When you start to look at ideas for wedding flowers, it can be very tempting to consider making your own wedding flowers. After all, many of the floral designs showcased in wedding magazines feature all the same type of flower in a round mass. How difficult can that be? And it would save a fortune! The major drawback is whether you as the bride (or groom!) would have the time and wherewithal the couple of days before the wedding to undertake this challenge. There will be a rehearsal and rehearsal dinner to contend with, not to mention a possible bridal shower or manicure and pedicure! You might also just want to relax and spend the day before the big day gabbing it up with your best friends at a spa.
Here are some tips and ideas to think about when deciding whether or not to tackle your own wedding flowers.
1. Make your own reception centerpieces and hire a professional to take care of the personal flowers. Reception centerpieces can be made in advance – possibly even a couple days prior to the wedding – and can be very simple to make. Considering centerpieces can be about $100 each, spending just one afternoon to make 10 would save you $1000, not including materials. The personal flowers – including bouquets, boutonnieres, and corsages – may require more intricacy and practice. There is some detailed technique work involved in making those popular hand-tied bouquets; and the wiring and taping involved in boutonnieres and corsages may be more than what you want to deal with on a limited schedule. Although making personal flowers isn’t rocket science, it may end up taking a long time if you aren’t familiar with it.
2. Consider signing up for a wedding floral design class at your local adult education center. Many community colleges and adult education centers offer classes in the arts and crafts. Look to see if there are any classes on making wedding flowers and centerpieces. You’ll get at least one or two designs down that you can later altar and personalize to your liking. If there is a class on making hand-tied bouquets, it would be a great opportunity to learn and practice the hand-tied technique.
3. Have a couple of friends or family on hand for help. Crafty bridesmaids, relatives, or friends would probably love to lend a helping hand in working with beautiful flowers! But also make sure there is someone you can count on to transport the flowers to the venue and set the centerpieces on the tables. Sometimes this may require missing some of the ceremony, pictures, or cocktail hour, so be sensitive of who you recruit.
4. Plan to work in a cool and spacious area with a large work table. Basements, garages, and dining rooms are great areas to store flowers and work with them. Flowers like it cooler rather than hotter and basements are perfect environments. Florists have the advantage of having a cooler to store flowers and completed arrangements. If it’s too hot, the blooms will open too quickly and then start to wilt. The trick is to have perfect timing. For a Saturday wedding, having the flowers arrive on a Wednesday or Thursday will allow them to open for a day or two before you work with them on Friday. Then they can be kept in a cool place overnight until the wedding on Saturday.
5. Purchase flowers from your local flower market (if one exists), from an online wholesaler, or from a warehouse like Costco. Not all cities have a flower market, and even if a flower district exists, sometimes there are strict rules and regulations governing who can shop the market. If they are strict, they may require you to have a reseller’s license. Some suppliers sell online and offer specials for DIYers wedding flowers. Costco has a pretty good selection of roses and other popular wedding flowers at reasonable prices.