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Wedding Flowers Advice

Jun 20, 2008
What Flowers & How Much?

Planning for your flowers needn't be daunting with lots of inspiration now available at hand. If anything, there's now so much inspiration, the choice can be overwhelming.

The biggest questions most couples have, is generally how to get started and make some sense of the multitude of choices. And since anything goes, and tastes are getting more adventurous, how do you end up with something that is really original. Next, how do you optimize your budget and more importantly how can you set a realistic budget for your ceremony flowers?

It often feels like a circular debate and breaking the circle is even more difficult for same sex ceremonies than it is for heterosexual couples. Here's how to make some headway:

Until the industry catches up with research into same-sex couples' ceremonies, start of with the broadly quoted industry statistics available for heterosexual couples. 550 is spent on average for a wedding, for an average party size of ca. 80 guests, but this can range from 200 to 8,000.

Bear in mind that these statistics are an average of all types of weddings - civil ceremonies, church ceremonies and ones combining a church or registry office and a reception. Eliminating the need for church flowers helps rebalance the need for more focus on flowers at the ceremony and reception, so the costs involved will be fairly similar.

Why not add details such as crystals or diamante to bouquet flowers to add a magical sparkle in all the photos?

Start planning at least 1 year in advance and look at florists' displays at the time of year when you plan to hold your ceremony. When you're ready to discuss your flowers with a florist, you'll know then what the main choices are. It's unlikely that you'll become an expert on all the flowers and colours available, but you'll get a good feel for availability and colour schemes.

A planning session with your florist can then help select finishing touches to make your flowers truly your own, customising designs to arrive at bespoke bouquets and party flowers as well as distinctive venue flowers which are most appropriate for your reception.

Why not add thinner and longer taper candles to gain height and stature for your table centres without getting in the way of people chatting over the table?

A venue with good bones and intrinsic beauty requires much less work and flowers. Simple and elegant flowers will dress it perfectly without going OTT. Keep clear of venues where flowers are required to disguise and detract attention from unsightly features of the venue. You'll end up paying twice - once for the hire of the venue and once again for extra flowers. Consider carefully the other details you can place on the tables, such as tea lights, confetti, cameras, mementos, as part of the overall flower and accessories plan for your venue. These will dictate the type and size of arrangements you select for the guest tables.

Why not make every guest feel special with his or her own buttonhole? These can be used as additional table dressings, placed on each napkin, maximizing impact.

Without buttonholes or corsages for all your guests, your venue flowers will usually account for over 1/2 the budget, and most of this will be for guest table centerpieces if you decide to use flowers for this.

Using this as a benchmark, have a look at what a similar design using the main flowers of your choice would cost if it were available to order through on-line retailers such as M&S or John Lewis. Consider the size it would need to be, whether it has the right balance of flowers to foliage, and remember to check whether it includes glassware.

Your florist will advise you on how to fine-tune this provisional cost in line with your budget by suggesting the most appropriate container, the balance of main flowers to filler flowers and the balance of flowers to foliage.

Why not place one or a few classic blooms such as roses, tulips or orchids, in a pretty tea light votive and give take home presents for each guest?
About the Author
For further information about the wedding accessories we offer for civil partnerships and marriages, please visit our website at http://www.pinkproducts.co.uk
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