Trending Now: “Flower Grandmas”

Flower Grandmas, Insult or Honor?

The roles within a wedding party are becoming redefined by unconventional couples. From gender-swapping to mismatched attire, a wide range of possibilities are emerging for the styling of a wedding party and traditional roles are being recast.

According to Martha Stewart Weddings, “Today, more and more brides and grooms are bucking tradition, choosing grooms-gals and brides-men, opting for two maids of honor instead of one, and outfitting the bridal party in mismatched dresses and suits.”

A role more recently re-imagined however, is that of the flower girl.

Flower grandmas, or “flower grannies”, are a rising trend in unconventional wedding parties. One such wedding that included them in their ceremony was the wedding between Josh and Maggie Wakefield. The story of their wedding ceremony went viral after multiple news sites such as Refinery29 covered their nontraditional decision.

“According to the bride, the two women played significant roles in their grandchildren’s lives, which is exactly why Maggie and Josh wanted to honor them on their wedding day,” Olivia Harrison, writer for Refinery29 said about the couple’s grandmothers. “The women wore matching gowns and tossed flower petals as they walked down the aisle.”

To couples like the Wakefield’s, having their grandmothers be their flower girls can be an honor, and it can also be a joy to the grandmothers who are asked to assume the role. Charlotte Summerfield of Bedford Heights is one such grandmother who was thrilled to be a part of her grandson’s wedding ceremony as the flower grandma.

“Being a flower grandma in my grandson’s wedding was one of the greatest days of my life,” said Summerfield. “John [my grandson] and I have always been great pals, and it meant so much to me that he thought to have me in it. It was really fun going down the aisle throwing the petals. Plus, it gave me things to talk to everyone about during the wedding, too. Everyone wanted to take their pictures with me. I felt important, instead of just being stuck away in a corner somewhere.”

More and more brides are loving the idea of honoring their grandmothers in this way. Cleveland resident Kallie Springer for instance wanted to include her grandmother in the wedding party since she has been an integral part of Springer’s life.

“I thought that having my grandmother be a ‘Flower Grandma’ was awesome,” said Springer. “She helped raise me, she was always there for me. I wanted to include her in the most important day of my life, and she loved it! Everyone told me how adorable she was, and it made me feel really good that I could give back to her like that.”

In spite of this, there are also individuals in the wedding planning community who are strongly against the idea of “flower grannies”.

Forums on wedding planning websites such as The Knot have generated a wide range of viewpoints on the subject, from those sharing their support to others presenting their cases against it. Most of those who are opposed to the idea of flower grandmas argue that it is disrespectful.

“My grandmothers would be far too sweet to say anything, but I imagine they would feel rather insulted at being asked to be ‘flower girls,’” artbyallie, a forum moderator for The Knot says. “I can’t speak for yours, of course, but it is a role meant for children under double digit ages.”

Another forum moderator for The Knot who goes by the username emmaaa shared a similar perspective.

“I think it is a personal decision of how you include your grandparents, but I would make sure it is done so fairly,” states emmaaa. “Personally, mine and DH’s grandmas would have been insulted to be flower girls, but every person is different.”

From the extensive amount of responses on the forums, the general consensus appears to be that every family is different, and only those directly involved in a couple’s wedding plans can know if having a flower grandma would be right for them. Some grandmothers may be thrilled at the opportunity, while others may respond to the offer with embarrassment.

What is your perspective on the idea of flower grandmas? Would you want them in your wedding, or do you feel the whole concept is insulting?

Photo by: Amanda Basteen Photography

Author: Arianna Shapiro

Author: Arianna Shapiro