Bridal and bridesmaids bouquets, centrepieces and venue decorations are traditionally made of real flowers. The only issue is, fresh wedding flowers are quite expensive. They also die, leaving you with no keepsake memory from your special day.
Or perhaps you’re not into real flowers at all. Maybe you’re a modern bride looking to add her own twist to the wedding by replacing flowers with something more unique.
Regardless of what drives you to look for flower substitutes, check out these 13 alternative ideas to real flowers guaranteed to surprise your guests.
Sophisticated and delicate, feathers are an elegant substitute of real flowers. Their glamour highlights the fine taste of the bride, and they can replace the bridal bouquet as well as the decorations.
Feathers are also easy to paint in all imaginable colours. Velvety purple or deep blue, for instance, will undoubtedly add a touch of style. Dark green, burgundy, and other intense hues can also enhance your look, making your gown stand out.
2. Sheet Music
Brides with a more thoughtful soul might appreciate an original classic music touch to their wedding. Making paper flowers from sheet music is easy and rather inexpensive; you can use old sheet music or print it on white or vintage paper.
Use the paper flowers to create an original bouquet and unique centrepieces. For instance, you can place tiny bouquets in bird cages or mason jars, and then decorate the tables or the buffet.
3. Dried Flowers
If you want to keep your bouquet forever, you can opt for dried flowers instead of their fresh counterpart. Dried flowers, while real nonetheless, are typically treated with substances able to maintain their beauty forever.
There is something vintage in dried flowers able to seduce even the most exigent brides. Their wilderness pairs perfectly with nature or forest themed weddings, and they also complement an outdoor wedding.
4. Silk Flowers
Fabric flowers are one of the latest trends. Made from a variety of materials, they can satisfy the needs of all brides. Depending on the fabric involved, they can look rustic, vintage, contemporary, or trendy.
While most fabrics are great, it is hard to deny that silk is special. It comes in a wide range of colours, and it can be turned into roses effortlessly.
Decorate your bouquet with pearls and beads to give it an elegant touch, or with buttons for a nonconformist look.
5. Paper Flowers
Do you remember the coloured paper used during the art classes in school? You can transform it into unique wedding flowers. Cut the paper in strips of about five centimetres each, roll each strip and fix its centre with a pin, then open the “petals.”
If you’re not a skilled DIYer, know that paper flowers in all imaginable hues are readily available online. And you can use them for your bouquet or create original centrepieces.
Buttons can serve dozens of purposes, including the creation of a one-of-a-kind bridal bouquet or unique table decorations. The best part is that you can unleash your imagination. Play with colours, sizes, and even shapes.
Pair the buttons with other DIY accessories, such as pearls, beads, and silk ribbons to enhance the beauty of your decorations.
7. Pom Poms
Whether you want a no-frills bouquet or original centrepieces, pom poms are undoubtedly a nice alternative to real flowers at weddings. They can be made from all types of yarns and can address the needs of most brides.
For instance, you can go for pastel shades if your event is elegant. A nonconformist bride can play with bold hues. If you want to unleash your creative spirit, you can even mix and match a rainbow of colours.
8. Leather Flowers
Ideal for the rock-n-roll or Goth bride, leather flowers can truly make a statement. Silver and black are the most popular colour choices and both pair well with the white of your gown. There is also to say silver and black are elegant shades that can easily add sophistication to your wedding.
9. Cotton Bolls
A sweet natural touch for your wedding, nonetheless a quirky alternative to real flowers, consists of cotton bolls. Pure and delicate, cotton bolls can make a perfect bridal bouquet for a romantic bride. They look amazing on their own, or you can pair them with ivy.
For the venue, place cotton bolls in mason jars for a natural, shabby chic feel. Our advice is to choose a pastel palette focusing majorly on blush pink, baby blue, and green to highlight the beauty of your original decorations.
If you like all things vintage, replace real flowers with brooches. You’ll have plenty of choices, from richly decorated metal brooches to porcelain and even fabric ones. Mix and match your favourite jewellery models to make a unique bouquet or outstanding table decorations.
Small brooch bouquets also make a gorgeous keepsake for your bridesmaids. Also, don’t forget to pick some unique brooches to pin onto the groom’s jacket.
11. Wheat Sheaves
Wheat sheaves can make an amazing bouquet and superb decorations at weddings inspired by nature’s purity. Their straw yellow pairs perfectly with a white gown as well as with most neutral colours.
If you’re not truly impressed by wheat sheaves alone, blend them with lavender flowers made of silk and enhance the beauty of your bouquet with some ivy.
12. French Beads
While it takes artistic skills and inspiration to make wedding flowers out of French beads, the result is simply outstanding. The best thing is that French beads come in a rainbow of colours to pair with your personality or wedding theme.
Just like brooches, French beads can also make a nice keepsake for your bridesmaids, not to mention such flowers make original thank you gifts for your guests.
Last but not least, you can replace real flowers with balloons. Whether you want an original bouquet or less traditional decorations, their festive hype will undoubtedly get everyone into celebration mood.
We truly hope these alternative ideas to real flowers at weddings got you inspired, so you can truly wow the guests on your big day!