2020 vision: what’s going to be big in wedding flowers this year

It’s the dawn of a new decade, and time to look at the floral trends we can expect in the year ahead. The future’s bloomin’ bright

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Days of Dahlia suggests couples confront the sustainability issue head-on with their florist (photo: Caro Weiss)

What’s your new year’s resolution? Maybe you want to give up smoking, or biting your nails; perhaps you’re looking to bring a new hobby into your life, or to achieve an important milestone.

Whatever it is, if you’re reading this magazine, it’s a pretty safe guess that you’ve probably already got a hefty checklist of w-day tasks to attend to. Why add to that? Our job is to make the planning process as smooth as possible, so we’re giving you a rundown of the floral trends you need to know about.

Stop scrolling on Pinterest and instead get a head-start on booking a quality supplier for the big day. You’ve got no excuse now – get training for that marathon!

FRESH AS A DAISY

When I ask florists what they predict will be big over the coming year, I hear a range of answers. “Bright colours, more foliage and slightly smaller bouquets – the larger styles are still requested but they sometimes prove impractical for brides,” is the view of Helen Speirs, the name behind Wishes by Helen. “I also think metallics will take off a bit more, with champagne and silver joining the rose-gold hues of 2019.”

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A floral arch à la Narcissus Wedding Flowers will make an eye-catching centrepiece for your ceremony (photo: Ryan White Photography)

“Texture is everything,” believes The Flower Croft’s Stephanie Wheatcroft. “Brides are moving away from failsafe roses and are really interested in using a wider variety of flowers and foliage, creating really cool floral designs.”

Emma Brady at The Flower Company in Inverness concurs, suggesting that berries, twigs, fruits, pampas grass, pods, feathers and other ‘woody’ materials can all be incorporated.

However, there’s one word that’s on the lips of all our florists – sustainability. And there’s good reason for this, as Lauren Printy Currie at Days of Dahlia tells me: “We are meeting more and more eco-conscious couples looking for guidance on how to plan an event in a sustainable way.

“This can be difficult in an industry still largely dominated by wasteful methods. We hope it isn’t a trend but rather a fundamental shift in understanding and an increased awareness of the responsibility we all have to protect our environment.”

We’re definitely on the same page, but what can florists actually do to honour these principles? One of the easiest ways to green up your greenery is to choose a florist who gets their flowers from as close to home as possible.

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From left: Impressed by this hanging installation by Days of Dahlia? It’s a look that’s set to be huge (in all senses) in the year ahead (photo: Caro Weiss); Adding greenery to classic roses like The Flower Company has done here will get you lots of gold stars

“We are committed to using as much locally grown, sustainably sourced materials as we can, and will always encourage our clients to be part of this,” promises Sarah Walker of Narcissus Wedding Flowers.

Lauren has noted a rise in the popularity of dried flowers which, as well as being aesthetically pleasing, also have hidden environmental benefits: “One of the great things about dried flowers is that you can preserve them in summer to be enjoyed later in the year, especially for times when blooms are scarcer – they can really save the day during winter,” she explains. “We squirrel away lots of flowers and ornamental grasses for this purpose.”

Of course, the responsibility doesn’t lie solely at your supplier’s door – it’s also up to you to think critically about the non-financial costs of the day. “Ask the florist about your flowers’ provenance and whether it’s possible to source them locally,” offers Lauren.

“If they’re coming from thousands of miles away, weigh up whether the environmental impact is worth it; if you feel it isn’t, ask the florist to recommend an alternative.”

ROOM WITH A BLOOM

One of the trends that we’ll continue to see dominating in 2020 is the prevalence of blooms as a key component of venue decor – it’s no longer just about what you carry. However, the good news is that creating a cohesive floral look has never been easier.

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Eucalyptus will continue to grow in popularity, reckons The Flower Croft (photo: Iris Art Photography)

“We’ve seen a rise in demand for natural, flowing arches or blossom trees as backdrops,” Emma says. “This perfectly complements the bouquet styles that are starting to come through.”

Sarah agrees, saying it’s often a question of proportion: “For larger arches and venue dressing, we usually see a profusion of foliage with a few floral accents, whereas bridal bouquets are full of luxurious blooms with touches of foliage. In terms of dried materials, I would say that big statement hanging installations are still gaining in popularity, and geometrics are still prevalent in pedestals and centrepieces.”

Although dramatic arrangements are clearly still in vogue, there are ways to get the look without blowing the budget, namely by putting the emphasis on greenery. “I like the imaginative use of foliage to give pieces structure and create areas of negative space to make them appear grander in scale,” Helen explains.

“Stems tend to be cheaper than the usual flower types, and items like garlands can be useful for decorating parts of your venue which are less prominent but still need some dressing.”

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Modernise a traditional white rose with texture and greenery, as Narcissus Wedding Flowers has done here (photo: Claire Fleck Photography)

She’s not wrong, and florists are keen to hammer home how cost-effective impactful decor can be. “One of our favourite weddings last year was for a couple of gin enthusiasts,” recalls Sarah. “Along with their friends and family, they had collected lots of different bottles, which we then filled with flowers.

“Perhaps the sourcing of the vessels wasn’t all that budget-friendly, but it certainly was fun! And it just goes to show that couples can use groupings of bud vases very effectively without splashing out on large, dramatic arrangements.”

SMALL TOUCHES

Flowers are one of the finer details of the big day, so it seems apt to consider which individual blooms will be making all the difference this decade. “Eucalyptus is here to stay,” believes Stephanie. “Most brides come to me asking for their bouquets to incorporate it, and once I start showing them all the different varieties, it gets even more exciting!”

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A truly tropical bouquet, courtesy of Wishes by Helen

“You’ll never go wrong with peonies, hydrangeas or orchids – they’re classics in their own right and can be adapted easily to suit many different styles regardless of current trends,” Emma says. She suggests brides branch out to floral headpieces or jewellery (necklaces, armlets or bracelets) made from textural floral materials.

Well, we’re excited for one – 2020, we’re rootin’ for you!

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