I’ve worked in the wedding industry as a wedding vendor for over half a decade, so when my partner of 10 years finally got on one knee, I expected the wedding planning process to be a breeze. Oh boy, was I mistaken.
Sure, I have a clear vision for my big day, and some great contacts in the local wedding industry, especially since I’m an active member in the Queenstown Wedding Association. But, regardless of how many people I know or how many weddings I’ve been a part of, nothing really prepared me for the overwhelm I felt once the time came to plan my own dream day.
The most overwhelming part for me? Flowers & Styling. Ok, yea, I’ve got a Pinterest board that’s been pinned with all the same things that every other bride on the planet has too; dreamy wedding images from those #instagramweddings that are styled to perfection, and idyllic scenes that are full of colour and magic.
But… my budget is small, and I have no idea how to translate my Pinterest board into a *realistic* reality.
So, I took some time to interview my friend and florist, Kyla from Bespoke Weddings and Events, to get some Top Tips from a local expert to share with couples who might also be struggling a bit while planning their Queenstown weddings.
If you’ve been feeling unsure about how to choose your wedding flowers, you’re in the right place (and I feel you!). Thanks to Kyla, I learned a lot, and I hope that others will gain just as much benefit from my conversation too…
SELECTING WEDDING COLOURS
L: Ok, so how the heck do I choose a colour scheme, when I pretty much love every colour I see?
K: Start by considering your overall wedding theme, such as the colours that your bridesmaids and groom will be wearing, and then go from there.
Also consider the colours that are a part of the rest of your wedding, such as the colours you would like on the tables, or in other parts of your wedding.
Still feeling like you’re stuck? Just choose your favourite colours and go with that! There are no rules, rhyme or reason– just do what you love!
ESSENTIAL vs NON-ESSENTIAL WEDDING FLOWER ARRANGEMENTS
L: Right, and once I have my colour scheme, how do I select what type of arrangements to order?
K: There are definitely some flower arrangements that are necessary for most weddings, and some that are just nice to have.
K: Here’s my opinion:
Essential floral arrangements:
- Ceremony florals
- Table / reception florals
Nice to have:
- Family buttonholes
- Aisle flowers
- Welcome sign florals
- Cake florals
- Flower crowns
- Bar / feature arrangements
K: But, honestly – everything is necessary as far as I’m concerned.
L: Hahaha, good point.
BUDGETING FOR YOUR FLORALS
L: Right, so how does a couple begin to budget for their wedding flowers?
K: It’s important to start by narrowing down your flower selection to what is most important to you and your partner, and then work everything else around that.
Choose what those main ticket items are, like a big bridal bouquet, then simplify it to create the bridesmaids.
A perfect way to make your budget stretch farthest, is to repurpose items from your ceremony into your reception styling.
A good example would be this stunning floral love next that I recently created, and the couple then after the ceremony finished, we immediately reinstalled the flowers at their head table for a seamless look.
There is a potential for flower quotes to be a bit intimidating, but keep in mind that florists are likely working a lot of hours to prepare and/or install flowers for you, and the price will reflect this.
SELECTING THE RIGHT FLOWERS
L: With so many flower types to choose from, how do you suggest that couples select their wedding flowers?
K: New Zealand has a limited supply of flowers, so you’re best off simply choosing your colours, and then trusting your florist to do the rest.
There are certain flowers, like Baby’s Breath, that go up in price due to their limited availability, and they’re extremely hard to get. If you’re dead set on having Baby’s Breath in your arrangements, expect to pay $150-$300 per bunch, and will need to place the order no less than 6 months in advance.
But generally, if you go for seasonal florals and let your florist choose the best, that’s going to be the most budget-friendly option.
WHEN TO ORDER YOUR FLOWERS
L: Do you have any advice for when a couple should engage with a florist, and place their flower order for their wedding?
K: I suggest reaching out to a florist as soon as you secure your date & venue. Unless you have a large lead time, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to work with the florist of your choice or get the flowers that you want.
It’s also important to note that most florists don’t have a physical shop, so they must place an order for your flowers, and that order takes time to be filled & shipped to Queenstown.
L: Right, so in essence- the sooner, the better!
HOW TO BRIEF YOUR FLORIST
L: What are the key details that a florist needs from a couple when they send you their wedding flowers brief?
K: There are quite a few things that we would love to receive from our clients in their brief:
- Favourite images of inspiration
- Detailed brief of what types of arrangements are required
- Colour preferences
- Who you’re wanting the flowers for, ie: bridal party vs family etc.
- Numbers in bridal party
- Venue & Ceremony locations
- What kind of ceremony flowers that you want
- Number of tables, and how many arrangements
- ***YOUR BUDGET*** This is the most important!
EVERYTHING ELSE YOUR FLORIST WANTS YOU TO KNOW
L: Are there any other tips or wisdom that you’d like to share with couples who are planning their Queenstown Wedding?
K: My number one tip is: Trust Your Florist! Find a florist that has a style that you like or that you can get along with, and then trust them with your brief. The most important thing is not to worry about the little details; instead, trust that they will make it happen to the best of their ability.
– Make sure you send your florist your favourite images so that they understand your preferences and style.
– Be patient! If you don’t get a reply straight away, it’s because they’re working on someone else’s wedding. You can assume that your email is safely in their inbox and will be returned to as soon as they get the time. Most florists spend way more time with flowers, than on their computer!
– Don’t be afraid to be different! If you have a wacky idea or want something that can’t be found on Pinterest, that’s great! Your florist is likely to enjoy the challenge and will work with you to bring your dream to life.
L: This has all been super helpful – thank you for your time, Kyla! What a privilege to get all of this insight first-hand from a local professional.
You can see Kyla’s work on her QWA listing page here– Bespoke Weddings & Events.
The author, Laura, is a QWA member as the owner of QT Booth, and she also manages the social media & marketing for the Queenstown Wedding Association through her creative marketing business, LP Media.