Flowers have been a part of weddings for centuries, and for good reason: they're beautiful, fragrant, and full of symbolism. The "language" of flowers dates back to Victorian times, when florals were used to express emotions and floriography is the art of communicating through different flower types. Each different flower has a different meaning so it's important to choose the right ones for your wedding, from your bridal bouquet to your ceremony arrangements.
A popular choice of flowers for any occasion is roses. They are classic for weddings and other romantic events, mainly symbolising love and passion. However, even roses have varied meanings depending on the colour. Red roses are a timeless way to say, “I love you.” They express passion and strong romantic love for another person. While white roses express purity, loyalty and are typically related to weddings or new beginnings. Yellow roses represent friendship, affection, and warm memories but they are also often used because of their bright, sunny appearance.
Lilies are another popular choice; they represent purity, innocence, and devotion. Lilies are usually popular for late spring, or summer weddings and Calla lilies are the common favourite, for their delicate trumpet-shape petals. Just like roses, different coloured lilies have various different meanings. Orange is a colour that’s always been associated with a strong sense of confidence and energy, for orange lilies the meaning is the same. Red, as commonly guessed, represents a strong sense of romantic love and passion, red lilies represent this and more – also being used to symbolise determination. Pink lilies symbolise femininity, admiration, and love. Due to being a very durable flower, lilies have been seen and loved throughout history and will likely thrive anywhere, making them a flower seen worldwide.
Peonies are an all-time favourite amongst brides and florists alike. They symbolize good fortune, a happy marriage and are believed to bring good luck to newly wed couples. Their appearance is gorgeously soft and feminine, with an open round shape they look great alone or paired with greenery and long flowers to break up the arrangement.
Another popular flower choice is orchids. Symbolising love, beauty, luxury, and fertility, orchids are often featured in wedding bouquets. They make a great choice as there is a lot of variety depending which kind of orchid is chosen – many types of orchids have very different, unique appearances, the patterns within their petals representing the beauty and perfection of nature itself.
Choosing Flowers that Reflect Your Love Story
Of course, you don't have to stick to traditional meanings when choosing your wedding flowers. You can choose flowers based on your wedding colours, your personal preferences, or even the season. Some people create stunning wildflower bouquets and arrangements based on the flowers that are in bloom during the season of their wedding. Sometimes even choosing wild flowers local to their area or flowers that represent of a certain place or country.
Keep in mind you’ll be carrying these flowers around and getting photos holding them throughout your day, so you’ll want them to match your personality and other wedding items, such as your dress, hair and wedding rings. Sometimes it’s lovely to have a juxtaposition of soft femininity and bold colour. For example, if you have a classic wedding dress and an elegant engagement ring you may want to match with delicate “feminine” flowers, or you could have a statement arrangement that stands out.
Just remember that your wedding bouquet is a reflection of you and your partner, so choose flowers that speak to your personal love story whether it’s by aesthetic, the flower’s meaning or a personal meaning. Don’t forget it’s your wedding, no one else’s, choose what works and feels right for your wedding.