A perfect way to personalise your wedding is to choose flowers for your bouquet and floral arrangements that hold specific meanings in the language of flowers.
When your guests step into a venue for the first time, the sight and scent of beautiful blooms are one of the first things they notice.
And while the colour and shape of your chosen flora is important, a magical touch for your big day is to choose flowers that have specific historical associations, providing an added layer of meaningfulness to your wedding celebrations.
By using the language of flowers, you can communicate emotions and feelings of love on your special day.
Although finding symbolism in nature has been a part of human culture for centuries, it was the Victorians who first began crafting an emotive language out of flowers, expressing the feelings through bouquet gifting when words and gestures failed.
The popularity of floriography, or the language of flowers, in the late 1800s saw the publication of flower dictionaries and a trend in sending secretive messages to lovers through floral gifts.
Today, the London Flower School suggests that a floral arrangement can convey “themes and motifs”, as well as “emotional content and a range of meanings” from its composition.
We’ve researched a selection of the most popular wedding flowers and their meaning to find out which blooms will add a magical message to your big day…
The classic wedding flower of the rose has different meanings when used in an arrangement, depending on the colour you pick. White roses, a popular bouquet choice, stand for purity, innocence and youthfulness, while red roses represent love, passion and beauty. Light or dusty pink petals are said to mean admiration, gentleness and grace and peach-coloured blooms suggest sincerity and gratitude.
Roses also have a complex symbolism dependent upon how they are represented. The gift of a singular red rose on a wedding day is, according to Victorian tradition, a depiction of utmost devotion, while two roses entwined together can be interpreted as a floral illustration of marriage. Watch out if you’re future partner comes home clutching thirteen roses in a bouquet, however – it’s said to be the gift of a secret admirer!
The homely sweet pea, with its rich fragrance and array of tones to suite any wedding colour scheme, is a firm bouquet favorite, inspiring thoughts of country weddings and delicate girliness. According to George Rouledge & Sons’ 1888 dictionary The Artistic Language of Flowers, this two-petalled flower symbolizes the initial enjoyment of delicate pleasures, fitting for a bride’s bouquet.
According to The Artistic Language of Flowers, Lily of the Valley symbolizes the return of happiness. This beautiful little plant was chosen by Kate Middleton for her wedding day bouquet because of its secondary meaning as well – trustworthiness.
Named by botanist Christian P. Ecklon after his friend Friedrich Freese, these sweetly scented blooms represent friendship, trust and honesty. They’re a beautiful addition to any wedding arrangements, representing the intimate trust a couple places in each other on their special occasion and the importance of friendship within a marriage.
Peonies can have different meanings, depending on their colour, and both meanings stem from ancient Greek mythology…
In the first, legend has it that Paeon, the Greek physician of the Gods, was a student of the god of medicine Aesculapius. When Paeon successfully used a peony root to heal Pluto, Aesculapius became jealous of his apprentice’s talents and tried to kill him. To save the doctor, Pluto transformed Paeon into a peony, cementing one meaning of the beautiful bloom – compassion.
However, in a darker myth, the peony is linked to a nymph called Paeonia. The beautiful and attractive creature attracted the attention of Apollo. When Paeonia realized that the Greek god Aphrodite was watching them, she became bashful and blushed red. In anger and jealousy, Aphrodite transformed the nymph into a red peony. Today, a red peony symbolizes bashfulness and timidity.
The Artistic Language of Flowers suggests that ranunculus symbolizes the receiver being “radiant with charms” and “rich in attractions”. These ruffled, bold blooms come in a variety of colours from elegant whites and pinks to fiery reds and golds.
The etymological meaning of the various blooms that come under the name ‘ranunculus’ is thought to be a combination of two Latin words: rana meaning frog and unculus meaning little. The story goes that the flower earned its name when it grew plentifully along streams during the summer months.
The delicate white flowers of Stephanotis can look strikingly stunning in a simple bouquet. The elegant trumpet flowers of this Madagascan plant are said to symbolize marital happiness, making them a perfect addition to any floral arrangement on your special day.
Gardenias might have been used in days gone by to as fabric dye, food dye and medicine, but today its heady fragrance and bright, voluptuous blooms have made it a popular choice for table arrangements at weddings.
The intoxicating perfume of this velvety soft flower can sometimes be overpowering, so if you’re featuring them in your wedding day, it’s an idea to only include a couple per arrangement.
Originating from Asia, in Japanese and Chinese cultures, these flowers symbolize peace and calmness.
The trusty Hydrangea fell out of favour as a wedding flower for a long time, but as with all fashions, its bulbous sprays of tightly-packed blooms are starting to see a renaissance amongst wedding florists.
Although the robust flowers of this plant were negatively viewed by Victorians, who associated them with frigidity and boasting, in their native Japan, they represent gratitude. Legend has it that an emperor supposedly gave hydrangeas to a woman he loved as an apology for neglecting her when his duties as a ruler took up his attention.
Delicate sprigs of Baby’s Breath add a touch of romance to any bouquet, headdress or arrangement they are tucked into. This elegant flower is most commonly seen in white, but you can also find pink and pale yellow varieties.
Gysophila has two meanings in the language of flowers. Firstly, as with many wedding blooms, it symbolises innocence. But it also represents fertility and is frequently given within a bouquet at the birth of a child.
Some flowers have negatives associations, so you might want to stay clear of them on your big day to avoid tempting fate.
The delicate blooms of Begonia have a decidedly darker meaning than you might think: they are said to symbolize a warning to be cautious. And be careful who you give them to! The Victorians often gifted begonias to symbolize dark, fanciful thoughts about the receiver.
Hyacinths might be beautiful, but you’re more likely to see them at a funeral than a wedding. These statuesque blooms have been linked to the tragic myth of Hyacinthus in Greek mythology. According to legend, Hyacinthus was a lover of the god Apollo but was also admired by Zephyrus, the god of Wind. The friendship between Apollo and Hyacinthus enraged Zephyrus, who used the wind to throw a discus Hyacinthus was playing with off course, hitting the mortal and killing him. From the spilled blood, sprang a hyacinth bloom. The plant now symbolizes sincerity (on Hycinthus’ behalf), but also jealously and rashness.
At Signature Living Weddings, our capable wedding coordinators will be on hand throughout your wedding journey to ensure your special day is a magical experience. From picking the perfect flowers, to ensuring each guest has a wonderful time, we always go the extra mile to make sure you have your dream wedding in a beautiful venue.
Our hand-selected venues make the perfect, romantic backdrop to your wedding – why not explore the historic Exchange Hotel in Cardiff or start planning your big day at the iconic Cunard House on Liverpool’s Waterfront?
To find out more about our stunning venues, get in touch with our team on 0151 236 0166 and take your first steps towards an unforgettable day.
The dramatic skyline, spectacular sunsets and dreamy waterfront of Liverpool make it an idyllic city in which to pop the big question.
Here at Signature Living, we know your engagement is the first step on the path to a magical wedding, so we think you should make the proposal as romantic as the special occasion itself.
Liverpool is full of stunning viewpoints, adorable hideaways and incredible experiences that can help make your proposal a magical moment. We’ve pulled together our favourite places in the city to pop the question…
Liverpool’s iconic waterfront is undeniably one of the most romantic spots in the North West. From its palatial architecture, to its stunning views across the Mersey, a proposal at Pier Head on a warm summer’s evening will be a truly unforgettable experience.
And the proposal is only the start – you can enjoy your whole wedding journey at this stunning location. Cunard House, one of the city’s Three Graces, is Liverpool’s most iconic new wedding venue, situated right on the waterfront. So, you and your partner can marry in the same spot that the magic started!
For breathtaking views and spectacular sunsets, there’s no better place in the city than the top of the Anglican Cathedral tower. Sitting 500ft above sea level, and with 360˚ rooftop views of Liverpool and beyond, the incredible Vestey tower has been the site of many Liverpool proposals and is likely to be the site of many more.
For only a few pounds, you can climb the 108 stairs, and enjoy uninterrupted views of the city – a dramatic spot to pop the question.
If you’ve ever experienced an Alma de Cuba petal shower, you’ll know it’s an unforgettable moment. So why not surprise your other half with the big question just as the flowers begin to flow?
For those not in the know, the petal shower at Alma De Cuba happens every Friday and Saturday at 11pm in Liverpool’s most famous Latin American inspired bar and restaurant.
On the hour, a gorgeous petal display rains down on revealers in the spectacular venue, as our samba dancers take to the stage for a sunshine filled performance.
A proposal during this incredible experience would cement your engagement as an unforgettable memory.
Plus, the formerly Grade II listed St Peter’s Roman Catholic Church is now available for weddings, so you can complete your wedding journey in the place it all began. Retaining many of its original features, including the altar and magnificent ornate glass windows, the spectacular venue offers a romantic venue in the heart of Liverpool for your special day.
For a more relaxed proposal, a slow stroll along Crosby beach on a Sunday Morning is the perfect time to pop the question for low-key couples. You’re sure to find a moment of intimacy on the dramatic stretch of coastline that has views out to the Wirral and North Wales.
Why not book you and your partner a romantic spa break before you surprise then with the big question? Morgan’s Spa, at 30 James Street, is an opulent hideaway in the centre of Liverpool that’s sure to soften your partner and make sure they say yes!
Featuring a 40sq ft hydrotherapy pool, private treatment rooms, a sauna and a spa-side bar, the indulgent spa is the perfect spot to spoil your other half either before, or after, an engagement.
You can even book luxurious treatments from our spa experts – why not request a couples massage?
The Victorian architecture of Sefton Park Palm House evokes the dreamy days of times gone by when courting couples would take walks in the park with their betrothed.
Reignite the romance of the past with a proposal amongst the arching glass windows and beautiful flora that fills this spectacular glass house.
For a seductive proposal, why not book the intimately private Signature Living Lust suite and sweep your future spouse off their feet?
The Lust Suite is the perfect place for a cozy, private proposal between you and your partner. Located within The Shankly Hotel, this beautiful pale-pink suite features Signature padding and sensual velvet furnishings. Complete with an indulgent double bed, and a beautiful mirrored ceiling feature, the suite is completed by a luxurious ensuite with whirlpool bath and waterfall shower.
Only a stone’s throw away from some of Liverpool’s most romantic restaurants, The Shankly also boasts a spectacular rooftop bar overlooking the city skyline.
Already engaged? The proposal is only the first step on your wedding journey. To start planning your dream day at one of our spectacular venues, contact our friendly team on 0151 236 0166.
From taking in the beautiful venue you’ve chosen, to enjoying the experience of walking down the aisle as newlyweds, the day of your wedding is going to be a magical whirlwind. But on the morning of the big day you’ll probably be a little bit panicky and all over the place.
To keep things running smoothly, make sure you write up a wedding checklist a few days before so you can calm those pre-wedding nerves and enjoy the day without any stress. After all, it’s meant to be a beautiful occasion all about you and your partner!
There’s always a few important things that the happy couple tend to forget leading up to the big day. Writing up a list of all the little details you might forget ensures any problems can be fixed early on and guarantees it will be a truly memorable occasion.
Here are 10 things that often get forgotten to add to your checklist.
The shoes you wear on your wedding day might be the most gorgeous pair you’ve ever owned, but if they pinch your toes while you’re dancing, their beauty isn’t going to cancel out how much your feet hurt.
Remember to take a spare pair of comfortable shoes to slip into when you get to your reception. They don’t have to be boring – why not buy some sparkly trainers or elegant flats?
And gents, this applies to you too. Fresh-out-the-box brogues can be just as uncomfortable. You don’t want to spend your wedding night sitting down, so make sure to pack a pair of shoes you’re happy to dance the night away in.
Weddings are teary events for everyone. But if you’ve just had your make-up done for the special day, you don’t want it half way down your face after only a few hours.
Giving someone in your party a little bag of makeup for touch-ups throughout the day will make your life so much easier. Remember to include eyelash glue if you’re using fake lashes – it’ll be a lifesaver.
A typical mistake lots of spouses-to-be make is forgetting to eat on the big day. Make sure you eat a big breakfast and a light lunch. Then you’ll have plenty of energy to get you through to the reception but won’t feel stuffed just before your ceremony. Nobody wants fainting newlyweds!
If you’ve chosen the stunning White Star Grand Hall as your venue, why not book a wedding breakfast at the Carpathia Champagne Restaurant and Bar in 30 James Street? With stunning waterfront views and a delicious menu, the friendly staff will be happy to accommodate your wedding party before the big day.
Yes, we all know staying hydrated is important. But it’s something that’s easy to forget on the big day. Make sure you take regular sips of water from the word go and don’t just rely on bubbly to keep you refreshed. You don’t want a headache to set in as you walk down the aisle!
Underwear seems like the last thing you’d forget but you’d be surprised how often it gets left behind. Make sure you pack it alongside your dress so you aren’t left borrowing your bridesmaid’s red knickers or wearing your old, holey underpants on the wedding night.
If you’re jetting off on a gorgeous honeymoon straight after the reception, assign a family member or friend to pick up the belongings you aren’t taking with you, like you dress and pre-wedding outfit.
Children can make or break a wedding day – make sure that any little ones have ample activities or a baby sitter to look after them and keep them entertained.
Every parent knows the pain of bored children acting up, so if you’re got something to keep them happy, you’re less likely to have screaming toddlers during the toasts and embarrassed parents leaving early.
You might think waking up would be easy, but mistakes happen, and alarms can fail! Make sure you’ve set an alarm and a back-up as well, so there’s no chance you’ll sleep in and wake up in a panic.
It’s a good idea to assign a friend or family member to give you a call or come and check you’re up first thing in the morning just to be doubly sure you don’t hit the snooze button accidentally.
On the day things do go wrong, so plan in advance to minimise the disruption. Get someone in your party to carry a little bag with needle and thread, double-sided tape, safety pins, tampons, hairspray, breath mints, wet wipes, scissors and deodorant in it.
Then you’ll be prepared when that hem comes down on a trouser leg, or the lunchtime snack before the ceremony ends up stuck in your teeth.
In the magic of the day, it’s easy to enjoy the experience and forget to collect any mementos that you might want to keep to remember the special day. Assign someone to collect the little things that will help capture the moment like flowers to press, menu cards and pieces of ribbon from bridesmaids’ hair.
You don’t want to be thinking about this on the day – but you will really appreciate having physical memories in years to come.
At Signature Living Weddings, our capable wedding coordinators will be on hand throughout your wedding journey to keep everything running smoothly and ensure your special day is a magical experience. We always go the extra mile to make sure you have your dream wedding in a beautiful venue.
From the historic Exchange Hotel in Cardiff to the iconic Cunard House on Liverpool’s waterfront, each of our hand-selected venues make perfect, romantic backdrops to your wedding.
If you’re planning your special day and want to find out more about our stunning venues, get in touch with our team by calling 0151 236 0166 and take your first steps towards an unforgettable day.