One of the common questions we get from our brides, is how to compliment their wedding dress with the bouquet style. This month on D Weddings Ask the Expert, Debby discusses how to do just that!
How does a bride choose a bouquet that compliments her dress?
In helping a bride select her bouquet the style of the dress is, of course, important, but the overall style of the wedding—classic, organic, modern—and tying into the whole scope and feel of the wedding is equally important. For example, we had a bride with a gorgeous lace dress. Typically, I would suggest a very simple bouquet with a lace dress, but her wedding was outdoors and featured lots of foliage. She wanted a more sculptural bouquet of succulents, so we broke our rule of thumb.
Getting a feel for the bride’s personality is really crucial. Is she more bohemian or is she a more quiet, subtle introvert with low-key taste? If a bride doesn’t have a strong sense of what she wants, I work to discover her personality and taste. I ask about her own personal style, her wardrobe staples, her favorite colors. I have her describe her home décor. This tells me a lot about what look to suggest and what is likely to resonate with her.
In general, here are some great basic go-to ideas depending on the style of the bride’s gown:
A simple dress pairs well with colorful, big, bold blooms.
For the Cowherd wedding, Kelly loved coral peonies and, while she has a very tailored, not fussy style in general, she loved colorful flowers and using large blooms really mattered to her. The result mirrored her personality: simple, but always happy and smiling. The bright, bold colors created a really cheerful bouquet to set off her tasteful dress with a sweetheart neckline, straight bodice, and draping.
For other brides, the organic, bohemian feeling of a hand-tied bouquet can also work with a simple dress. It’s a different way to contrast the dress for a wedding that is outdoors or has a more rustic vibe.
For a lace dress, or one with a lot of detail or embellishments, the simpler the better when it comes to the bouquet.
This will allow the dress to standout. To show off the dress, pair it with all garden roses or peonies in one shade for a classic style, as we did for Corinne Jessee’s wedding. For a more modern feel select all calla lilies.
A dress that exudes classic glamour needs something equally sophisticated and special – a glamelia bouquet.
A glamelia is handcrafted petal by petal. Each petal is removed from the bloom and then used to assemble what looks like one giant bloom. It’s an old technique that is gaining in popularity again. Think movie star weddings from the ‘40s and ‘50s. A glamelia is truly a labor of love and totally swoon worthy. Our bride Caroline Crawford chose this for her timeless lace dress.
For a more modern twist, a sculptural bouquet can also be paired with a dress with a lot of lace or embellishment.
Our bride Kellye Hunt wore a lace dress with an overlay and gorgeous belt, but she loved succulents so I suggested large succulents with a bit of romantic cascading and touches of white. The result was a bouquet that really expressed the natural elements of her wedding décor and enlivened a classically beautiful gown.
A cascade looks great if you have a dress with a very full skirt.
For a traditional bride who chooses the romance of a full skirt and a traditional veil, as our bride Kenzie Chesnut did, a smaller sized cascading bouquet accentuates the flow and fullness of the dress.
Finally, for a sexier dress, a modified spray cascade makes a statement.
For Trinh Pham’s dress, which featured a keyhole cutout and a fitted-drop waist, I went with a sexy, wild, tropical cascade. She wasn’t someone who oozed sexy in her day-to-day attire but, for her wedding, another side of her personality was sneaking through. She loved tropical flowers and greens, and we included pops of yellow because that is her favorite color. Tropical greens and florals are often best showcased with lots of hand wiring and a little bit of air between them. This is another great example where not only did the bouquet pair well with the dress, but it set off the outdoor styling and artistic elements at the Nasher Sculpture Center.
Ultimately, the shape of your dress plays a role in working with your florist to select a bouquet, but equally important is the type of fabric and the detailing on the dress, as well as the bride’s personality and the overall style of the wedding. There used to be more hard and fast rules guiding the style of bouquets based on the shape of the dress, but now, like with so much in the design world, the new rules are there are no rules!