Flowers: Nouveau Riche
Four local florists prove that affordable posies can look fabulously lavish
Photographs by Mary Kahlor | Styled by Amanda Zurita | Shot on Location at the Hotel Sorrento
Petit bouquets make a big impact when composed of a few vibrantly hued, captivatingly textured blossoms. Tara Millar of Bloom used disbud chrysanthemums, papery ranunculus, lisianthus, Italian ruscus, larkspur tips, and just a couple choice garden roses for this chic orange-tone spray. “For anyone looking to cut costs without forsaking a stunning bouquet, I suggest choosing as many seasonal blooms as possible,” say Millar. “Also try incorporating botanical fillers as elements of interest and texture, and splurge on just a few blooms (like the roses) that have the major wow factor.”
Double Duty Another way to come in on a budget, proposes Millar, is to give floral ceremony arches and aisle décor a second life as table runners and centerpieces for the reception. Bridesmaid bouquets can adorn the dessert table and even the bride’s showpiece can shine when placed in a vase on the head table. It helps to choose durable flowers—like the disbud chrysanthemums—to ensure petals stay fresh from the “I dos” through the last dance.
When assembling their ladylike, cascading arrangement, Jodi Macko and Arianna Krueger at Woodland Flowers chose a range of lush flowers in shades of peach, apricot, blush, and butter yellow—a versatile palette that pairs well with gold, gray, and navy to enhance its creamy glow. Major posy players include double tulips (a less expensive option than popular peonies, notes Macko), pieris blooms and lilac for depth, and honeysuckle vine and viburnum for texture. As for other accents, find dusty miller, ranunculus, vintage daffodils, narcissus, poppies, and hyacinth placed throughout. All of the components were sourced locally and seasonally, helping to keep costs down. “We love working with budget-friendly stems as they’re often more unusual and inspiring,” says Macko. For something truly unique within your price point, allow your florist artistic autonomy on style and be flexible on color scheme—giving designers a wider selection when it comes to picking blooms.
Tender sunflowers, parrot tulips, plum dahlias, and leafy dagger ferns are the stars of this abundant, rich bouquet by Theresa Althauser of Althauser Design. “I love working with bold colors, but also enjoy mixing in the soft shades to really make the bright ones pop,” she says. Adding an assortment of greens also emphasizes the beauty of the flowers, as with this mix of foliage that includes plumosa, sprengeri, silver dollar eucalyptus, deep red agonis, and red huckleberry shoots.
Filled In Selecting inexpensive buds with a sizeable presence helps to fill out a lavish arrangement like Althauser’s. “I tucked in the sunflowers because they’re inexpensive and generally available all year,” she says. “The lush variety of greenery is another a simple, affordable addition that makes a big impact.”
Jesús Peiró A-line gown with a chapel train, $3,088, Nordstrom Wedding Suite. Black enamel and Swarovski crystal earrings by LK Designs, $175, JJ Caprices. 14k gold black onyx and diamond ring, $6,400, Kathryn Elyse Fine Jewelry
Have It Here Let the Hotel Sorrento’s 100-year history inform your Old World fête. The Top of the Town ballroom accommodates up to 120 guests and the seventh-floor penthouse has a rooftop with sweeping views of the city. In-house catering is available, and the recently renovated Dunbar Room restaurant makes a picture-perfect backdrop for Northwest-focused rehearsal dinners.
Rather than a traditional spray stuffed with high-end blooms, Tobey Nelson, owner of Vases Wild designed an unconventional statement-maker meant to be worn around the wrist or carried upright by its handle. “Because of the unique shape and draping, I could use budget-focused flowers that add beauty and drama, but at a moderate cost,” she says. The locally grown blossoms include black parrot tulips, graphic checkered fritillary, grape hyacinth, lilac, hellebore, asparagus fern, and begonia. Nelson envisions the bouquet for an artistic, trendsetting bride seeking something intense and original.
Color Story The design focuses on cool, steely metallic tones that lend a sultry, glamorous element to the avant-garde arrangement. Varying shades of purple create depth and dimension, and pair well with a fall-ready berry lip shade.
Jenny Packham crystal-embellished gown with illusion neckline, $7,430, the Dress Theory. Rutilated quartz 14k gold tassel necklace, $4,500, Kathryn Elyse Fine Jewelry. Forevermark 18k white gold and diamond ring, $5,660, Marci Jewelry
Hair & Makeup: Tiffany Colors
Model: Maddy Pinkerton / Heffner Management
Stylist’s Assistant: Olivia Tinsley