Which Buds Are For You?
Whether you’re planning a casual shindig or a formal soiree, one of these four bouquets will fit the bill, leaving you time to stop and smell the roses (or gardenias or peonies).
Formal What it is: An all-white, hand-tied bouquet, traditionally filled with calla lilies, stephanotis and Vendela roses. The stark palette is meant to be an elegant accessory to the gown, not to compete with it. Often, the bouquet is secured with a satin ribbon accented with mother-of-pearl buttons.
What to know: This arrangement might be the priciest of the bunch. (The blooms tend to be expensive.) White buds bruise easily; be sure to keep them in a cool, shady spot where they won’t wilt.
Single Flower What it is: Three to five heads of large, single-hued flowers, such as hydrangeas. Lilies, freesias and gerbera daisies also work well because there’s little color variation in the petals. Filler is minimal; lemon leaves provide just enough greenery. The simple arrangement is perfect against a frilly gown, which calls for an unfussy bouquet.
What to know: These bouquets are often cheaper than others, since the florist needs to purchase only one flower variety.
Note: Steer clear of Narcissi.
Their oozing stems can ruin a dress.
Wildflower What it is: A variety of types, colors and textures of cultivated wildflowers -- such as blue mountain thistle, miniature dianthus, heather, sedum, lisianthus, celosia and eucalyptus -- grouped together to appear randomly picked and gathered. Perfect for a casual affair, the bouquets are often wrapped with patterned or plaid ribbon.
What to know: It may seem like a DIY option, but it’s tough to get this look right, so leave it to a pro. Still, if you’re undaunted, harvest flowers the day before and let them soak up water overnight.
Contemporary What it is: A tightly packed, stylized bouquet of flowers, such as cherry brandy roses and isle spray roses, with fun, informal accents, like peach hypericum berries. When it comes to the extras, brides get inventive, adding everything from holly to fruit to cotton plumes.
What to know: Ask your florist whether your dream accent is durable enough to withstand being wrapped in a bouquet. Tie the stems with chiffon ribbon, which, unlike other fabrics, won’t stain when submerged in water.