It’s invariably among the best wedding photos – all the single women lined up, at the ready to catch the wedding bouquet as it’s hurled across the reception space. However, as with a host of other long-standing wedding traditions, many brides question whether it’s still necessary to throw their wedding bouquet. To help you decide whether tossing the bouquet should feature at your wedding, here’s a few points to consider.
All Photographs: Lifestyle Images by Alexandra Grimshaw
The unusual tradition of throwing the wedding bouquet originated during the middle ages in France and England, where brides threw their flowers as decoys for guests to catch, to avoid the bride being tackled by those trying to tear off a piece of her supposedly lucky wedding gown. Somewhere along the way, the tradition morphed into a single-ladies only spectacle, where the woman who catches the bouquet is said to be the next to marry.
1 Check your guest list
If you have a large group of single women coming to your wedding, the bouquet toss can be good fun.
2 Timing is everything
Time the bouquet toss for when your reception is in full swing. Preferably when your guests are up and dancing and the drinks are flowing. Just don’t leave it too late or some of your guests may have gone home.
3 Make it a feature
Make a feature of the bouquet toss by choosing an appropriate song, possibly something about single or independent women, and have your MC announce that all the single women should take to the dance floor.
4 Modernise the tradition
Of course, not every woman likes to make a show of her singledom, (and who can blame her?) Why not consider modernising the tradition by throwing your bouquet into a crowd of all your guests who want to participate, and then simply brace yourself for the scrum?
5 Order a decoy
Check with your florist whether they will include a less expensive throwing bouquet with your real wedding bouquet. This has two advantages, firstly it stops your expensive bridal bouquet from being destroyed, and the decoy can be made more robust so that it doesn’t fall apart as it is thrown.
6 Practise makes perfect
It may sound odd to practise throwing a bouquet, but you’ll probably feel a little foolish if you throw it over your head on the day and it lands right behind you! Try to find something of a similar weight, or buy an inexpensive bunch of flowers and have a trial throw at home!
Many brides think that the bouquet toss is a sweet tradition that should play a part in their wedding. However, if it’s not really ‘you’, there are other things you can do with your bouquet such as having it preserved, giving it away, or presenting it to your wedding guests that have been married the longest.