquets are very popular. These are gorgeous and create bling! The brooches can be new or vintage. Do you have a favorite brooch or a collection of brooches? Ask your designer to include them in your bouquet. These bouquets can be heavy so you may want to mix fresh flowers or another alternative flower with a few of your favorite brooches.
Paper flower arrangements/bouquets bring a whole new look to paper. I have seen entire weddings done with paper flowers from bouquets to boutonnieres to centerpieces. Origami flowers are made with intricately folded paper to form beautiful flowers. Do you love to read or do you love music? There are flowers made with pages from old books or sheet music. There are paper flowers that are fashioned into actual flowers such as roses, carnations, etc. The variety of paper that can be used in making flowers is endless…tissue, cardstock, and scrapbooking to name a few. For those of you who like to DIY there are tutorials on sites like YouTube, or you can buy the directions from various sites. Search the Internet for a variety of sources.
There are some very unique items that I have seen for bouquets…seashells, feathers, lollipops, and raw cotton bolls (raw clumps of cotton still in the husk) to name a few. These items can be mixed with fresh flowers as well as another alternative flower. Designers love to be creative so don’t be afraid to share your vision.
Of course, there are the artificial/”fake” flowers. These flowers have come a long way and many look quite real. If you choose to go this route please check out what you are purchasing to make sure they are of a nice quality.
The final category I will mention is the fabric or ribbon flower. Fabrics and ribbons are used to create rich textural flowers that offer a large variety of uses. Depending on the fabrics/ribbon used you can create your vision whether it be country/rustic, romantic, vintage, gothic, etc. Common fabrics/ribbons are silk, satin, taffeta, linen, burlap and felt. This type of flower works well with embellishments (add brooches, shells, etc.).

Finally, when you choose an alternative to fresh flowers you create a lasting memory to display in your home. No need to preserve, simply display. At the beginning of this article I mentioned using a combination of fresh flowers and alternatives. A mixture in a bouquet is a great way to have the best of both worlds. Adding a few fabric flowers, brooches, etc. in a fresh flower bouquet creates interest and texture. After the wedding if you don’t want to preserve your bouquet then just remove the embellishments and you will have a lasting memory.

Have fun searching out exactly what works for you!

Life is “Beauty Full”!

Cathy

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