Hayley Lehmann Photography Blog

Wedding Flowers: The Look of Love

Friday March 20th 2009
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Your first step to floral perfection for your function is to find a good florist. You are looking for someone who is in tune with what you like and who will bring a sense of style and drama to the whole occasion. The trick is to find someone who can make your dreams come true without blowing your budget. Look through magazines to find florists in the area close to the venue, and ask for recommendations from the banqueting manager, your caterer and friends.

Arm yourself with details of your wedding (the date, the venue and some idea of what you’d like). It is also important to have some idea of how much you want to spend at the outset. As a rough estimate, 3-5% of your total wedding budget is the average spent on flowers. 

While the main aim is to choose flowers in a colour that you like, there are other factors to take into consideration.
Think about the venues where you will be holding your ceremony and reception. If you love the idea of soft pink flowers but your venue has a scarlet patterned carpet, you might need to rethink your colour scheme. Also, if your venue is modern and minimalist, delicate country flowers in pastel shades could easily look out of place, while arrangements of striking white lilies would be ideal.

The simplest solution to setting a theme is to go with the season. Spring and summer demand soft, pastel shades, in particular pink, and lots of white. An autumn or winter wedding, when it is likely to be dark, allows you to choose opulent, richer colours. Reds, splashes of vibrant orange mixed with foliage and lots of candlelight will certainly look dramatic. 

First impressions count but keep table arrangements either low, no more than 10in high, so that guests can talk over them, or in tall vases so that they can talk under them.

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While you may have an idea of the flowers you like, spare a thought for the style of bouquet. Think of your flowers as another accessory and an important part of your overall outfit. Describe your dress to your florist or take along a photograph, if possible, and choose something that you love and feel comfortable carrying.

The round bouquet tends to be the most popular style and will either be hand-tied or wired. Wired bouquets are easier to hold, as the stems are slimmer, but are also generally more expensive as they take longer to create. Hand-tied bouquets can often sit in water if the stems are free, which makes them ideal for decorating a vase at the reception, but beware of water marks on your dress. It is best if the stems are wrapped in silk tape. Your bouquet will probably be out of water for most of the day, so you should select flowers that are durable and that won’t wilt when they’re handled. 

The teardrop bouquet has a posy top and gradually trails to a point at the base.

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The teardrop works well with most styles of dress as it isn’t too heavy and the gradual tapering makes it a flattering shape. 

A posy is a smaller version of a round bouquet, often used for bridesmaids or flower girls. It’s also ideal for bride’s wearing a simple, straight dress who don’t want anything too heavy or overpowering. The round bouquet suits most style of dress, although petite brides and those wearing slim-fitting dresses should avoid a heavy, overly large bouquet.

When you’re choosing the flowers for your bouquet, there are a few things to take into consideration. As well as the price and whether the flowers are in season, you should also bear in mind their scent. Lily of the valley, roses and sweet peas, for example, have a sweet scent, while oriental lilies have a heavy scent and chrysanthemums are spicy. Beware of flowers that will attract wasps and bees in the summer months.

If you’re having your ceremony and reception at the same venue, it’s a good idea to co-ordinate your bouquet with your table flowers. However, if you’re getting married elsewhere, there’s no reason why your bouquet should co-ordinate with anything other than your dress and your bridesmaids’ outfits.

Rob Van Helden: www.rvhfloraldesign.com
Designer Flowers: www.designerflowersuk.com
Paula Pryke: www.paula-pryke-flowers.com

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