Congratulations! If you're like most brides, you've been dreaming about your wedding since you were a little girl. You know exactly how you want to look, how you want to feel, and how you want the day to go. And you've also probably signed up for some wedding planning sites and Googled wedding timelines. The problem is, sometimes those timelines don't always work from a flower planning perspective.
So, we're here to give you the 411 on all things wedding flower planning.
In our world, the earlier you reach out to us, or truly any florist, the better. Especially if you're planning on getting married during high season - roughly Labor Day through Halloween. As many of our brides find out, unhappily, our available dates fill up really quickly - sometimes up to 18 months out during the
Fall. There's nothing we hate more than having to tell a bride we're already booked for her date.
And because it's so important to us to provide personalized service, we really try to stick to our sweet spot of not overbooking on weekends.
So, what's a hard working bride to do?
Let me give you 5 easy steps and a quick timeline that'll help you navigate the wedding flower fields like a pro.
Step 1: Set a Date and Call Your Florist for Availability
Do this as soon as you possibly can... you want to be sure you have access to your first choice of Florist for your big day, especially since flowers really set the tone for your entire wedding.
Step 2: Talk with your Florist, Either in Person or Over the Phone
Do this within a week or two of initially contacting your florist, if possible. This is where you'll outline your vision for your wedding, talk about your number of bridesmaids, groomsmen, readers, etc. and decide on an initial theme for your day. It's also where you'll hammer out the logistics of your wedding - when you'll want your flowers to be delivered, if you'll have a first look, what your ceremony space will look like, how many table arrangements you're planning for your reception - just all the little details that make wedding flowers wonderful.
Step 3: Pin Beautiful Photos to the Secret Pinterest Board your Florist Sets Up for You
There's no better way to show your florist what you're dreaming of than to share your dreams and inspiration with him. We love Pinterest for this, and we set each bride up with her own special board where she can pin photos of all things wedding flower related. Then, when we do a Cooler Walk with her, we collaborate and discuss all those pins and print out some of the Pinterest photos to bring with us for inspiration. Brides should be pinning away during the time between the initial consult and their cooler walk.
Step 4: Come for a Cooler Walk!
Depending on the season and how far away your wedding is, we'll do a Cooler Walk - Usually 6 months to 9 months out from your date. We walk through the 3 massive (and cold!) coolers on Floral Row, gather armloads of flowers in our hands, and then at the end, edit everything down to create a special, personalized look just for you. By the time we're through, we know exactly what your flowers will look like and how they'll make your day amazing. And don't be afraid to bring your fiance, bridesmaids, moms and dads. This is a fun, wedding-y thing to do that everyone can enjoy.
Step 5: Final Consults and Wedding Lists
About a month or so out, we'll get in touch again to finalize everything. But don't think we haven't talked since your Cooler Walk - we've been emailing back and forth and probably had a few other consults in there too to continue to make sure everything's just right. At the final consult, we'll double check everything, get a room layout from your venue, review your Day Of Itinerary from your photographer and make sure we've got all the details to personalize your day.
So, bottom line, it's really important to get on your Florist's calendar as soon as you know your wedding date. Truly, 18 months to a year out is the perfect time. There are a lot of details and steps along the way that you may not have known about, and you don't want to be left scrambling to find someone who's not the best fit for your flowers. It's just too important.