Tips for Making Your Own Wedding Bouquets
Making your own wedding bouquets can be a big money saver, as well as an excellent opportunity for bonding with friends and family.
Where to Get Your Flowers
There are a couple of ways you can go when it comes to procuring fresh flowers for your wedding. If you're not dead-set on using particular types of flowers, visiting a farmer's market or floral outlet a few days before your wedding is a great option. You may have to be flexible in the exact varieties you end up with, but it's a sure bet that you'll have plenty to choose from in your desired color scheme. If you want a bit more assurance, order your flowers to be delivered. There are several wholesale flower sites that allow you to specify the time and date of delivery.
I ordered my flowers online from Sam's Club. They arrived fresh, and on time. I traded in my beloved Costco membership for a Sam's Club card that year solely so I could buy my wedding flowers through them. At the time, they had (by far) the best deal on bulk flowers I could find.
Now, a few words about choosing your flowers.
- Get a little more than you need. Inevitably, you're going to mess up at least once. You'll want to have a few extra stems to work with.
- Save money by choosing less expensive flowers. So, daisies are not my most favorite flower in the whole world. They were, however, really affordable compared to many other types of flowers. I thought, "I can either get very few of the fancier ones or get tons of daisies." I wanted as many flowers as possible, so I got the daisies. I don't regret it.
- Save your splurge for the bridal bouquet. You can bulk order some less expensive varieties of flowers to fill your vases, make boutonnieres, and for your bridesmaid bouquets. Use your fancy flowers for the bridal bouquet. You'll save money overall, and your bouquet will stand out.
When to Have Your Wedding Flowers Delivered
Have your flowers delivered 2 or 3 days before your wedding. Make sure that somebody will be home to process the flowers as soon as they arrive. Most reputable floral distributors require a signature upon delivery, anyway. You don't want flowers to sit outside your door, wasting away in the heat (or freezing in the cold, as the case may be).
How to Care for Your Flowers When They Arrive
As soon as you open the boxes, take all of the flowers out and remove any plastic wrap or rubber bands around the bunches. Mix up some flower preservative in some buckets of water (most bulk flower orders will come with several packages of preservative). Cut all of the stems along the bottom at a forty-five degree angle. Trim off any leaves that will not be displayed as part of your arrangement. Place the flowers in the buckets and store them in a cool, dark area. You can designate a room in your house for this purpose; close the blinds, turn off the lights, and run the air conditioner if it's hot out.
When to Make the Bouquets
Ideally, you should make your bouquets two days before the wedding. Make them too much sooner and you will run the risk of having droopy flowers. Making them the day before your wedding can be a little bit stressful, and there's not much time to correct any mistakes. They will stay fresh and beautiful through your wedding easily if they are properly cared for.
Assembling the Bouquets
Putting together bouquets is relatively simple. You can use inspiration pictures, and even video tutorials - or just let your creativity run wild. It's best to know the basic shape you're going for before you begin, though. Decide if you want a tight, symmetrical ball-shaped bouquet, or one with varying heights and textures. Gather all of the flowers together in the desired arrangement and wrap the stems tightly with floral tape. (If you are using very thick and/or hard stemmed flowers, you can start by wrapping them with thin wire). Cover the tape by wrapping the stalk of your bouquet in ribbon. Use floral pins to secure the ends.
Storing Your Bouquets Until the Wedding Day
You can store your bouquets in water until the big day, remembering the rule of keeping the room they're in cool and dark. It's best, however, to put them in a refrigerator until you're ready to use them. Try to allow space between the bouquets (or stack carefully if you must) and make sure everyone knows not to disturb the flowers. If you have an extra fridge available, clean it out and use it exclusively for your wedding flowers.
Making your own wedding day bouquets is a fun experience, and it's not as difficult as you might think. You can invite some friends and relatives over and have a flower arranging party. It's pretty empowering to do something yourself that many brides pay hundreds - or thousands - of dollars for.
If a professional florist is not in your budget, try your hand at creating your own beautiful and unique wedding flower arrangements.
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© 2011 Arby Bourne