Wedding flower DIY is not for the faint of heart. I know this because I (along with a friend, my MOH’s mom, and my mother) decided that we would assemble all of the wedding flowers. My mother is an interior decorator and has worked in and with flower shops over the years. My MOH’s mother (affectionately called “Mama Lu”) owned her own floral business for many years and continues to do floral work when she has the chance. Amy Delov, owner of a Toronto business called Delovly Design, has wonderful passion and keen eye for floral design. My floral roster was stacked, I want to clear about that. Here’s how our flower adventure unfolded.
We decided on hydrangeas and vendela roses – simple and classic. We also ordered garden roses, dahlias, lisianthus, and some other white flowers (sorry, Amy) for special bouquets and arrangements. We had to make the following:
- 1 bridal bouquet
- 1 toss bouquet
- 4 junior bridesmaids bouquets
- 4 bridesmaids bouquets
- 1 MOH bouquet
- 12 boutonnieres
- 17 centerpieces
- 2 church arrangements
Yep, we had a lot to do. My mum ordered the stock through her business license from FleuraMetz and the service and quality were impeccable. The Friday evening before the big day, we met at my parent’s place to begin the assembly.
Armed with our mix and match vases, wrapped in lace and sewn with crystal buttons, we began dividing and conquering each task. Removing thorns, pulling leaves, cutting stems, tossing petals – a lot of prep work goes into getting the flowers ready for arrangement, people! With 3 knowledgeable professionals and a team of bridesmaids, things moved along nicely. Though there was panic about the state of some of the hydrangeas, I’m happy to report that everything survived well into the wedding day. Some guests/winners of the centerpieces later told me that their flowers lasted into the following week!
I know that that story seems pretty painless, but I assure you that it was a lot of work. We had 7 people working their butts off for 6 hours! Aside from ensuring that you purchase quality flowers, I recommend that you have enough (wo)man power on preparation day.
Here is the useful stuff – some floral tips that I learned from the pros:
1. Fuller Roses
Gently wrap your hand/fingers around the rose and blow into centre of the petals. This will help open up any closed blooms and give the roses a fuller look.
2. Puttin’ on the Spritz
Have 5 or 6 spray bottles on hand and spray, spray, spray! This is especially important for the delicate hydrangeas as they absorb a lot of water through their petals, leaves, and stems.
3. Extra, Extra!
Make an extra boutonniere for the Groom (thanks, Mama Lu!). With all the hugs and embraces he receives throughout the day, his flower will likely need to be changed at some point.
4. Keep It Down!
For the love of pete, hold your bouquet low or no one will be able to see your dress! The number of wedding shows that I’ve seen where the bride and her bridesmaids are holding their bouquets at their chests – Ach! It drives me crazy!
Rule of thumb is this: your flowers should be carried either against your belly button area (this is especially helpful if you’re nervous and your hands are shaking) OR naturally where your hands meet when your arms are fully extended.
Assign someone to save your bridal bouquet. Throughout the evening, your mind is focused on other things and I admit that I completely forgot about my bouquet. Thankfully, months later on Christmas morning, my amazing mother gave me a beautiful gift – my dried bouquet in a shadow box that was lined with the lace that had adorned our head table. My mum still has her bridal bouquet, pressed and dried in a frame, and felt that I should have mine too. This preservation really maintained the beauty of Delovly Design’s work (check her out on Instagram @delovlydesign) and is a cherished keepsake.
Flowers are truly beautiful and really add a lot to your big day, and to your budget if you’re not careful.
What flowers will you be using at your wedding? And, perhaps more importantly, who has been designated to save your bouquet?