It’s hard enough to decide on the main wedding party flowers – bouquets for the bride and her maids, boutonnieres for the groom and ushers. And then there are other non-wedding-party guests to include… fathers, mothers, grandmothers and the like. But you don’t know what they’re wearing or how they want to wear their flowers. Here are some things I saw at a recent wedding that worked with the bride’s “look” without looking like part of the wedding party.
A great alternative when your guest doesn’t want a flower on her dress or wearing it on a wrist: the Purse Corsage. Here, the bride had used white/cream in her wedding flowers, and carried it here using elegant orchid corsages pinned to the guests’ handbags.
Maybe this is more familiar in the U.K., but it made a beautiful “neutral” bout: a small sprig of heather. Simple and elegant. Even on a kid!
Flowers for Special Guests at the Wedding
Despite the seemingly endless ranges of hue and texture that Mother Nature makes available in fresh flowers, sometimes you can’t find just the right shade of blossom that you have in your head for your wedding flowers. Maybe your wedding falls in the wrong season for your perfect flower. Maybe your dream color scheme needs something just a little outside what exists in nature. Then what?
I recently was thrilled to be invited to my cousin (ok, maybe a few [hundred] times removed!) Julie’s wedding in Northern Ireland. I was in! The trip, and the wedding, was amazing (a story for another blog), but I was really looking forward to see how wedding flowers are used “across the pond”.
Julie had found a stunning rich, deep, teal dress for her bridesmaids – just perfect for an early September ceremony, right on the cusp of fall. So elegant, when paired with ivory flower girls’ dresses and handsome black tuxes. The simplicity of the single accent color would have been offset by introducing other colors into the mix. But there’s really no such color in the flower world, and she came up with a great solution: silk flower accents.
Julie combined white mini calla lilies, white gerbera daisies (with a black center) and some lush green ruscus with a touch of deep teal silk flower to pull it all together. The result was just beautiful; all the splendor of fresh flowers, and just that little pop of drama from the silks. It really was a great alternative to trying to dye flowers to be “just right”, but still having the lushness of fresh flowers on her special day.
Julie’s Wedding Party
Julie’s Wedding Bouquet
Lovely Flowergirls Lisa and Emma
With the annual trek back to school comes the sudden and urgent need to raise funds for the year. Sports teams, band and choir groups, dance schools, PTOs, youth groups, booster clubs, drama clubs… the list goes on and on… all come to the realization that they need simple, fun, popular and profitable ways to raise money for their activities. Next month in central Ohio is a fantastic expo that will have hundreds of ideas for doing just that. Info on that expo is at www.cofundraisingexpo.com if you are in the area. Another great online reasource is a fundrasing directory at www.fundraisingweb.org.
Selling cut flowers for fundraising has always been extremely popular – and for many reasons:
1. The profit margins can be very high – often 200%-300%.
2. The price point for the flowers offered can be adjusted to suit the venue. For example single flowers might be sold for $1.00, while full bouquets could sell in the $20.00 range.
3. The fundraising event can be timed to coordinate with a particular event, holiday, or season.
4. Lead times for ordering and preparation times are short for flowers so last minute sales can be pulled together.
5. Wholesale flowers can be purchased in bulk and arranged before the event or pre-assembled bulk bouquets can be sold requiring NO pre-preparation.
6. Cut flowers last a couple of weeks typically, so they can be sold over and over throughout the year.
7. Flower orders can be pre-sold for extra profit security and reduced risk, but are equally suited for “day- of” sales.
So why not try flowers this year if you have not before? For more information or questions, check out Fundraising ideas.
The last two cool evenings here in the Northeast remind me that fall is almost here. Soon we’ll smell wood smoke in the air and be decorating our front porches with brightly colored chrysanthemums, Indian corn, cornstalks and pumpkins. While I’ll be delighting in the wonderful outdoor sights and smells of my favorite time of year, I also like to bring that feeling inside with cut flowers that welcome in the season like nothing else can.
Just like the autumn leaves, many varieties and colors of cut flowers are found only
at this time of the year. The variety of cut Chrysanthemums expands greatly, and a fall favorite is the Red Rover Mum. These bright, bold flowers are often used by themselves or along with yellow compliment flowers like roses, or smaller pompon daisies or button mums. Other seasonal Chrysanthemums are the delicate looking “Cremon” in a beautiful bronze color and the yellow, cheery, “Vyking”. Spider, Football, and Pompon mums, which are available in certain colors all year long, are now available in a lovely bronze.
Brown is a new favorite wedding color, and the peachy-brown Leonidas Rose is perfect for a fall wedding or bridal shower. For a more exotic look, cymbiduium orchids are available in yellow and in a beautiful burgundy. With green or yellow accent flowers, these orchids look spectacular!
Perhaps the most exciting fall flowers of all are the accent flowers. White or red Kale makes an ordinary bouquet look extraordinary. Yellow Billy Balls and the orange safflower add texture and interest. Solidago, which brightens up any arrangement, is now available in red as well as in yellow. The Wax flower, one of the most popular fillers, is now available in orange and yellow.
Take advantage of the beauty and variety of fall flowers. Don’t let the leaves drop from the trees without having experimented with something new to bring this beautiful time of year into your home!
As stated in the latest issue of the SAF (Society of American Florists) publication Floral Management, the Green movement in the wholesale flower industry is alive and well. In fact, The Florverde® certification for Columbian flower industry is more than 12 years old.
With more than 2 billion stems of fresh-cut flowers imported to the US from Columbia in 2007, this certification is the gold standard for responsible stewardship of the environment and the workers involved in cut flower production. As stated on the Florverde.org web site: “The Florverde® certification and standards were developed by Asocolflores a decade ago as a way to improve the lives and living standards of floral farm workers and their families; to preserve and protect the environment for the industry’s farmers for generations to come; and to ensure high-quality, affordable flowers for consumers year-round. In order to receive Florverde® certification, participating farms must comply with all compulsory standards and codes of conduct, including operational and social guidelines.”