Flower Girl Advice for Toddler

Updated on April 20, 2009
M.W. asks from Baltimore, MD
24 answers

This isnt really a discipline/Behavior Issues but I wasnt sure what topic this request falls under. My 15 month old daughter was chosen to be the "flower girl" in my brother's wedding at the end of June. She has been walking for a few months and gets around great but I was wondering if anyone has any tips to get her down the isle. She does follow simple directions most of the time but I'm not sure how she will react with 100 people staring at her. I will have my husband standing at the end of the isle to encourage her to walk. Any other tips or suggestions to help her perform her duties without a hitch? I know anything that will happens will be adorable, even if she sits down in the middle of the isle and starts eating the flower pedals but I'd really love if she walked nicely and tossed some pedals gracefuly.

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N.H.

answers from Washington DC on

I was at a wedding, where they took a wagon, decorated it with flowers, and the ring bearer who was older pulled her down. She had a great time throwing flowers.
Grandma N.

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L.R.

answers from Washington DC on

A cousin's daughter was flower girl at not quite 2 years. Her mom walked down the isle right behind her. No one noticed her mom because they were so involved in watching her. Good luck!

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N.H.

answers from Washington DC on

I was at a wedding, where they took a wagon, decorated it with flowers, and the ring bearer who was older pulled her down. She had a great time throwing flowers.
Grandma N.

1 mom found this helpful

K.F.

answers from Washington DC on

You can have her walk down the aisle with someone else (my DSD walked down with my DSS...so cute). The younger they are, the more overwhelming it will be for them - and she probably won't remember to throw petals out, let alone for it to look graceful. I would give her a tiny bouquet or a little white basket with petals...but not expect too much. You can have her walk down with one of the bridesmaids, or just try to explain that she should follow one of them...and then have her sit down in the front row with your mom or something. Kids will be kids, but it will be adorable seeing her in the dress! And a dress rehearsal will help - it will give you an idea of how she will be on the day, so you can have a chance to do a run through and change things if necessary. :)

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L.R.

answers from Washington DC on

A cousin's daughter was flower girl at not quite 2 years. Her mom walked down the isle right behind her. No one noticed her mom because they were so involved in watching her. Good luck!

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H.H.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi M.,
I had my very shy 3 year old sister in my wedding and because she was so shy and uncertain about what to do we had my other sister, who was a bridesmaid walk with her down the aisle. My little sister had a flower ball since she was too young to really understand putting petals on the ground and my sister was the last bridesmaid to walk to it just seemed like that was the plan. I'm not sure how much say you'll have at your brother's wedding, but I think you'll have a VERY difficult time getting your little one to walk down the aisle if she doesn't have someone with her to "show" her the way :) Best of luck!

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S.M.

answers from Washington DC on

My daughter was a flower girl at 25 months. She practiced and was so excited, and when the time came she freaked-out halfway down and ran through the pews. I was a bridesmaid, and I should have held her hand all the way down instead of us walking independently.

So, I suggest that you and the bride and groom don't get too caught up in the magic moment of walking down the aisle. Odds are against it happening the way you envision it. She can do it 100 times in church on Sundays but she won't do it at the wedding.

It is plenty cute for her to be accompanied - your brother could "escort" her or a trusted usher or bridesmaid (definately should be an adult and not another child).

Enjoy it and don't make it a trial (18 months is pretty young for this). It is just a few minutes out of the whole day and she will be more beautifyul if she is enjoying herself, and you are there to keep her focused.

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L.B.

answers from Washington DC on

Perhaps you could borrow a small wagon (if you don't have one) and then cover it with a white sheet and decorations such as flowers or ribbon. Ask another young child (or grownup) to pull her down the aisle. It would be great if you could get her to toss the petals. That way you won't have to worry about her getting frightened and holding up the proceedings and it will still be cute as (rhymes with wedding bell). Congrats to your family and enjoy the wedding!

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K.H.

answers from Washington DC on

Is there a ring bearer? Maybe the two of them could walk down holding hands? For our very young flower girl (20 months), we had the older flower girl walk down with her hand in hand, and it worked out quite well.

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A.L.

answers from Washington DC on

M.,
I think as long and you and the bride and groom are realistic about what to expect from a toddler, then everything will be fine. It would be great if she would walk nicely and toss pedals, but that is a lot to expect from a 15 month old. I've been in a lot of weddings with flower girls, and most of the young ones end up either being walked down the aisle by their Mom or carried. Like you said, seeing all those people staring at her might be a bit overwhelming. Either way, she'll look adorable and everything will be fine as long as everyone doesn't expect things to go "as planned". Enjoy the day!

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T.B.

answers from Norfolk on

My youngest was the flower girl in two weddings last summer. Granted she was older than your daughter, but we had to try different things with her to get her to walk. The first wedding, she was the only flower girl. She was expected to walk down the isle and around a corner to her "spot" and stay there the whole time...ha ha ha, that didn't happen, BUT what she did was kind of funny. She made it down the isle, until she noticed that her god-mother was sitting in the front row (the mother of the groom), she ended up sitting with her during the ceremony. For the recession, she came running down the isle to me.

For the second one, she was one of two flower girls. We got the girls together several times so that they could get to know each other. Then we told them that they were to walk together and if needed hold hands. This worked wonders and she would have made it all the way down the isle, had it not been for her seeing me sitting in a pew. She sat with me for a short time, then realized my friend was sitting up front. So she went and sat with her. The recession this time was much easier because she went up and walked back with the other flower girl. It was really cute, and she did a great job for it being a new experience for her.

I am sure that what ever your little girl does will be absolutely adorable. Even if she does not make it all the way.

I do really like the idea of having her push something decorated for the wedding. It will give her an incentive to go.

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M.S.

answers from Roanoke on

Not sure if I have advice on how to get her down the aisle, but I would suggest having someone that she is comfortable with sit near the front so if she has a meltdown, they can take her out of the ceremony and take her to a nursery. The couple getting married probably does not want a crying baby while stating their vows.

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S.C.

answers from Norfolk on

My son was a in two weddings when he was 2yr. For one we had him walk down with someone. He walked with the flower girl who a year or two older for one and he walked with me in the other b/c I was in the wedding too. Both times we had him sit after he came down. My mom was seated down front and bribed him to his seat with a favorite toy.

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K.H.

answers from Washington DC on

My niece and son performed the flower girl/ring bearer job at very young ages. My mother in law had two big stuffed animals for them at the end of the aisle. The little girl did wander some and even went up on the altar to sit with her aunt who was the bride. My son had lion king stickers plastered inside his jacket and special action figure socks so he still felt cool and in control.

When my brother got married, the flower girl fell apart right before her big moment but looked really beautiful and was much better at the reception. Another of my sons had a last minute panic at his ring bearer duties but his big and experienced brother put his arm around his shoulders and escorted him down the aisle. It's a really cute picture and they were both pleased at having accomplished the task.

Having my kids involved was stressful but also very special. They felt really important but also anxious. Overall it was a positive experience. And gifts that they know about in advance waiting at the end of the aisle are a great idea and may help them sit still and quiet for the ceremony.

Good luck!

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M.C.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi,
I saw a wedding once where the little flower girl went down the aisle in a little decorated wagon being pulled by her mom. No tears, no hesitancy. But very cute!

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M.C.

answers from Washington DC on

I like the other response. Very cute.
Some other options:
1. Decorate an umbrella stroller and have the ring bearer push her down the aisle.
2. Have her hold the hand of one of the bridesmaids.
3. Have her Dad escort her down the aisle.

M.

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Y.G.

answers from Washington DC on

Just to add to all the good ideas here, when we got married, our son was almost two. We thought it would be nice to have him bring the ring pillow down the aisle. Well, when the actual event happened, it was almost naptime (good planning, Mom) and he ended up walking with his blanket, nuk, and his much older (teen) cousin who was one of our ushers. He ended up falling asleep in his stroller at the front of church and missed that whole thing. :) We were obviously VERY laid back about our ceremony - some people are more detail oriented. Enjoy the ceremony!

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K.L.

answers from Washington DC on

My niece was 18 months old when I got married. She walked down the aisle with my sister-in-law (her mother) who was my matron-of-honor. During the ceremony she sat with my in-laws and then walked back up the aisle with her parents after the ceremony.

I didn't expect much from her in the traditional sense of a flower girl.

She did make for lovely pictures though! lol

M.P.

answers from Norfolk on

I don't know about tossing petals gracefully but to get her down the isle I would try holding her favorite stuffed animal or her blanket, or something else she loves so she is inclined to proceed forward. Perhaps even a little reward such as a lolipop or something. Of course you don't want to ruin her dress so I would stay away from berry blue ;o).

Good luck!

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J.C.

answers from Washington DC on

I've been in your shoes before, and this is what helped us have a good chance at "success":
-make sure she's had her normal nap, or an early one if the time of the wedding is during her nap
-make sure she's had a good snack, so she's not hungry and grumpy
-practice, practice, practice, starting NOW... give her a basket at home with some faux petals or pieces of tissue and walk her through it daily. Use the same wording every day, such as "throw the petals and walk"
-if there is a rehearsal, let her check out the church and walk around and get a feel for the place. Explain that this is where she is going to "throw the petals and walk". Explain and show that you are going to be at the front of the aisle, and daddy is going to be at the back to send her off.
-Praise her for everything! Talk about how special it is going to be, without emphasizing "doing it right", etc.

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T.H.

answers from Dover on

When I got married, my son was 2. He and a close friend of the family was 2 as well. They were my junior bride and groom. I had the same anxiety about the wedding. I thought they would do one of two things 1). Freeze because of the 200 guests and not do anything or 2) run ridiculously down the aisle (neither of the two I wanted to happen). So what I did was purchase a wagon. I decorated it was beautiful lace and vine. I then had my ring bearer pull the two down the aisle. It was so adorable. When they got to the front, I had the ring bearer help my son out, then my son helped the jr bride out. They gave each other a hug and then when to their designated spots. Maybe the flower girl can throw the petals from a wagon. It worked for me.

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R.A.

answers from Norfolk on

We had a 23 month-old in my daughter's wedding. Her father sent her down the isle, and her mother was sitting near the front (just behind the family) with M&M's. She just about ran down the isle, but was so short only the people sitting near the isle could see her. We didn't even try to have her stand through the ceremony. She just sat with her mother. Those who missed her saw her at the reception. She was precious.

C.W.

answers from Washington DC on

Dear M.-
I have a child with special needs...one of her former nurses (now a best friend) wanted shannon to be her flower girl. Shannon was a 'new' walker...and needed some 'guidance'. What WE did was take fabric remnants from the dresses...decorated a 'fisher price' shopping cart (loaded with weights...and flowers) and 'aimed' her down the aisle. After the wedding...I think many wished they had had a 'flower' cart' at theirs!!

Good luck!
Michele/cat

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K.L.

answers from Washington DC on

Tara gave you great advice - have everyone she is drawn to at the altar from the beginning! When I got married my 2 year old niece was our flower girl. She got really upset when my sister-in-law (a bridesmaid) was about to leave her to walk the aisle ahead of her. My sister-in-law ended up carrying her. That was fine too :) Good luck!

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T.H.

answers from Norfolk on

one thing we did wrong when we had our 18 month old do this was to pick the pedals back up during practice. when the wedding came she went down the isle threw one hand full then turned around and said " i have to pick them up". i think it would be best if the person that hands her of at the end of the isle should be the vent coordinator or someone she isnt drawn to or knows that way she would rather go to you or dady by the groom. good luck!

S.T.

answers from Washington DC on

just stay flexible and prepare to do whatever you've got to do to keep the situation relaxed and fun. if you need to hold her hand down the aisle and help her with the petals, well, why not? i LOVE the suggestion that the ringbearer pull her in a wagon! if she runs or forgets the petals or wanders off in the wrong direction, just laughingly put (or carry) her back on course and remember it will all work out wonderfully in photos and memories.
:) khairete
S.

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