To Corsage or Not to Corsage - That is the Question!

Though corsages for mothers, grandmothers, officiants, guest book attendants, and stepparents have been a long standing tradition, Times they are a changin'!

Corsages have been a tried and true wedding industry standard for many years - It's true, however with the introduction to new textiles, the flux of influences from other parts of the world and the endless reach of Google and other search engines- we simply have more options than ever before. At the same time, many traditions are being ignored or overlooked due to the fast pace of planning online. Now more than ever I have brides and grooms whom I never even meet until the day of their event.

As a floral designer, I make it a point to cover all my bases. I ask about the florals but it's up to the couple what they want to include or exclude from their wedding or event. Traditions change for functional reasons also. Some traditions like that of the corsage are being replaced with new ideas or alternative methods. Just last year, I had a mother of the groom say "no way, not me". while the mother of the bride absolutely had to have a corsage!

Over the years, I have heard that they are to heavy, they don't wear well, they have ruined the fabric. Some have gone to wrist corsages where I hear - they are to heavy, this is flopping all over my arm, I crushed the flowers when I went to hug someone, It felt itchy - Well the good news is there have been advances and you have other options for those who oppose the corsage. Technique is a huge factor - look at photos of your florist past work. Are the corsages big and heavy looking? Are they light, delicate, and proportionate to the person who is wearing them?

This year I had a mom come to me concerned because her daughter in law to be had not ordered flowers for the grandparents. I have noticed that many couples today are skipping over some of these traditions in favor of themed food stations, favors or creative place cards. I have heard many couples say "Well, I don't think they need that." To those couples I would say - ask . While I agree that we can change and adjust how grandparents are honored , to not acknowledge them at all may not have the desired effect either. It's important to remember that many of these time honored traditions have deep roots. I know that for my very Southern Grandmother - as with many others, the corsage was a way to let guests know that they were part of the bridal party. In other words - That's my granddaughter or grandson that's getting married! Not only is it about pride and tradition but it was a social icebreaker. Flowers help out of town guests and new family members identify each other. That being said if you choose not to identify your grandparents with flowers -you may want to choose another way to announce them or make them feel special! I had one bride request flowers that had been carried by her grandmother and mom to be placed in her bouquet. Another couple honored their deceased family members with photographs and flowers on a special table at the reception.

Talk to your floral designer and communicate your desires and those of your family members. Your floral expert can make recommendations that will meet your needs and those of family. For the mom who didn't want flowers, I designed a spray of florals for her clutch as pictured above. For the mom who wanted a pin on corsage but had a soft chiffon dress, we created a shoulder corsage, the weight of the design was resting on the shoulder which prevents flopping and could be pinned to an undergarment for added security - as pictured below. The other option is to use magnets rather than pins to avoid damaging formalwear.

Other alternatives to corsages are trends in floral jewelry, the return of poseys and nosegays and my personal favorite, flowers for the hair. Talk with your designer, get creative, let us know if we can help!

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