floral arbor at outdoor ceremony
Lindsay Coulter Photography

Your wedding florist’s goal is to create beautiful arrangements that fit both your vision and your budget. There’s a lot involved with designing your wedding flowers (more than you might initially think!), from ordering and processing the blooms to producing and delivering your arrangements, so it’s important to give your florist as much information up front so that they can first write up a proposal, and then create the wedding décor of your dreams.  

Here’s a list of things to share with your wedding florist to help you get started.

Budget

You can expect to spend about 8 percent of your total wedding budget on flowers (check the Wedding Cost Guide to see how much a couple generally spends on wedding flowers in your area). Be upfront and share your target budget with any florist you’re considering for your wedding.

Wedding Date

Obviously, it’s essential to find a florist who is available on your wedding date, but having pinpointed a date for your wedding is also important so your florist can tell you which flowers are in season during that time of year.

Venue

Your venue can be a major source of inspiration for your florist. For example, the types of centerpieces that look great in a grand ballroom might be completely different than those for a beach venue or warehouse. If your florist has never worked at your venue before, he or she may want to tour the venue or at least get a floor plan in advance.

Guest (and Wedding Party) Count

In order for your florist to figure out how many centerpieces, bouquets, corsages, and boutonnieres you’ll need, he or she will have to have a guest count—as well as the number of people in your wedding party, parents, and other VIPs.

Seating Plan

A big part of a florist’s job is creating centerpieces for your reception tables. You’ll want to discuss the types of tables you’re considering (round, long, square, etc.) as well as the number of tables you’ll need. Remember, too, that there will be other tables and areas that will need decorating including (but not limited to), the escort card table, buffet tables, guest book table, and more. Coordinating with your rentals company is an important part of this step.

Elizabeth Fogarty

Color Palette

Some couples will provide a florist with a very specific color scheme—using paint chips or photos to describe their dream palette. Others prefer to give their florist a bit more leeway, providing a more general description of colors they like (“pinks and neutrals” or “greens and blues”) and allowing the florist to use his or her creativity to interpret their vision.

Wedding Style

What are the three or four words you would use to describe your wedding day? Glamorous and modern? Rustic and relaxed? Using descriptive words (and providing photo examples or a Pinterest board) will help your florist pinpoint your vision for your wedding day.

Attire

What are you and your future spouse going to be wearing? What are your wedding party members wearing? Providing photos and even fabric swatches of everyone’s attire can be a major help for your florist.

Favorite Flowers

Are there flowers that you absolutely love? Your florist isn’t a mind reader, so it’s on you to share any flower varietals that you adore. Also, don’t get upset if a flower you love isn’t available during your wedding season—be flexible and trust your florist to find an alternative that will provide the same look and feel.

Dislikes

Conversely, if there are flowers or colors that you don’t like, share that with your florist as well. While it’s helpful to be as flexible as possible, if there is one particular flower or color you’re not a fan of, let your florist know.