You know that all of your friends dropped thousands of dollars on their wedding flowers, and while you want your wedding day to be beautiful, posies are just not your main priority. So how can you keep your wedding flower budget under control without looking cheap?
The first thing to keep in mind is that your wedding venue is beautiful in its own right, and you don't have to spend a fortune to gild the lily. But there are some insider tricks that professionals use to cut costs, which you, as a bride-to-be in the know, are totally allowed to steal.
1. Vases and candlelight are always less expensive than floral arrangements as centerpieces.
Just be sure to use nothing smaller than a 10-hour votive candle so you don't have to replace them during the event. Tea lights won't last long enough, while floating candles tend to tip over if the table gets bumped once, and then they won't relight. (So anything floating should be on a permanent fixture, like a cake table or sideboard — not someplace guests are sitting and moving around.)
__2. Corsages for the moms and other VIP women can seem outdated and tend to cost a lot more than the much more en vogue "keepsake bouquets" more moms are carrying now. __
Simply choose two or three flowers from your own bouquet — three pink roses or two white Gerbera daisies, for example — and tie them with a thin satin ribbon that matches the bridal bouquet. It looks pretty in pictures, acknowledges the importance of that person, and won't ruin the fabric of her dress with a pin, or flop around on her wrist all night. Bonus: Some flowers will dry nicely, and she'll have it forever after the big day.
See More: 25 Organic Wedding Bouquets
3. You have to rent or buy linens for your wedding anyway, so choose a bright color for a splash on your tables rather than using just flowers.
If white is your only option, create bright napkin rings, or tie each napkin with a ribbon that matches your color theme. There are so many different and fun decor ideas on BRIDES and Pinterest for creating pretty (but inexpensive) place settings that you don't need to totally splurge to have a pin-worthy wedding.
__4. If you're DIY-ing your wedding, order bunches of roses to de-petal for your aisle and other décor, rather than ordering bags of just petals. __
The petals will stay fresher longer if you wait to strip them off the roses the day before the wedding, rather than buying something that's been wilting in bags for a few days. And you'll get a LOT more petals out of the 25 roses that come in a bunch than you will when you buy them as petals in a pouch.
Sandy Malone is the owner of Sandy Malone Weddings & Events, a full-service traditional and destination wedding planning company and Do-It-Yourself wedding planning consulting service for DIY brides and grooms based in the Washington, DC area. Sandy is the star of TLC's reality show "Wedding Island," about her destination wedding planning company, Weddings in Vieques. Sandy's book "How to Plan Your Own Destination Wedding: Do-It-Yourself Tips from an Experienced Professional," will be released on March 1st, but is available online for pre-orders now where books are sold.