- 4 years ago
We are getting married in March 2016. The first week we we’re engaged I hired our close friend to be a our coordinator. She owns a wedding coordinating company, and she assigned one of her staff to do our wedding (because the friend is a guest, and we don’t want her working at our wedding). We are definately her most “budget” wedding. She’s used to brides just paying for convienence and we are looking to save at every turn. When the topic of flowers came up she told me not to worry, she new a super affordable flourist. I looked him up on yelp and everyone talked about how great his prices were. Great! So I call him and ask for a quote, this is what he gave me: 10 short centerpieces, 3 bouquets, local delivery = $2500.
Yikes!! What if I need 20 centerpieces?
So I told my coordinaor/friend we would DIY the flowers and she looked horrorstruck! She told me that DIY flowers always turn out terrible and it’s too stressfull to do it the day before the wedding. This worried me. So I decided I should do a practice run. First I researched like crazy!
I went on fifty flowers and global roses and all those sites to start comparing prices, and deciding what types of flowers to order (I figured I would do all white/ivory to keep it simple). Our location was an added compliction. We are getting married in Palm Springs but even in March the weather is hot enough that certain flowers just can’t take it. For example hydramgeas (whcih I love!!!) wilt realy fast in the heat. So I decided against them. Succulents do great in the desert, so I figured I would encorprate potted succulents into the ceterpieces. These 2 photos became my inspiration:
I went to ikea and got these candle holders for 99 cents – and I’m using them as vases. I need 3 per 8ft long table (16 tables) total = 48 small centerpieces.
I went to a thrift shop and bought wine glasses and water goblets – mix and match – for about 65 cents each. I need 4 – 6 per 8ft table, (16 tables) total = approx 70. I also purchased that mirror glass spray paint to make faux mercury glass and I spray painted the wine glasses and goblets.
Then I planted the succulents in the glasses. If I can keep them alive until March I will use them! If they die I will replant new ones. I will plant the rest about 3 weeks before the wedding. It took me about 2 hours to plant 7 succulent centerpieces by myself. It will go faster when I have help.
Next, I went to the LA Flower Market (They are open from about 3am to 8am and they sell wholesale to flourists directly! Most large cities have one!) and spent about $50 on flowers. (but I was experimenting with loads of types, so this cost will be lower per stem later) Since I am not using hydrangeas, I decided to supplement with these galacitica white stem daisies called “apple of my eye”. They are more sturdy than hydrengeas and can hold up to the heat.
This is a photo of the Flower Market. Next are photos of all the flowers I’m ordering either online or at the Flower Market.
I specifically chose flowers that are available all year round and that are sturdy enough to handle the Palm Springs heat. Even though flowers like tulips are indeed avialble for my wedding in March, I found that the seasonal ones cost more even when IN season, then the year-round flowers cost.
Then I made a total mess of my kitchen.
Admitedly the first bouquet was a bit difficult. It kept sliding around on me and it looked lumpy (not the smooth orb-shape that I wanted). But the second one was amazing, and the ones that followed looked even better! The first one took me about 45 mins to figure out, but then I started moving faster. I made 3 centerpieces and 2 bouquets (that was all the flowers I had purchased). This took just about 2 hours, but again I did it by myself – I will have moms and bridesmaids to help on the day before the wedding.
Then I placed them on the table with the succulents and the votives. The end result was WAY better than my expectations! I think they looked really professional! And I think they look almost as good as the inspiration photos up at the top!!
I am still pricing the diffrence between ordering online and ordering at the Flower Market. I expect I’ll do a combination of the two. I read that when ordering flowers on line you should order 15% more than you need – becsause some flowers are bound to be damaged in transit so you order a surpluss to make up for the loss. I will also order the succulents online, but to save money I will pick them up from Riverside rather than paying to ship them – it’s only an hour drive.
COST: All the glassware, plus votives and candles, plus the actual flowers and succulents all combined come to just under $800 on flowers. (and this is for about 48 centerpieces, way more than the estimate for $2500 – which was only 10 centerpieces).
This cost includes 48 small centerpieces in the ikea votive/vase. and approx 70 goblets with succulents. It also includes 3 bouquets (1 bride, 2 bridesmaids). Plus 2 taller arrangements for either side of the altar. And it includes the cost of rose petals for the aisle. If we do corsages/boutineers I will order them seperately, I’m not going to make those myself.
Short votives are sold in packs of 4 for $1 at ikea. Tall votives were $1 each at the dollar store.
Please share your DIY flowers, and other tips for saving time or money!!!