6 Pro Tips to Rocking Your Wedding Florals
You're engaged! The excitement is overwhelming -- in both good and, well, overwhelming ways. There are so may decisions to make and things to plan, and one of them will be your wedding floral arrangements. Where do you begin? It's a valid question, and one I brought to some of my favorite ladies at Sherwood Florist in Dayton, Ohio, to hear what they had to share on the topic. Scroll down to see some of their top tips and suggestions for making the best connection with your florists, to create amazing floral pieces for your wedding day.
tip #1: Start Your Planning Early
It goes without saying, but wedding planning is a bit of a marathon. Plan accordingly, and make sure you choose your key vendors in a timely manner. Because weekends are at a premium, one of your first wedding vendor choices should be finding your florist, especially if your wedding is in a popular wedding time, like May/June or September/October. Booking your florist a year or more in advance will allow you to have the best options available and plenty of time to create together.
However, before launching into your hunt, there are a few things that will assist both you and your future florist in the process. One key element is knowing your color palate. This is huge! Knowing your colors before you meet with your florist will save loads of stress for everyone, and that's always a great thing while wedding planning. Also, if you have inspiration pieces to share to give a general direction of the vision you have, that will allow your future wedding florist to know the style you're looking for in your wedding florals. During your search, be sure to find florists whose style fits your vision for your day. Also be sure to understand that while Pinterest is a great way to get the creative juices flowing, allowing your florist to flourish and create within those inspirations will make for amazing, unique pieces that are perfect for your day! Do your homework, and make sure the florist you choose is the best fit for you and your day. Being sure your visions vibe together will allow you to be the best team, and beginning the search early on in your wedding planning will allow you the best chance to be able to book the wedding florist you love.
Tip #2: Work Within Your Season
Everyone loves gorgeous peonies in a bouquet, but they aren't realistically possible in August. Dahlias are stunning, but can't happen in April. Understanding the season you're getting married in will affect what florals are available for your day, and knowing ahead of time what's in season will help the process. Being willing to work within your season will allow you to avoid heartache, and you never know, you may fall in love with a flower you didn't even know existed, or thought of as a another option! Trust your florist to help guide you with the best options for your season. And, as a killer starting point, the ladies at Sherwood Florist have give a jumping off point below to know what options there are per season:
If you're having a spring wedding...
If spring is your wedding season, and you're a fan of peonies, you're in luck! Peonies, tulips, ranunculus, and anemones are all fantastic, season-friendly options in the spring. And, to top it off, these florals are all locally grown within the season, which will definitely ease the strain on your pocketbook. Spring is also the best time for the popular trend of blooming branches.
If your wedding is in the summer...
Summer weddings are popular, and there are fantastic seasonal options for summer wedding couples. Take a look at garden roses, listhianthus, stock, and hydrangeas as options for unique, seasonal wedding bouquets. Again, bonus points for working with a florist who locally grows these beautiful options. You'll be happy with the lower cost of a locally sourced item, AND you'll be boosting the local economy. Win!
If an autumn wedding is your jam...
Autumn weddings are becoming more and more popular, and it's no wonder; the beauty of the changing leaves and the crisp temperatures in the midwest that allow for outdoor activities, but not quite the heat that we experience in summer, all make for a compelling case for an autumn wedding. And, if you choose to say, "I do" in the autumn months, you'll have a load of unique options from your florist! Sunflowers, dahlias, cockscomb, and celosia are all beautiful in the autumn months, and lisianthus is still available as well. Plus, it's the best time for foraged foliage like plumes, wheat, ivy, etc. There's a plethora of options for autumn wedding florals, so set your florist loose and see what they can dream up for you!
And if winter is your wedding wonderland...
Don't fret, winter couples. While the snow might put a possible damper on the ease of acquiring sunflowers and tulips, you still have beautiful options to stun! Amaryllis, genestra, and even possibly peonies can be sourced in the winter months depending on the time. Add in some beautiful winter vibes, and you'll have stunning wedding bouquets and centerpieces.
TIp #3: Prepare for Your Investment
There's no way to get around it: fresh flowers ARE an investment, and truly an art. Come to your wedding florist with your full wish list, and be ready to discuss options with to stay within a desired budget, if need be. Your florist will be able to find viable options that can fit within ranges if needed, and being flexible with them to build the perfect florals that fit your needs will alleviate stress for you, both emotionally and financially.
One key elements of preparing for your wedding floral investment are to pick your priorities ahead of time. What are your non-negotiables, and what items are you more flexible on? Understanding what is in season in your wedding timeframe, being flexible with your vision, and allowing your florist to have creativity within the theme and color palate will allow your wedding florist to fit your needs much easier than if there is strict rigidity in the process.
Another thing to keep in mind is that even while planning for anything, no one can really plan for everything. Natural disasters can affect availability of certain florals and their prices. For example, when Hurricane Erma hit Florida, Miami customs were unable to bring in any foreign florals for a period of time, which caused issues for many types of arrangements. While your florists will do their best to accommodate requests, understand that sometimes things are simply out of their hands. Understanding availability can dictate pricing, planning accordingly will allow you to be one step ahead of the game when it comes to budgeting for your wedding florals.
Tip #4: Be Flexible
Be open to your wedding florist's suggestions -- they want the best for you! Sometimes the specific flower you want in a particular color might not be available, but your florist may know of a killer option to take its place and still be stunning. For instance, burgundy can be tougher to come by, so being willing to have an open vision to being in that color palate will allow your florist to be able to create a unique vision for you. Are you in love with a big ball of roses, which can sometimes come with a larger price tag, or are you in love with a big ball of red florals in general? Both are stunning, and being flexible with your florist will allow you to get the most bang for your buck, and the best wedding florals for your wedding day.
Tip #5: Understand the Process
Most florists offer many appointments throughout the process to be sure you both are on the same page, and everything goes according to plan. These appointments are generally an initial appointment, where you'd share your vision, hopes, and general theme and color palate to start the creative juices flowing for your wedding florist. The second appointment is usually to design and show you a mock centerpiece, and it is generally midway through the process to ensure there's plenty of time to make changes and know you're both in love with the creation process. Finally, you'll have your final appointment to tie up any loose ends before the wedding. To optimize the process and keep things flowing, try to build your changes, concerns, and ideas into a centralized concept list and bring those to your appointments to share with your wedding florist. And, because each week brings a new set of weddings, be mindful of the timelines they’re working under for fellow couples, and be flexible with your florist by understanding their response process.
tip #6: Trust Your Florist
You've done your homework, and you've narrowed your search down to your absolute favorite florist. You've shown them your inspiration, they're excited for you, and you've booked them for your big day. Now is what might be the hard, but oh so necessary part: trust your wedding florist to do the amazing job they're about to do for you. Allowing creative freedom will inspire fresh concepts, and create beautiful displays for your wedding day.
As a bonus question, I asked the ladies at Sherwood Florist what they themselves would love to see more, and what makes their hearts skip when given the opportunity to create. Immediately, they said they would love to see more full installations, especially anything suspended. Large, creative focal pieces--and not even just large; we're talking GIANT!--are what their dreams are made of, and the bigger, the better. And, as for a "sleeper" floral that they didn't feel was given enough credit were Carnation pieces. They were in agreement that there are so many absolute beautiful carnation varieties out there that can be utilized — especially the antique varieties!
And there you have it, folks...six tips to rock your wedding florals, as well as a bonus mini wish list of what makes the hearts of a few local florists speed up. I hope this helps couples in their hunt for the perfect wedding florist, and make sure you stop by Sherwood Florist in Dayton to say hello to the ladies. I think you may just leave with one less vendor choice to make. :)