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Presenting . . . roses and baby’s breath

Doing your own flowers seems like such a good idea in hypothetical terms – in front of your laptop, time-wasting on Pinterest and gazing lovingly at that hydrangea plant you’ve kept alive for a record two weeks*.

But get down to business and flower-arranging soon gets stressful. Why have my roses wilted way before my succulents? Why are those tulips in such a rush to wilt? And why did I just get charged way over the odds for a bunch of very meager calla lilies?

We get it, we do – you want to put your own stamp on things. But on the morning of your wedding, or even the day before, the last thing you should be doing is running around a flower market listening to people shout instructions at one another and haggling with a badly dressed woman called Mavis about just how much you’re willing to pay for the ranunculus you’ve had on your wedding bucket list for, like, ever.

But hiring a florist – or enlisting the help of a friend (why not offer to send her on a one-day flower-arranging course in exchange for being your bloom-related lacky for the day?) – doesn’t mean you have to lose the personal touch. How you present your flowers isn’t just about the arrangement of blooms – presentation can make a world of difference. Take these three bunches – they’re the exact same combo, of soft peach roses and baby’s breath (simple but oh-so effective).


Glass bottles lend a distinctly DIY vibe to your wedding, and this is the kind of presentation that has been popular for the past couple of years. Think of a rustic celebration – maybe in a barn or outdoor marquee with country features such as raw wooden flooring – and you’ve got just the ticket.

The bottles can be picked up for a song in vintage stores, at car boot sales or online, and the little ribbon adds yet another personalized touch. If you’re an American football fan, why not buy ribbon in your team’s colors? Is your husband-to-be heavily involved with his alma mater? Think of incorporating his school colors for a thoughtful nod to the, let’s face it, often-forgotten groom!


This bird cage is a very romantic choice – and though it nods to vintage with its slightly worn metal finish, the overall effect is very pretty and traditional. You can go down two routes with this one: source a variety of vintage cages on Etsy and eBay (at any given time there is a huge selection), or find a new version (try Urban Outfitters or Anthropologie for nice and possibly overpriced cages).

Your table numbers may determine your ultimate choice – if you’re having 10 tables, maybe you’ll want to get your cages for less than $10 apiece. Four tables? So you might splurge and go for the $25 Urban Outfitters options!

Last, but not least? This metallic bucket is probably the least obvious choice – hands up who’d pick this out of a lineup! But with the roses and baby’s breath in situ it takes on a very cute feel – like the glass bottles, it’s quite rustic, but while mismatched glass bottles probably wouldn’t be mom’s cup of tea, we have a feeling she’d approve of this sweet nod to gardening.

Sources? A little tougher! We can’t seem to find this exact pot anywhere (maybe it was a one of a kind?) but Ikea has some great choices, starting at about $5. Mix’n’match your buckets for a fun feel – and if you’re having a kids’ table, a cute multicoloured selection would brighten things right up!

* The secret (thanks to Ruth Monahan of Appassionata Flowers): lots and lots of water. Think you have enough water? Add more. “Drown them.” (Direct quote.)


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