Flower Grandmas

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Flower Grandmas: An Honor or an Insult?

By: Arianna Shapiro

Photo  by Amanda Basteensmall

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 reimagined 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 circa 2016. 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.

In spite of this, there is also a substantial number of 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 appropriate 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? Let us know in the comments below!