Timeless and dearly beloved, lily of the valley is perhaps the ultimate wedding flower when it comes to the traditional bride. Kate Middleton and Grace Kelly both carried lily of the valley bouquets, and as two of the most iconic brides in the last century, we can’t help but wonder: How does a simple bloom make such a statement?
“Lily of the valley is the perfect choice for anyone looking for classic, timeless, and chic style; it has an effortless quality that is really wonderful,” says expert Matthew Robbins. “I find that lily of the valley works well for a bride who wants the focus on the fashion and the overall vibe rather than the flowers. It is understated but always luxurious.”
Meet the Expert
Matthew Robbins is the founder and creative director of Matthew Robbins Design, a wedding and event planning firm based in New York. Alongside partner and executive director Luis Otoya, Robbins also founded Robbins Otoya, a division of Matthew Robbins Design focused on destination events.
The naturally petite profile of lily of the valley has the ability to serve as the focal point at any wedding, but it's recommended that brides bulk up on these blooms in order to make a statement. “Remember: They are insanely small so you need lots of them to make it look like something substantial,” says Robbins.
Ahead, read on for 23 stunning lily of the valley wedding bouquets to inspire your own.
A Royal Touch
Myrtle is a largely under-utilized flower when it comes to weddings, but every British royal bride since Queen Victoria has carried a sprig of myrtle in their bridal bouquet. This bouquet of lily of the valley, astilbe, astrantia, and myrtle gives off a refined, regal, and romantic look.
Slim It Down
Take things down a notch with a more simple collection of lily of the valley. A bouquet with a slimmer profile can complement a more dramatic or intricate dress design, or even emphasize a more minimalist wedding style.
Make It Dainty
Perfect in place of a corsage for a mother of the bride or groom, opt for a delicate handful of blooms. Here, this mother of the bride carried a dainty, petite bouquet of only lily of the valley at this citrus-infused Ojai wedding.
Opt for a Nosegay
Skip a big bouquet in honor of a nosegay. Lily of the valley is the perfect size and shape for a small arrangement combined with other blooms—like ranunculus or stephanotis—or kept just to themselves.
Tie It Up
We love the dependability of the traditional lily of the valley bouquet, full and teeming with life. Enhance an already incredible design by adding a satin or silk ribbon to keep the blooms together.
Keep It Subtle
Use lily of the valley sparingly in a voluminous, organic bouquet like the ones featured here. The softness of these flowers adds texture to a bouquet combining fern, eucharis, and nerine lilies.
Incorporating garden roses or stock roses in a bouquet is always a game-changer. Add a stem or two with lily of the valley for a classic bouquet shape and style, perfect for a bride in favor of a traditional feel.
A large bouquet? Sign us up! Go for a ‘more is more’ effect by requesting your florist create a lush bouquet. Adding in extra leaves to the outside of the arrangement will make it even more full.
Trim It Back
Keep the bouquet focused on the bell-shaped portion of the flower by cutting back those leaves. Additionally, keep the green leafy portion of the bloom to a minimum to create a clustered effect.
There’s no doubt about it: Orchids have long been one of the more popular blooms to add to bouquets and wedding floral arrangements. (Just look at the stunning bridal nosegay from this wedding on the Italian coast.) The combination of pink and white orchids with lily of the valley makes for an enchanting bouquet.
Make It Whimsical
We love a touch of whimsy on a wedding day. This bouquet made with lily of the valley, stephanotis, sweet williams, and white astilbe keeps things romantic—just the way we like it.
Copy Kate (Yes, That Kate)
Undoubtedly one of the best bridal bouquets of the last decade, Kate Middleton’s lily of the valley bouquet is absolutely worth emulating (and this bride would agree). The rounded shield shape is classic and a perfect fit for any style.
Add a modern twist to your bouquet by creating an asymmetric shape. Incorporating vines will create a draping effect that will draw the eye to one side of the design.
Keep It Understated
With elopements and micro-weddings remaining popular choices for some couples, the intimacy of smaller gatherings can be translated through more than just your guest list! Utilize other small-headed flowers, such as sweet peas, Muscari, and spirea, along with lily of the valley.
Anemones lend themselves to a more wild, organic style of design no matter what other flowers they find themselves among. Consider a lush bridal bouquet recipe including gardenia, peonies, anemones, lily of the valley, ranunculus, roses, white lilac, astilbe, lisianthus, and Pieris japonica.
Embrace the Cascade
Cascading bouquets are definitely here to stay. A hint of lily of the valley woven together with roses and orchids is a design trend we can definitely get behind.
Your bridal bouquet is the perfect opportunity to display your “something borrowed” or even “something old”. Whether a family heirloom or a piece of jewelry, featuring it alongside a delicate bloom such as lily of the valley will only enhance the sweetness of the gesture.
Add White Flowers
Embrace a neutral color palette by adding more white flowers to your bouquet. Opt for statement blooms like white peonies or even a simple handful of white tulips to round out an all-white design.
Change It Up
A typical lily of the valley-only design would draw the focus to the flowers in the center, with the outside edge lined with leaves. Create an entirely different look altogether by mixing the leaves and flowers together evenly. This will create a more natural, organic arrangement and a break from tradition!
Add Sweet Pea
Available in a variety of colors, consider adding sweet pea to the mix. The ruffled effect of a sweet pea’s petals is the perfect addition to a bouquet for a springtime affair. Opt for longer stems of lily of the valley to create an elegant draping for a unique shape and style.
Play With White and Green
If a taste of spring is what you’re aiming for, look no further than the freshness of a white and green flower duo. Lively but not over the top, this color palette is one of our favorite color combinations; we love how it exudes classic femininity.
Tuck It In
We could argue that lily of the valley is the best accent flower since, well, any other flower. While we love a mono-floral bouquet, we’ll gladly celebrate just a sprig or two tucked in amongst an intricate design or large-and-in-charge stems, from daffodils to hydrangeas.
Opt for a Posy
A posy of lily of the valley is the penultimate celebration of less is more. The best part? The petite blooms are just the right size for a flower girl.