6 Floral Tips for Smaller Budget Weddings from Rose of Sharon
November 13, 2013
Winter Weddings
Can we talk about the flowers in this wedding for a sec? They're show stoppers. A beautifully cascading bride's bouquet, rich purples complemented by the prettiest sage greens and vases filled with sweet petals that don't tower over the table, but rather, invite you in. It's the handy work of the lovely Althea at Rose of Sharon, who's sharing her tips on how you can achieve this look with a smaller budget! See the rest of this beautiful day captured by The Photo Love, right here in the gallery!
1. Keep the size of the guest list down. With every additional person, you have to buy more food, linens, and flowers. Also, keep the size of the bridal party down. Flowers for large parties add up fast!
2. Be specific about colors, not flowers. Tell your florist a few flowers that you like and a few that you don't like. Show them photos of the style you like. Let the florist choose the rest.

3. Double duty. Some items can be re-purposed. Altar arrangements can be moved to the buffet. Aisle markers can be used as accents at the reception. Rehearsal dinner flowers can be used at the reception (if proper care is taken).
4. Don't rule out the standards. Carnations have a wonderful texture. Alstroemeria lilies come in a wide variety of colors. Daisies are fun. Paired with a few more expensive blooms, these classics work great.

5. Decide what's most important and splurge there. If your bouquet is the most important, use the more expensive blooms, like calla lilies and orchids here and go for less expensive blooms in the bridesmaids' bouquets. If the reception is where your focus is, have a focal piece for the room and coordinate the rest of the designs without matching exactly.
6. DIY. This is only recommended if you have experience with flowers, practice ahead of time and plan your day well. Flowers always take longer than expected and all the supplies you need can easily eat away any savings you may have. Oh, and go with something simple like hydrangeas. I also recommend a hybrid DIY-do your own centerpieces but purchase the more technical pieces from an experienced florist.
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From the Bride... I went for a fairly classic look. Simple and tasteful, and with a mix of masculine and feminine. Our main color was a warm eggplant purple with accents of grey and black. To continue the theme of his & hers, the venue had masculine wrought iron candelabras as well as feminine chandeliers. I loved the mix of black lanterns with delicate flower clusters on the tables. For flowers, I went for a natural but not rustic look with a mix of interesting and unusual blooms. For my cake I went with a very feminine ruffled cake with fondant flowers and for his cake he went with a Turtle Cake with tons of caramel and pecans. Shawn’s absolute favorite beer is Yuengling, which is only available east of Memphis. A friend made a special trip just to it for us to serve at the reception. Shawn’s nickname is “Taterhead” and one of the touches that truly that was special to us was our vintage “Mr. and Mrs. Taterhead” cake topper on the groom’s cake. We did not hire a wedding coordinator and did the planning ourselves. We also went with a full service wedding venue, had lanterns as centerpieces to reduce the amount of flowers needed, and served heavy hors d'oeuvres instead of a full meal. We skipped some of the formalities such as wedding favors and printed programs. Overall the wedding was great and went so well. My favorite memory was walking down the aisle and seeing each other for the first time but we also both loved being able to talk with our out of state friends and family that we don’t see often. We did have a little issue with a flower falling off the cake (several times) but luckily Jeff from Avondale skillfully reset it for pictures and cake cutting. The other funny thing was we were rushing to make our exit before the sparklers went out, but unfortunately, they were still lighting them at the end of the line. The guys lighting them ended up in the center of all of our exit pictures! My mom told me beforehand that your wedding will never be 100% perfect and to just expect it….so that helped me just laugh and enjoy the day.

From Rose of Sharon... Rachel came to me with the request that her flowers 'not look like everyone elses', that it be 'natural, not rustic,' that there be lots of texture, and that we use eggplant purple and sage green. With this, we were able to use flowers that most brides are afraid to try: Pieres Japonica, 'Picasa' Calla Lilies, Anemones, Succulents, Helleborus, Orchids, Clematis, and antique Hydrangeas. We accented this with deep plum miniature Carnations, Seeded Eucalyptus and Italian Ruscus. Rachel and Shawn's flexibility with the types of flowers used gave us the opportunity to be creative--our favorite kind of bride and groom!