Flowers - The Basics

Guideline for Flowers for Your Wedding Day


Gone are the days of brides carrying a simple bouquet of white flowers up the aisle. Nowadays, you can carry anything you like - from a shower arrangement of orchids to a single calla lily, or you can even sport a trailing wrist corsage. But to ensure your bouquet is extra special, follow the three ´fs´ - Foliage, Filler and Focus. The focus is your main bloom, such as calla lilies, white roses and so on, the filler will be the secondary blooms that harmonise with your man flower, and the foliage is the darker (often green, silver or brown) finishing touches that will bring the whole look together.


Traditionally, the groom wears two flowers in his buttonhole and the bloom tends to match one that features in his bride's bouquet.


The best man and fathers of the bride and groom also wear a double bloom in their buttonhole - but it can be any flower of your choice.


The mothers of the bride and groom traditionally wear a corsage that either matches the couple's colour scheme, the bride's bouquet or possible the mothers´ outfits.


Usually, they all wear a single bloom in their left buttonholes.


A pageboy's buttonhole will usually mirror the best man's.


Traditionally, bridesmaids will carry a bouquet that's either a smaller version of the bride's, or one that contains some of the flowers in the other bridal arrangements.


They either carry a basket or a ball of flowers, or a basket of rose petals, which they will scatter in front of the bride as she makes her entrance.


You do not have to supply your grandparents with flowers, but it's often a really nice touch to make sure there's a corsage or buttonhole for them to wear on the day.


There are no hard and fast rules, but many couples have pedestal arrangements (normally more than one) of mixed flowers and foliage at the entrance to and the front of either the church (one either side of the altar) or the civil venue (flanking the registrar's table). You can also have arrangements on every pew end or row of chairs, on columns or walls and on the windowsills.


Many couples arrange for their ceremony pedestals and so on to be moved to their reception venue to save money. In addition, it's traditional to have table arrangements. These can vary from the more usual candle and flower oasis centerpieces to floating gerberas in square or round glass vases or pots filled with seasonal fruit. The top table arrangement can either be a long version of the other centerpieces, which can stretch the length of the table, or maybe two or three separate arrangements.


Many couples now choose to decorate their cakes with flowers featured either in the bride's bouquet or in the table arrangements. These can be real or sugar flowers.


It's traditional to present the mothers of the bride and groom with a bouquet of flowers as a thank you for all their help and support planning the wedding.


What you wear on your big day will hugely influence what style of bouquet you should choose.

...Hand-tied Bridal Bouquet ... Best for:

  • medium height and build
  • bias-cut dresses
  • detailed dresses
  • an understated and contemporary look

...Wired posy ... Best for:

  • petite figures
  • full or bias-cut dresses
  • simple and straight designs

Trailing or shower ... Best for:

  • tall figure, as they help to draw the eye downwards
  • full skirts - A-line, ballerina or princess
  • long trains

...Over-arm or wrist corsage ... Best for:

  • slim figures
  • outfits with lots of detailing
  • very modern, contemporary dress styles