Choosing a wedding florist and thinking about your wedding flowers might seem daunting, but if you break it down, and trust your florist you can make the process both easy AND fun!
1. Decide what style of wedding you are having, arm yourself with as much information as you can to share with your florist.
You might not think your wedding has a style, but there will be some clues - what kind of venue have your chosen? What style is your dress? What are the men wearing? Is it formal or relaxed, urban or rural, modern, retro or vintage? Are your invites on brown craft paper, hand calligraphed in gold, or embellished with a geometric design?
All of these elements, from colour to theme to the food you're eating will create a unique fingerprint of your wedding - tell your florist all of it, bring swatches of fabric if you have a colour that you want to match a flower to it, if we don't know we can't think about your flowers in context.
2. Make a moodboard and find a florist that is similar.
Chances are that you will probably already have looked at some wedding magazines or blogs between getting engaged and starting your search for a wedding florist. Get a sense of what you like and don't like and make a moodboard - Pinterest is great for this if you haven't tried it already (and it's full of all sorts of amazing ideas to do with weddings, not just flowers!).
Once you've got an idea of what you like you can look at a few florist's websites and hone in on the ones that seem similar to the look you are after...
3. Know your budget.
So many times I'm told "we don't know our budget, how much do wedding flowers cost?" - but it's not a question with simple answer. It's a bit like asking how much a meal costs, or a shirt. You can go for a budget option, or a designer option, or one that is more expensive because of the design, the fabric and the materials used.
Typically though, you should expect to spend 10 per cent of your overall budget on flowers - more if you're want a very flower-full look, and perhaps less if you are having the ceremony and reception in the same venue (if you have a church and then a reception to decorate, it stands to reason you'll be buying more flowers).
It saves you, and your florist, a lot of time and energy if you know what you want to spend so that they can come up with ideas that fit your budget and focus on your priorities.
4. Have a wish-list...
What do you need - bridal bouquet, buttonholes, ceremony flowers, reception tables - and what do you just want - any extra decoration, toilets, fireplaces, an entrance arch etc?
Know what your absolute must-haves are.
And have a think about any must have flowers - no florist expects you to be an expert, or to choose all the flowers (we do need some flexibility!), but do you have a favourite flower - sweet peas, or scented garden roses - that you would LOVE to see in your flowers.
Lastly, have an idea of colours.
Beyond that, let your florist come up with some ideas for you based around your wish-list and if there's any budget left, you can look at the extras - that flower wall might look amazing but it could cost more than your honeymoon!
5. ...But be prepared to be flexible.
Honestly, most couples don't expect the flowers to cost as much as they do.
But factor in the sheer amount (a wedding bouquet will contain at least four times as many flowers as a standard bouquet), the specialist flowers used (most brides don't want supermarket quality roses or spray carnations!), the time taken to plan and order your flowers, prep the vases, make all of the elements, load the van, travel to the bride with her, then the groom, then install the flowers at the church, and then the reception - its several days work for several people. And that's before we collect and clear, dispose of any unused flowers and clean all of the vases and votives.
So, you might have to scale down the plans for that tunnel of flowers or floral wall that you were hoping for.
Be prepared to think creatively and be flexible to get as many of the things you want, and be prepared to let go of unrealistic ideas if your budget won't stretch. It's so much more effective to have fewer things that look A-MAZING, than lots of things that look scrimped on.
Want to chat to us about YOUR wedding? We don't charge for consultations and there's a cafe at our studio, so it couldn't be easier - just drop us a line...