Chances are if you're attending a wedding as a male bridal party member, you'll be wearing a boutonniere.
They have an interesting history. We've searched the internet to brief you on the history of the boutonniere, as well as some etiquette tips to help you out on the big day!
The word boutonniere comes to us from the French. The British simply called them button hole flowers. Traditionally, the flower was placed in the button hole of the man’s suit or tuxedo.
Some sources believe that the tradition of wearing flowers goes back as far as ancient civilizations like the Egyptians or the Aztecs, who were believed to wear certain colored blossoms to show their support for players who participated in sporting events.
Other scholars believe that the boutonniere tradition came about on the battlefields of civil wars in England, where each side wore a particular color or type of flower to distinguish friends and enemies from each other.
According to GentlemansGazette.com, boutonnieres became popular as lapel adornments in the early 19th century. The fashions of this time period started to include coats that folded over at the top, revealing the inside of the buttonhole.
So why did this tradition start?
Oddly, the boutonniere and the bridal bouquet were created for similar reasons: to ward off bad smells, disease, and evil spirits.
Today's weddings are full of traditions and Southern brides and grooms, for the most part, like to stay true to many of these traditions. One of these traditions is for the groom, groomsmen, fathers, grandfathers, ushers, and maybe even the officiant to wear a boutonniere on the left lapel of his suit or tuxedo jacket.
Most of the time a boutonniere is simply a few small blooms bundled together. Sometimes, however, something more unique is in order.
At weddings, there are certain guidelines to follow when it comes to boutonnieres. The groom should have always have a different boutonniere than his groomsmen and the other men at the event who might wear one, like the fathers of the groom and bride. While it’s not required, it’s a good idea to match the boutonniere to the bride’s bouquet.
The boutonniere should also always be worn on the left lapel of a man’s suit jacket. Make sure your florist includes the stems of the flowers used, so that the boutonniere can be easily pinned to the jacket. Also make sure to ask your florist to include pins to use, otherwise any floral or hobby shop like Hobby Lobby will carry floral pins.
Our best advice is to keep it simple and tasteful, but don't be afraid to get creative with them either!
Don’t use anything much larger than the size of a golf ball, leave the full, lush blooms to the mothers to wear as corsages.