Bouquet Tosses Are Grim And Insulting. We Can Do Better.

In Depth

No huge surprises here: Most of you — 81 percent — feel that skipping the bridal bouquet toss, that ritual in which all the single women in attendance are herded up and made to battle one another to catch a clump of flowers in hopes of being the next to marry, is a no-brainer.

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In other not-surprising news, you also had ten thousand (rough count) great ideas for alternatives to the bouquet toss. Some were sweet, some were funny, some are likely to result in bodily injury, and all of them were awesome. Here they are:

  • “My friends did a cat toss instead—they threw a stuffed cat into the whole assembled crowd and the person to catch it was supposed to be the next person to get a cat.”
  • “Instead of tossing the bouquet, I handed it to my good friend who was getting married a few months after me, and had everyone toast her and her fiancé. She took the ribbon and little jewel pins from my bouquet and had them incorporated into her bouquet, then did the same thing I did, handed her bouquet off to her friend who was getting married, who also used the pins and ribbon and so on…5 brides have used the pins now (the ribbon got a little ratty) and I don’t even know the last 2 brides outside of some sweet notes and photos they sent me, but its a really cool little connection and a “something borrowed” for them.”
  • “We asked all the married couples to come out on the dance floor and then the DJ whittled it down to the couple who was married the longest (40 years for the couple at our wedding) and we gave it to them. I saw it done at wedding years ago, then it went to a couple married for 60 years, and it was really fun. People were a bit confused when we asked the married couples to come out on the floor, but then once they got what what was happening they really liked it. Also saved our single friends the embarrassment of the whole “traditional” ritual.”
  • “Okay so an alternative toss would be to gift your bouquet to your (or someone’s) Gramma. The oldest, most lovely woman in attendance, and kind of make a big deal out of it. You can also have the bouquet dried and turned into beads for jewelry so that’s an option.”
  • “I told a friend of mine that when I get married, I want to stick a firework in the bouquet at the end of the night. And just let the flowers explode. She gave me some real hard side eye on that one.”
  • “Another ‘alternative’ – get 50 $1 scratch off lotto tickets, tie them in a ‘bouquet’ and launch them into the crowd. That way EVERYONE will want in on it.Don’t blame me if a fight breaks out.”
  • “I attempted an alternative bouquet toss that was good in theory but didn’t quite turn out as I’d planned. Instead of throwing my actual bouquet I had a bunch of tulips loosely tied together and little quotes and messages about love tied to each flower. I invited all the ladies to come up, not just the single ones, and before I tossed it I untied the ribbon so that the flowers would separate and each person would get one. Initially I had planned to toss them off the balcony at my venue so they’d float down all pretty-like, but on the day the balcony was closed because of rain so I just threw them on the dance floor. I suck at throwing so the flowers didn’t rain down prettily so much as fall in a pile behind me. But everyone grabbed a flower after that and seemed pleased, and the pictures are pretty funny. I think the idea could work if you had a better throwing arm or a balcony.”
  • “Witnessed: My gentleman’s cousin did a different take on the bouquet toss at her wedding, and invited basically everyone onto the floor. Her “bouquet” was basically a fistful of silk flowers, and before she tossed it, she wished for everyone present to find or keep a love as sustaining and true as the one she’d found. It came off really sweet and most of the guests (except for the small contingent that comes to every wedding and takes it as their solemn duty to be displeased) thought it was charming. Also, she got to pelt the unpleasant minority with silk flowers.”
  • “Modified bouqet toss? Gather all the little kids under like 10? Maybe force any surly tweens and teens to join too? Nobody over the age of 16-18?”
  • “We had all of the single people meet us at the bar where we “tossed” back a shot to celebrate the fun of being single. Though quite a few married people came over anyway, ‘cus who dosen’t want a shot!”
  • Glitter carpet bomb the crowd. There. I didn’t make you all get up for anything, and yet you’re all going to feel embarrassed about what you were just part of.”
  • “Our good friends, who were in the wedding, had just celebrated their one year anniversary 5 days prior to my wedding, so I brought my florist a photo of her wedding bouquet and had them make a smaller version, which I presented to her. I kept mine.”
  • “I was at a wedding with over 400 guests (the bride has a big family) and they had a tiny bouquet and a tiny garter, which the bride threw first for the little kids to fight over (and avoid adults trampling them). The funny part was when the little garter was tossed, it landed on the floor and the boys piled on top of each other to get it. When the official garter was tossed, the athletic bride’s brother caught it like a football pass, looked at his hands, then dropped it with a look of horror on his face.”
  • “I had a separate bouquet just for throwing, which was 12 paper individual paper flowers. We invited everyone out onto the floor — all the ladies, all the kids (we had quite a few, which is a whole other conversation), anyone who wanted to. When I tossed the bouquet, the flowers separated and scattered amongst the group, so 12 happy people went home with a memento. The kids especially loved it.”
  • I tossed a Yoshi. People were willing to DIE to get that thing. 10/10, would toss Yoshi again.”
  • “At my wedding, no one really wanted to do the bouquet toss except my sister. So my single girlfriends and I did a kind of soul train line where we just passed it off to her in the end. It made it fun without seeming awkward. My mom, ever the traditionalist, was kind of pissed that we didn’t do it “the normal way.””
  • “I graduated high school from a Catholic, all-girls, college prep in Sacramento, CA. Rather than caps and gowns, we wore white formal dresses and carried bouquets of red roses. At a point in the ceremony, a grad gave a “Thank you” speech addressed to our parents after which we all filed out into the audience and presented our parents with a rose from our bouquets. I didn’t want to do a bouquet toss at our wedding in 2009, so I riffed on that part of my graduation ceremony from ten years before. I ordered three small “toss bouquets,” gave a “Thank you” speech to our parents, and passed out the bouquets to our mothers. The moms loved the surprise and the sentiment; my still-single relatives were grateful for the toss-reprieve.”
  • “One DJ we interviewed said he did a wedding where the bride put some money in the bouquet. They didn’t tell the crowd how much was in there but the mention of $$ made all the ladies get up.”
  • “I had a “Presentation” bouquet, the type you cradle in your arms, for my Fall wedding. I put it on my Father’s grave…he had died that spring.
  • “I decided to do what my friend did at her wedding. She gave me the bouquet privately. She explained to me why she wanted me to have it and it was touching. So, I followed suit at my wedding. Granted, both of our weddings were very intimate and non-traditional in many ways so no one was really looking for a bouquet toss anyway.”

If there are any alternate bouquet toss ideas that you didn’t see mentioned here, by all means mention them in the comments! And thanks for all the input — our bride-to-be said she got lots of inspiration from your suggestions, so our good work for the week is done.

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