“…and the wedding was furnished with guests” (Matthew 22:10)
Their practicality & spiritual significance.
Reusable: Purchasing decor for your wedding day can be expensive, but it can also be reused. For example, if you wanted to purchase bowls, serving utensils, pitchers, etc. consider what you might want in your home after the wedding. If there are salad bowls that you really like, consider purchasing them for your wedding and enjoying them forevermore. This can be extended to other areas of the wedding as well. For example, dresses for the bridesmaids. You can certainly ask your wedding party to purchase elegant expensive gowns, but there is a certain joy in being able to see the bridesmaid dresses for years to come at the meeting, bible school, bible class, etc if the dress is a little less formal. Again, this can be applied to so many areas: ties, shoes, pants, head coverings, stringed lights, candles, table cloths, etc. As a community, we know that the things of the spirit are deemed less in the sight of the world, and so we can comfortably say here that the principle to be applied is “less is more”. which leads us into…
The Scriptures: when we think of weddings in the scriptures we can glean so many beautiful ideas and themes and inspiration to furnish a wedding. The first thing to note is that there weren’t many weddings in the Bible. Very often we are simply told of the husband & wife joining together as one flesh, which in and of itself can already inspire us: the decor is not the focus. The world around us has boasted billions of dollars in revenue on this subject alone. A quick google search shows that the average bride & groom can spend around $5,000 on invitations, decor, flowers, chairs, tables, dinnerware, favours, etc. It goes without saying that God has given us financial means to spend on higher things than these, but that does not mean that we can’t adorn the day in simple yet beautiful ways. Take for example, the first marriage: Adam & Eve’s. They were surrounded by the epitome of God’s creation, every animal, every flower, and surely the most delightful weather. Bring your mind forward to the last wedding, even the kingdom, when we will imitate the first marriage to such a greater degree. Planning your wedding in a well-kept backyard, or a local garden, or even something along a lake or ocean shore, can be the most beautiful scene you could set even God’s design. Incorporate the Word of God anywhere possible. You can truly bring any favoured bible story to life in the decor with any budget. Which brings us to…
DIY: There are many talented people in our community. Here are a couple of ideas you, or brothers & sisters you know, can create to furnish your event;
DIY Coffee Filter Garland
You will need: fishing line, clear drinking straws, coffee filters, dye colour of your choice, scissors, & a few bowls.
First, you will need a space where you feel safe to use dye and where you can risk drip drying; ie. in an unfinished basement, outside, garage, etc. You can then begin mixing varying amounts of dye and water to achieve different shades of the same colour into different bowls. You can then dip the filters in batches of 12-20 and hang them to dry on a make shift clothes line, again in a place where you can be happy with some drip drying. Once dry, you can begin to cut the filters into leaf looking snowflakes. This can be done by folding the filters (more than one can be done together) into four and cutting leaf shapes into them. When you open them up, they should have even looking leaves all around. The next step will be to place them on your fishing line (preferred because its strong & invisible). A small trick that will help make this project easier, and the garland longer, is if you cut clear drinking straws into 1-2″ pieces and place them after every 50 or so filters on your fishing line. This is where you can play with the different shades of filters that you made and decide where the colours look best & how best to mix them. This can be done in green as the photos show or in pinks, yellows, etc.
So many beautiful things can be made with paper, but using the pages of a cheap Bible or an old Bible can add a special detail. You can make origami with bible pages into whatever fits your theme instead of name cards, or centre pieces, or banners, or anything really! You could even make them into flowers. The options are endless with this idea. Incorporating scripture wherever you can is a beautiful idea for decor.
Their spiritual significance.
Flowers are something that adds touches of nature to your wedding day. In scriptures, flowers are often described for their beauty and for their temporary existence. “The life of mortals is like grass, they flourish like flowers of the field; the wind blows over it and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more.” Psalms 103:15-16. As humans, we too have beauty in our lives, but it is also only for a short time.
Marriage is probably one of the biggest blessings that we have. Flowers come in so many wonderful colours and textures and their fragrances are so lovely. Marriage is the same thing. When two people come together, they bring different personalities and experiences, layered with colour and texture from varying backgrounds. Once married, a husband and wife walk together as heirs together of the promise to come. Their prayers will be as a sweet-smelling fragrance unto our Lord. We are here to bring hope and beauty to our partners and to others around us. We have a fleeting amount of time as our lives are temporary. We are like the grass that fades and as the flowers that wither but the kingdom of God will stand forever.
One of the main elements of a wedding day is the addition of flowers. Flowers can represent God’s gift of nature, and the beauty of the hope that we have. Flowers also represent the knowledge that we are merely pilgrims of the day. Our time on this earth as humans is not forever and we should rejoice with love for each other every day we are given!
Flowers set the tone for a wedding day. One of my favourite themes is a wedding day that is decorated with all white flowers and greenery – white represents the purity of marriage and the white linen that we will be wearing as the future bride of Christ. Green tends to represent immortality which is our hope to come.
The Song of Solomon is a book of the Bible that depicts the wonderful love between a bride and groom as representing the love Jesus Christ has for his followers. There are two beautiful flowers mentioned in chapter 2:1-2. The bride says she thinks she is like the Rose of Sharon and like the Lily of the Valley. The idea behind her saying this is that she is humble. These flowers are not cultivated but are common, and grow wildly in the Middle East. The response of the groom in verse 2 however, is that he thinks she is a “lily among thorns”. In other words, when the groom looks at his bride, she is not common at all. All other women are thorns compared to her. To him, she is the most beautiful flower he has seen, and that she stands out from all the rest.
Some of my favourite white flowers to incorporate at weddings are anemones, butterfly hydrangeas, sweet peas, garden roses, majolica spray roses, lily of the valley, Queen Anne’s lace, tulips and hellebores. My favourite vines and greenery would be spirea, flowering jasmine, hops, bittersweet vines, smilax and love in a puff. The flowers for your wedding day do not have to be elaborate. You can gather them the day before your wedding with your friends from a local flower farmer and have fun arranging the bridal bouquets together. You can also gather bunches of flowers in vases for your reception. As a florist, I like to arrange flowers so that they look like they have come from nature. Flowers should look organic, loose, and whimsical with a garden style. I love to arrange flowers in vintage vessels that I come across in antique stores. Vintage vessels add a lot of character and old-world style. Flowers and greenery set a beautiful tone of God’s beauty and hope that we have and can truly make your wedding day feel like that glorious day that is to come.
We pray that as you consider this wondrous adventure ahead, even marriage, that you might keep in mind the awe-inspiring principles & words of our all-knowing & all providing God.
“His will is best, there let us rest” -Sister Jane Roberts in The Virtuous Woman
If you have any resources related to this post or any of the content ahead (please see the table of contents) we would love to hear from you!