Wedding Flowers and Decor

Clever Ways to Update the Bouquet

Whether your wedding will be an intimate gathering or a grand affair, certain elements are universal and everlasting. Trends change from year to year, and despite new approaches to ceremony and reception décor, flowers are never left behind.

Bouquets and floral wedding centerpieces will often follow a theme, pulling together the dominant feeling or attitude of your wedding reception. Is your party personality sophisticated? Rustic? Unconventional? Consider your atmosphere when you play around with flower arrangements, and explore some alternatives to traditional choices.

Find Your Floral Style

You might not know just what you want in a flower, so look to your dress, your colors and your general decorating preferences for inspiration.

  • A Natural Touch. Whether your wedding will be indoors or outdoors, the easy, rustic beauty of natural surroundings is a great focus for décor. Think slender branches of blooms in long vases, clusters of flowers on trees, and lots of seasonal greenery to round out arrangements. A lot will depend on how much room you'll have to work with, and while full grown trees might not fit, there's space for a bit of the outdoors in any reception setting.
  • Soft and Airy. Light colors and silky petals might have deep roots when it comes to wedding décor, but this tradition isn't going away anytime soon. Big pink roses, white peonies or blue hydrangeas are romantic nods to the English garden, but their fluffy volume is in line with modern wedding trends, too. And if you opt for silk flowers instead of fresh, your neutral selection of pale blooms can be used again and again.
  • Inventive Arrangements. If you've incorporated different textures in your dress and the wedding party outfits, why not carry the vibe into your bouquets and your centerpieces? Mix and match sizes, colors and species for a unique bouquet that evokes creativity, playfulness, and a departure from traditional wedding structure. A collection of garden fresh daisies, dahlias, and sunflowers overflows with happy energy, while some white blooms with green succulents is a beautifully unpredictable match.

A Trendy Touch for Your Tables

The right flowers are important, but there's room for other decorative elements, too. Consider some new, modern approaches that bring grace and interest to each table and all corners of the room:

  • Going Green. Take a cue from nature and make use of minimalist features. Simple and separated botanical elements like small succulent arrangements, stubby little pots of wheatgrass, wispy grasses or slender sprigs of fresh herbs bring big fragrance and fine texture.
  • Classic White. Big, light blooms like peonies and dahlias make a lush statement, while loads of tiny white roses bring lots of gentle detail. Add little white lights throughout your arrangements to complement the blossoms, or white votives for subtle glimmer. For a crisp, clean look, scale back the blossoms and up the accessories: use small white vases across the tables, placing one or two single white flowers in each.
  • Round out the Room. Globes of small flowers on pedestals are pleasantly geometric, while tight bouquets bring symmetry and interest. As for the flowers themselves, big round blooms like peonies or dahlias are full enough to stand alone or with a couple of neighbors in a small, round group.
  • Simply Unique. Get back to basics with mason jars, old jugs, and second-hand store finds for vases, and pick a selection of flowers that happen to be blooming in your garden or your local nursery, along with different herbs for interest. Decorate each original arrangement with lengths of ribbon and small, non-floral accents. If you're using long rectangles instead of round tables, create a green runner from leaves, fruit and small blossoms to stretch down the middle of your tables.

Lights, Lanterns and Luxury

A great wedding ambience rests on the right lighting, and now that gleaming gold and sparkling metallic is all the rage, it's easy to illuminate your space. Most brides-to-be won't have an unlimited budget, so a gold-laced dance floor is out, but small touches can bring a big return.

The key to a good gleam is carefully coordinated tableware and touches of light in all the right places. Gold-rimmed glassware won't go unnoticed, nor will pewter candle sticks or silver platters. With the right metallic accessories, all you need is a couple of flickering flames to bounce light around the table and across the room.

If silver and gold is too bold for you, you might prefer smaller lights for a subtle glow. Wind lights through branches and dry vines for a rustic vibe, or use mirrors and glass with tiny tea lights for an enchanted effect. Smaller lights and candles will work with most themes and designs, and since they're so accessible and affordable, you'll have more resources left for your trendy decor elements.