White Flowers - A Guide to White Flowers

“White covers a multitude of sins.” -- Jonathan Milne
White Flowers

White flowers are the perfect symbol of innocence and purity, conveying a touch of heaven and beauty. This guide will show you the best selection of white flowers, their meaning and use in flower arrangements and weddings.

The color white is the ultimate color of light, angels and heaven. It signifies purity, innocence and tidiness. Although a non-color, just like black or grey, white goes well with any other color, just like black or grey. White is a blinding, reflecting, brilliant color, as it is known that white reflects all light, which is most associated to weddings and to the immaculate conception.

In westerns culture, white is related to brides and virgins, while in the East it is the color of death and mourning. White can cause restlessness due to the fact that white is also the color of hospitals, doctors and dentists. White is also an emergent symbol of masculinity, being the Yang in the Yin&Yang dichotomy.

In nature, white is encountered in the color of snow, clouds, swans, doves or cotton. In the botanical reign, the bright white flowers, such as white lilies, white callas or white roses, have a special place. In feng shui white is the color of purity, the Yogi color of completion and ultimate wisdom.

As a feng shui color, white is associated to the Metal element, bringing a sense of clean, freshness and tranquility. Use white in your home, especially in meditation rooms or bathrooms, to contrast brighter colors, more as an accent than as a dominant color.

White flowers are often related to perfection, chastity and purity, carrying deep symbols of peace and calmness. Virgins and brides use white flowers as accessories to convey simple beauty, sincerity, modesty and innocence, whereas at the same time, they are often used in funerals and commemorations in order to symbolize the supreme light of God and the heavens above.

You can suggest sincerity and appreciation when offering a white flower bouquet. They express a truthful, clean and open heart and bring brightness and light to the recipient’s life.

White flower arrangements will always evoke elegance, beauty and humility at the same time, whether you use dramatic white flowers such as white lilies or white callas, or simpler white flowers such as lily-of-the-valley which brings about freshness and spring.

If you are not confident about choosing the perfect color combination for your white flower arrangements, here are some tips which will guide you:

  • You can obtain an enlarging effect in your living space if you decide to use white flower arrangements. But be careful since too much white will cause a clinical effect.
  • White flower arrangements become warmer if you try mixing them with red flowers or yellow flowers.
  • For a Spring-like effect, white flowers go perfectly with pastel colored flowers such as light pink flowers, light blue flowers or cream flowers.
  • For a summer look, white flowers and bright yellow flowers are a great match.
  • If you want to enhance the stunning effect of dark red flowers, deep purple flowers or navy blue flowers don’t hesitate to use a dash of white flowers in your arrangements.
  • Use ivory tones to soften jewel tones, or use pure white flower tones to enhance them.
  • For a simpler, but aristocratic and sophisticated effect, use bright white flowers with a touch of emerald green greenery.

White flowers are probably the most common choice for wedding flowers regardless of season. However, they are also the perfect classic choice for your wedding, since white, as black, goes well with any other color, illuminating everything around it. You might consider white flowers for your wedding if you want to convey chastity, perfection and new beginnings. White flower bouquets for weddings are well suited for any season and for every type of wedding, may it be casual, formal, classic or modern.

Here are some useful tips for your white wedding flowers:

  • Choose your shade of white wedding flowers according to the color of your dress. You have the option to create a harmonic combination or contrast.
  • Use magnolias in arrangements, corsages or buttoniers to add a touch of romance.
  • Consider tonal arrangements since they are most dazzling when using ivory or white flowers, so use similar flower shapes in your wedding arrangements.
  • White hydrangeas can provide a perfect match to your wedding dress and the large flowers make them excellent for bridal bouquets.
  • A white calla lily bridal bouquet will give you probably the most stunning and dramatic appearance when you walk down the aisle. Consider a round or shower calla lily bouquet, combined just with some green foliage.
  • Use white roses in hand-tied bouquets. The most popular white roses varieties used extensively in bridal bouquets are: “Bianca” and “Akito”.
  • White tulips bouquets look dramatic by themselves. However, they can also be paired with white gerbera daisies and roses.
  • A Lily-of-the-Valley bouquet is much prized, since these flowers are only available through end of April and beginning of May. Choosing this white flower bouquet requires that you carefully plan your wedding day.
  • Use large white wedding flowers in pedestal arrangements, such as white lilies, or white Asiatic lilies. These will give an immediate visual boost and spread a lovely fragrance all around.
  • For centerpieces, there is a large variety of white flowers that you can work with: white lilac, white roses, white tulips, white carnations and white calla lilies.
  • Calla lilies are especially suited for arrangements and centerpieces, as they can be coaxed into bending, giving a new dimension and offering endless possibilities for arranging your wedding flowers.
  • Add a formal air to your ceremony by using white wedding flowers with black accents.
  • Paper white flowers, cream and ivory flowers offer distinction, formality and elegance.
  • White flowers are mostly paired with greenery in bridal bouquets, due to the relaxing and soothing effect of the green color, which will help the bride unwind and enjoy her special day.

As white flowers offer a very wide variety, but they are still extremely popular at the same time, it’s a good idea to check your florist for availability. This will narrow down your options a bit and will give you a clear picture of which white flowers are readily available each season and how they go together to offer you the best wedding experience.

  • White Rose

    Emblem of the House of York in the Rose War, the white rose is the flower of moonlight, symbolizing virginity and innocence. The blooming bud of this white flower symbolizes a girl too young to love. Traditionally used as wedding flowers, these white flowers are a token of virtue, pure love, unity, envisioning new beginnings.

  • White Lily

    The white lily symbolizes purity and majesty. There are several legends about the creation of this magnificent white flower, most of them related to Christianity: one story says white lilies were born from Eve’s tears as she was leaving the Garden of Eden, others say that they grew from the drops of sweat as Jesus was praying in the Garden of Ghetsmani. When offered as gifts, these flowers say: “It’s heavenly to be with you”.

  • Camellia

    Camellia Japonica Alba Plena, also known as the “Bourbon Camellia” is a white flower native to Japan, Korea and China where they call it the “Winter Rose”. Although they are said to be unscented, these flowers carry the message “You’re adorable” and they are referred to as “flowers of promise”.

  • White Hydrangea

    Easy to plant and care for, the white hydrangea is always a dependable flower in your garden. Unfortunately, this white flower may not maintain its color year after year, since a slightly different composition of its soil may turn it blue or pink.

  • White Gerbera Daisy

    The bigger sister of the white daisy, the white gerbera daisy belongs to a species of flowers which are said to be the fifth most popular cut flower in the world. These white flowers symbolize truth and innocence.

  • White Tulip

    White tulips are a perfect choice for spring wedding bouquets, as tulips usually are related to love and they always seem to be just right in any context: they are not too big, not to flashy, always elegant and fresh. These white flowers in particular, express forgiveness, transmitting to their recipient: “I am not worthy of your love”.

  • White Daisy

    The white daisy is used since the 18th century in predicting if your loved one loves you back, by playing the classical “He loves me, He loves me not” game. These white flowers are a symbol of freshness, modesty and simple beauty, also conveying the promise of secrecy: “I’ll never tell!”

  • White Calla Lily

    The white calla lily is ironically associated to both weddings and funerals. The trumpet-like shape of this white flower resembles the shape of a woman, standing as hallmark of birth and resurrections. These stunning white flowers convey a message of magnificent beauty.

  • White Orchid

    As any other white flower, the white orchid is a symbol of purity, while as an orchid, this flower expresses delicate beauty. Offer a bouquet composed of these flowers when you want to say: “I care about you” or “I am thinking of you”.

  • Magnolia Flower

    A splendid white appearance, the white magnolia flower is said to be one of the first flowers that ever appeared on the face of the earth, alongside the waterlilies, being older than the bees. These white flowers convey nobility and love of nature.

  • White Hibiscus

    The most popular white hibiscus species are Hibiscus Waimeae native to Hawaii and the Luna White Hibiscus which makes a great perennial in your garden. These white flowers are used for concoctions in the traditional Indian medicine, Ayurveda.

  • White Carnation

    The white carnation stands for pure and sweet love, for loveliness and innocence, and it is said to bring about good luck. On Mother’s Day, wearing these white flowers in your chest brings a tribute to your passed away mother.

  • Jasmine Flower

    This gracious and delicate flower carries a message of attachment, affection and sensuality. Offering a bouquet of Jasmine flowers says: “I attach myself to you”. In Hawaii, the Jasmine flower is usually used in courtship and marriage.

  • Lily of the Valley

    This white flower has many legends associated to it: on one hand, it is said they have sprang out of Eve’s eyes when leaving the Garden of Eden, while on the other they are called the tears of Virgin Mary. Either way, these powerfully scented April white flowers say, when offered as a gift: “You’ve made my life complete”.

  • White Daffodil

    Also known as narcissus, the white daffodil is the birth flower of March. The Greek legend says that Narcissus, a vain young man, drowned in a lake while looking at his reflection. The Gods then turned his remains into the white daffodil flower.