Alternatives to the Bridal Bouquet

autumn bouquetThe Bridal Bouquet is a focal point for any bride, especially when walking down the aisle just before the ceremony and again when the bouquet is thrown over the shoulder just after the ceremony.

The traditional brides bouquet of flowers, has, over the years seen such items as pearls, diamantes, feathers and twigs added to produce some stunning arrangements for the bride to carry down the aisle. The modern bride planning her dream wedding is forever looking for something that is out of the ordinary and different to make her wedding stand out. Bouquets are among the traditional aspects that are constantly evolving.

There is a wealth of options for brides wanting an alternative to the traditional bouquet, for those allergic to flowers, the bride who just does not like flowers and wants to be totally different, as well as the bride that is on a budget and more than happy to make something herself to ensure coorination with the wedding theme.

There are many alternatives to the traditional bridal bouquet and it's always possible to achieve the unique design you are seeking. Here are some suggestions for an alternative to the tradional briday bouquet.


The bride carrying a basket can fill it with just about anything and can be matched to different seasons and wedding themes.  Flowers can be arranged or just left lying loose inside a satin or lace lined basket.

For spring time weddings daffodils, tulips, hyacinth, lily of the valley, cherry blossom or tiny wild daisies made into chains would bring that seasoned fresh look.

Getting married in the summer gives the widest choice of seasonal flowers from roses, magnolia, carnations, lilies and lilac.  Giant sunflowers of bright yellow and orange for outdoor summer weddings as would the soft colours of the trailing sweet peas.

Autumn weddings can have baskets filled with nuts, acorns, berries, ears of wheat, cones, twigs and foliage or exotic flowers such as orchids, bird of paradise mixed in with tiny pumpkins, leaves and crab apples.

Holly and red beads with tiny oranges and gold sprayed fir cones, or the deep red of the poinsettia flower mixed with white roses or orchids with ribbons cascading down.


This is a flower ball usually made from tiny roses to form that perfect sphere.  A ribbon is attached to allow the ball to hang down while a loop at the other end of the ribbon is attached to enable the bride to carry it on her wrist leaving her hands free.
Nowadays almost anything can be used to make a Pomander and many stunning designs are there for the finding.

Pearl and beads interspersed with clear gems, white fabric leaves and butterflies are just a few of the materials that can be used to give any bride a stunning alternative to the traditional bouquet.

Pomanders do not necessarily have to be perfectly round.  Orchid pomander’s of just three blooms with gold skeleton leaves and coloured grass can produce a dramatic look as can open roses with diamantes or pearls hidden within the petals.

Rose scented pomanders made from satin sachets with real or silk roses and ribbons on top can be used but double check whatever is giving off the rose scent inside the sachet will not ruin your dress.

Gold or silver wire with crystal beads is used to produce a 4” to 5” circle that can be decorated with flowers, ribbons, bows, greenery or twigs.   These pomanders are usually made with a much shorter ribbon.

The latest trend in pomanders is to use antique buttons and these are fast becoming popular.

Wrists Corsage

The bride that does not wish to carry anything in her hands can opt for the wrist corsage.  Bridal corsages can be made with bracelets, tie on ribbons or elastic cords.

From one to a few flowers can be placed onto the corsage or an arrangement of diamantes and pearls with tiny bows and/or ribbons.

This is the ideal style that you can have with you all day yet still be hands free to hug, shake hands, eat, drink and dance.

Crystal Wedding Bouquets

A sparkling and beautiful alternative to the traditional flower bouquet not only looks stunning but can be kept as a wonderful keepsake.

Crystal Bouquets can be made in a range of styles, colours and sizes. 

Materials used are Swarovski crystals, pearls, feathers and ribbons and these masterpieces are more robust than they look.


Parasols were historically very much part of ladies fashion and outfits were not seen to be complete without one. 

Made from the finest laces, silks and cottons and adorned with lace, braid, satin beading as well as a wide assortment of different trims they can be carried by today’s modern bride to give that elegant and classy look.

Carrying a parasol instead of the traditional bridal bouquet can truly compliment your wedding dress as well as doubling up as a protection against the sun or rain.

These elegant wedding accessories can be perfect for those beach or summer outdoor weddings, or winter and Christmas weddings, parasols can be carried with white fur trimmed around the edge.


Why not walk down the aisle with a lace fan that can be plain or decorated with beads, crystals, flowers or pearls in colours that match the groom’s waistcoat or your bridesmaids’ dresses.

An antique fan complete with matching parasol for that Victorian lady appearance with long cream gloves adding to the sophisticated and elegance look.

Outdoor weddings held in the heat of the summer would be the ideal place to be holding a fan while photographs are being taken.  Your wedding bouquet would not help much towards keeping you cool and a professional photographer would make good use of your fan in the photos.

In keeping with the theme you could give your guests small fans for favours.

Winter Muff

Keep yours and your bridesmaids’ hands warm and snug in a winter muff made from soft faux fur, whilst still looking every inch the bride you are.

Winter muffs of snow white or cream can look wonderful either plain or decorated with flowers and ribbons.

These thick and sumptuous furry hand warmers can compliment a bride’s winter fur trimmed cloak during those cold winter weddings.


If you are religious a bible with a lace cover and a single flower added to the top would not look amiss for any bride to carry down the aisle with her when in church.

A long flowing ribbon in matching wedding colours or a plain thick ivory ribbon with diamante’s and/or pearls added would give a dramatic and pure look.

You may have a family heirloom bible that can be used or you could buy one custom made for your wedding and begin your own family bible after the wedding.

single flowerSingle Flower

One flower can say a multitude of words.  A single flower with ribbons tied around to trail down the stem can be ideal for the bride who wants flowers but either suffers from hay-fever or feels uncomfortable carrying a bouquet.

Your single flower can have a photograph attached to the ribbon of a loved one who is no longer with you to serve as a way of them being with you on your special day.

Beach weddings held abroad will find a vast selection of beautiful tropical flowers and a matching flower can also be placed behind the bride’s ear.

Beaded Flowers

This once lost art form of beading flowers is making a strong come back and used in many ways.  Bridal bouquets, buttonholes, favours, corsages and hair combs are just a few of the things that can be achieved with beaded flowers.

Beads strung onto silver, gold or coloured wire and shaped into flowers with dazzling crystals and gems added, give not only a stunning and sparkling wedding bouquet, but a lasting memory of a special day.

Once a unique art during the 1500’s in the French Royal Court some of these antique bouquets can still be found from time to time in museums and many are highly sought after by private collectors.

These crafted flowers are gently shaped and arranged into cascading or posy styled bouquets that any bride will be happy to carry on her wedding day and keep for many years.


handbagSatin, lace and silk purses can be carried and compliment your wedding outfit.

From a choice of clutch, structured, fancy or drawstring purses you can turn this wedding accessory into a necessity for holding such items as handkerchief and lipstick.

Your bridal handbag/purse can be decorated with tiny rose buds or have a drawstring of pearls or decorated with sequins and flowers made from material.

Lighted Lamp

Winter dark afternoons and evenings are the ideal time for not only the bride to carry a lighted lamp but the whole wedding party can light up the venue to give a romantic glow.

The base of the lantern can be decorated with tiny arrangements of flowers and have wide flowing ribbons trailing down.

Always ensure the lantern is designed to fully enclose the naked flame to reduce the risk of any accidents.

For the small intimate ceremony bride and groom as well as guests can hold a single non-drip candle.

You're the Bride - It's Your Choice

Remember, it’s your day and if you decide you want something different from the bridal bouquet then you can let your imagination run wild with anything being decorated to coordinate with your outfit and wedding colours.

For those brides who love, and want, the traditional wedding bouquet but with a twist, why not have your grooms name spelt out in your flowers!