Guest Author - Beth Helmstetter
Whether you dream of a formal fete or a beachside soiree, flowers can carry out your style and theme of your event. Now, unless you’re in the floral industry yourself, the chances of you knowing the difference between peonies and cymbidium orchids are pretty slim. Well, lucky for you, that’s not a prerequisite for choosing amazing wedding flowers. While there are a million resources both in print and online, the best asset you can have is a great florist as well as the following tips. Keep reading for the top tricks of the trade that will help your florist help you.
Do your research. While florists are designers by nature, every one of them needs to have a good understanding of your style before they can find the perfect blooms for you. So, before you meet with her, search magazines, the internet and pictures from friends and families weddings for ideas that you like and don’t like. Create a file of images that includes ideas you love, flowers you love, and also, concepts you hate. This will save a lot of frustration and time for both of you and give your florist a good starting point for designing your day.
Be flexible. While it’s important to come with your ideas, be open to your florist’s suggestions and concerns. Often times, magazines showcase some of the most amazing flowers in the world. Ones you think you can’t live without, but, also, flowers that are nearly impossible to get. Listen to your florist if she tells you the flowers you love will not come in the best condition or that the bouquet you have selected is way too large for your frame. She is looking out for your best interest and if truly a great florist, she should be able to offer you several suggestions on more appropriate selections while maintaining your style.
Think color. Have an idea of the color scheme you would like when meeting your florist but remain open minded in this area as well. If your bridesmaid’s dresses are apricot and you dream of apricot and pink, allow your florist to make recommendations on how to enhance the color scheme. Maybe adding creams, pale yellows and accents of orange would make for a more polished color scheme. If you still are set on a two toned event, go with your gut, but remember to always be open to suggestions during these brainstorming sessions.
Intimate flowers. Before meeting your florist, do have a few blooms in mind. What were the first flowers your fiancée ever gave you? What flower did your mom carry in her wedding? And simply, do you have a favorite flower? Having a few special memories and flowers in mind will go a long way in the design of your décor.
Get Personal. When designing your bouquet really put some thought into the details. For instance, don’t settle for a plain wrap of satin ribbon around your stems. Accent it with pictures of your mom on her wedding day, a rosary to show your religious commitment, or wrap the blooms with a handkerchief passed down by your grandmother. These meaningful touches will add a personal touch to your most important accessory.
Do double duty. When choosing ceremony décor, consider how these pieces can be used at the reception. For instance, pew décor might transfer nicely to the cocktail tables or if large enough may be able to be placed right on top of an empty vase to create a centerpiece for the dinner tables. Altar arrangements can double as entry arrangements or bar décor at the reception. Or, you can even use your dinner centerpieces around the ceremony site in places like the guest book table, windows or even lining the altar.
High or Low. When choosing a centerpiece, think very high (24” or more), or low (12” or below). One of wedding guest’s biggest complaints is not being able to see around centerpieces for conversation. Eliminate this potential gripe by avoiding centerpieces that are at eye level when sitting down.
Avoid too many smells. While you may love the scent of gardenias and Casablanca lilies, consider your guest’s comfort when selecting area décor. Many guests are allergic to extremely fragrant flowers and others are prone to massive headaches. To avoid guest discomfort, keep the aromatic flowers for your own personal bouquet and use less fragrant blooms for centerpieces, napkin detailing, etc.
Pinspotting. Pinspotting is an inexpensive technique used by all event designers to really make your dinner tables pop. For an additional $30 to $50 per table, you can have a spotlight focused on your centerpieces and cake table, ultimately drawing everyone’s eyes to the amazing florals you worked so hard to design. If you cannot afford to pinspot every table, consider only highlighting you and your groom’s table for an extra special effect.
Be charitable. Unless you have selected highly delicate blossoms such as plumeria, phaleanopsis or gardenias, your flowers should last a few days following your event. Since you will be jet setting by this time, donate your flowers to a local charity, church or hospital. You will surely brighten many people’s day and you can even write a percentage of the expense off.