(Budget) top tips

Below, I have tried to put my experience to your good use… I hope you find it useful.

HOW TO SPREAD YOUR BUDGET IN % TERMS

Very roughly, I would suggest the following as a starting point (e.g.for a £1000.00 budget):

BRIDAL FLOWERS

20%

£200.00

CEREMONY/CHURCH FLOWERS

15%

£150.00

RECEPTION FLOWERS

65%

£650.00

My overriding advice is not to spread your budget too thinly – concentrate on the main focal points to create impact with the flowers!

BRIDAL FLOWERS

SUPPLYING BUTTONHOLES & CORSAGES – It is no longer expected to supply everyone with a buttonhole/corsage outside of the direct bridal party, but remember that ‘older’ family members are often used to this ‘tradition’! (£10-£20.00 is not worth a family fall-out on your wedding day!)

MORE THAN 1 BEST MAN – Equality rules! – 3 or 5 bridesmaids means it is also acceptable to have more than 1 best man – but remember you need a main best man!

CHURCH(CEREMONY) FLOWERS

Unless you have a generous budget, remember that the ceremony will only last around 30 minutes & all eyes will be on the bridal couple. My suggestion is the following ‘IMPORTANCE RANKING LIST’

1.Pedestal arrangement opposite the pulpit
2. Aisle flowers (single flower or ‘pew-end’ arrangements) – (these can be staggered)
3. Entrance porch
4. Lych-gate
5. Font
6. Fresh flower confetti cones (check church/venue policy on this!)
7. Window arrangements
8. The Altar

My logic is that flowers form a beautiful back-drop to the ceremony (aisle & pulpit) & any photographs that will be taken (aisle, pulpit & entrance porch/lychgate) , so that’s how to decide where flowers ought to go!… SIMPLES!

BLUES & PURPLES – be careful of using these colours in old churches – due to generally poor light levels & ‘back-lighting’ from high windows, these colours can ‘disappear’ & appear almost black. I suggest going for pastel shades & adding cream and/or lime green to avoid the above

NOTE – It makes sense to relocate (re-use) the pedestal arrangement to the reception venue – BUT often churches expect you to leave the flowers in the church!!! & remember to organise the logistics in terms of moving a large flower arrangement that won’t fit in a Ford Fiesta!

RECEPTION/WEDDING BREAKFAST FLOWERS

Why 65% of the budget for wedding flowers? … because this is where flowers really do their work! Flowers create ‘the look’, the impact, atmosphere & ambience and against the standard backdrop of white-decked tables, this is where your guests will be WOWED!.. that’s why!

TALL or LOW TABLE FLOWERS – tall table flowers may initially seem a little OTT, but note the size of the room & that the flowers will create the necessary impact when the room is filled with people (and then you can still see the flowers) LOW TABLE FLOWERS also fulfill the brief, but will disappear amongst all the guests. Half tall & half low is an effective solution.

A MIX OF DESIGNS – with table numbers of 6 or more, why not add interest by having a mix of designs (continuation in flower choice and colour will pull it all together!) – this will add to a ‘celebratory’ & more relaxed atmosphere (& can help in balancing out the budget!)

MIRRORS & CANDLE(s) CUPS – a great way of maximising impact & atmosphere: candlelight, flowers & reflections = pure romance! (check with venue – some do not allow ‘naked’ flames – LOVE health & safety!)

CHANGE OF COLOUR SCHEME FOR THE RECEPTION – remember, the ceremony is the formal aspect of a wedding – the reception is the celebration (read PARTY!!!), so why not add some COLOUR to create a suitable atmosphere & get ‘the party started!’

SOME ADDITIONAL OPTIONS TO CONSIDER:

– LESS FORMALITY – Oval top tables appear less formal or you could sit on a circular table right in amongst your guests/friends (many wedding formalities are going out-the-window)

– COLOURED TABLE CLOTHS – these can really set the colour-scheme alight & add to a celebratory colour scheme!

– FINGER-PRINT YOUR GUESTS (alternative to guest book!) – get a large sheet of paper, some coloured ink pads & pens – get everyone to add fingerprint (& name/ message), frame it & hang it on your wall as a masterpiece of abstract expressionism & a funky memory of your big day!

– AN EMBROIDERED ‘GUEST BOOK’ TABLE CLOTH (alternative to guest book) – buy a pale-coloured cloth & some ‘wash-out’ ink pens, get all your guests to sign it…. choose a colour scheme (for the embroidery!) – give it me to send to my crazy Dutch mother & within 2 months you’ll have it to adorn your table! (Contact Hans for price)