Choosing your big day blooms
Choosing the flowers for your special day is one of the most enjoyable tasks of wedding preparation. And it can be very satisfying too when your choices work out and you get wonderful results. However, certain myths regarding wedding flower arrangement have caused many brides to make wrong decisions, which only lead to dismaying effects.
Meghann from Go Wedding Flowers gives us the insider scoop, dispels a few myths and shares her top tips on selecting flowers for your big day.
A common misconception many brides-to-be believe is, ‘If I leave choosing my flowers until the last minute, they’ll be cheaper’ - this is not the case! If I scramble to secure flowers at the last minute, the price can increase. The more time I have to organise your flowers influences what varieties I can get my hands on, and how much I have to pay for them. Flowers are seasonal - grown locally, and imported into New Zealand from all over the globe! Therefore, it’s important to note that the closer to your nuptials you leave your floral organisation, the more flexible you’ll need to be about price and style, as particular flower varieties might be impossible to source.
It’s generally believed that when the word ‘wedding’ is mentioned, the price of flowers goes up. Again, it’s not that simple. An average wedding is about 30-40 hours work for a florist; a considerable amount of time and effort goes into sourcing the perfect blooms. This involves choosing the best and most viable option to locate the flowers to style your dream day – whether that be attending flower markets (at 5am!), negotiating with Wholesalers, or going directly to rural nurseries. It's not all about the individual flowers, but rather the lengths I go through to ensure I source you the highest quality blooms.
‘How do you decide what is an appropriate amount to spend on your wedding flowers?’ There's always that moment during the consultation process when I have to try and find this out. If you’re unsure about investing in flowers, let me say this: flowers live on in your photos! In fact, I'd go as far as saying they make a lot of the pictures even more special. Five, ten or fifteen years after your wedding, you won’t necessarily remember what your appetizers were, but you will have photos and videos that will provide a visual record of your special day. And guess what? Your flower choices will standout in those visuals.
There are many ways to save money when selecting your blooms. Work with your florist to choose locally grown, in-season product for your bouquets; perhaps consider having fewer flowers and more foliage. Put vases on your bridal table for your bouquets to go into after the ceremony so they can double as a table decoration. Consider the number of people you have in your bridal party; the more bridesmaids you have, the more bouquets you will need! I would always suggest focussing on the bridal party first, then the reception venue, and finally the ceremony venue (if different from your reception venue). Beautiful floral walls and heavily decorated arches are lovely but may be out of the question if you have a small budget.
To DIY or not? That is the question. Many brides assume that it’s easy to create beautiful florals, however, this is not the case. There’s so much planning involved; how many bunches of each variety of flower is required for the bouquets, buttonholes, corsages, hair flowers, church/venue flowers? It takes a bit of experience to get this right! I also have to consider how far in advance I need to get the flowers so that all the blooms are full and look their absolute best. Then, once I have bought all the flowers, there's the prep work. I also check all the flowers to make sure there are no blemishes or imperfections as I can only use the best blooms. Personally, if it were my big day, I'd prefer to leave the floral design up to a professional so that I can relax, sip some champagne and enjoy my wedding day without unnecessary stress.
‘How do you get the most out of your flowers?’ Many of the flowers you have purchased will still be going strong for several days after. It would be a shame if they were to be thrown away. Anything wired such as buttonholes, corsages and floral crowns would not last much longer than the day, as they’ll wilt without water. However, the bouquets and floral arrangements will keep much longer. To help your bouquets survive the day, make sure they don't stay out of water for extended periods. When you have your photos taken, keep the boxes your flowers were supplied in handy so that you can pop them in water between shots! After your wedding, take your flowers home, or gift them friends and family who helped you to create your special day. You can also consider donating them to a rest home or hospital where someone else can enjoy them.