I was asked recently, “Why are wedding florists so expensive?” I was shocked for a moment at the question! Why wouldn’t they be expensive?? Well then I had to stop for a moment and realize that most couples getting married really have no idea what happens behind the scenes so here’s a post to fill you in. Costs for wedding flowers can sound over the top but once you understand what takes place behind the scenes it makes more sense.
There are multiple steps to this and it typically starts with the couple completing a fact sheet and a consultation. Then the florist takes your ideas and breaks them all down. Size of vases, how many, what foliage, when to pick up and drop off the flowers. The six to seven weeks before your wedding is crucial in the planning stages for florists. They need to be sure materials aren’t on back order and that all supplies are ready. Florals need be chosen to coincide with your wedding vision (tough if the blooms the couple wants aren’t in season).
Bought from suppliers
Most floral companies buy their flowers from other supplies and they are usually abroad. Flowers must be grown either in special conditions or abroad in climate conducive to their growth. Then they are imported by plane or come by boat and delivered to wholesalers. All the while they’ve been in air-controlled containers, so they get delivered in the right state of growth. Then consider rising fuel costs…it all adds up!
Production & Art
It takes a lot to preserve your florals once they come in. The stems need to be trimmed and cleaned. There are solutions they need to keep in, sometimes in or out of coolers to maintain the bloom size. Then it takes hours to assemble, arrange according to the design desired- this includes boutonniere’s, bouquets, centerpieces and aisle décor. Every stem needs to be freshly cut again, and preserved during the design and assembly process. Then vases need to be cleaned and packaged and everything else in their toolkit needs to be prepped for delivery.
This is an “ugly truth” moment. Yes…$800.00 delivery fees exist. Flowers don’t deliver themselves and the reality is, the more you have the more expensive it is. You can’t just toss them into the back of a four by four and call it a day if you want your installations to still look beautiful for the wedding. Plus, each design needs to be properly packaged for transport, misted with water and placed into an air-conditioned truck.
Now it’s time to unload the truck, store the blooms and designs in the coolest spot and then set up completely at your venue. This takes time, accuracy and attention to the details outlined in the paperwork. This typically can’t be done with just one person; likely a few other team members are required since set up time can be constrained to the venue’s requirements. Therefore, the cost of more bodies to set up is likely included in the pricing as well.
We love them but florals aren’t cheap, they are truly a luxury item that most couples want to incorporate. So if you have the budget to splurge go for it, you certainly won’t regret it. On the other hand, if the prices are too far out of your budget, wait for our next post and we will tell you how you can save!
Let’s just clarify from the start we are NOT wedding coordinators at the venue, don’t get us confused and if you are confused read my article I wrote awhile back
So what do wedding planners really do you ask? Well I guess it depends: we mediate, negotiate, police, teach you how to dance, and might even use nail polish remover to un-super glue a piece of statue from your palm…okay maybe I am getting a bit dramatic here but let’s focus on the full-planning service they provide .
Full scale planning is a lot of work, which is likely why you have hired someone to do it because you lack the time (or patience?) to be able to do all on your own. The moment you are engaged and hire a planner, we are there with you every step of the planning process. Here are some of the things we do for a full planning:
Help you create a budget
Outsource potential venues and set up viewings based on the number of guests you are looking to have attend and your budget limitations
Research officiants based on ceremony style and language
Aid you in developing your wedding theme and vision
Wait, before I continue, let me just say that we research EVERYTHING. Just because you don’t see work being done in front of your eyes, doesn’t mean it’s not taking hours of our time. Research is tedious and details must be acquired for every single vendor needed for the wedding.
Research and outsource: DJ’s or bands for the reception, décor/rentals and florists, hair and makeup artists, suiting/tuxedo companies, bridal boutiques and trunk shows, transportation and hotel accommodations, cakes and sweets, photographers and videographers, invitations, catering companies (if the venue doesn’t have an in-house caterer) and in most cases, planners will also go with you to meet these potential vendors.
Help negotiate and manage your contracts and develop a record tracking system for your payments
Coordinate your fittings and wedding rehearsal
Be there the day of the wedding to organize your vendors, ensure they show up on time, oversee set up and tear down- we leave after you leave.
Reading this it doesn’t look like much but when you realize the endless hours of work it entails to be glued to a computer coming up with multiple quotes from multiple vendors- you will understand why you’ve hired a planner…or at least why you should!
Part 2 will discuss how a Partial Planning works and why some couples opt for it instead!