Many couples are trying to navigate the world of wedding planning on their own. One of the bigger challenges most face is ordering their wedding flowers. It's easy when you have a good understanding and knowledge about the topic, but for most, flowers is completely a foreign subject. Many can look at a picture and know if they like it or not, but lots of couples feel uncertain when it comes to knowing the names of flowers, what flowers are in season when, and what kind of costs they should expect. It's only natural that couples gravitate towards tips available in magazines and blog, but what if the information we're being presented with isn't completely accurate?
That is what we are here for. Today, I want to dispel some of the myths that we commonly hear from couples during our floral consults to make sure you have information that is accurate and applicable for couples getting married and needing to plan their flowers for weddings in the Calgary area or the Canadian Rockies.
Myth 1: Choose Flowers That Are In Season
This is perhaps the biggest statement we hear from couples coming in for a floral design consult. It is seen over and over again in articles and blogs related to choosing your wedding flowers. We definitely agree with it to some degree. The fact is that there are certain times of year that certain flowers are available to us, and other times of the year that they are not. For example, peony season is May and June. No matter how much you might want peonies, we can't get them for you in September. Anemones are another popular flower request that we can only get from late fall through early spring, but not at other times of the year. On the other hand, there are other types of flowers, such as roses, hydrangea, gerbera daisies, and orchids that we can get all year long, especially as so many of our flowers are shipped in from Central and South America. Costs may fluctuate depending on current need, or exchange rates (as many of the flowers we get come through the United States), cut they are accessible and fairly reasonably priced.
Trust your florist to be able to share what they can and cannot get for you for your wedding, and to advise what are some of your more cost effective blooms that you are able to choose from.
Myth 2: Greenery Costs Less Than Flowers
There was a time when this was definitely true, but with the increased popularity of using greenery over the last couple of years as part of wedding décor, the cost savings we used to see no longer exists. Greenery is being used everywhere - bouquets, centerpieces, backdrops, cakes, and more. In addition, it was named as Pantone's Color Of The Year For 2017, adding to its desireablility. As a result, the request for greenery has increased significantly, which also means that the growers have increased the price as well. (Supply versus demand.) Florists have seen a definite rise in the cost of greenery, which in turn they have to pass along to you as the client.
We're not saying don't use greenery, but we're saying be realistic and recognize that choosing to utilize greenery in your wedding flowers won't have the major cost savings impact that most couples are hoping for.
Myth 3: All Your Centerpieces Need To Be The Same
The days of having everything look the same at a wedding have come and gone. Today's couples are embracing the idea of having things that compliment one another, but are slightly different. This includes bridesmaids gowns, types of tables used at the reception, table linens, and of course, centerpieces.
We are in agreement that centerpieces should use similar types of flowers, and look like they go together, but we're seeing more and more couples wanting to have two or three different looks for their tables. This adds interest to your reception space and keeps it interesting as well for guests.
We also will often incorporate this technique when couples come in with a picture they found on Pinterest of a very costly tall centerpiece. The couple may not be prepared for the full cost of those centerpieces, but we can do a few of the larger ones, and then design something similar (but with not as many flowers) in a lower arrangement and in a different container that is more cost effective.
Regardless, having a few different alternatives centerpiece arrangements available can help create a interesting and unique canvas for your wedding reception.
Myth 4: Silk Flowers Cost Less Than Real Flowers
For some reason, the rumour exists that silk flowers will cost you less than real flowers. In actuality, nowadays, realistic looking silk flowers can cost you just as much as real flowers or more so there aren't any real savings in it for you.
While a lot of florists are reluctant to use silks, there are some specific occasions that you may want to use them:
- You are doing a complex installation that may require days to set-up so silks will guarantee that the flower look fresh.
- You want to keep your bouquet or centerpieces after the wedding. (Warning: the color from silks can sometimes transfer to your dress.)
- You are planning for a winter wedding and your bouquets won't survive outside in the bitter cold during photos.
Myth 5: Economical Centerpiece Ideas
For some reason, the internet is full of advice saying that a group of three different sized cylinder containers with submerged flowers and floating candles is a cost effective centerpiece. In reality, you have to pay for the rental of each container, a floating candle on each, not to mention the labour of actually submerging the flowers (flowers float so you have to find a way to anchor them down). It also means that the florist has to add water on site to all of the vase containers, which is additional labour.
Trust your florist and talk to her (or him) about other possible ideas that might be more cost effective and definitely more original than the over-used three container option.
Myth 6: Save On Flowers By Buying Local
This is another one we hear a lot! We love the idea of being able to shop and support local growers, but the fact is our growing season is very limited in the Calgary and Canadian Rockies area, especially when compared to growers further south. While we are able to get a few flowers from farms in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia, the majority of our flowers are shipped in from Central and South America, mostly via the United States. With the current exchange rate and increased surcharges on fuel, the savings are far and few between. We would love to be closer to some of the flower farms in Oregon, Washington, California, Ontario and the East Coast, but it is just not feasible, especially when you consider the quantity of flowers that a wedding might need. As a result, we're a little more limited in what we can get.
For example, I was talking with another Calgary wedding florist a couple of weeks ago. She had a client who wanted dahlias for her wedding. Most florists are aware that dahlias work best when they are freshly cut (which isn't possible around here). The florist commented that she ordered 80 dahlias for the wedding, but only 20 were able to be used. (The rest had wilted.) When you're dealing with live crops, such as flowers, you have to take into consideration what will work best, and what won't. Once again, this is where you florist's expertise will be of great use.
As wedding floral designers, we don't expect our clients to come in with a ton of knowledge about flowers. We see it as part of our job to educate you and share with you some of our expertise, in order to help you make the decisions you need in regards to your wedding flowers.
We encourage you to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 1-888-790-6986, ext. 704 to book an time for your floral consult now.
Cathy MacRae is a Calgary, Banff, Canmore and Lake Louise wedding planner in the business of designing customized weddings that make your heart skip a beat! She is the lead wedding planner and design coordinator for Creative Weddings Planning & Decor©, working with couples to plan chic and stylish weddings that make your heart skip a beat! Located in Calgary, Canada, she plans wedding for couples primarily in and around the Calgary, Banff, Canmore, Lake Louise, and Fernie area. Her clients want a wedding that is all about romance, elegance and personalized style with meaningful and heartfelt moments that take your breath away and created an incredible guest experience. She has been in involved in the wedding industry for over eight years now. The foundation of her business has been built on developing relationships with numerous quality vendors that her allow her to best match them with her clients so the end result is a unique wedding celebration that tells a story and sets the stage for the couple's "happily ever after." As a destination wedding specialist, she also works with couples who desire to wed in various picturesque dream locations throughout the world. She had done weddings in various exotic locales such as Hawaii, Mexico, Costa Rica, and throughout the Caribbean. She is available to plan weddings internationally.
She has earned her Professional Wedding Planner© status with the Association of Bridal Consultants, and is also a member of the Wedding Planners Institute of Canada, the Calgary Bridal Alliance, and the Community of Wedding Innovators. In addition, she is a Certified Sandals Specialist and WeddingMoons© Specialist with Sandals© and Beaches© Resorts, specializing in romantic travel. She was a founding board member of the Wishing Well Wedding and Event Foundation, Canada's first non-profit wish granting founding providing weddings for couples directly facing terminal illness, and continues to support the foundation in the role of a STAR vendor. Cathy also owns Consulting For Creatives, where she works as a business coach with both new and experienced entrepreneurs in the wedding and event industry with a desire to get ahead.
For more information about planning your own wedding or for advice from Cathy, please contact her at 1-888-790-6986 or email her at email@example.com.