There was nothing about Poppy Delevingne’s May 16, 2014 wedding ceremony that felt particularly whimsical. After all, she carried a relatively conservative white peony bouquet. Still, inside the church, she stood under an arch that was everything whimsical wedding flowers should be, and it got us thinking: What are some great reasons to include whimsical flowers, especially if your wedding itself isn’t actually whimsical?
Here are the top three reasons, inspired by Poppy Delevingne, to pick whimsical flowers for your wedding.
1. You Have a May or Early June Wedding
It’s that time that doesn’t feel like spring anymore but isn’t quite summer. Everything is damp and new, and you can imagine the creatures of the forest dancing into the night before the heat of summer descends. This is the season of the whimsical, and the flowers that bloom then capture the feeling completely.
What actually makes these flowers whimsical? I used to wonder about this too, and then I went and looked at all our data and noticed three common features in flowers that are found in whimsical bouquets: warm colors, playful symbolism, and both exotic and familiar origins. When these three traits are present, a flower just feels capricious.
Ms. Delevingne’s wedding arch included a number of flowers that fall into this category for us: hydrangeas, peonies, and foxglove. Together, they give an air of playfulness that’s perfect for her mid May wedding date.
St Paul's Church, Knightsbridge, London, United Kingdom
2. You Are Using a Traditional Venue
Whimsical flowers are the perfect way to add a touch of surprise to an otherwise traditional venue, such as an old church or a reception hall. If the venue is old, the flowers will blend against the dark stone and woods. If you are using a reception hall, the multi-color palate of the whimsical look will make the colors of otherwise awkward carpets and chair seats blend. Either way, the flowers can give you the romp in the woods look without actually having to take your guests outside.
In Ms. Delevingne’s wedding, her venue was the St. Paul’s Church Knightsbridge. A beautiful Victorian church built in 1843 and located in Belgravia, the neighborhood whose Pont Street Evelyn Waugh used as an eponym for all things British upper class in Brideshead Revisited, it is the antithesis of an untamed destination. Still, the wild foxglove and bold peonies capture all the personality of the young bride—it’s a bit of irreverence captured in a totally reverent messenger (whose mother has ever said that that flower wasn’t appropriate for a lady?).
3. You Love Flowers Like Snapdragons or Foxglove
If you love tall spikey flowers like snapdragons, you are definitely a contender for considering whimsical flowers. These flowers are called simple inflorescence (you might also hear spike flowers), and they are the most whimsical of all flowers thanks to their complicated origins, color, and meanings.
Ms. Delevingne’s arch used a fabulous example of this: foxgloves, which mean insincerity. Legend has it that fairies gave the fox these flowers as gloves to keep from getting caught in chicken coops. You can’t get more whimsical than a fairy and fox up to no good. It comes in right pinks and yellows and is both native to Europe and places abroad, making it a fabulous addition to her whimsical look.
The idea of having a whimsical wedding may have felt too much for your style or impossible in your venue. But if you can find whimsical in Belgravia, then truly, you can design it anywhere. It just takes a talented eye and some really carefully picked flowers, which we know is just your style.
For more wedding related articles, see the details of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's wedding here.