I've been thinking about bouquets lately...and how maybe I won't carry one. I had planned on using a local florist who carries our stuffed animals, because I love him and his business, not because I care about a bouquet. But I've also been thinking about making an arbor of some sort and putting my bouquet money in that direction. This is why my thoughts have begun and why I'm writing this post.
You may not know that flowers are one of the most unethical parts of a wedding. (I mean, besides the whole WIC and the costs and all the other stuff!) You see, most flowers are grown in hot houses in China and then shipped to the U.S., where they have a very short shelf life. Huge waste. Waste of resources. Bad labor issues. Transportation and environmental issues. Big problem...for all flowers, though...excluding those that are locally grown. It's a big deal, so why was I even consider carrying flowers? I'm aware of the issue and have talked to my florist about it, so I felt confident in using him...and I just want to represent him. He's such s great contact and friend, and I love his artistry.
(My bridesmaids will carry bouquets they make with a local art studio. The flowers will be recycled soda bottles. All the ethics and supporting local and creating something they can keep or recycle!!!)
I photographed a wedding recently (I wish I could easily insert a photo into this post!), and the bride carried a bouquet of wild flowers made by a local friend. Totally ethical. But as she carried them around the courthouse, I continued to ponder the purpose of them. The tradition for flowers is really about personal hygiene. Before we bathed regularly, we smelled a lot, and so brides carried bouquets to help them smell better. There isn't much point to them, either good or bad. They carry no negative traditions. They are just, well, pointless. As I watched these wild flowers go into the courthouse, hang by the counter, sit in the judge's quarters, shift around for photos, end up on a table at the reception, I was so struck with, "BUT, WHY!?"
Despite knowing there is no purpose to flowers, and despite wanting to use that money for a pretty, pretty arbor, and despite watching them at a wedding and not really being convinced they were cool, I still have not decided what I'll do!!! I just don't know. I feel so ambivalent! Part of me just wants pretty crap in my hand, even if it's a waste of money. Part of me can't figure out why the hell I'm even considering this tradition. No one will give a shit, even me.
UGH! This is what enculturation does. It can be so hard to step away from something even if you're heart isn't in it. So I don't know. I'll decide later. Nothing has to be decided now. But it's in the back of my mind, and it's annoying the shit out of me.