A Very Succulent Wedding

When a lovely couple contacted us in April about their Stone Tower Winery wedding, they talked about creating a beach theme with their wedding flowers and decor. They were quick to clarify that they were not looking for a traditional beach theme with preppy colors, flip flops and wooden chairs. Instead they wanted to celebrate the natural beauty of a beach with enduring seaside vegetation and sea glass. We would provide the arrangements and tablescape and they agreed to provide the sea glass from the beach near their home in Japan.

As we talked about their personal taste and the types of things that we would find available to us, the concept became more clear. Succulents continue to be very popular in home decorating but their natural habitat is arid and dry climates found in desserts and on sea coasts. Their fleshy leaves and stems are made up of tissues that store water.

The Boutonniere with Peacock Feather for a hint of teal.

The Boutonniere with Peacock Feather for a hint of teal.

The bride wanted to use Succulents in her personals and we loved the idea of wooden boxes with a worn almost driftwood look. A year or so ago, I created a sample table-scape for couple who were leaning toward a more earthy, natural look. I worked with Moss, Grasses in wooden boxes, a variety of Succulents and mixed metallic votives. We showed the photos from that staging to this couple and they loved it. Their table needed to seat 15 to 20 guests so we planned for a 10' long centerpiece. It's fun for us to work with different fauna, requiring us to experiment with unique grasses and plants. The grass, in it's low flat tray, arrived nearly a month before the wedding and was manicured to fit the 5” wooden boxes We trimmed the stems on the large Succulents, using only the tops so that we could nestle them in the moss. We chose a variety of Succulents for the longer wooden boxes blending clolors and petal types.

A hair comb with tiny Succulent, Air Plants, Fern and Baby's Breath.

A hair comb with tiny Succulent, Air Plants, Fern and Baby's Breath.

As I mentioned, the bride wanted an all Succulent bouquet with just a few greens. We have been getting some gigantic Succulents from our wholesaler so we knew that we would be able to find some big, beautiful focal points for her bouquet. She wanted a hint of teal in her bouquet and suggested peacock feathers, a fantastic combination. We also added Baby’s Breath to provide a little bit of a delicacy to contrast with the larger blooms. We finished the stems (wired and un-wired) with a Ballerina wrap in burlap and tied twine for a simple bow. She also wanted a Succulent hair comb that featured Baby’s Breath and a little bit of greens. We discovered tiny air plants that would work perfectly in her hair. We used the same Succulents varieties in the boutonnieres.

Long wooden box with Succulent varieties at the Summit Room at Stone Tower Winery in Northern Virginia.

Long wooden box with Succulent varieties at the Summit Room at Stone Tower Winery in Northern Virginia.

Because the Succulents and greens last out of water, we were able to use a Ballerina Wrap on the handle to hide the mechanics. This was a very popular wrap in the last decade for hand-tied bouquets.

Because the Succulents and greens last out of water, we were able to use a Ballerina Wrap on the handle to hide the mechanics. This was a very popular wrap in the last decade for hand-tied bouquets.

This was a small, intimate gathering in one of the rooms on the top floor of Stone Tower in Loudoun County (the view is stunning). We added a few long wooden boxes of Succulents, Jade and berries to the room to complement the long, natural table runner.

Succulents are so versatile. They can be arranged in foam and water so that they can be arranged with fresh flowers like Garden Roses, Peonies and Dahlias. They can be arranged with a modest amount of soil so that they can be removed and re-used in different pots and containers. Or, they can be wired and used in bouquets and hair clips. We used all three techniques for this wedding creating one-of-a-kind decor for this lovely couple.