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Friday Faves: Alternative Bridal Bouquets

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These alternative bridal bouquets give a whole new meaning to “forget me nots”

John Lennon once said, “Love is the flower you’ve got to let grow”. And then Bette Midler sang about love as a rose, and Bret Michaels reminded us that every rose has thorns. It’s no coincidence that artists keep making the comparison – if there’s anything we know for sure about love, it’s that it does take a quite bit of nurturing to really bloom.

In that spirit, for this Friday’s Faves I’ve rounded up seven brilliant alternative bouquet ideas that will remain with you as long as your memories (unless it’s an edible bouquet, and then, I give it ’til the end of the reception). 😉

1. Love, Anji – Native to Cleveland, Ohio, this paper florist designs and hand crafts colorful arrangements and single stems for a variety of events including weddings. Paper flowers bring whimsy and charm to any wedding, whether elaborately planned or simply devised, and they’re always in season. Non-floral bouquets also make it possible to hang on to the memory of your wedding day – they never wilt and they’ll last forever! Just keep them away form kids, paper-eating cats (like mine!), and coffee. And they’re the perfect alternative for those who suffer allergies to floral fragrance or pollen. Check out Love, Anji’s baseball and Cleveland map roses, too!

2. Large Individual Flowers – Go big or go home, right?! That’s what I often say, anyway. This is one case in which size definitely matters! A single, enormous flower, natural or artificial, is one of my favorite new twists on the traditional bouquet – so magical that you might feel a bit like Alice in Wonderland, jumping down the rabbit hole…and finding your sweetie at the end of that ride. (Navigating a sometimes crazy journey together is what marriage is all about, right?) This single large flower is also non-floral and looks amazing in photoshoots, bringing a pop of color and size. The best part? You can make your own, oh crafty ones. 🙂 Or ask a florist about a single oversized natural stem like a magnolia, sunflower, calla lily, or protea flower.
Photography by Whitney Darling Photography

3. Brooch Bouquets – If you’re like me and can’t resist all that glitters, you might opt for a brooch bouquet. It used to be that you had to make your own, but now many artists – and even traditional florists – are offering these stunners. (Check out all the glam brooch bouquets I’ve hoarded collected in my Pinterest board like a planner magpie.) Jewel encrusted bouquets aren’t for wallflowers, to be sure, but if bling ain’t your thing, you can use colorful enamel vintage brooches for more kitsch. Understated and elegant or jazzy and eye-catching, brooch bouquets lend vintage flair that plays up embellishments in your dress, jewelry, and hair pieces.

4. What About Your Bridesmaids?

Vinyl Bouquets –  What’s cooler than upcycled, rock-n-roll-inspired vinyl bouquets? Coordinate your bridesmaids’ bouquets with your own for a fantastic photo opp.
Photography by Shutter & Lace

Parasols – Inspired by Downton Abbey and perhaps Mary Poppins, parasols are making a comeback from a romantic, bygone era. Lacy parasols provide vintage nostalgia and throw some shade (the best kind), but modern umbrellas will keep perfectly styled hair dry in rainy weather. Match your ‘sols to your wedding colors and suddenly the rain is part of your master plan. Can regular bouquets do that?
Photography by Caroline Ross Photography Studio

Lanterns – Have your bridesmaids light your path down the aisle with the glow of a lantern. There is something wonderfully sacred about the idea of friends lighting their friend’s path as she (or he!) walks down the aisle toward the one they love. Especially when paired with a dusk ceremony, lanterns make a statement that won’t be soon forgotten.
Photography by The Photo Love

5. Cupcake Flower Bouquet – What if you’re in the middle of your ceremony and suddenly the White Walkers march in? How do you survive a  zombiepocalypse of epic Game-of-Thrones proportions? How about an edible bouquet to keep you going? You’ll thank me later 😉 All kidding aside, a cupcake bouquet is an awesome DIY, low-key, sustainable, and whimsical addition to your wedding getup. Just make sure you chill them thoroughly first, and maybe skip the cupcake bouquet during the hottest months of the year…or look out for runny icing! (Wrap them generously with tissue paper to catch any errant frosting.) Pose for a photo or two before splitting up the cupcakes instead of doing a cake cutting, and then share them with your besties (so much better than tossing your bouquet at them, don’t you think?). In Cleveland there are bunches of cupcake bakers you can hit up for help with a cupcake bouquet, or if you’re pretty handy with a piping bag, you could DIY!
Photography by Caro Hutchings Photography

6. Feather Fans – For those of you channeling your inner Marie Antoinette or planning an exotic peacock- or flapper-themed wedding, holding a feather fan instead of the traditional floral bouquet serves as part of your theme. And bonus, feathers are so much more lightweight than a bundle of flowers! Score! For vegans or allergy sufferers, try a paper or wooden fan, available in a range of colors and styles, and doubling as homemade, portable air conditioning on demand, even during a scorching summer ceremony.

7. Pinecone & Evergreen – If you’ve read a post or two on my blog, you’ll already know that I find fall and winter weddings to be seriously underrated and special. The greenery in this bouquet remains evergreen (true to its name), and you can do a quick spray to preserve the pinecones for many years to come. Finish with – you guessed it! – GLITTER EVERYWHERE…er, light sparkles and a touch of clear spray paint for shimmer.
Photography by Rebecca Anne Photography

So tell me in the comments below: What’s bloomin’ at the end of your bridal bouquet?

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Lisa Paladin

I’m Lisa, the head dreamer & schemer of Event Plan-It. Let’s get coffee and chat about your ideas for an EPIC event!

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