At Nola Flora in New Orleans, Louisiana, owner-designer Ashley Bateman creates floral arrangements for everything from memorials to Mardi Gras parties, but says weddings are her first love. "There's nothing more fun than seeing that sparkle in a bride's eye as she really starts to get a vision of the look she wants," Bateman says. "There are so many different styles, varieties and colors in the floral world. Flowers can bring in that special touch — that reflection of the couple's personality."
To Bateman, flowers add more than atmosphere and ambiance. “Flowers can represent the couple’s history or the family’s history,” she says. “Using favorite flowers, flowers the groom has always given the bride, or a special flower that the bride’s mother and grandmother may have also used is another way to add meaning to the wedding.”
In 2013, Bateman saw lots of succulents, peonies and cotton in floral wedding décor. This year she predicts we'll see the following flowers popping up in bouquets, boutonnières and table arrangements wherever wedding bliss is blooming.
"This is a new variety of protea," Bateman says. "It's beautiful, white, softer and more petite than protea. It's fun and different for bridal bouquets."
South American Vining Jasmine
According to Bateman, South American vining Jasmine is exotic, fragrant and increasing available due to popular demand. “This flower even comes in radiant orchid, the 2014 Pantone Color of the Year,” she says.
Green Trichelium / ‘Green Trick’ Dianthus
Perfect for the eco-couple, these flowers are “fun, textural, non-flowery flowers,” says Bateman.
“It’s not just garlic anymore,” Bateman says. “There are more petite, delicate varieties in white and yellow that are a really fun accent for bouquets or arrangements.”
“There are so many fun, new varieties of thistle coming available,” Bateman says. “These are great for textural, modern or even wildflower-y weddings.”
Available in bright hues perfect for a pop of color, celosia is “soft, velvety and more feathery than flowery,” Bateman says.
“I think we’ll see a big comeback in these,” Bateman says. “They’re available in bright colors and can be used in new ways for a sleek, modern look. They’re full and flowery but not too fluffy.”