DIY Wedding Flower Tips
So you're thinking of DYI-ing your wedding florals!? YES Girl! We are cheering on you! You got this!
The reality is, flower arranging is not brain surgery, it's more of a form of art. And being a form of art you could say some rules were meant to be broken.... but not all of them! And we're about to share those that can't be broken... EVER! So let's dive right in!
While the art of flower arranging is not brain surgery, the planning of the recipes for all the elements of your wedding decor, sourcing the best suppliers for flowers and other accessories can be, but don't worry we have nailed down this step and could do it in our sleep after planning recipes for over 150 weddings over the past 15 months! It's a lot of #flowermath.
So where to begin?
First, establish your quantities, how many bouquets, how many boutonnieres, corsages and centerpieces you need to make. From there, I would recommend splitting that list into categories "Bridal party flowers", "ceremony flowers" and "reception flowers" this will just make it super easy to keep track of how many bunches of each type of flower you will need especially if you're using one type of flower only (trust me it can get super confusing) as you don't want to risk having too much or not enough!
The next step is to figure out how many stems of each type of flower you need for each bouquet, each boutonniere, each centerpiece, etc. Don't worry about "bunches" at this point, you just need to figure out how much of each type of flower and greens you need to make your design. Once you have it all laid out and know how much you need of each item for each category, add up all the quantities for the same types of flowers, for instance, if you need 36 roses for your bridal party flowers, 24 for your ceremony flowers, and 68 roses for your centerpieces then you need a total of 128 roses for you entire wedding. Do this for the rest of your blooms and greens.
After compiling this list, (and here comes the part where I would recommend getting the help of a professional or someone that knows a little more about wholesale flower ordering) you'll need to place an order with your local florist, supermarket flower lady, ...Costco....(Don't get me started!) or of course us! (which we would be thrilled about!) because no every bunch of flower is sold the same way and you'll need help figuring that out! Whichever way you choose to go, we will still be cheering on you girl!
here are a few things we want you to keep in mind when ordering your DIY flowers:
- When ordering from places that don't specialize in flowers (AKA supermarkets, Costco, your friend who does flowers on the side) you are compromising on the quality of your flowers. These flowers are not ordered or delivered specifically for your wedding, they have been sitting in coolers in major warehouses for weeks if not months! (yes... roses are cuts months in advance before they hit your favorite vase!) as such orders are filled with mass produced flowers. So why is this important? Once in room temperature, the "vase life" for your flowers at it's freshest is 1-3 days. For weddings, we recommend 2-4 day old flowers as you want them to fully open to get that natural and lush garden look everyone wants! But let's be clear we are not telling you not to order from these places/people, we are just telling you the compromises you'll need to make!
- As I mentioned previously, not all bunches of flowers are sold in the same quantities. For instance roses and carnations only come in bunches of 25, so if you only need 12 roses for your bouquet, you still have to buy the whole bunch of 25. Here's a general breakdown of what you can expect in terms of bunch sizes for flowers (but these are not all the options there are...because I'd be here all day listing them!)
- Roses and Carnations = 25 stems/bunch
- Most cut flowers (tulips, alstromeria, lilies, freesia, spray roses, spray carnations, ranunculus, anemones, etc.) = 10 stems/bunch
- Daisies and mums = 5-7 stems/bunch
- Greens/foliage = 5-10 stems/bunch depending on the type . So keep these numbers in mind when adding up all your final numbers from each category if you need 128 roses total for your wedding you might want to compromise on those 3 roses so you order 125 of them (5 bunches of 25 roses) Makes sense? But remember, when buying wholesale you cannot but buy just single loose stems, you have to buy the whole package!
- If you have a very specific color in mind for your wedding very rarely you will be able to get exactly what you want from the supermarket or Costco... As florist, we have spent years learning the names of each rose (yes! each rose has a different name and each blush rose is not the same as the next blush rose.... there's 8 different shades of "blush" roses that I can think of!) So make sure you do your research and ask for the very specific shade you're looking for because you definitely don't want to end up with Light Pink Mondial when you really wanted Mentha roses.... and if you're supermarket flower lady doesn't know "if they can get you that kind of flower" run! run! run! You really don't want to risk it!
- Timing is everything! make sure you place your order well in advance, wholesalers need time to prepare the mixes of boxes and your supplier need time to prepare the order. I normally recommend ordering 3-4 weeks in advance!
- And then there's YOUR time because you know DIY!? Make sure you allot yourself several hours for flower arranging before your wedding. Normally the day before the wedding. especially if you are making a bunch of corsages and boutonnieres! They are the smallest most tedious things to make and they are time consuming! Not to mention the many time you'll have to restart the bouquets because they are not "perfect" enough! I would normally recommend 4 hours for Bridal Party Flowers and 3-4 hours for centerpieces depending on the complexity of them and the prep involved!
- Lastly, make sure you have done your research! What style of bouquet are you going for? Hand tied traditional, hand-tied freestyle, cascading...etc.? Have you looked up "how to make a garden style bridal bouquet", if not, do it RIGHT NOW! (well after finishing reading this blog or sign up for our upcoming DIY workshop!) and make sure you know what kinds of materials you will need to create your bouquets and your centerpieces! Trust me you will regret trying to "wing it!" it just doesn't work that way! Even when I am designing I make sure I pull out the picture of what the bride asked for as reference for shape, style, colours, flowers, size, etc. and review the picture a few days before so I make sure to have all the supplies I need for each item!
So yes, flower arranging is not brain surgery, if I can do it, you can do it too, but you definitely cannot wing it and there is a method to our madness!
We hope this was helpful information and if you still have questions or want to chat more about your DIY florals feel FREE to reach out as we offer DIY packages where we not only help you figure out your recipes, but also give you step by step instructions on how to build your own bouquets and arrangements!
We are also hosting a workshop on Sunday April 15th, 2018 at the Vanitea Room 5:00pm where you will learn not just the theory on how to DIY your wedding florals but also the techniques and you will get to create a real bridal bouquet! You can sign up for it here DIY Bridal Series Workshops . you can also book your private workshop if you prefer a more personalized workshop where we discuss the bridal bouquet you have picked for your wedding day.
As always, I can't wait to hear from you and your wedding florals!