Flowers tend to play a big role in setting a celebratory mood by emphasizing a wedding’s color palette and style—but many couples are actually exploring alternatives to fresh blooms, with sustainability being one of the main reasons. “There’s a lot of waste associated with florals,” shares Michelle Cousins, owner and principal designer at Michelle Leo Events in Salt Lake City, Utah. “They’re typically disposed of after a celebration as they’re generally at the end of their life cycle when used at weddings.” Oftentimes, the arrangements are too large for the couple and guests to transport home and many times the attendees have traveled to a wedding, making it difficult to enjoy the flowers in their homes afterward.
That said, many wedding experts are predicting more eco-friendly floral alternatives in 2023. “A huge trend will be fresh vegetation and living tablescapes,” says Mandy Connor, the owner and lead planner of Hummingbird Events & Design in Boston, Massachusetts. “I’m advising clients to think of their tablescape as a personalized work of art, incorporating things like fruits, vegetables, herbs, and organic elements to add depth, color, and interest to the table design.”
Meet the Expert
- Michelle Cousins is the owner and principal designer at Michelle Leo Events in Salt Lake City, Utah.
- Mandy Connor is the owner and lead planner of Hummingbird Events & Design in Boston, Massachusetts.
- Beth Helmstetter is the CEO and creative director of Beth Helmstetter in Los Angeles, California.
- Leslie Price is the founder and owner of In Any Event in New York City.
- Heather Balliet is the owner and lead designer/planner at Amorology in San Marcos, California.
- Allison Jackson is the owner and creative director at Pineapple Productions in Arlington, Virginia.
- KC Cloud is the owner and creative director of KC Cloud Events in Dallas, Texas.
- Andrew Roby is the creative director and CEO of Andrew Roby Events in Washington, D.C.
- Tara Fay is the owner of Tara Fay Events in Dublin, Ireland.
- Mindy Weiss is the owner of Mindy Weiss Party Consultants in Beverly Hills, California.
- Virginia Frischkorn, the founder and CEO of Partytrick and Bluebird Productions in Aspen, Colorado.
- Becca Atchison is a founding partner and the creative director of Rebecca Rose Events in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
Ahead, wedding planners share their favorite floral substitutes, from potted plants to sculptures, creative lighting designs, and more!