1. Do Some of the flowers yourself.
- Flower Girls. There is no reason that the flower girls should be throwing real flower petals. Actually, it is probably better for you (and your dress) if those flowers are artificial. All of the major craft retailers sell petals in almost every color that you can imagine.
- The Toss Bouquet. All you really need are a couple of silk flowers (matching the flowers in your carry bouquet) wrapped together with wire (make sure the sharp edges are tucked) and tied with ribbon
- Aisle Runner. Again this can be easily purchased (at a fraction of the price) from a craft retailer or on-line.
- Pew Bows. I tried to tie my own and had a melt down (my one DIY fail of my Wedding) and asked the florist to do it. At least give it a try.
- Flowers for the Mothers. One of my favorite Wedding traditions is to have the Bride and Groom deliver flowers to their Mothers. These can be put together as easily as the toss bouquet.
2. Limit the Amount you order.
Back in the day, everyone in the Bride and Groom's family would get a corsage or a boutonniere. Times have changed. Limit these to those parents, grand parents, god parents, and those how are speaking in the wedding. I snapped the picture below after a Wedding (I know they are fake, but someone still paid for them) of flowers that weren't picked up or used. Wasted money.
Other Places you don't need flowers:*
- Pew Bows
- Buffet Tables
- Cake Table
- Favor/Gift Table/Seating card table
* if you really feel these areas need flowers, please see below or think about using the toss bouquet
3. Reuse the Flowers
Ceremony Flowers can be re-used at the receptions in lots and lots of different ways.
- The Bride's bouquet and the Bridesmaids bouquets can be used to decorate the head table. Just buy some inexpensive vases. Pew bows can also be attached.
- The Bride's bouquet and Bridesmaids bouquet can be moved around for photo opportunities (like cake cutting) or placed by the place cards until the guests have been seated.
- Alter Flowers from the ceremony can be used to decorate the entry to the receptions.
4. Get the standard reception flowers.
Most reception venues have a standard package for table decor. Stick with that. We have all been to weddings and after the first course is served, the table is a mess of favors, and food, glasses, purses, you name it.
5. Substitute the Bridesmaid's Bouquets.
I went to a fabulous wedding where the bridesmaids carried custom clutches that the Bride had made herself. Please do not go with the the classic umbrella ....
Dry your own Bouquet.
I just recently found out that the florist will do this for you. This is a definite DIY. It's simple, hang the bouquet upside down with string from a window sill, once dry store in wax or tissue paper.
PS - don't forget the Groom's boutonniere