Thrifty wedding flowers for DIY Brides
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In a fantastic blog for all you DIY brides, Lindsey Kitchin, of The White Horse Flower Company will be giving your her tops tips for saving money when planning your wedding flowers.
As a florist I see brides almost every day planning their wedding flowers, and it must be said, flowers really do lift any occasion by adding both colour and natural beauty. They set the scene and say so much about you and your day. In this current economic climate I see brides who simply want me to make their bouquets and are keen to roll up their sleeves and have a go at arranging their own reception flowers. Fair play to you I say! Here are my top tips to help you along the way…
Firstly, look through magazines particularly those with wedding flowers in, these will have lots of inspiration to help you formulate ideas and will help you decide which flowers you like and those you don’t. Mock up a few samples at home and ask what friends and family think or perhaps enrol on a florist’s workshop where you can learn how to make a table centre or tie a bouquet This could even be part of your hen celebrations? Lots of florists run classes and you’re sure to glean lots of tips from the professionals!
Not, for one moment, am I suggesting you’re not capable of putting together a complex floral arrangement, but if you’re organising a wedding, there are many facets to the day – flowers being just one of these. Others will also require your attention, so it’s important to bear in mind that your flowers ideally, need to be prepared the day before if possible, so simplicity and speed may be the key – particularly if you have lots tables! Consider using vases or containers which take just a few stems and actually add something to the look themselves. For example, pretty jugs, cut glass vases and little votives (in a myriad of colours) – originally designed for tea lights, these can look lovely with just a single stem, dotted about on the tables, some with flowers in and others with tea lights. Jam jars are very popular at the moment, tied with ribbon or even garden twine, they are cheap and economical and can be given away at the end of the reception as gifts. Check out car boot, jumble sales and charity shops to buy cheaply (and in bulk)!
What colours do you like? What, if any, are the colours running through your wedding wardrobe – bridesmaid’s dresses, invitation details, ribbons and trimmings? All these can tie in with your flowers. A splash of bright colour goes a long way so consider adding bolder colours into the centre pieces. A few single stems of bright coloured flowers such as jewel like anenomes, roses, tulips or dahlias clustered at various heights can look really pretty and won’t eat into your budget too much.
What time of year are you getting married? Seasonal flowers will most likely be in abundance and therefore less expensive than varieties flown in from sunnier climes. What’s locally grown and what’s in yours or your family’s gardens which could be pillaged and picked? Consider blossoms, tulips and daffodils in spring – there are literally hundreds of varieties to choose from. Then there are roses, peonies and sweet peas during summer; dahlias, sweet William, delphiniums and sedums later on in the year to name a few. If you have a year or more to plan, note down who has what growing in their gardens and see what could be realistically grown or cultivated for your wedding day, then, perhaps add to these from your local market. Consider using plenty of greenery amongst the flowers to add body and substance. Often the greenery alone can look stunning, what about using herbs, grasses or even cow parsley or perhaps trails of ivy in winter arrangements?
Lastly and by no means least, what are your talents? Are you more of an organiser than a creative sort? If so, don’t bite off more than you can chew, this will only add unnecessary stress before your big day. Who do you know who would be willing to pick flowers and arrange them for you – family or friends? Keeping the flowers simple, arranging them in simple pretty eye catching containers and not making them too large is crucial. Finally, this is your wedding day – it’s exhausting enough even if you’re not arranging the flowers, so get together with friends and family, share the workload and have some fun along the way!
Lindsey Kitchin is a freelance florist and owns The White Horse Flower Company based in Newbury, Berkshire. A florist for over 10 years, creating and arranging flowers for all occasions; she teaches and runs floral workshops but is mostly known for her beautiful wedding flowers.
The White Horse Flower Company. “Exquisite Flowers – Beautifully Arranged” www.whfco.co.uk