Cascading floral bouquets are usually used as a bridal bouquet, although bridesmaids can also carry smaller versions. Using a cascading floral bouquet is an elegant, more formal statement, yet has a more modern appearance. Floral bouquets have long been an important part of wedding ceremonies, but the cascading bouquets have only been popular since the 1980s. Making your own cascading floral bouquet will save you money, make the bouquet a memorable keepsake, and have your bouquet exactly as you envisioned it.
Select the varieties and sizes of the flowers and greenery you wish to use in your cascading bouquet. Be sure you purchase flowers with long stems, particularly the ones you will want to cascade down. Store your flowers and greenery in containers filled with water until you use them in your cascading bouquet.
Mix the floral preservative with water, per instructions. You will need to mix enough of this to fill a large, deep bowl or small bucket to soak the cascade bouquet holder. For the best results, see if you can purchase professional floral preservative from your local florist or floral supply center.
Insert the cascade bouquet holder into the floral preservative solution so the entire floral foam of the holder is submerged. Soak the foam for at least an hour so it fully absorbs as much of the floral preservative mixture as it can.
Remove the bouquet holder from the container it was soaking in and dry off the handle. Insert the handle of the bouquet holder into the neck of a tall, narrow-necked vase or jar to which you have added pennies, pebbles, rocks or marbles to weigh it down and make it more stable. This is an important step, because as you add more flowers and greenery to your cascading bouquet, it will become heavier and may tip over the support vase if it does not have weight in the bottom.
Building Your Cascading Bouquet
Start to build your cascading bouquet by inserting into the soaked floral foam of the holder the stems of greenery you selected. Begin around the outer edges of the foam and holder, in an open starburst design. In other words, insert one stem at the top, the next at the bottom, opposite the first stem, then at the 3 o'clock position, then 9 o'clock, and so forth. The greenery should extend 3 to 4 inches shorter than the diameter size of your finished bouquet because you will be placing blossoms that reach beyond the end of the greenery later. Of course, you will want to insert much longer pieces of greenery at the bottom, where the cascading will be.
Continue filling in the holder with greenery, but leave enough open space, foam you can see, to insert your blooms later. Do not make your bouquet look flat, but dome-shaped. Check this by viewing your bouquet periodically, as you insert the greenery and flowers, from all sides. When you are done inserting the greenery, lightly spray it with floral finishing spray to preserve it and keep shiny.
Select two of your medium-sized flowers to be the focal point of your bouquet, and after clipping the stem to a length that creates the dome look, insert them into the foam at the center and slightly above and at an angle from each other. Then begin to add more of your medium flowers around the edge of your bouquet. Have the top half of the blossoms extend beyond your greenery stems. This will determine the final size of your bouquet.
Fill in your bouquet, first with the medium flowers, then insert the smaller blooms. Make sure the blossom heads are facing out, not all of them forward, to create a more natural appearance. Once you have added all the blossoms you want, add the accents. These can be long ivy vines cascading down, curled or wire ribbon, bead strings, clusters of beads within the bouquet, or whatever you choose to add a special look to your cascading bouquet.
Spray your cascading bouquet with floral finishing spray to help seal in the moisture. Store the bouquet in a cool place and re-mist the bouquet and floral foam daily to keep your bouquet looking fresh.