The word boutonniere is French.  In the UK they were known as buttonhole flowers.

Traditionally the flower was placed in the buttonhole of a suit or tuxedo.

Boutonnieres are now worn at formals and not just for weddings.  Some sources believe that the wearing of the flower goes back to the Aztecs or Egyptians who used to wear particular coloured flowers to show support for players in various sporting events.

Others believe it originated from the battlefields of wars in England and each side wore a flower of the same colour to distinguish friends from enemies.

Adornments on the lapels seemed to become quite popular by the early 19th century.  This is when coats were folded at the top which revealed the inside of the buttonhole.

The boutonniere should be worn on the left hand lapel of the jacket.  If there is no lapel on the jacket you plan to wear than the florist who creates the boutonniere can create a stem that can be pinned to the lapel.

Though it seems to be traditional that the boutonniere is a flower, we believe they can also represent the true man you are marrying, his hobbies, his quirks, a moment in history, an item of a lost loved one.  The ideas are limitless.

A lot of boutonnieres could be hand made, therefore another way of saving money.

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