Wedding Service Flowers
Tips on how to save money on Wedding Ceremony flowers
Looking for Wedding Service flower ideas? Whatever your budget, follow The Chief Bridesmaid's top money saving tips to lower the cost of your flower arrangements.
First of all, work out where your wedding flowers sits in your priorities. On average, the typical bride spends between 8% and 10% of her overall wedding budget on the flowers. This includes the bride's and bridesmaids' bouquets, corsages, and any ceremony and reception flower arrangements.
Saying this, if you, like me, decide that wedding flowers are fairly low on your agenda, you could always reduce this to say 5% of your overall budget. You should also consider that factors such as whether or not the flowers you choose are in season, the size and location of the wedding ceremony and reception will also influence your final flower cost.
You should have an idea of your overall floral budget before meeting with your florist. That way, they can’t tempt you with wedding flower options that are unaffordable. A good florist will be full of creative yet practical ways to keep your flower costs within budget. They can give you advice such as where to place flowers for maximum effect and what types of flower are in season and good value.
Wedding Service Flowers
Choose wedding flowers that are in season
Talk to your florist about which are the best value flowers to choose for your wedding day. Flowers that are in season and are grown in the UK (rather than flowers that have to be flown in from abroad) are not only cheaper, they’ll be fresher and therefore better quality. There are lots of flowers available all year round, so chat to your wedding florist about what's in season around the time of your wedding day.
Save money on your Pew Ends
If you’re getting a married in a Church, halve the cost of pew ends by having them on alternate rows rather than on them all. Or even cheaper, simply have pew ends on the front and back two pews. Don’t feel that it’s necessary to splash out on flowers on every window ledge, arch and pedestal either. Simple, stylish flowers can be just as stunning as swamping the venue in arrangements!
Decorate the pew ends with ivy, greenery and ribbon. It might be cheap but it looks incredibly effective! Alternatively, ask your florist whether the pew-ends from your wedding ceremony could also be designed to work as table centres for the reception.
Use the same flowers for both the Wedding Ceremony and Reception
If you’re having your wedding ceremony in a different room or location to the reception, you can save money by moving your wedding flower arrangements from one place to the other. This works best with pedestal or free standing wedding flower arrangements as they’ll work almost anywhere; and at around £75 - £150 for a pedestal arrangement, you could save yourself a lot of money.
Allocate the role of moving the flowers to a couple of the ushers, it's best to pre-agree with them the day before where the flowers will best be suited in the wedding reception venue. You don’t need anyone worrying you with questions on the day!
Just a note if you’re having a Church wedding: whilst it’s OK to remove the big flower arrangements for the reception, it’s nice to leave some flowers behind. These will be kept up in the Church for the following week and it’s something the congregation really enjoy seeing. Alternatively, you could talk to the vicar about moving them out of the Church temporarily, and returning them before the Sunday service.
Church Wedding Flowers
Many Churches have their own resident florists - members of the Parish who routinely create the Church’s flower arrangements. As amateurs with minimal overheads, the Church florists are generally a far cheaper option than getting a professional to do your wedding flowers. Ask your Vicar when you’re booking your wedding - it could save you a fortune. Indeed, the Vicar may insist that the wedding flowers are done through the Church committee, but this is actually one the best ways to get cheap wedding flowers so you shouldn’t feel too anxious about it.
Double-up on your Wedding Flowers with other Brides
Are there any other weddings happening in the same location that day (or day before or after)? Could you talk to the other brides about whether they’d be interested in sharing the same wedding flowers? Obviously, you’d need to be prepared to go for similar flower types or colour schemes, but that way, you can either halve the cost of your wedding flowers - or afford twice as many! This works best for Church flowers or flowers for the room that your service takes place in - reception table flowers take more of a beating from fiddling guests and children!
If a particular Church is popular for marriages, the same wedding flowers are often used for all the ceremonies over that particular weekend. Although this means that you will have less control over the types and colours of flowers that you can have for your wedding, you will usually pay a very low set fee - so you can get very cheap yet fabulous wedding flowers.
If this is the case, speak to the celebrant at the Church or Church flower committee and ask if you can specify flowers for that weekend. If you can get hold of the other couples getting married, you could agree on particular flowers, you could then approach the flower arrangers to request your preference.
This will, of course, mean that you won’t be able to use the same flowers for the wedding service and reception - and so the costs won't be as cheap in that respect.
Just decorate the reception venue
Let’s face it, you’re going to look so show-stopping in your wedding dress that your guests are going to be too distracted to notice the wedding flowers during the service anyway. Why not save half your money and just decorate the reception venue?
Avoid February 14th!
The cost of flowers fluctuates through the year and the price isn’t just affected by what’s in season - during Valentine's Day and Mothers' Day, the cost of some flowers such as roses can be enormous. Your florist could also be really busy and so will have less time to devote to preparing your flowers.
Save money on your Bridal Bouquet
The bridal bouquet can be one of the most expensive flower items you buy - the more elaborate the style you go for, the less cheap you’ll find it is.
Hand-tied bridal bouquets usually cost half the price of oasis arrangements. They are simple bunches of flowers secured with a pretty co-ordinating ribbon tied around the stems. Most flowers work in a hand-tied bridal bouquet, they’re versatile and more importantly, cheap to buy. Hand-tied bouquets are not hard to make, and so you could even have a go at making your own. But definitely have a trial run before the day! Tie the stems with wire to keep them secure before covering them with ribbon. Choosing ribbon that matches the bridesmaids’ dresses can be a really sweet way of keeping your wedding flowers co-ordinated.
At the other end of the spectrum, splash out on an extravagant bouquet but give it a second life by laying it along the top table as the top table arrangement or wedding cake table arrangement.
For a cheap bridal bouquet, carry a single flower instead of a bouquet or arrangement. Choose a single, beautiful flower, like a calla lilly, amaryllis, rose or sunflower - all look great as single stems.
Having a single flower stem instead of a bouquet is a dramatic yet simple look and works particularly well with elegant, contemporary wedding dresses. You could have one stem, or even increase it to three stems tied together in a simple hand-tied bouquet. Either way, it’s more cost-effective as you use less flowers.
Bridesmaids' and Flowergirls' bouquets
Simply give your bridesmaids' smaller versions of your hand-tied bouquet, or again, give them a seasonal, single flower like a Calla lily. So beautiful, and very on trend for ‘09.
My bridesmaids had their hands so busy with the bride(!), that their bouquets were rather a hindrance. In retrospect I wish I’d chosen simple wrist corsages for them or put flowers in their hair. Both look so pretty and are a much cheaper option than bouquets.
Corsages are small flower arrangements that sit on the wrist. As they usually only include a flower or two and some greenery, they’re much cheaper than bouquets, plus they allow the bridesmaids to have both their hands free during the day so they can hold your bouquet or bag.
Bridesmaids' bouquets could also double up as table decorations at the reception - hand tied bouquets could be dropped into appropriate vases on the tables before the Wedding Breakfast commences.
Button holes for the Groom, Father of the Bride & Ushers
You can easily triple the price of your buttonholes by choosing more than one flower to go in them. Save money by choosing simple, one flower buttonholes and you’ll keep your wedding flower costs down.
Silk Wedding Flowers
If you're hoping to cherish your bridal bouquet or wedding flowers forever, consider silk wedding flowers. Silk flowers can be cheaper than ordinary flowers - perfect if you're on a low budget. The great thing about them is:
- Silk flowers are always going to look perfect and won't wilt during the wedding day.
- Silk flowers are difficult to damage, so if the bride drops her silk bouquet, it'll still look perfect for the wedding photos.
- Even budget silk flowers are allergy free (unless you are allergic to silk!)
- A bride can have out of season or more exotic flowers on her big day and perfectly match the colour and style of the floral arrangements to the theme of the wedding - silk flowers are available all year round, in any colour.
- Silk flowers won't stain your wedding dress with pollen!
- If chosen well, silk wedding flowers are beautiful, difficult to tell from the real thing and they can be cherished for a lifetime.