When it comes time to choose your flowers you will also need to make a decision on which bridal bouquet design you most prefer. You will need to consider what works well with your bridal gown and the bridesmaids dresses, as well as the formality of the marriage.
The size of the bouquet is also a factor. You don't want to carry something that will overwhelm you (or your bridesmaids), but neither do you want something that is so small or insignificant that when carried in front of your gown, nobody even notices your bouquet.
There are many different styles to pick from. Do you want an elegant arm bouquet or a nosegay? Are you having a simple, outdoor wedding where a hand tied bouquet of wildflowers would work well or a formal marriage celebration where perhaps a cascading bounty of flowers would suit the occasion better?
To help make your decision a little bit easier, here is a general description along with a photo of each type of bridal bouquet design.
The nosegay bouquet is a simple and elegant bouquet that is densely packed with flowers and greenery, making it look lush and full. It's an ideal choice for practically any style of wedding.
You can dress this bouquet up or down depending on what flowers you use, how you wrap the stems and with the use of decorative items.
The best flowers to use in this type of bouquet are ones that have compact blooms such as roses, ranunculus, narcisi, calla lilies, hydrangeas, carnations, and tulips.
The posy is similar to the nosegay, but smaller in size. Occasionally a bride may choose to carry a posy, but usually these are reserved for use by the bridesmaids and flower girl.
Posies require smaller blooms and ideal choices are rose buds, grape hyacinths, ranunculus, and anemones, although a few larger flowers such as peonies or lilies can be added to enhance the bouquet.
This is a classic and one of the most popular bridal bouquet selections.
Also known as the Colonial bouquet, it is larger than the nosegay and usually uses a mixture of large and small flowers that are loosely arranged in a rounded shape.
This is a good option for a formal wedding.
The Biedermeier - also called a Ring Bouquet - is a variation of the round wedding bouquet. It consists of a several circles of flowers with the bottom ring usually being a ring of greenery. One type of flower and color is used per ring creating a bullseye effect, as each ring is slightly bigger than the one before it.
Most often, the Biedermeier is used for either formal or semi-formal occasions, rather than for casual weddings.
The shower or cascade wedding bouquet is the most traditional of all the bouquets. It is also the most formal.
The floral blooms are wired so that they "cascade" over the bride's hands creating a beautiful waterfall-like effect.
It usually contains a mixture of large and small blooms, with the larger flowers being used closer to the top and smaller flowers tapering downward.
Often, you'll see ferns, English ivy or other trailing greenery and/or berries woven into the bouquet to enhance the beauty of the design.
As the name suggests, this style consists of a crescent shape of flowers where one or both ends hangs lower than the middle. In other words, it can be symmetrical or asymmetrical.
Choose this type of bouquet if you are wearing a bridal gown with a large, flaring skirt, as this sets off the bouquet, but doesn't overwhelm the bride, especially if you are petite.
Just as the name suggests, a hand-tied bouquet is... well... hand-tied!
To be a little more accurate, this is a casual bunch of floral blooms that have been wired together and casually hand tied with ribbons.
It's a fabulous choice for an outdoor or informal wedding and lends itself perfectly for those brides wanting a simple or wildflower bouquet.
You've all seen this type of bouquet if you've watched any type of beauty pageant. The presentation bouquet consists of a beautiful bunch of long-stemmed flowers that are cradled in the crook of the bride's arm.
Long-stemmed roses, calla lilies, lisianthus, delphinium, French tulips, and orchids are lovely flowers to use and drape very well along the arm.
A pomander is a small compact ball covered in densely packed flowers such as roses or hydrangeas.
The dimensions of the pomander is approximately four to six inches in diameter. A ribbon is attached to the ball and is worn around the wrist.
Brides very rarely use this type of bouquet, but it is an excellent choice for bridesmaids, junior bridesmaids and flower girls.
The composite bouquet (also called a glameria) can make a very dramatic statement. If you can't make up your mind about the traditional bouquets - or if you're looking for something different, the composite is a great option.
Basically, it consists of individual flower petals (usually rose, gladiolus or lily petals) being wired together to create one extra-large bloom that is carried instead of a bouquet.
If you're looking for a floral arrangement that doesn't follow any of the rules above, than the free form style is for you.
As the name implies, there is no particular shape or design to follow when creating this type of bouquet. In fact, the bouquet may consist of more than just flowers!
Wires, beads, sparkling glitter, wheat stalks, ribbons, bouquet jewelry, garden herbs, grapevine and many other items can be incorporated into the bouquet. As an example, I saw one arrangement that contained kale and fiddle head ferns in it!
Find out how you can save money on your flowers for wedding arrangements and bouquets.
Would you like to know what the flowers in your bridal bouquet mean? You can find out here at our Flower Names and Meanings page.
Wedding Flower Ideas