I don't get the whole wedding flowers thing. I want a bouquet (what would I do with my hands during the ceremony without one? I can just picture myself standing their awkwardly), but my head spins whenever I even try to think about the other flower shit I need for the wedding.
I just want the place to look pretty!
Why's it gotta be so hard?
God, good question Jaq. “Why's it gotta be so hard?” could pretty much be the motto of every Offbeat Bride, but I extra-sympathize with you on the flower thing. I skipped the whole issue by getting married in a garden, but for those who chose a different road, there are answers.
I sat down with Seattle's demigod of blossoms, Fiori Floral Design‘s Miles Johnson and peppered him with questions and got a few tips for the floral-impaired:
Miles, how can brides get the most bang for their buck?
Pick in-season flowers, especially dahlias in summer and peonies in May. You get big bulky flowers, and you're paying low seasonal prices. Dahlias and peonies are also great because they're big flowers that make a big impact. Don't be fooled by inexpensive flowers like lilies of the valley. At a buck or two a stem they may seem like a bargain — but they're so small that it takes a lot of them to make an impact.
Oh, and if you can, for godsake avoid having your wedding in the 10 days before Valentine's Day. Prices on roses are jacked up 40-50%, and you'll have price increases on other flowers, too.
Obviously you're a florist with a vested interest helping brides, but do you have tips for couples who want to do their own flowers?
[related-post align=”right”]Timing can make it difficult for couples to actually arrange flowers themselves, since you need to be working on arrangements the day before the wedding, when couples have their hands very full. If you're not using a florist, make sure you have a friend or family member who's really committed to helping you the day before and day of your wedding.
Also, if you have to pick between which floral elements to get help with, do your centerpieces yourself — but have a professional do your bridal bouquet. Bouquets are the hardest to put together and they're the most photographed. [Editorial aside: if you're feeling brave and want to try making your own bouquet, here's a quick how-to.]
So, centerpieces, hmm? Got any tips about them?
Rocks look great with centerpieces, especially when combined with low bowls to create pond feeling and table-scaping element. [Here, I busted up laughing over the phrase “table-scaping.” Miles very graciously didn't slap me for giggling.] Rocks and table-scaping are a great way to stretch your budget — but don't over do it. There's nothing worse than an over-scaped table. Limit yourself to three elements on the table besides dishes. Mostly, just remember that it doesn't have to look cheap to be inexpensive. Intention is everything.
What about ceremony flowers?
Do it big and well, or just skip it! It's better to intentionally have nothing and go for a minimal look than to have a small, distracting floral element.
How big is too big on a bouquet?
The shorter the bride the smaller the bouquet should be, and in general no bigger than the bride's head. [Here I had to show Miles pictures from my wedding, where my enormous bouquet was twice the size of my skull. We both laughed.] … Well, rules are meant to be broken!
A very special thanks to Miles from Fiori Floral Design for taking the time to answer my silly questions.