"I just got engaged....now what?"

For those recently engaged brides out there, congrats! We have seen quite an increase in inquiries since the holiday engagement season...who said the winter months were supposed to be slow for florists? We are busier than ever and loving every second of it! Dawn and I love to hear engagement stories, we really are that sappy. I get a lot of emails and calls requesting appointments and all of my brides have the same question,"what do I need to bring to the meeting?" To help you out, I have made a list of suggestions:

1. Your happy face!

Wedding planning should be a happy time and we think that choosing your floral designs is one of the most fun parts, ok we are a little biased, but we can't help it. So many of our brides say that the one thing they are most excited about is seeing how the flowers pull everything together on that special day. We agree! While we do understand that there are a lot of decisions to make, we are here to help. Don't stress about all the little things at the first meeting, we will send you a little "to-do-list" to help you remember to ask your dear Granny if she wants a pin on corsage or a wristlet.

A happy bride!

2. A Wish List

It will save a lot of your time at the meeting if you have a list of all the things you will need from us on your wedding day. If your wedding is 6 months off, we don't expect you to have the exact centerpiece count, but a rough idea will help. Don't fret if you decide to add or delete a few things, we can make changes to your order until 30 days before your wedding. Here is a list that might help....

Bridal Party flowers: bridal bouquet (duh.), bridesmaid bouquets, groom's bout, groomsmen bouts (we will need names for labeling), father and grandfather bouts (with names), mother and grandmother corsages (with names), flower girl and ring bearer flowers, reader or soloist bouts or corsages

Ceremony flowers: alter vases or urns, aisle runner, pew or chair decor, presentation flowers, unity candle, wreaths, toss petals for guests

Reception flowers: cocktail tables, head table or sweetheart table, guest table centerpieces, votives, cake flowers, place card table, bar decor, throw bouquet, gift table

Now I am sure you feel overwhelmed about all of the things on that list, but just reeeeeeeeeeelax. We can discuss all the options at our meeting, but it is a good idea to think about everything that you will need prior to sitting down.

3. Wedding Day Details

We encourage our brides to go about their wedding planning in this order.....get the man, get the ring, book the venue, find the dress, call A Garden Party! Your venue and dress will help set the tone for your wedding floral designs, so it helps to have those decided on. Also, choosing a bridesmaid gown is recommended so we can get a color palette going. To help estimate the price for delivery, we will need to know the general wedding timeline, like where and when you are getting ready, where and when the ceremony is being held and what time the cocktail hour and reception will begin. Dawn and I also like to contact the wedding photographer and bakery prior to the wedding day to firm up arrival times. Many brides will look for suggestions for a photographer or cake designer, and we are happy to recommend Tina Jay Photography  and Sweet Life Bakery...we adore them!

Sweet Life Bakery....I want a piece of this right now!

4. All of your hard work!

Dawn and I are sticklers about making sure the wedding flowers compliment all of the other wedding day details, from the invites to the favors! We would love to see a sample of the invitations, programs, favors or anything else that you have been working on. Believe me ladies, all of those little details add up and make a big statement! Let us help you pull it all together! For example, one of our brides wanted a country chic wedding and planned to make homemade jam as her favors. We used coordinating mason jars for her centerpieces and for her aisle decor. It was so cute and totally country chic!

Mason jars hung on shepherd hooks down the aisle for this outdoor ceremony.

5. Pictures!

We love when brides come to us with stacks of inspirational pictures, it gives us a head start! We all know you have that huuuuuuuuuuge pile of wedding magazines at home, take a night to go through them and tear out any pictures that you like. Or head on over to TheKnot.com for lots of ideas and inspiration (be sure to add us as your vendor)! Bring them to the meeting and we can review them and create a custom look, just for you! If you have them, bring pictures of the ceremony and reception location too. A beautifully ornate church may not need the same decor as a simple country church. We can make copies of your pictures to keep in your file.

6. Some help!

We love when brides bring their moms, mother in laws, bridesmaids and even the groom! We kinda go with the motto "the more the merrier". Everyone has a good time and likes to be a part of the planning, just be prepared to hear lots of opinions :) We have lots of books and albums to keep everyone busy while we discuss all the details. I have a big table so everyone can fit!

7. A Budget

Many of our brides are unsure about what the cost of the flowers will be, which is totally understandable, you have never ordered wedding flowers before! According to the wedding experts, 10-15% of your overall wedding budget should be spent on flowers. Of course this varies greatly since every bride is different and each case is unique, but let me give you an idea of price ranges. Most bridal bouquets start at $125 and can range to $175, depending on the floral selection and design. We have done simple tulip bridesmaid bouquets for $50 to more elaborate designs for $85 with roses, callas and orchids. Bouts are usually $15 and corsages are $25. Since centerpiece options are so varied, the range does too. We have candle rentals starting at $20/table or more elaborate designs priced around $150, depending on floral selection and season. There are plenty of options everywhere in between too!

A trio of floating candles and bear grass in rented candle holders.


Lush pink elevated centerpieces on silver flower tower.

I hope that this blog has helped! Let me know what you think and if I missed anything!

If you are interested in our floral design services in South Jersey, the greater Philadelphia area or Northern Delaware please contact us by filling out the form below:[gravityform id=2 name=ContactUs]