The future of wedding florals, with celebrity florist & founder of Bloom, Larry Walshe
The world of weddings is changing! We asked celebrity wedding florist Larry Walshe some of our biggest, burning questions – and we were thrilled to bits when he replied with such thoughtful insights on the future of weddings.
Before we dive in: yes, luxury weddings are bound to create more waste by volume. We’re not hiding from that. But no amount of Guardian coverage can stop luxurious weddings from happening; they’ll go on, and they’re already becoming more sustainable. It would be naive to ignore the existence of extravagant celebrations and assume everyone can have a thrifty little micro wedding. Finally, the wedding industry needs its shining stars to set an example: and here’s how that’s already happening.
Where do you see the future of wedding floristry heading, with sustainability in mind?
I believe that as we all look towards seeking and implementing more sustainable solutions across all facets of our lives, this will equally become more of a leading and prevalent factor in the designs and decisions that we make for parties, weddings and celebrations.
Notoriously, the weddings industry is incredibly wasteful due to the temporary nature of what we create. Transforming a space from nothing into a veritable fantasy for a single day does inevitably come with consequences and I do believe that whilst the scale of what we create will always stay the same, the way we approach design will evolve.
We regularly guide our clients towards more sustainable forms of design, those with more movement, depth and texture in order to create work which is formed without the use of floral foam. We endeavour to educate our clients on sustainable wedding flower options and by driving these choices and making selections available to them, we are seeing more and more couples selecting a more environmentally conscious scheme.
Floristry has the power to totally transform a space into a magical wonderland so I don’t see that changing as visually led social media continues to grow at a rapid pace. I do however feel we will all start to adopt more planet-friendly solutions to ensure we can continue doing what we love for many years to come.
Is it possible to have luxe-looking florals and still have a sustainable wedding?
Yes, however certain schemes and styles lend themselves well towards this style of design. Those styles of look which are wild, garden inspired and free-flowing are ideally suited to adopting sustainable techniques.
We must however me mindful that many of these looks need to be made in situ and cannot be pre-prepared. If sustainability is important to you, one should take this into consideration when selecting your wedding venue to ensure that this will be possible for all your wedding vendors. The longer you have to prepare, the more creative you can be!
Could you share 5 top tips on how to sustainably style your wedding with flowers?
- Create designs without the use of floral foam.
- Use flowers which are sourced locally. Design by colour rather than by specific flower type to allow your florist to find the best of what is available for you locally.
- Gift your flowers to guests at the end of the wedding so that they can be enjoyed fully.
- Give your florist the time they need to create sustainably led designs. These do take longer to bring to life so ensure that your chosen venue(s) are able to accommodate this.
- Work with a florist who embraces sustainable practices and has an environmental policy which they are committed to working within.
As a little footnote, I’d like to add to this article that while wedding flowers are seen as creating waste, they’re also a huge opportunity. We need flowers. Our bees, wasps and other pollinators need flowers. Every patch of land where flowers are growing (organically, pesticide free of course!) is a blessing for nature. So while cutting blooms and shipping them off to a wedding may seem wasteful, think of the plants which wouldn’t otherwise be grown, and their benefit to nature. There’s a whole world of wonderful things we could say about British flower farmers and growers and the good they’re doing. Please, do support them if you can!