What are Some Alternatives to the Traditional Bridesmaid Bouquet?

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  • Written By: A Kaminsky
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 28 October 2019
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A traditional bridesmaid bouquet is usually a smaller version of the bride’s bouquet, in a holder or tied with ribbon. However, a bride wanting something a bit different has a wealth of options when thinking about alternatives to the traditional bridesmaid bouquet.

The bride should first consult her attendants to make sure they aren’t allergic to certain types of flowers she may want to use. She should also talk about their own preferences for a bridesmaid bouquet. Some attendants might prefer a bouquet that is held in the arms or in another sort of container besides the ubiquitous plastic holder. This opens up all sorts of possibilities for a bridesmaid bouquet. What about bouquets in baskets, in small pails (for an outdoor wedding), or in small purses? All are popular options for an alternative bridesmaid bouquet. Even a single stem with a wide ribbon around it is a good choice.

Attendants in a church wedding might want to carry small Bibles or prayer books, perhaps covered with flowers, or small, dripless candles or lanterns with a battery-operated tea light inside. These are ideal for evening or candlelight weddings. Another option for the bridesmaid bouquet is to carry a wrist corsage. This leaves the arms free for hugging and shaking hands.


One old-fashioned idea for a bridesmaid bouquet is the pomander. This is a flower ball, often made with roses, but also with other flowers, clustered around a ball form, with a ribbon loop attached to carry from the wrist. Tuberoses, stephanotis and other fragrant blooms are perfect for the pomander. Also in the old-fashioned vein, a bridesmaid bouquet could be made from a painted folding fan, with small flowers at the base, perhaps with ivy trails from the bottom.

Non-perishable flowers are also popular for a bridesmaid bouquet. The flowers may be made of silk, paper or wood shavings. Tinted, shaped wood shavings have become increasingly poplar for weddings, since they are unique and unlikely to trigger any allergic reactions. Beaded flower bouquets are also popular, and the colors can be coordinated to the attendant’s dresses or suits. A porcelain tussie-mussie is also a good choice, although this might be better for a bride with only two or three attendants, as this can be an expensive bridesmaid bouquet.

The bridesmaid bouquet can also coordinate with the theme or location of the wedding. For a beach wedding, what about a pomander made from small sea shells? A fall wedding might feature bouquets made from colorful autumn leaves. A Christmas bridesmaid bouquet could include holly with red berries and ivy, reminiscent of the carol “The Holly and the Ivy.”

If a bride and her attendants are looking for alternatives to the traditional bridesmaid bouquet, the main thing they need is a little imagination. With a willing florist, the bride can likely come up with bouquet ideas that are unique, creative and beautiful. This will help make her wedding one-of-a-kind.


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Post 3

@spotiche5- I like this effect, too. As an alternative to a bouquet of fresh flowers, you can also do the theme of various flower sizes using artificial flowers. This makes a nice wedding keepsake in addition to lovely bouquets for the wedding day.

Post 2

@spotiche5- Another nice variation for bridesmaids' bouquets is to alternate the colors of the flowers. An example of this is if the wedding colors are pink and white, place large pink flowers with small white flowers in the bride's bouquet. Alternate the sizes and colors in the bridesmaids' bouquets for a unique contrast.

Post 1

A tip for beautiful bridal party bouquets is to simply use smaller flowers of the same variety for the bridesmaids' bouquets.

For example, if the bride is carrying a bouquet of roses, smaller bouquets with miniature or baby roses are great options for the bridesmaids.

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