Updated: Feb 14
Flowers play a big part in my life, and they will probably play a big part in the hearts of many a bride to be.
It really is not just the size of your wedding that will cause your wedding flower bill to soar. Laid back or lavish, the cost can depend very much on your flower choices.
Additionally there are other factors which will affect your spending, two of which are where you purchase your flowers from, and how you utilise them.
If you're reading this blog, and you are interested to find out how you can get more from your wedding flowers while spending less, then I hope you'll find the tips here both enlightening and helpful.
ARE YOU A DIY BRIDE?
If you are a DIY bride, organising your wedding flowers can become quite daunting, since you have the added tasks of calculating the amount of flowers you will need, finding the best place to source your flowers from, and last but not least, planning and preparing the arrangements to perfection.
Whether you are a Boho bride, or a traditional one, there will be flowers involved.
The cost of your wedding flowers could eat away at your wedding budget if you do not choose wisely.
I'm not going to make you any empty promises here, nor am I going to share any magic formulas. I'm giving you 9 + tips to consider that may assist you in keeping your costs at a reasonable level, whilst still achieving the best possible results.
GOOD FLOWER CARE
Did you know not all flowers need the same flower care?
It’s not enough to just purchase your flowers, bring them home, plonk them in a vase of cold water, and expect the best from them.
Your flowers will reward you with a few more days of beauty if you treat them well, and cater to their individual needs.
Peony Care Tips
Tulip Care Tips
Ranunculus Care Tips
Water is important, but just as ‘man cannot live by bread alone’ the same is true for flowers and water.
A little bit of research won't hurt, but it should help. You should be aware that; some flowers need just a little water, some need a lot, some like their water very cold, some you can invigorate and give new life if they are placed in quite warm water.
Most flowers do not need to be up to their necks in water. A vase half full is sufficient in the majority of cases.
NOTE: Aim to change the water every 2 to 3 days. Make sure your container is clean. Every time you change the water, snip the flower stems. Remember to cut the stems at an angle.
Try to prepare your floral arrangements at least a day after you purchase them. This gives them ample time to hydrate. They'll thank you for it.
Keep completed bouquets and other floral arrangements in a cool room if possible and don't be afraid to mist your flowers to maintain humidity, especially on a hot day.
When misting your flowers, avoid wetting leaves such as eucalyptus, water will ruin their appearance.
If you’re fortunate enough to purchase flowers that are supplied with flower food then you’re laughing, or you should be.
In respect of wedding flowers, I would say that flower food is an absolute must have. You can purchase it in sachets of liquid or powder.
PROPER PREPARATION BEFORE ARRANGING YOUR FLOWERS
Vases, Containers and Tools
Make sure the containers that you intend to use for your flowers are squeaky clean.
In fact make sure all the equipment you intend to use is clean.
Make this a purchase planned with precision, wash your buckets / vases and place water (with flower food already mixed in) in them before going to the flower warehouse. By the time you get the flowers home, the water will hopefully be close to room temperature and not too cold. This will help to prevent the loss of any of your freshly bought flowers since they will not be lying around too long on a kitchen surface, waiting to be hydrated.
Use a good sharp knife to cut your flower stems. (If you’re going to use scissors to cut the stems, they need to be very sharp. Blunt scissors can squash and damage flower stems.)
NOTE: Most flowers benefit from having their stems held under water whilst being cut.
For further information and a more extensive list of items you may need, click on the link below.
PREPARING YOUR FLOWERS
Many people buy their flowers, take them home, place them immediately into a vase of water, and consider the job done.
As I mentioned earlier your cut flowers will thrive better if you can cater to their individual needs. Remember the flower food that I mentioned earlier?
Once you arrive home with your fresh flowers there are a couple of things you need to do before placing them in water.
Firstly, cut about 2.5cm from the bottom of each stem. Remember to do this at a 45° angle. Why? The best thing you can do for your fresh flowers is to allow them to have a good drink.
Secondly, in order to prevent your flowers from dying prematurely from bacteria etc., and to keep the water in your container clean, remove any leaves on the lower part of each stem. That is all those leaves that would be submerged under water in the vase if you were to leave them on the stem.
KNOW THE IDEAL CONDITIONS TO STORE YOUR FRESH FLOWERS IN
Fresh flowers are worth every penny. If they're looked after properly they'll reward you with both beauty and longevity.
Where To Store Your Flowers
You will need to be careful where you store your flowers if you're preparing them for your special day. Your flowers will probably be stored at your house for a day or 2. You need to be able to keep them looking perfect for your big day.
Try not to fall into the trap of storing your flowers in a sunny room. Definitely avoid a sunlit window. That is unless you need to speed up the flowering process.
Store your flowers in a cool room. This will prevent them from blooming and dying too quickly.
This also means, keeping them away from ripening fruit which can definitely shorten the life of your flowers quite dramatically.
You should also be aware that storing your flowers near a draughty window or warm radiators will quickly cause your flowers to fade.
How To Store Your Flowers
If you have a large amount of flowers, don't overcrowd them in containers that are too small. Use large enough containers, allowing the flowers to have plenty of room. This will allow the air to circulate freely.
Not All Flowers Get On Well Together
Narcissi are beautiful flowers, but they don't play well with other blooms. It would be better if you kept them separate in their own vases.
Since greenery does not have flowers, you can save on your flower food and just store it in a separate bucket of plain water.
Secateurs may come in handy when it comes to cutting the stems of some of your greenery. One clean cut is always better.
This will definitely prevent you from destroying your knives and scissors.
WHERE TO PURCHASE YOUR FLOWERS
To bulk buy or not to bulk buy?
If you need a large amount of flowers for your wedding and you are able to purchase them wholesale then bulk buying maybe your best option.
The flowers may cost you less, though you must remember that VAT maybe added at the till, and that great saving you made might not look that great if you don't use all the flowers.
Remember this is meant to be a money saving exercise.
CALCULATE HOW MANY FLOWERS YOU NEED BEFORE SHOPPING FOR THEM
Not all flowers purchased from the warehouse are sold with the same amount of flowers. They may be sold in bunches of 5, 10, 20, 25 or larger. See more information below, bunch sizes in brackets.
Carnations (20, 25)
Chrysanthemums (5, 10)
Lysianthus / Eustoma (10, 20)
Roses (10, 20)
GET GOING WITH THE GREENERY
Even the smallest bouquet or floral arrangement can be enhanced with a little greenery (Foliage). So don't forget to add it to your list when you go shopping for your wedding flowers.
Greenery such as hard Ruscus often comes in larger bunches of 50 stems. Unless you'll be needing a lot of greenery (foliage), one of these bunches will be more than sufficient.
Hard Ruscus literally lasts months and months, it's well worth purchasing. Just remember to change the vase water every now and again. I love to place large bunches of it minus any flowers into brightly coloured tall vases
Salal (Lemon leaf) and Leatherleaf and soft ruscus also goes a long way, though it does not thrive as long as the Ruscus.
GROW YOUR OWN IF YOU CAN
If you have in your garden, Astrantia, Eunonymous, Hydrangea, Hypericum, Ivy, Ladies Mantle, Lavender and other Herbs, Peonies, Roses, Viburnum to name but a few, you're well on the way to being able to reduce your flower budget.
Well almost. See 'Grow Your Own Wedding Flowers And Greenery'
You always need to consider which flowers are available throughout the year, as I'm sure you'll be aware that all flowers / greenery is not available every month of the year.
BE A SAVVY BUYER
I've saved what I believe is the best advice till last.
All the advice in the world is not going to help you much if the flowers and greenery that you purchase is poor quality or already past it's prime.
When buying your flowers, make sure they are not in full bloom. This is so important, especially if you purchase your flowers on a Thursday and you need them to look their best on Saturday.
When choosing bunches of flowers, don't buy them if the majority of the buds are green, showing no colour and are still firmly closed.
Choose flowers which have buds that are firm to the touch, and are just starting to open.
Avoid buying bunches of flowers if the petals are looking bruised at the tips.
Fading and limp greenery is a sure sign that your flowers are not as fresh as they could be.
If you must use flowers that are not in season in the UK, or flowers that are very expensive, consider combining them with lookalike or substitute flowers. This will definitely help to keep the costs down.
This list is not exhaustive, nevertheless it should definitely help you to make some good decisions when making your flower purchases, assist you in prolonging the life of your flowers, and ultimately saving you money.
PC Creations Leeds wish you every success with your wedding planning.