FAQs and expert advice about flowers & bouquets

Here is a selection of Q&As from Your Surrey Wedding magazine whether it be about flowers, hair and makeup, fashion, wedding themes, health & beauty, cakes, stationery, legal advice. If you would like your question answered by our experts, please email it to editor@yoursurrey.wedding

 

Darling buds

Darling buds

Q. I love the colour blue and want to incorporate the hue into our wedding flowers. What blooms do you suggest we look for?

A. Kimberley Binns says: What's not to love about the colour blue? Not only does it represent the sky and sea, but it also means trust, loyalty and sincerity – a perfect reason to choose this hue for such a special occasion. When it comes to selecting your wedding flowers, you may come across one too many artificial sprayed carnations or roses online. Thankfully, there are a variety of natural blue shades, tints and textures to choose from with no spray can insight.

Start with gesture blooms, there are hydrangeas, delphiniums, alliums, larkspurs and tweedia, each available in a variety of textures and shades. These can be lifted with filler options such as clematis, Nigella seed heads, forget-me-nots and thistles.

Blue also works with different shades such as ivory, peach, soft pinks and lavender. Why not also add in some sage colours such as green hanging amaranthus to add further texture to hanging centrepieces and cascading bouquets?

Kimberley Binns,Ginger & Wild Flower Co
www.gingerandwild.uk

 

Floral wonder

Floral wonder

Q. What questions should we ask our florist before booking?

A. Annabel Grange says: Here are the most important questions you should ask:

- What experience do they have, and how long has the company been going?

- Do they arrange the flowers themselves or subcontract them?

- Do they have a portfolio, reviews and letters of recommendation you can see?

- What flowers would they recommend for the time of year you're getting married, and are there any that aren't in season?

- Do they charge extra for vases and candelabra hire, or is the loan included? Do they collect any loaned items, or do you need to return them?

- Have they worked at your venue before, and do they deliver everything there?

- Do they have public liability insurance?

- Can you collect the bouquets the day before?

Annabel Grange,Butterflies and Bows
www.butterfliesandbows.co.uk

 

Floral wonders

Floral wonders

Q. My wife-to-be and I are going for a relaxed bohemian theme for our wedding, but don't know where to start with our flowers – what would you suggest?

A. Kimberley Binns says: Work with a floral designer whose approach reflects your ideas and influences. If you're looking for a bohemian style wedding, go for a florist that offers bold, wild and rustic designs.

Select a supplier that uses British flowers and foliage instead of mass-produced versions. This will give you a wonderful variety to choose from, providing you with high-quality arrangements and a guaranteed fragrance that will set the tone and theme for your day.

Although working with seasonal options may have limitations with availability, the joy in this is that there are so many alternatives. Your florist can introduce you to local blooms that are more likely to be available from a smaller number of suppliers, as they are easier to source, better quality and higher value. Suppliers that work with local companies will state this on their website and have a sustainable angle to their business.

Kimberley Binns,Ginger & Wild Flower Co
www.gingerandwild.uk

 

Pick of the bunch

Pick of the bunch

Q. We're having a smaller celebration than originally planned because of the restrictions, but still want to make a statement with our flowers. How can we do this?

A. Annabel Grange says: Now that you're having fewer guests, think about re-allocating some of your budget and having large flower displays to ensure the ceremony and reception spaces don't look too empty. Use pedestals, table displays, pew ends, a pair of blossom trees or bay trees and a stunning floral arch. These items can then be moved into the reception room.

Space out your friends and family and use guest tables to display the flowers. Tall arrangements will give a wow factor as you enter the room and you can finish the look with chair hoods, covers or sashes, fairy backdrops, ceiling drapes and garlands.

Annabel Grange,Butterflies and Bows
www.butterfliesandbows.co.uk

 

Snow is falling

Snow is falling

Q. My wife-to-be wants to create a winter wonderland for our December wedding. What flowers do you suggest we look for?

A. Sharon Monk says: Having a winter wedding is exciting for a florist. We can get very creative as there are a wide variety of flowers, foliage and accessories available. You could opt for traditional reds and greens with holly, ilex berries, skimmia, roses, amaryllis, pine cones, willow and ivy. Alternatively, look for crisp, frozen touches with whites and silvers, roses, double lisianthus, anemones, brunia and succulents.

Bridal flow spray roses give the most stunning aroma, combined with eucalyptus and blue spruce befits the festive season. Either of these could be enhanced further by careful use of bark, moss, wooden containers, vases, glassware, candles and additional Christmas-themed ornaments.

Sharon Monk,Longacres Garden Centre
www.longacres.co.uk

 

The roaring '20s

The roaring '20s

Q. We're having a 1920s-inspired wedding and would love to incorporate the era into our decor. What flowers will create a luxurious atmosphere?

A. Annabel Grange says: The 1920s were all about black, white and gold highlights and opulence with sultry lighting. To incorporate the era into your wedding, there's nothing better than feathers. Ostrich versions look amazing as table displays, opt for black and white options set in tall Eiffel vases. Incorporate lights at the base or hang crystal lights from the top to add an extra wow factor.

Another good centrepiece to look out for is candelabra. Opt for tall, black ones decorated with feathers, soft organza material, diamantés and LED candles. Set these on a mirror and scatter crystals and lights, but ensure you don't use naked flames.

Finish the look with table cloths, table runners, jewels, crystals and white chair covers with black sashes.

Annabel Grange,Butterflies and Bows
www.butterfliesandbows.co.uk

 

Bloomin' beautiful

Bloomin' beautiful

Q. We're having an autumn wedding and want to incorporate our theme into our flowers. Do you have any suggestions?

A. Katie Albury says: Incorporating your colour scheme into your flowers is a simple way of keeping your theme consistent throughout your wedding.

- Look for burnt oranges, varying shades of reds, browns, green foliage and pops of cream or pale pink.

- Hypericum berries, garden roses, safari sunset and autumnal maple leaf are just a few examples of what you can find this time of year.

- Adding props to your arrangements can help create a styled look. Pine cones, cinnamon sticks, contorted willow and soft fairylights will help add an element of warmth to your flowers.

- You can also incorporate rustic textures from the outside. If your venue has a vineyard, pull some vines into your display or if it has wooden beams, add wood-framed arches, log slices or a rustic welcome sign at the entrance to greet your guests.

- We create bespoke packages and supply all the beautiful blooms that you'll need to create your own flowers.

Katie Albury,The Flower Fix
www.theflowerfix.co.uk

 

The wow-factor

The wow-factor

Q. I'm planning to tie the knot next year and want flowers that will wow our guests. Do you have any ideas?

A. Annabel Grange says: Go for big or exotic flowers to create the wow factor. Larger blooms tend to be more expensive, but keep in mind you don't need as many of them to create a striking arrangement. Hydrangeas are good for large reception spaces and come in an array of colours including white, pale blue, pink, purple and green. Displayed in tall martini vases with some roses or gypsophila is a fairly simple design that will draw your guests' attention.

Use cylinder vases in a variety of sizes to create an interesting table centre. Fill the vases with water, submerge the flowers and place floating candles on top. Place them on large mirror plates surrounded by tea lights in glass votive holders with table crystals. This is a beautiful option for the darker months.

If you're having a Royal blue theme, use dyed fresh roses. These will make a dramatic bridal bouquet, especially against an ivory dress, or can be used for centrepieces or pedestal flowers mixed with white or yellow. You won't need to add many of these to create an awe-inspiring look.

Alternatively, you could look for tall, tropical flowers and greenery – these add a faraway feel and look fabulous on tables.

Annabel Grange,Butterflies and Bows
www.butterfliesandbows.co.uk

 

Roses are red

Roses are red

Q. We're getting married next Valentine's Day and want to incorporate our theme into our big-day flowers. Do you have any suggestions on how we can do this?

A. Sue Sturges says: You can easily incorporate your theme into your flowers. Use soft delicate, flowing foliage with a variety of blooms to create different shapes and textures. Opt for candles as part of your centrepieces to create a romantic atmosphere.

Valentine's Day is a popular time of year to give flowers as a gift, especially red roses. Unfortunately, this means they are in high demand, so prices will be higher than usual. It's worth keeping this in mind when choosing your big-day blooms. You could look for arrangements that aren't red or mix them with other colours to save money. Remember February is a lovely time for spring flowers which are a nice sight after winter.

Sue Sturges
www.brambleandbelle.co.uk

 

A budding romance

A budding romance

Q. We're on a tight budget but still want beautiful flowers on our big day. Do you have any ideas on how we can save money?

A. Annabel Grange says: Use flowers that are in season in the UK, as although we can buy them all over the world, the cost can increase considerably if they're flown in from outside of Europe.
- Use more expensive flowers such as roses, peonies and orchids in your bouquet and top table and replace these with something more economical for the bridesmaids' posies. You'll still have the same effect but reduce the cost considerably.
- We don't charge extra for vase hire, but some companies will so shop around before booking.
- Specialist roses such as David Austin are beautiful but cost far more than standard versions. If you really want them, use them for a special arrangement or your bouquet.
- Flowers that are easily grown tend to be cheaper. Look for chrysanthemums, gerberas, eustomas and carnations.
- On-trend shades are usually more expensive. Think about having an ivory/white base with accents of colour or incorporate your favourite hue into your ribbons and decorations.
- A few large blooms can work out more cost-effective than having lots of smaller ones. Hydrangea heads look amazing in a tall vase of gladioli.
- Silk or artificial flowers can be mixed with fresh versions and/ or greenery to create a beautiful display. This can lower the price of arches, gazebo decorations and garlands dramatically.
- Be aware that greenery fluctuates in price depending on the time of year.
- Use the same flowers at both your ceremony and reception.
- Centrepieces can be used as gifts instead of buying separate thank you presents. Ask your florist if they have any supply vases you can buy instead of hire.

Annabel Grange
www.butterfliesandbows.co.uk

 

Darling buds

Darling buds

Q. What are the latest flower trends?

A. Sue Sturges says: Blush is on-trend at the moment, it's a great colour that will complement any time of year. Flower arches are also popular. They look amazing and create a fantastic backdrop for your ceremony.

Sue Sturges
www.brambleandbelle.co.uk

 

Floral fancy

Floral fancy

Q. We're getting married in November and would like our flowers to reflect the season. Do you have any suggestions?

A. Kate Lamport says: - There are lots of beautiful arrangements and hues available this time of year, including soft creams, warm burnt oranges. hydrangeas, dahlias and feathery astilbes.
- Avoid flowers that look too Christmassy and look for pastel shades and rich natural tones.
- Use seasonal pods and berries to lift and add texture to your blooms.
- Remember, you can use different components to add interest, such as pheasant feathers and fresh fruit.
- Incorporate naked branches like contorted willow or foliage picked from a hedgerow.
- If you're looking for inspiration, go for a stroll on a lovely frosty morning and take in the different colours of the landscape.

Kate Lamport
www.facebook.com/lilyandmyrtle

 

A budding romance blooms

A budding romance blooms

Q. Purple is my favourite colour, and I want to incorporate it into our flowers. Do you have any ideas of what blooms we should look for?

A. Jane O'Hare says: To prevent the purple looking stark, it's good to introduce complementing hues such as lavender and lilac.

Flowers to look out for include, quicksand roses, Memory Lane roses, lavender eustoma and freesias. These flowers are available all year round and can be accompanied with silver-toned foliage such as cineraria eucalyptus and cineraria.

If you want something a bit more vibrant, add hypericum berries, viburnum opulus or bright green orchids.

Jane O'Hare
www.longacres.co.uk

 

Pick of the bunch

Pick of the bunch

Q. We love flowers and want to incorporate them into our venue decor. Do you have any suggestions?

A. Annabel Grange says: - Pedestal arrangements can be used during your ceremony and moved to the reception area.
- Flower garlands have different textures and can be positioned over mantlepieces, around columns, draped on staircases and even placed along the front of the top table.
- Free-standing arches, rings and stands are on-trend. These can transform a dark corner or embellish a cake table.
- Look for large blooms such as hydrangeas and bubbling gypsophila for your centrepieces.
- A single flower head can be added to your chair sashes. Use silk ones to ensure they don't fade over the course of the day.
- Don't forget about outside spaces. Transform them by adding jugs of large blooms such as gladiolus.

Annabel Grange
www.butterfliesandbows.co.uk

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