Wednesday, April 17, 2013

7 Tips on Keeping Your Wedding Flower Budget in Check!

One of the areas that we think is driving up wedding budgets these days is in the floral and decor department!  Now, don’t get us wrong, we love Pinterest and all of the online sources that display wonderful ideas for weddings, but sometimes, it can get overwhelming and the simple looking arrangements and ideas can cost more than you would think!  Here are our secrets on how to keep your wedding flower budget in check!

1.  Setting a Reasonable Wedding Flower Budget.  Liven It Up Events is located in Chicago, the third largest city in the country.  Our costs, by far, tend to be on the high side for most things like a 10.75% sales tax, parking in a garage downtown for an hour can cost $28, and flowers for a wedding can get pricey!  See what you need from your florist.  Start with a list of personal flowers, Bridal Bouquet, Groom’s Boutonniere, wedding party flowers, parent flowers, grandparents, ushers, readers, flower girls and ring bearers.  Then, look at what you need for the ceremony.  Alter arrangements, chuppah, mondop, aisle runner, flowers for the aisle, flowers for the back of the aisle and so on.  Then think about your guest count.  How many people will you have your wedding, assuming you have those folks at 8 – 10 people per table, plus your table, sweet heart or head table, place card table, cocktail tables and so on!  There is much to think about!  If you have a large wedding party (say 8 on both sides) and more personal flowers, an elaborate set up for ceremony, 200 guests and so on, your flower budget is going to be more than $1,500.00!  Set a realistic number and then you can start configuring on how to save in some areas and spend where the money will make an impact on the design and perception of the room.

2.  Making Your Personal Flowers, Count!  What has been more and more common, that couples have been doing and florists have been doing is to save some dollars for a couple is to reuse the personal flowers, mainly the bouquets from the bridesmaids, as table decor for a long head table.  All they need are the vases, and with some candles and a small amount of loose blooms to spread out on the table, a long head table can be turned into a luscious table setting with flowers already accounted for!
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Using bridal bouquets on the head table for flowers! 

3.  Ceremony Flowers Are Your Reception Flowers!?  Another way to save on your bottom line is to use some of the reception flowers down the aisle, and maybe taller pieces on rented pedestals at the front of the ceremony space, so you get the maximum amount of use out of your arrangements.  Just keep in mind this only works if the ceremony is in the same space as your reception!  Look at the example below!
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4.  To Have An Aisle Runner or Not?  We have been finding that aisle runners are used about 50% of the time these days.  If you are in a church, there are some churches that do not allow runners!  In some private venues, the flooring is beautiful and does not require one either.  Think about how important this is for you and then see if you really need one!  If you do not, you can save some money right there!

5.  Lows & Highs for Your Wedding Reception.  You might think what are lows and highs when it comes to a wedding reception, right?  Well, in floral terms, low and high arrangements mean how tall they are.  The low pieces, tend to be more cost effective options than tall arrangements.  They can also be designed to be used down your aisle.  The talls can make that “WOW” impact on their guests as they walk into the wedding reception, not to mention that can be used to flank your alter to create beauty!   Now, to maximize what you have, you can split up the number of how many arrangements you do.  If you have 20 tables, split the amount of lows and highs.  This way you get the “WOW” and your budget will not take a huge hit!
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Wedding at The Newberry Library with Lows & Talls Centerpieces!

6.  Candles, Props, Vases, Oh My!  Tons of votive candles, (make sure they are at least 10 hour votives!) can help transform a room.  If you can put candles on ledges, window sills, and all around the room, it will help create a fantastic ambiance for you.  Adding props like candelabras, logs, or birch pedestals, can get costly, but again, if you use them in the impact areas, head table, a few of the guest tables, they can be used to create the “WOW” factor!  And when it comes to vases, clear glass is the most cost effective.

7.  Flower Collections, Blue Mason Jars, and Vintage Vases.  These are the items that can get costly.  Collection of flowers on a table can be an assortment of 3 – 5 vases, with flowers in each vase, candles around and maybe loose blooms around them.  These become costly because of the labor.  It takes a team to get a room of these type of arrangements set up.  Remember, each one of these tables have 5 vases, 6 candles, the flowers and water to go in them.  To make them look fantastic, they have to arranged individually on site!  Blue Mason Jars and Vintage Vases, depending on the season, can be hard to find and can be expensive!  We LOVE collections, mason jars, and vintage, and think they can be used, again, using them in certain areas, not on every table will help the overall flower budget work for you in best!

Thanks for reading our wedding flower tips!  If you have questions or comments, feel free to leave them below!

Until next time…. happy planning!
The Team at Liven It Up Events

****All photographs have been taken by Liven It Up Events

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