- If you have your heart set on a particular flower, it's
best to plan your wedding for when it is in season. While it's possible, for
example, to ship tulips from Holland in the fall, they will be neither as strong nor as
bright as fresh spring tulips. Plus, ordering flowers out of their season can double
or triple their cost.
- Make sure no one in your wedding party is allergic to a
certain type of flower.
- Before contacting your florist, select the date, time and
place for your wedding and reception, and know your colors and styles of gowns.
- You should visit florists at least six
months before the wedding, especially if you're planning an elaborate wedding
- Arrange a preliminary meeting. Go prepared.
Take fabric swatches and descriptions (pictures are even better) of your selected wedding
apparel. Also have examples of the colors and styles of the mothers' gowns and the
attire of the groom and his attendants. With this information in hand, your florist
will be able to suggest floral combinations and artistic treatments to create beautiful
floral complements for your wedding. Discuss your general design ideas and begin to
develop a budget that will meet your needs.
- If possible, try to interview several florists and compare
their ideas and estimated costs before making your final decision. The volume of
flowers, not the variety (unless you're requesting something exotic), determines the
price. And remember, you're paying for the labor as well as the flowers
- When you visit the florists in person, check for sloppy
workmanship. Two bad signs: visible floral foam at the bottom of an arrangement and
designs that appear skimpy or sparse.
- Ask to see photographs of florists work, sketches, or
sample wedding albums.
- When deciding on a florist, determine which one was the
most helpful and informative, had the prettiest arrangements, and the accompanying costs.
Then select your florist. Remember, request that your florist give you an
itemized bill in advance. Get a written contract outlining all the details.
- Keep the bridal bouquet as simple as possible. Besides
hiding your wedding gown, an enormous bouquet will draw attention away from where it
should beon you! A bridal bouquet should complement your frame, size, and your
- If you prefer not to throw your actual bouquet during the
bridal toss, talk with your florist about arranging an extra bouquet for the toss, a
smaller simpler version of yours. That way you can keep the one you carried in the
- If you want to have your bouquet professionally preserved,
check out the list of Bouquet
Preservation Professionals in the San Diego Area and Bouquet/Flower
Preservation on our Links page.
- The groom's boutonniere, worn on his left lapel, is usually
a spray of the same type of blossoms used in your bouquet. The ushers and groomsmen
wear boutonnieres different from the groom's and your attendants' flowers are different,
of course, from your bridal bouquet. Corsages for the mothers/grandmothers and
boutonnieres for the fathers/grandfathers are coordinated in color and style within the
general floral theme.
- You'll need other floral pieces for your wedding. Ask
your florist for guidance. Also check out the items listed on our Wedding
- Consult selection guides for ideas. Your florist has
bridal books to offer guidelines for colors, flowers, styles, designs and flower
- If you intend to use fresh flowers for your cake, try to
provide your florist with a picture or sketch with dimensions of your cake. This
will help them estimate the quantity for your cake. Also, accenting the cake with
similar flowers or petals on the cake table makes an elegant presentation.
- Consider using the same flower decorations for the ceremony
and reception. Have someone transport the flowers from the ceremony location to the
reception. There is no reason to buy double the flowers.
- When selecting flowers for the head table or the cake table
at the reception, consider using the wedding party's bouquets placed along the front.
This adds more to the table and saves on additional flowers.
- Ask your florist to make a preliminary list of their
recommendation of what theyll think youll need in numbers of bouquets,
arrangements, boutonnieres, and so on.
- If you have any unusual or personal requests, dont
hesitate to ask! Sketch ideas, cut out pictures or take photographs of flowers and
share them with your florist. By communicating with your florist, you can be
confident that your wedding flowers will be just what you hoped for.
- Your may wish to select certain flowers for personal
reasons. Others may be chosen because they have traditional meanings. (For a
list of flowers and their meaning, see The Meaning of Most
Flowers from 1-800-FLORALS.)
- For an interesting article on Wedding Floral Trends from
the Society of American Florists, click here.
- As you get closer to the date, meet again with the florist
youve chosen to complete the details
- You wouldn't dream of wearing a gown you have never laid
eyes on, and the same should be true for buying flowers. Request to see a sample
centerpiece a few weeks before the weddingwhen your flowers are in seasonto
ensure that there are no surprises on the big day.
- If the florist has never worked at your ceremony or
reception site, make sure she or he visits the location.
- Make arrangements for when the flowers will be delivered
and who is to receive them. Ask if there is a delivery fee and/or set-up fee.
- Make sure that you supply the florist with the names,
addresses and times for delivery of your bouquet, boutonnieres, corsages and floral
- Find out what the payment and cancellation policy is.
- Ask what the guarantees are regarding freshness,
availability and substitutions.