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Classic Ceremony Marker
Whether you lean toward classic, romantic, modern, or bohemian looks in fashion, your wedding-day flowers can make a similar statement. Here, eight ways to follow suit.
Crisp white blossoms evoke timelessness and are every bit as versatile as a little black dress. They look elegant in all types of venues, including churches and loft spaces, and possess limitless, year-round appeal. Exchange rings backed by French tulips, calla lilies, and inexpensive azalea branches. The boughs' buds, paired with umbrella ferns -- a throwback to the 1800s -- give the sprays a vintage air; glossy vases keep them current.
Glossy vases, jamaligarden.com.
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Green leaves add depth to gardenias, camellias, and calla lilies, while a pleated satin handle wrap provides texture. "When there's just one color, details like ribbon really stand out," says contributing editor Matthew Robbins of Matthew Robbins Design in New York City.
Satin handle wrap, mokubany.com.
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Queen Victoria would have fallen head over heels for these decadently feminine displays, but pops of neon pink prime them for an ornate ballroom or a historic home in the 21st century. This profusion of peonies, ranunculus, roses, and mini gladioli is like a portable garden. Robbins added sweet peas for a shot of green ("a great alternative to leaves," he says) and tied it together with rich brocade ribbons.
Brocade ribbons, hymanhendler.com.
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For vintage flair, open your cupboards. Here, silver vases, sugar bowls, creamers, and even trophy cups serve as vessels for peonies, roses, ranunculus, and spiraea. The key is to "keep everything below eye level, so your guests don't have to talk through a hedge," says Robbins.
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Modern Escort-Card Table
Minimalist design has never looked so lush, thanks to the abundant green leaves and white flowers in these refreshing arrangements. Bold and avant-garde, they make the most impact in a spare setting like a gallery, loft, or museum. Tiers of greenery make for a verdant backdrop. Crocodile leaves, 'Green Goddess' calla lilies, and Solomon's seal sprout from the tall vases; clematis spills from those in the center; and moss sits in front. To highlight the plants, set them in white pots, such as these ASA Selection vases.
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Just a bunch of beautiful foliage? Take another peek. In between the fronds are fritillaria, hellebores, clematis, and more 'Green Goddess' callas -- all flowers! They're backed by a few large crocodile leaves, which form a long silhouette meant to be cradled in one arm. A jute ribbon recalling a knotted Japanese obi completes the look.
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You don't have to fancy yourself a flower child to appreciate these laid-back yet polished posies. It's a new spin on the Age of Aquarius that appears effortless in both rustic and contemporary settings. Though each blossom is tiny -- roughly the size of a quarter -- this clutch of yellow pansies, lilac-colored brodiaea, pink ixia, and purple columbine packs a colorful punch. It stands just eight inches tall, but flowing tails of ombre silk ribbon give it wedding-worthy length and a free-spirited vibe.
Silk ribbon, M&J Trimming.
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Vivid pansies, ranunculus, and orchids look like a kaleidoscopic image gone 3-D. "To bring the flowers forward, I put them in neutral vases that fade into the background," says Robbins. He used Ikea "Ovantad" vases in gray and white and Eva Zeisel vases in gray-green.