Book Review – Vintage Wedding Flowers by Vic Brotherson

WP_20140412_003I have to say that this book is beautiful, I squealed and cooed over every page when it arrived yesterday. It has stunning photographs by Catherine Gratwicke, of Vic’s highly inspirational designs, along with amazing wording  that really sums up the different types of vintage wedding flowers available. The book covers bouquets, buttonholes, table settings, headdresses and lots more floral creations.

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Most of the designs use the traditional English flower varieties that we grow here on the farm. Flowers like sweetpeas, cornflowers, larkspur, ammi majus, dahlias, roses, cosmos, astrantia and herbs are all used throughout the book.

It is divided into six different themed chapters, each showing bouquets, table flowers and other designs that fit with the theme. The last chapter has detailed  step by step instructions to make a number of designs including a hand-tied bouquet, wired buttonhole, pomander and hair garland.

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The book explains how important flowers are to a wedding day, and how they can be incredibly personal to the bride and groom and their families. “Everyone has wonderful stories that can woven into the day through the flowers, creating a modern interpretation of a very ancient ritual.”

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I would say that this book is an absolute must have for brides looking for vintage inspiration, British flower growers, and wedding florists.

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The Meaning of Flowers

Today’s blog takes a look at the traditional meanings and symbolism of certain flower varieties.

Allium                                  Good fortune

Alstromeria                        Devotion and friendship

Amaryllis                             PrideMixed flower buckets

Anthurium                          Attraction

Birds of Paradise              Magnificence

Bouvardia                           Enthusiasm

Chrysanthemum              Hope

Cornflower                         Delicacy and refinement

Daffodil                               Respect / Chivalry

Dahlia                                  Good taste

Eucalyptus                          Protection

Freesia                                 calmnessvase of flowers

Gerbera                               Purity

Gladioli                                               Generosity / Natural grace

Gypsophila                         Everlasting love

Heather                               Passion

Holly                                     Good will

Hyacinth                              Consistency / young love

Hydrangea                          boastful

Iris                                          Wisdom

Ivy                                          Friendship / affection

Jasmine                               Good luck

Lavender                             Devotion

Lilac                                       First love

Lily                                         BeautySweet peas

Lily of the Valley              Sweetness / Humility

Mimosa                               Sensitivity

Orchid                                 Love / Beauty

Peony                                   Bashfulness

Phlox                                    Sweet Dreams

Primrose                             Hope

Rose Red                              Love and Passion

Rosemary                            Remembering

Stephanotis                       Desire

Sunflower                           Loyalty and power

Sweet Pea                          Lasting pleasure

Tulip                                      Hopeless love

Violet                                   Modesty and faithfulness

Zinnia                                   Absence