Post # 1
Question for all previous brides and bridesmaids: Did you hold on to your bouquet after the wedding?
Most brides seem to go on their honeymoon right after being married, so the idea of the bouquet lasting for a week after the wedding doesn’t hold as a selling point for me to have an elaborate bouquet if I will only appreciate it in person for the day of the wedding and the day after (before I would go on my honeymoon).
When I was a bridesmaid for my SIL’s wedding, I kept my bouquet (though it was white orchids and they began to brown the day of) and some other flowers which lasted for a week. I kept the bouquet from my cousin’s wedding and dried it out, kept it for years in the basement at my parent’s house (eventually threw it out).
Did you (as a bridesmaid) like/appreciate the bouquet and keep it for the next few days/weeks? Do you feel like having tons of flowers is a waste? Do you HATE carrying a heavy bouquet and get confused/frustrated when you want to keep it safe and have no where to place it during the reception?
I ask all of this because I have a proposal from a florist I love, but the price for the bouquets is just too high. We plan on discussing this with the florist and asking for their suggestions to cut a 10K proposal (pre-tax) to around 8K (pre-tax) – I’m in NYC so everything is $$$$$$$$ unless you say – hey I’m not okay with lighting cash on fire. I have a lot of ideas, but I think cutting stem-count and reducing variations of flowers down would help a bit. I will of course, ask the florist for their ideas on how to reduce the costs.
I hope this makes sense. I’m a little tired and just want to post this so I have something to look forward to reading through. I do love hearing different opinions from brides and bridesmaids, obviously they’re completely different but helpful!
Post # 2
8k is a lot to spend on flowers. I think when we shopped around, we spend around $1500-$2k total in Southern California, but we went with two different florists: 1 for the bouquets amd boutonnieres and ceremony design, and a wholesale florist for the centerpieces. I loved my bouquet, but was sad that I didn’t get a chance to preserve it. That being said, I am borderline between thinking holding onto the bouquet is sentimental and it being weird/stuck on a material item rather thinking back on the memories of the day. I still have my bouquet on our bookshelf, gathering dust, but it’s still pretty, and my maid of honor has her bouquet in her bathroom, which made me really happy to see. the flowers were beautiful.
Post # 3
Thank you for sharing!
Yeah, it is. I think I have reasonable ideas to cut somewhere around 1K off from the budget pre-tax. Another cost is that a huppah is being built for us – only options they have were white birch and we wanted something darker. That’s something we may flip on if we can’t get close enough to $8K with other ideas.
Post # 4
As a bride, I kept it for a couple of years. As a bridesmaid, not long at all, maybe days.
I can’t imagine spending that sort of money on flowers! But I agree you don’t want to spend big dollars to make them last a few days longer.
Post # 5
I have never even tried to keep a bouquet, whether as a bridesmaid or bride. None of them ever looked attractive enough 12 hours to even come close to resembling something I would want to keep.
Post # 6
I think I’d find a better way to spend $8-10,000! I would keep, but wouldn’t try to preserve a bridesmaid bouquet- and, would totally not have cared if the bride re-used them for centerpieces, or if I didn’t have one.
I didn’t think I’d be interested in even keeping my own bouquet, but at the last minute, I couldn’t let it go (totally unlike me!). I had DIYd the flowers and after had some of the flowers pressed into pottery (Salt Marsh Pottery in Mass) and dried and put into jewelery (Forever in Time).
I think your area is a very different price point than mine, but have you thought of just setting the flower budget, the color/type of design you want, and giving that info to the florist? That way, rather than asking them to cut their estimate, you are telling them what you can afford and asking them if they can design something more in your pricepoint.
Post # 7
We already met once to get our design ideas, colors, and what we need in total, and got a proposal. We went to see a mock up of my bouquet and a table centerpiece without signing a contract or paying any fee. We plan on going back and saying: We’re now looking to keep our budget to X. Based on what we’ve discussed that we would like: Design/colors/etc. what do you suggest we do to get there?
My ideas for cutting the estimate down are just ones to throw out there. I don’t need $800 for a space filler in an alcove – I’ll take a candelabra with some candles. That’s a way to cut from their estimate that will bring the budget down. I’m interested in alternatives in general to get to the same kind of feel we are looking for. If that means scraping everything and starting anew, I am open to this.
Post # 8
Update: So far we’ve been able to cut almost $2K off the budget. That $800 alcove filler – GONE and replaced with essentially a table centerpiece. I got a quote from a chuppah vendor and asked the florist if they could try working their quote for the chuppah down and as close (or lower) than the other quote I received.
I would still love for bees to vote and share about keeping/saving bouquets. I actually looked in to professionally preserving the bouquet and then went HELL NO after seeing the prices being charged (it’s beautiful work though).
Post # 9
I had my planner find a florist who would be willing to repurpose/reconfigure (don’t know the right word) all of our florals (bouquets, centerpieces, altar pieces, etc) into floral arrangements and deliver them to our local hospital. Our quote came in around $5k, but we feel much better knowing they are serving two purposes and will hopefully brighten someone elses day. Maybe consider that. Sometimes based on your city you just can’t avoid high prices.
Post # 10
I only spent a few hundred on my flowers. I was a bridesmaid once and I highly recommend you go with stems instead of one of those weird flower holders – there was no salvaging it, no keeping it in a vase, so when it started dying, that was basically it. I let the petals dry and planted the ivy. I put the dried petals in the wedding album I made my best friend. My cat ate the ivy (darn her). The rest went in the trash.
For my own wedding we had stems. Everything was easily put into vases for those who wanted to keep them. It was lightweight the day of – no need to have gigantic bouquets for no real reason. I also requested succulents, which I pulled from the wires and planted. Now I have a flowerpot full of them as my flowers are of course long gone (just daisies).
My suggestions – get things that can be planted after, such as the succulents or leaves that root very easily. Get flowers that are in season as they should be cheaper. And get more greenery than florals – I’m just guessing but I bet that’s cheaper too. Plus they won’t die as swiftly. And last of all, go smaller than whatever it is you’ve planned that costs 8000 bucks … that really does seem a bit outrageous, though it depends on the flower choices, of course.
Post # 11
My Maid/Matron of Honor and I dried our bouquets and now I have mine out in our living room (until we figure out where we’ll be permentally and I can build a wedding day shawdow box). I think it looks pretty.
I think if i did pay $$$$$$ for flowers I would have dried them in slicia rather than the onld fashion way, but I bought my flowers wholesale at the farmers market lol
Post # 12
I opted to make my own arrangements out of dried flowers I purchased on etsy! They were cost effective (still not CHEAP, but not extravagant) and because they were already dry ALL of my girls took them home and have them on display now!!
Post # 13
I kept my bouquet for a while: I used it a couple of days after the wedding for taking more pictures. Then when we got back from the honeymoon the bouquet was still pretty fresh.
We donated our large centerpieces to a local hospital right after the wedding. This is a good option if you’re worried about spending money on something that you can only enjoy for an evening. You can check with your venue or coordinator.
During the reception, we placed all the bouquets on the cake table as decoration. They were heavy, so it was nice to display them without carrying them!