Broke-Ass Category: Florists & Floral Inspiration

3/1

… I am still on the hunt for a florist, how about you?

The original plan was to keep the flower plan simple: bouquets and boutonnieres only. Well that plan is not realistic! Who was I kidding? I love fresh flowers and buy them weekly to decorate my house. A minimal flower presence at my wedding was a silly idea. What was I thinking? 

Real Bride Ciji Floral Event

I attended a floral event/book signing in hopes of being inspired

I started looking for florist in December 2016 and I am still looking. I’ve hit one roadblock after another but I still have hope! Here’s how you can avoid my mistakes:

  • I started talking to florists before I had a decor plan. The thought was that I could share bits and pieces of my vision and they would tell me what to do, that hasn’t happened … yet
  • Be open to suggestions but not all suggestions. I don’t really want mother’s corsages and I should stick with that decision without being influenced by tradition and florist feedback
  • Talk it out! I have so many ideas in my head and so many pictures on my Pinterest page but what I need most is to talk thru my vision. I’ve tried not to be a burden my friends and family with all of my wedding talk, but I need to get over that and I have a plan. More to come on that plan in a future post! 
  • Be gentle on yourself! Nothing’s worse then the feeling of wasted time. When I realized that it’s taking me almost four months to check this box off my list, I was two minutes away from a meltdown. I’ve had to give myself pep talks and encouragement. It’s your big day, it’s ok to take your time and get it RIGHT! 

I am confident that I will be able to share soon a status update on my floral decor plan, stay tuned! 

What have you been running into massive roadblocks with?

  • 1/10

    I mentioned a while ago that we planned to use fake flowers when it came time for bouquets, bouts, corsages and decor. So that’s what we did. Other than my bouquet, every other piece of flowery goodness was made with artificial flowers, and we were insanely happy with how they all turned out.

    We had two separate seating areas since dinner was outdoors, and dancing and partying were in the barn. Because of that, we wanted to do two different centerpieces. Outside, we had three long rows of tables, which we covered in pink linens with cream doily runners and 30 centerpieces made with flowers and carousel horses.

    Rachel's outdoor dinner tablescape

    Rachel's carousel horse centerpieces

    My mom found the bases on clearance and spray painted them aqua. She made all of the flower arrangements, including really cute fabric flowers with buttons in the center. The carousel horses were an eBay find, and while I don’t know the exact price, they weren’t super expensive. Once they were all put together, I was obsessed. They went perfectly with the linens, mismatched china and doilies. We also put boxes of Cracker Jacks and jars of gumballs out, too. My sister-in-law and bridesmaid, Rachel, hand-folded all of the napkins into pinwheels because she is the best ever, and we used homemade cream cheese mints as the centers. I made the actual batter (dough? I really don’t know what it is, lol), but my mom, SIL and a couple of other really awesome helpers made them into edible treats.

    Real Bride Rachel's table settings

    Listen, it was windy. Though not exactly how you set a table, the fork made sure those legit napkins didn’t blow away. After all the work of folding them, that would have been a travesty.

    Inside the barn was our party area, so we decided to go with fun, whimsical centerpieces for the eight round tables we set up. We took some of the best parts of a carnival and rolled them all into one fun arrangement.

    Rachel's centerpieces inside her venue

    Rachel's centerpieces inside her barn venue

    Icees? Popcorn? Rock candy? Lollipops? Cotton candy? Check. My mom made all of it — from the fake candy to the fabric suckers to the paper pinwheels. I mean, she didn’t go all Ghost on me and make the pots on a pottery wheel, but she did paint them. The little white LED lights were a great addition, too. We used cream linens for the tables, and we put peanuts out for everyone to munch on. Random aside, but my grandma was a HUGE fan. She was snacking all night. The centerpieces were the perfect fit.

    Our bridesmaid bouquets were one of my favorite parts of them entire wedding. I LOVE them. They were one of the first things my mom and I brainstormed about back when Russel and I picked our colors and theme. It was hard to articulate what I wanted, because I really didn’t even know. I wanted different shades of pink, and I like roses, succulents, peonies and ranunculus. Aqua flowers aren’t a thing, so we knew that would have to come in in the ribbon. I remember seeing the first prototype and thinking, “Oh lord, this might not work.” But as always, my mom came through.

    Bridesmaid bouquets made with artificial flowers

    Rachel's artificial flower bridesmaid bouquets

    They were so light and airy, and I loved all of the little pops of pink. We used aqua ribbon and finished them off with one little doily around the stems. I honestly have no idea how much they ended up costing, but I can tell you it was a fraction of what real flowers would have been.

    The boutonnieres were single pink roses with aqua and white flags and aqua ribbon. I wish I had a close up, because they were super cute.

    Rachel's artificial bridesmaid bouquet and bouttonierres

    The bouts for the dads, grandpas, officiant and reader (AKA my brothers) were just simple pink flowers. The corsages for the special ladies in our lives were made with the same flowers as the bouquets. We also had some random floral arrangements throughout the fairgrounds as well. There were two large pieces attached to the gates as you walked in that had our initials in the center, plus arrangements on the guestbook table, cake table, etc. For a gal who can take or leave flowers in normal, every day life, we ended up having a lot of beautiful floral-y goodness all over the place.

    If we had tried to make everything with fresh flowers, it would have cost us a fortune, and then we would have been out there the next day throwing them in the trash alongside bottles and peanut shells. How depressing. I’d rather sell them to a fellow Broke-Ass Bride and help her have a beautiful wedding while also putting some cash in our pockets, so that’s what we’re doing. We’ve already sold a few things, and are hoping to offload the rest in the next couple months. You never know, I may end up at one of those resale bridal shows I attended last year. We shall see!

    All photos by Jenni Bella Photography

  • 11/21

    Shaina Sheaff Photography

    Credit: Shaina Sheaff Hello lovelies, I’ll be honest, I haven’t been thinking about wedding stuff much this week. I’ve been very hard at work and probably wont be slowing down until about April. I’m okay with that, though -- almost all of the major vendors have been nailed down. We have a venue, caterer, DJ and photographer, and I’ve got my dress. The only two things…

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    10/24

    Amy-Rick-Teaser-27

    Flowers were not a priority for me in the wedding planning process. I gave the florist a few photos and gave them full control. I have to say, I was blown away by my bouquet on my wedding day! It was exactly what I would have asked for if I could have put it in to words. I was thrilled, but sad at the same…

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    6/7

    DIY Wedding Flowers from Sam's Club

    DIY wedding flowers can be a tough project to take on -- especially when it comes to figuring out where the hell to order your blooms from. Putting your trust in a wholesaler you're not entirely familiar with could potentially result in flowers that are a bit off-color (uh, peach and hot pink aren't the same, y'all) and it can be tough to find bulk…

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  • 5/25

    flowers

    Don't buy them. Brilliant advice, right? Lol, or not. Obviously it's possible to have a wedding sans flowers, but I can't think of many brides who go with that option. I am not a flower lover in general (they cost money and then they die ... so just buy me something else), but even I have always known that they would be included in my…

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    4/5

    bridal_sash

    Something that we value is shopping local or independent retailers when we’re able. We love supporting the Milwaukee economy and I’ve sort of made it a personal wedding mission. Obviously, most people’s wedding photographers or florists are local, but I thought I’d share a rundown of how we’re supporting local or other independent vendors elsewhere. Dress: While Maggie Sottero is an international designer, I was…

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    11/19

    crepe rose 2

    I'm a lover of flowers, but there's one thing I don't love -- the price tag associated with floral arrangements. When I started venturing into the world of wedding planning, one of the first things that jumped out at me was the exorbitant cost associated with buying flowers for a wedding -- centerpieces, bouquets for the bride and bridesmaids, boutonnieres, corsages, ceremony decor ... you get…

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  • 11/12

    Shaina Sheaff Photography

    I knew BAB and I were going to get along when I saw the tagline "Creativity is our Currency." Creativity is something I pride myself on, and when I can glean from the imagination of other awesome people, I'm usually set to create something truly impressive. The hand-craftedness of the majority of my decorations was something that began as a ploy to save some major…

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