How to Make a Bridal Bouquet – Shapes & Varieties

You’re asking a florist but, but since you did, one of the most key elements to a beautiful day and a fabulous wedding are the flowers.

When do flowers matter more? Uh, never is the correct answer.

Even if you choose extraordinarily modest florals, they will still take front seat and mark the bride and groom, the day, the affair.

Another couple may have all the bells and whistles arranged for their big day, but flowers will still steal that show too.

They set the mood, they set the style and they set a wedding aside from any other gathering. Think about your flowers, the color palette, the style, the quantity and the size- they will speak volumes regardless of whether you’ve got 15 or 500 people in attendance.

Here are a few thoughts on the shape of your bouquet relative to the shape of your dress.

How to Make a Bridal Bouquet

Get Inspiration From the Bride’s Dress

When consulting with a bride I want to start with her dress.  Yes, that actually is the perfect jumping off point because it should dictate the design of the bouquet.

Even if she is overwhelmed with other wedding details, she usually has a pretty good sense of what she is going to wear.

At the very least she knows what she looks good in and what makes her feel comfortable. Perhaps she is going full ball gown, maybe she’s fitting for an understated sheath or she’s got a smart, hot white suit she’s ‘bout to kill.

What she wears will inform the style, shape and color of her bouquet. Having a looksie at her dress gives your florist a feel for what kind of bride they’re dealing with.  Is she nailing every detail? Is she letting whimsey have its way? 

For Ball Gown/Princess – Make Cascading Bridal Bouquet

A big dress asks for a real flower statement.  If you’re going big, GO BIG. Cascade bouquets were popular in the 80’s, I know.

But there is a way to revisit without dated stargazers and stephanotis.  Avoid the 80s trappings of perfect symmetry and stiff form.

For a cascade bridal bouquet request lush vining greenery, giving it a fairy tale, loose, woodsy spin. Some of our favorites are jasmine, feather eucalyptus (all varieties, of euc, really), plumosa, clematis and wisteria. Trail away!  But leave the strict rules and rigidity in the 80’s. Opt for a slightly undone look.  

Crescent Bridal Bouquet

Natural Hand Tied and Crescent Bouquets look lovely paired with sheath, column and trumpet dresses.

These dresses elongate and bring our eyes up and down and up and down.  Feel free to break that vertical line with a wild and natural bouquet at the waist. A hand tied bouquet is your round structured bouquet gone wild.

It takes notes from the classic ball bouquet, but it looks like nature has had her way. A crescent bouquet is a somewhat new shape which also evolved from a round bouquet. It appears to be growing out horizontally as it “reaches for light”- creating a shape that may fairly resemble the crescent moon on its back.

Designers have watched the traditional “roundy moundy” bouquet morph into something elemental and less tame; something you’d find in an overgrown English garden.

This is beautifully paired with a bride whose got a wild and subtle side, who likes surprises and has a casual sensibility.

Posy Bridal Bouquet

The posy bouquet is a simple, sophisticated flower statement. It doesn’t need to scream “LOOK AT ME!” Its confident in its elemental and perfect elegance. A posy is a very small handheld bouquet which may have components of a large, full scale wedding bouquet but you can pop it in your cup holder.

I love the idea of a posy made of just one perfect variety. Martha reinvigorated the lily of the valley posy- there may be nothing more nuptial than a handful of sweet peas; in fact, I carried a simple, clean posy of yellow freesia.

Pro tip – If you are going to carry a posy, make sure it’s fragrant – it is part of the charm.  A posy looks lovely with a mermaid gown as this petite bouquet won’t hide curvy, sexy lines and it’s also perfect if you plan to whisk away to city hall in a charming tea length dress.

Lastly, I love the contrast between a handsome, finely appointed women’s suit and a simple, sophisticated posy made of white peonies or garden roses. 

Final Thoughts

Whether you’re meeting a florist for a wedding consultation or having your best friend’s mom put together your florals, start by matching your bridal bouquet with your dress and personality and then run with it!