Post # 1
I am interviewing florists right now for my wedding in October. I just got hit with a $15,000 estimate. Yes, you read that right. I thought we were crazy for budgeting $5,000 for the wedding. Now I’m terrified it won’t be enough. The florist stressed that this was just a starting point and that it can be decreased. My mom has literally fallen into a depression over this. She won’t even talk to me or about the wedding because she thinks that the florist will not work with someone who is asking to change the arrangement up enough to decrease the cost to $5,000. I don’t think that there is any harm in asking- if they prefer higher-budget clients, we can go with someone else. But if we like this person’s work, what is the harm in asking?
I’m also a little bit upset with my planner/coordinator. It’s her job to keep everything within budget. She’s talking to the florist about all of these different tables, rental items, and very elaborate centerpieces. I feel like between her not acting conscientious of the budget, the flower estimate being so astronomically high, and my mom being more or less despondent (she was already stressed about the wedding and has lately been telling me she wishes I had just eloped) I literally cannot enjoy this process at all. Is 5k really not an adequate amount to do flowers? We could go up to 7.5k if we absolutely HAD to, but obviously that is not ideal (and I think a little bit excessive, but to each their own).
DIY is not an option at this venue because of the size and vendor approval requirements (plus my mom is ALL about the flowers and would never go for it). Is 5k really not enough? In your experience, do florists start high and come down that much? I have been in tears off and on all day. My mom won’t further discuss it with me and the planner is adding all these rentals that are not within an already generous budget (60k). I would be fine with using the same florist, doing more modest centerpieces (the venue is already gorgeous), and not renting all of the different tables. I want to tell my planner this, but I feel like my mother will be upset if I address these concerns with her. I feel like I’m in between a rock and a hard place. I’m sorry I’m scatterbrained and asking so many questions. I could never have known how draining of a process this is.
Post # 3
What kind if flowers are you wanting???? Mine is costing $1200 for everything and I thought that was super high! I’d look elsewhere and maybe size down what you’re wanting
Post # 4
@DuckEBee: Oh dear lord I would cry… we orderered our bouquets online from LoveFlowers Australia for $500 with the corsages and what not it was like $550 (maybe a little more) ? Is there anyway you could do that and then get the centerpieces from her?
I am amazed that she said that much… where are you located?
Post # 5
@MrsN14: I explicitly said that I wanted in-season flowers. A lot of greenery, peonies, succulents, lavender, wild flower looking things.
Post # 6
@lynnielou33193: Raleigh, NC. Weddings here are very pricey for some reason. Must be a southern thing.
Post # 7
$15,000 was more than my entire wedding…in wine country, CA. Tell the florist how much you are willing to spend (offer $3k, that should be more than enough) and ask them what they can do for that amount.
Post # 8
@likewoah: That is what I am hoping to do. Just say “what can we do for ____?” but for some reason my mom is very resistant to doing that. She thinks that they will guilt trip us into more. I don’t think it hurts to ask…
Post # 9
We got about 5 arrangements for the church, bouquet, boutonierres, the bridesmaids just carried single flowers, and then a few small, simple centrepieces. So, granted, we got less than most people, but it was like $500 or something.
I believe you are getting the Wedding Surcharge, here. I would go get some quotes from other florists, and say it’s for a 50th birthday party, and see what those prices look like, and show them to your coordinator.
Simply don’t allow them to guilt trip you into more. Say, very simply, “This is the part of the budget allocated to flowers. This is how much we would like to spend. We can spend it here, or elsewhere; that is entirely up to you.”
Post # 10
@DuckEBee: Sweetie, I’ve worked at flower shops for years. Florists are used to this. Tell them what you’re willing to spend, what your absolute necessities are, and give them pictures of a few styles and the names of a few flowers you’d like to see.
Or just order a wedding package of pre-arranged flowers from Sam’s Club, Costco, Safeway, etc. $700 and you’re done.
Post # 11
Well, anybody can try to guilt trip you into anything. Just let her know you won’t be made to do what you don’t want to do!
Post # 12
I would look at each thing they have priced and look at specifically what you can cut. Could your centerpieces be thinned out (they could be using over a full bouquet for each table) and if not is it even a must to have flowers in the centerpieces and not just purchase something else? I am picturing that the walls are going to be covered in flowers, your dress will be flowers – EVERYTHING will be flowers for that price.
If your coordinator has been handling this she may have just given them what you wanted in list for and let them go crazy without a budget! They may be looking at the more expensive flowers you wanted that could be 3 or 4 times the price of cheaper options that would work!
I would give them the budget and have them work with it while being firm that is all you are willing to pay so they need to come up with something to satisfy you. Our caterer that is mandatory for the venue is a little too pricy for us, I went to her and told her I want to spend around X (gave a little lower) and she was able to come up with an improvised buffet menu so that she could get the business.
If they cannot give you flowers for $5000 then I think your business is better spent elsewhere. Every wedding vendor I’ve spoken to so far that has not been cooperative with their prices doesn’t even get a second look, the vendors I ended up picking are very cooperative with me and are willing to work with my prices.
I still can’t get over trying to picture $15000 of flowers!
Post # 13
You need to stand up and take charge. It’s not your mom’s place to, it’s your’s. $15K for florals is literally revolting – I am paying under $5K.
Tell your florist to stick it where the sun don’t shine.
Post # 14
@DuckEBee: Thats a little ridiculous….that $15K price quote is 35% of what I spent on my entire wedding.
In total I spent $2800 on flowers. There were somethings during my wedding planning that I did not want to break the bank for. I set a budget to not spend more than $3K on flowers (and even that was a lot to me) bc they are just gonna get dumped or someone will take home the floral arrangement
But as far as your wedding coordinator goes, you hired this person to do a job and told them to stsy within a budget, make that clear to her, and express that if shd doesnt, that you will be forced to use another coordinstor
Post # 15
Ok don’t freak out. I think this is rather common and happened to me too. I ended up pricing out the same type of thing with 3 different florist and got estimates from each that ranged in price by several thousand dollars. The florist I chose to work with said to me: “TELL ME YOUR BUDGET AND LET’S START WITH THAT”. That’s really how I chose them – I trusted this. Granted I did go a bit above my original budget, but my florist was so great about keeping me on track and helping guide me to make good decisions about which investments would give the most impact and bang for buck. They also threw in a few extras as a suprise on the day of the wedding (made the table arrangements bigger than expected, decorated a few little details as a suprise for me). My florist also helped keep me on track, when I started seeing pictures on pinterest. They would remind me that we had a plan to go more simple for ceremony and save more budget for reception, so that I wouldn’t get out of control with the budget. I really appreciated this!
I think you need to push your planner to look at a few other florists and find one that you feel comfortable working with, that will want to start from the perspective of your budget and help you stay in. I looked at each estimate line by line and saw that each charged very different amounts for the same thing, such as extremely different prices for table linens, bouquets, etc.
You should not feel bad to ask the florist to stay within your budget and help you get the most bang for your buck. They should be able to explore alternatives with you to help you get what you want (such as adding more greenery or flillers to table centerpieces, using flowers that are in season, suggesting a flower that looks similar to one you like for less $$, etc). My florist even suggested renting larger tables through our venue, which ended up saving some money because this cost was less than I would have paid for extra centerpieces and linens.
Don’t worry – it will all be ok. You just need to do a little grunt work here to get what you want. You may ultimately decide to up your budget a bit for this, but $15,000 is absurd.
Post # 16
$1500 is outrageous! Ask to use mostly in season and locally grown flowers, it will bring the cost down a lot. And using greenery is a great way to make the arrangements look full and lush without spending a ton.