blush and gold centerpiece

Photo: A Muse Photography

From breathtaking bouquets to lush tablescapes, flowers have the potential to transform your wedding and set the mood for the entire day—and really, they’re just so darn pretty, too!

If you’re searching for the perfect wedding florist that will bring your dream event to life, consider the following details:

Determine your style
Before you start your search for a wedding florist, chat with your fiancé(e) about how you want to incorporate flowers on the big day. Maybe you know the exact blooms you want your bouquet or centerpieces to include, right down to the greenery. On the other hand, maybe you don’t know the difference between a garden rose and a carnation (which is totally okay!) and would prefer to leave the specifics to a professional. Regardless, figure out if you want the style of your flowers to be classic, rustic, vintage, modern, or something completely unexpected. Begin gathering floral inspiration that you can use down the road when the time comes. Just like any other artist, florists tend to have their own styles and design specialities, so it’s important to have a general idea of what you want and ask them how they’ll work with your vision.

Start early
Don’t wait until the last minute to look for your wedding florist. The sooner you start your search, the better your chances are of finding a florist with availability on your wedding day. It’s a good idea to begin the process shortly after you’ve finalized your date and have booked a venue. This should allow several months for you to find a florist and meet with them without feeling rushed or stressed out. It’s also important to hire a florist as soon as possible in case they need to make advanced preparations for your wedding, such as ordering special flowers or creating custom structures for their arrangements. Plan to hire a wedding florist about 10 months in advance and make sure to order your flowers around eight months before the wedding.

Ask friends and family for recommendations
Chat with friends or family members who recently got married. Ask about the florist they used and if they can show you pictures of the finished products. You can also ask your event planner, venue or other vendors for recommendations of local wedding florists they enjoy working with.

Do your research
Browse WeddingWire’s catalog of wedding florists to find the perfect vendor in your area and read reviews from other couples who hired them. Pay attention to how the florist describes their style, and look through the pictures they’ve shared to see examples of their previous work. You should also be able to view basic pricing information and a list of the services they offer right alongside the reviews. Finally, check out their blog or website and follow them on social media to see sneak peeks of their most recent work. This is especially helpful if you’re planning a wedding from out of town and can’t necessarily meet with the florist face-to-face.

Watch them in action
Some florists host local floral arranging workshops for beginners. Not only would this be a fun date idea for you and your S.O. but it’s also a great opportunity to get to know a potential wedding florist on a personal basis and watch them work in real time. Check the florist’s website or contact them directly to see if they’re hosting any upcoming events in your community.

shabby chic centerpiece with lanterns

Photo: Alena Bakutis Photography

Visit their studio
If the florist has a walk-in shop, consider popping in briefly one day to get an overall feel for their business. Make a note of how the shop looks—does it seem generally well-kept? Do the flowers on display look fresh, or are they wilting and faded? If you visit during the weekend, remember that Fridays and Saturdays are typically busy for florists (especially during wedding season or around holidays), so keep it quick and try to be more of an observer than a potential client with a ton of questions. Remember, you can always schedule an appointment to come back and chat with them in-depth.

Schedule a sit-down appointment
Once you’ve found a potential florist, it’s important to schedule a one-on-one appointment to hash out all of the details. There are several basic questions you should ask a wedding florist, including information about their availability, style, pricing, and services. Tell them your estimated guest count and how many people you plan to have in your wedding party. The appointment is also an opportunity for you to mention any dislikes or restrictions they should be aware of (such as any types of flowers you don’t want them to use). Don’t hesitate about meeting with several florists before making your final decision on who to hire.

Talk about your wedding vision
During your appointment, be prepared to discuss your wedding vision. Most importantly, the florist will need to know your color scheme and wedding season, since both will affect the types of flowers that are available for your wedding. If you have a mood board or Pinterest page, share it with the florist so they can see the overall aesthetic you’re going for. Ask them to show you examples of how they’d work with your vision. Let them know if you have specific flowers you’d like to include in the arrangements, but also be open to their professional input.

Don’t forget about your budget
Be honest with your potential wedding florist about what you’re willing to spend, because your budget will determine which types of flowers can be used. Keep in mind that certain wedding flowers are more expensive than others and that prices can change depending on the season. For example, peonies are always in high demand, but their small window of availability (late winter to early spring) means that getting them can sometimes be tough—and pricey. Expect a higher price tag if your florist has to source the flowers you want from another state or even another country. After your appointment, the florist will provide you with an estimate that lists exactly what you’d be expected to pay for if you hired them.

Discuss their wedding day routine
Do they provide delivery and set-up services on the wedding day? If those aren’t provided by the florist, you’ll want to consider who would be responsible instead, such as your event planner or the staff at the venue. Also, be sure to ask about their process for “break down” or cleaning up at the end of the night.