Flowers, in spectacular or simple arrangements have always played a major role in ceremony and reception decoration. As always, recommendations from friends and family members are helpful in choosing a designer. Traditionally, 10 percent of your total budget should be set aside for the wedding flowers. Before setting up an initial appointment with your floral designer, you should know the date, time, location of your ceremony and reception and whether the wedding will be formal or informal. You should also be prepared to provide the florist with photos of your wedding gown, bridesmaid's dresses, and if possible, fabric swatches. Showing the florist pictures from magazines or books of bouquets, arrangements and decorations you particularly like is useful, too. When discussing arrangements with your designer, consider the style and mood of your wedding, the season or environment, and your budget. Also, find out the answers to the following questions:
· Will the designer provide a written estimate for each item?
· How much is the deposit (20 to 40 percent is standard)?
· When is the final payment due?
· Will the shop transport the flowers to home, ceremony and reception?
· Is there an additional charge for transportation?
· When will the flowers be delivered?
· Does the shop carry rental items (silks, urns, candleabra, arches, etc.)?
· Is the designer familiar with your ceremony and reception site?
Floral pieces you will need for your ceremony and reception are:
· the bridal bouquet
· the bridesmaid's bouquets
· the flower girl bouquet or basket of rose petals
· boutonnieres for the groom, ushers, best man, groomsmen,
· fathers and grandfathers of the bride and groom
· small corsages for the mothers and grandmothers of the bride and groom
· floral decorations for the ceremony
· floral decorations for the reception
· flowers for older relatives or very close friends unable to attend the ceremony are optional. If they are sent, a card from the couple should accompany these flowers saying they are "part of our wedding flowers that we wanted to share with you."
Practical considerations to discuss with your florist include:
· selecting fresh, silk or dried flowers
· floral/decorating restrictions at the ceremony/reception site
· how to prevent the bride's bouquet from damaging her gown
whether or not to preserve the bride's bouquet (freeze-drying is the best technique)
· cancellation policy and fees, if any
· delivery and set-up fees
When decorating the ceremony site, the flowers can be as elaborate or as simple as you wish. Consider the decor and don't detract from architecture, views, etc. Decorations should be determined by the size and style of the building, the formality of the wedding, personal preferences and your budget. REMEMBER, FLOWERS REFLECT YOUR PERSONALITY....MAKE YOUR WEDDING AND RECEPTION UNIQUE TO YOU!
Flowers with Meaning:
JANUARY - CARNATION
FEBRUARY - VIOLET
MARCH - JONQUIL
APRIL - SWEET PEA
MAY - LILY OF THE VALLEY
JUNE - ROSE
JULY - LARKSPUR
AUGUST - GLADIOLUS
SEPTEMBER - ASTER
OCTOBER - CALENDULA
NOVEMBER - CHRYSANTHEMUM
DECEMBER – NARCISSUS