PHOTO: Peonies, eryngiums, hypericum berries, spray roses, matthiolas, eustomas and astrantias from Cotton and Sage for real bride Shaowen's wedding. Taken by Alvin Choon Photography for Her World Brides Dec 2016.
1. Confirm your venue, type of wedding celebration, and the dress
The type of wedding you’ll be having (see different budget tips for different types of weddings), and the dress you’ll be wearing are essential to helping you pick the right bouquet. If you’re big on wild flower arrangements (see the prettiest wildflower bouquets) then your dress can’t have too many frills and details in front (see simple wedding dresses that don't stint on style); choose a simple silhouette so it doesn’t clash with your flowers. If your dress has intricate embellishments (see lace and beaded dresses for glamorous weddings), pick a bouquet that doesn’t cover too much of it.
2. Get the colour right!
If you’re keen on an all-white bouquet (see the prettiest monochromatic bouquets here), make sure it comes in a similar shade to your wedding dress for a perfect match (see how to pick the perfect shade of white for your skin tone).
3. Size matters
If you’re a petite bride, opt for a posy or nosegay (see the prettiest pastel bouquets, posies and boutonnieres here), so it doesn’t overwhelm you. Similarly, if you’re a tall bride, consider a cascading arrangement (see stunning cascading bouquets you'll love) that complements your height. If you're bigger-built, a full and lush arrangement (see the prettiest, lushest bouquets here) would be ideal.
4. Set a budget and stick to it
Flowers can get expensive so when planning your wedding budget, do your research and come up with a realistic amount. Ask your florist for advice as well. See also: floral alternatives to look to should your preferred bloom be out of season, or is too expensive, and ways to save money on your wedding flowers.
5. Know your flowers
If you’re big on symbolism, you may want to take note of the meanings of certain flowers. For instance, the dandelion represents faithfulness and happiness, while a pale pink rose signifies grace and joy. The gardenia means joy, and the hydrangea, perseverance. Similarly, you’ll want to give these a miss: marigold, oleander and yellow hyacinth, which connote negative meanings.
6. Seasonal blooms
Get more bang for your buck when you pick blooms that are in season. Find out which ones are in season at different parts of the year, here.
7. There is no wrong or right
Big on bright arrangements? Bring it on. Love quirky, squiggly blooms that might look weird in classic bouquets? Don’t worry. Each bouquet should reflect your personal preferences, although, you should also be open to suggestions from your florist! See also: big, bright and bold bouquets we love, as well as bouquet alternatives to be inspired by.
See also: how to use your flowers after the wedding, where to get long-lasting flowers, prettiest floral hairstyles for your wedding, experts share their tips on choosing the right flowers, and flowers with a unique, personal twist.