First and foremost, I want to make it clear that I do not recommend any bride DIY-ing her flowers for her own wedding. This is a very involved, and stressful process. However, if you have tried talking to your local florist, and had no success, read on for suggestions on how to DIY your wedding flowers.
In order to DIY your flowers, I would first suggest recruiting some very understanding friends, bridesmaids, aunts, etc. that would be willing to create your flowers for you. Do not, under any circumstances make your floral arrangements yourself. This will cause much stress and heartache, as these will need to be put together the day before the wedding, if not, the day of the wedding, and will need to be delivered to the ceremony and reception locations. You should not have to worry about this, if you are the bride. If you cannot get anyone you know to commit to doing your wedding day florals, try talking to your local, neighborhood florist. Take the exact designs you want to put together, and find out what they would charge. Take a look at my other article about how to save money while still using a florist called, “How to Save Money on Wedding Flowers With a Florist.”
Also, it is important for you, as the bride, to be open to different types of flowers. If you have your heart set on one specific type of flower, you could be risking unnecessarily increasing the costs of your flower budget. Of course, you can get nearly any flower year round, but some flowers are more expensive than others, and flowers are always more expensive when they are out of season, and need to be shipped in from far away. So, remember to be flexible. At the same time, that doesn’t mean that if you hate carnations, that you must use carnations.
Alright, so now you have your flower design team, and an open mind. The next step is figuring out what flowers you want. Try looking online at different designs, look in bridal magazines, and Martha Stewart galore. Look for something inspiring and simple. Take a few different looks, maybe between 3-5 that might work, and keep them handy through the next few processes.
Then, you need to determine where you are going to get your flowers, and begin your research. There are numerous places to search for bulk flowers. Try looking online, contacting your local farmer’s market, grocery store, and mail order catalogues. See what flowers they have to offer, and check up on each company to make sure they have good reviews. If your flowers would have to be mailed to you, check to see if anyone said their flowers arrived dried out, and dead in online reviews. If you read a review like that, be sure not to use that vendor for your bulk flowers. Once you find the vendor you are going to go with, purchase some flowers to do a test run with the rest of your team. It’s important to do this so you can get some practice in, and also to check on the quality of the flowers when they arrive. You may need to do more than one test drive, so when you are looking at your flower budget, take it into consideration that you may need to spend money on flowers that will never see your wedding day, and are just for practice.
For your ribbons, try checking out your local dollar store. Especially at Christmas time, dollar stores tend to sell a wide variety of ribbon. Buy twice as much ribbon as you think you’ll use. For vases, there are a lot of things you could do. Since you’ll be buying in bulk, you may find bulk order websites online to purchase your vases through. Additionally, you could also try vintage and thrift stores for a more eclectic look.
Make sure that your flower team is organized, and ready to take over for you for the wedding day. Far in advance, designate one person who is the head of the team, so you can just put your feet up and relax before you walk down the aisle. Three weeks before the big day, make a big basket for your team including everything they need such as floral wiring, sponges, vases, scissors, ribbons, etc. Also, as stressed as you may be, be sure to treat your team with kindness. They are doing this entirely for you, and this is a gift to you so you can have a wonderful wedding day. Make sure you let them know of your gratefulness, by cooking them a meal or having a meal catered for them while they are working on your flowers, or giving each person on your team a small gift.
One thing I do not recommend is using silk flowers (also called faux flowers, or fake flowers) for any part of your wedding day décor. Using silk flowers can end up being just as expensive, if not more expensive than using real flowers in the end, and they never look as nice as actual, real flowers. Also, what do you intend on doing with these flowers after the wedding? Most brides hopefully think they’ll be able to resell them to another bride, and get some of their costs back. However, most brides generally want something new that has the distinct look they want, and you will find yourself stuck with a bunch of plastic flowers from your wedding, that you’ll just feel too guilty to throw away! Don’t do it!
Good luck on your DIY wedding flower project, and have a beautiful wedding day!