Preston Bailey


John Labbe

Get advice about your summer wedding from florist to the stars Preston Bailey. He also dishes on inspiration, style and how to throw a celebrity style wedding on a budget. —Kathryn Papanek

What tips do you have for a bride who is planning a summer wedding?

Always have a Plan B! Weather can be unpredictable in the summer, so if you are having a gorgeous outdoor wedding make sure you have a rain plan that is easy and just as beautiful. I can't tell you how many times we have had to resort to Plan B.

What are your favorite new summer wedding trends?

I really enjoy more relaxed summer weddings. They don't have to be less elegant than the formal ones—just a little more fun. One couple had an after party on the lawn. They set out beautiful blankets and fun pillows with little coffee tables and tons and tons of candles. Everyone loved it, and it was hard to get people to leave...

There's more!

What type of flowers should a bride choose for a summer wedding?

Use flowers that are hearty and can stand to be out of water and air conditioning for a couple of hours. Orchids, roses, peonies or sunflowers are all great choices. Try to use what is in season as these flowers are used to the sun and will also be less expensive than other blossoms.

How can a bride have a celebrity style wedding on a budget?

The first thing you need to do is decide what element of your wedding is most important to you. It could be the food, the flowers, the music or the decor. Once you have decided which area is a priority for you, make sure you put a good chunk of your money towards that element and fill in the rest.

Where do you look for inspiration for your designs?

I get most of my inspiration trying to recreate the abundance of nature. I am also fortunate enough to be able to travel around the world meeting new people and seeing new cultures. I take a great of inspiration from my travels as well.

BONUS: You've worked with everyone from Donald Trump to Catherine Zeta-Jones. What is it like planning weddings for celebrities?

It is great because it is such a challenge. These people attended the best parties around the world, so when they throw their own celebration they really want something different. I love that! Every job is a new challenge and that is what has kept me going after twenty-eight years in the business.

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