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Envisioning Fresh Flowers on Your Big Day

Let’s think about your wedding flowers

Are you envisioning fresh flowers on your Big Day? Wedding day floral arrangements vary from simple to extravagant. Monochromatic tones are subtle and romantic while bright colorful arrangements are striking and will be very memorable. The fragrance of fresh flowers filling the venue adds to the décor! Be sure to budget enough to be able to fulfill your dream! Read on for advice from professional florists and ideas to stretch your floral budget.

As you are creating your mood board or Pinterest boards, remember many of the posts you are seeing are likely showpieces that florists have used for editorial features. Take those pictures to your floral consultations (you should visit 2-3 florists). You have to discuss the budget. Don’t shy away from talking about money. It can be uncomfortable, but it’s best to be clear about what you are willing to pay. Many of your local florists are willing to work within any budget, of course, the quantity, size, and types of flowers will vary within each price-point. That’s another reason why it’s helpful to get a couple of quotes.

Advice from Professional Florist, Emily Farnworth

Advice from Camas, Washington based florist, Emily of Chickabloom Floral says that her #1 requested flower for summer/fall weddings are peonies. But warns that peonies have a short local growing season (May/June).

Availability and price will vary depending on the weather that year; the basic “supply vs. demand” economic theory. Emily also told me that, as the popularity of peonies has grown over the years, they have become available through the summer from Alaska (who knew!). Although smaller in size and not the same quality as locally grown peonies, customers will still have to pay a premium price to import them. However, if a client is set on having peonies in her bouquet, Emily recommends using highly-quality silk peonies. They can be mixed in with fresh flowers or, in her opinion, substitute high-priced peonies with dahlias.

Beautiful dahlias grow locally from July-the first frost in October. They come in a variety of colors and have many petals. Dahlias are a great summer flower option.

Many commercially grown flowers have become available year-round with flowers being shipped in from around the world. For instance, peonies become available again in late fall when it is spring in the southern hemisphere. There are a few spring flowers that are only available during their local growing season such as lilac and daffodils. Many others are grown in greenhouses and are available outside of their usual season.


Advice from Portland Florist, Tamara Arradondo

Another Florist friend, Tamara, owner of Poppies and Paisley Floral in Gresham, OR says “make lists and really think about your priorities”. She asks her clients “What is the #1 thing that you are not willing to budge on? Is that the Bridal Bouquet? Do you have a specific huge signature bouquet that you have been drooling over. Are your reception tables being over the top dripping in specialty orchids the clincher for you?” She suggests making a complete floral wish-list and then rank them from most important to least important. This list might include, but not limited to, bridal bouquet, bridesmaid bouquets, groom/groomsmen/officiant boutonnieres, corsages/boutonnieres for parents and grandparents, alter, arch, or aisle flowers for the ceremony, toss bouquet, floral crown, cake table, guest book table, reception table centerpieces, buffet/bar, etc.

When my clients list flowers as a high priority, we usually budget between 7-10% of the budget for flowers. The size of the wedding party and the size of the reception may dramatically affect that cost. If bridesmaids’ bouquets rank high on your list, but you have 8 attendants, you’ll be paying a lot more than if you have 3 bridesmaids. If floral is at the top of your list, you may spend 12%+ of your budget on them. That’s fine! You can have anything you want. You just probably can’t have everything you want. So keep making those lists!

My Advice About Flowers

My advice to couples is to trust your florist. An experienced florist has worked with all types of flowers in all seasons and conditions. Also, give your florist some flexibility on flower choice. Flowers are a perishable product and many things can affect their supply such as weather events, natural disasters, high demand, and shipping issues. Emily says, “I always create better designs when I have some artistic liberty to choose flowers that are locally in-season and look amazing!”.

Tamara has a wonderful blog on her website about hiring the best florist for your wedding. Click through and give it a read!

Wondering What to do with Flowers After the Event is Over?

Do you feel like because flowers are perishable, they are a waste of money to enjoy for just one day? Well, consider giving away your centerpieces to guests or to a local retirement center, senior care home or hospital where your gorgeous flowers will brighten the lives of the elderly or sick for days beyond your event. Ask your coordinator, your parents or a friend if they’ll run this charitable errand for you. If you are going to give them away, think about buying the vases from a dollar store or even repurpose vases from Goodwill (they always have a large assortment in a wide variety of colors and sizes).

So, as you continue with your planning, I hope I’ve given you some words of wisdom from the experts and ideas about wedding flowers that you haven’t considered before.

If you need further assistance finding vendors, planning or coordinating your wedding, I’d love to hear from you and see if we connect!