How to Work with Your Wedding Florist

Tips and advice for creating the perfect floral scheme

A good floral designer can hear the details of your wedding—your setting, your dress, your menu—and craft the perfect floral scheme to fit your personality and style. Here’s some smart advice to help you and your florist work together so you can make the most of her talent and your budget.

Give Your Florist the Scoop
Share as many details about your wedding as possible: swatches of the bridesmaids’ dresses, photos of the sites, your vision of the big day. That will help your florist get a sense of your taste.

Ask How to Maximize Your Budget
Many floral designers can come up with creative ways to stretch even the tightest budgets. Give your florist your figure in the initial meeting, and see how she can work within it to achieve your vision.

Consider What’s in Season
Locally grown flowers are fresher (and less expensive) than ones that are imported. Ask your florist what will be readily available on your date.M.

Look Beyond the Blooms
Mix unexpected ingredients with your flowers—anything from fresh fruit to vintage jewelry to tufts of feathers—to give your flowers extra personality.

Consider a Market Buy
If you don’t really care whether it’s dahlias or daisies that fill your bouquet, authorize your florist to find the best blooms in the market that suit your color scheme. You’ll get lusher flowers at a lower price.

Ask About Hardiness
Some blossoms can take a beating (and go for hours without water) and still look fresh, while others are more fragile. Ask your floral designer to use sturdier flowers in boutonnieres and other arrangements that risk being crushed during hugs.

Mix It Up
Your bouquets and centerpieces don’t have to be carbon copies of each other. Ask your florist to change it up from table to table or bridesmaid to bridesmaid—different styles, colors or flowers can make each arrangement stand out.

Study the Scents
Some flowers, like gardenias, lilacs and peonies, have beautiful fragrances—great for your bouquet, but not as heavenly on your tables, where the scent may interfere with the flavors of the meal.

Sign on the Dotted Line
Get the nitty-gritty details (dates, times, colors, amounts, payments) in writing. You may even want to give your florist a list of specific flowers that may be substituted for your chosen blooms, in case they aren’t available. Order one or two extra boutonnieres and corsages, to have as backups if necessary.

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