For show-stopping arrangements, Williams fills a large glass vase with limes or other fruits, then adds flowers. Citrus also can provide a subtle link to the attendants’ gowns.
“A lot of the girls’ dresses are fruit colors—kumquat or kiwi or pomegranate,” she says.
Floral essentials at the reception include centerpieces for the tables and a large, dramatic arrangement on the table for seating cards because that is the first thing guests will see when they enter the space.
Sprays of blooms fastened to the backs of chairs are lovely, but optional.
“If you are trying to save money, only decorate what will be photographed,” Williams says.
Spring conjures visions of narcissus and hyacinths, tulips and lilacs. Bridesmaids may carry different bouquets, each made up of one type of flower. The link is color.
“The maids would all be carrying pink flowers, such as lilies, Gerbera daisies, roses, sweet peas and hydrangeas,” Williams says. “The bride’s bouquet would incorporate all five of those flowers.”
For the mother of the bride, pin-on corsages have been supplanted by clutch bouquets. Another option is a floral bracelet of mini-roses tied up with ribbons to match her dress.
Williams decorates cakes with fresh flowers, usually the blooms found in the bride’s bouquet. Some bakers insist on applying the floral accents themselves to ensure the frosting remains intact.
“Fresh flowers are beautiful and they also are much less expensive than sugar flowers, which are very labor-intensive to produce,” she says. “Plus, using fresh flowers guarantees they will be an exact match to the flowers in the bouquet.”