Some of you may recall a certain episode of Sex and the City in which conservative Charlotte gripes about a date that was ruined from the get-go because the poor, unwitting suitor showed up with carnations, which she disdainfully dismisses as “filler flowers.” Carrie’s response? “I hear they’re making a comeback.”
Carnations, whose formal name, dianthus, actually means “heavenly flower,” have long been the black sheep of the floral world, synonymous with “tacky” and relegated to prom corsages, gas stations, and roadside flower vendor buckets. Yes, they lead unhappy lives.
But the times they are a-changin’, and today’s bride is typically more budget-minded, seeking creative ways to do a lot with a little. And you can definitely do a lot with a little when it comes to carnations, since they’re the cheapest flower around. Plus, as Martha says, they last forever. They may not be David Austin roses, but they deserve love too. And if they’re good enough for Carrie, our favorite fictional style icon, and Martha, the queen of good taste, they’re good enough for us.
Behold the many faces of the humble, unsung carnation!
1. Nude and pink carnations in a fabric-wrapped vase via DIY Bride 2. Carnation cones from Martha Stewart Living, February 2011 3. Handmade runner of pink carnations and coral by Hana Floral Design 4. Purple carnations in bamboo vases, source unknown 5. Floating carnation monogram designed by the amazing Tara Guérard 6. Pink ombre carnation curtain via Style Me Pretty 7. Peacock feather-adorned orange carnation sphere via Wedded Luxe 8. Bright yellow and orange carnations from Martha Stewart Weddings 9. Escort cards on a bed of pink carnations from Martha Stewart 10. Carnation in an old salsa can from Fern and Feather 11. Dark purple carnation centerpiece from Martha Stewart 12. Fuchsia carnation cubes from InStyle Weddings via Hostess with the Mostess 13. Pink and peach carnation centerpiece via Style Me Pretty 14. Bowl of red carnations from InStyle Weddings via Hostess with the Mostess 15. Carnation ball guestbook from Brides via The Savvy Event