The baffling task of choosing your wedding flowers

Hurrah! You’re engaged! Woop! Oh, the excitement, the best wishes from all corners of your life, the fuzzy feeling in your tummy when you catch a glimpse of the big sparkler you’re now sporting.

And then the reality of planning this big event hits you. Boom. Daunting, isn’t it? Now, I’m sure people will be offering you advise left, right, and center – you know the sort of thing – prioritise what’s important to you, have the day YOU want, delegate as much as possible, shop around…

Well, I’d like to put my two-pennies worth in and give you my top 5 pointers when choosing your wedding flowers. Traditionally, the advice is to allocate 10% of your overall budget on your flowers and venue decoration. In reality, this never seems to happen! The dream dress, Jimmy Choos, and champagne reception, not to mention a cracking photographer and vintage bus to transport all your guests, all eat up the budget before flowers are even thought about. Please don’t forget us, and the important part beautiful florals play in your day!

Style. Before you do any planning at all, decide what style of wedding you’d like to have. Are you after a traditional affair, a modern chic party, or a country rustic gathering? Bare in mind that your venue choice, and your combined characters will play a big part in this decision, and the choice you make may shape other elements of your day, such as the design of your dress and the food you serve.

Tall classic chic vase arrangement
Tall classic chic vase arrangement

Colour. Although you may not want too strict a colour scheme, or one that will be too restrictive, it is a good idea to have a colour palette to work from. It’s a great way to make sure all the different aspects of your day flow and fit together. And be a bit bold! Everyone loves a bit of soft pink and ivory, with stacks of roses and freesia, but why not step outside the box and explore some cerise and lime green? Or what about purples and reds for a regal statement? Or autumnal oranges and browns? There are so many possibilities! Once the decision is made, the scheme can be used throughout the day, from invitations to chair sashes, confetti to bridesmaid dresses.

Bold black and red theme for a Halloween wedding
Bold black and red theme for a Halloween wedding

Season.  Before you set your heart on any particular flower, think about what season your wedding is in. Or do it the other way round and identify when your favourite bloom is available and plan your wedding date around that! That’s what I did – I simple had to have blossom and muscarri, so it had to be a Spring wedding. Don’t be asking for Lily of the Valley in August or peony in November, because it just isn’t going to happen. Not without breaking the bank that is. Flowers in season are both at their best quality, and their best price, so it’s worth a little research.

A riot of Spring - making the most of the season!
A riot of Spring – making the most of the season!

Budget.  It’s difficult to know what to set aside for each part of your day, but it’s an important process to go through – you don’t want to run out of money and find you haven’t the funds to organise the fireworks you’ve dreamed of since you were a little girl. Sit down and work out what’s really important to you both in your day, and what is less important, and assign the money accordingly. But don’t forget that your flowers will feature in all your photographs, help set the tone of the day, and transform your venue to the next level. They really are worth it. Make a list of where flowers are required to help guide your budget allotment – bridal flowers, the bridesmaids, buttonholes, corsages, table decorations, chair ties, cake flowers… And be realistic. Clearly a budget of £200 is not going to get round a bride, 4 bridesmaids and 10 buttonholes, let alone 8 table decorations too… I’ve put together a few packages to give you an idea what you can get for your money, so take a look.

A budget-friendly table arrangement, perfect for a rustic wedding setting
A budget-friendly table arrangement, perfect for a rustic wedding setting

Research. The fun bit! Find out what you like, and what you don’t, by getting busy with bridal magazines, on blogs, and the wonderful Pinterest. Think about shape of designs, the colours available, the flower types and shapes, and the style of arrangement. Do you like foliage in the bouquet? Do you like a mix of flowers or just one type? Are you drawn to the tall candelabras or the short fish bowls? You might find it better to do this bit before setting your budget, to help see where your thoughts are going, or even before deciding the overall style of the day. It’s no good deciding to have a traditional wedding then finding you don’t like shower bouquets, pedestal arrangements, or roses.Looking back on your research, you’ll hopefully find a theme appearing, with similar shapes, style, and types of flowers.

And finally, find a florist who your trust completely to take your ideas and transform them into the reality of your perfect wedding day flowers!

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