Saturday, August 07, 2010

Flower Power and Trimming a Budget

I had my centrepiece trial with our amazing florist this week. I've been working with Tanya and I love how knowledgeable she is about what's in season throughout the year, what's worth splurging on vs where we can save money. She's been fabulous to work with to say the least. She's also really enthusiastic about the silver teapots and I think we're both really looking forward to seeing it come together! I got to the shop and she filled up my teapot with a mix of dusty miller, lisianthus, wax flowers, freesia and some big gorgeous roses. Swoon.  

I know I know! You're insanely jealous! I'm sorry! Tanya was a sweetheart and packed up the teapot full of flowers and sent them home with me. What the what?! I have to say, the roses opened up a bit more the next day and looked even more beautiful if that's possible! I love the wax flowers and the vintage touch it adds to the arrangement. I'm so glad Tanya suggested it! 

I have a but. BUT as I hauled my centrepiece off to my hair/make up trial, I realized the teapot was leaking! ACK!!! A weld under the spout had given (come on, the thing is how old, it's sort of to be expected) and slowly the teapot was losing water. I don't know why the possibility that the teapots might leak didn't occur to me at any point during this process. When I got home I emptied the teapot and stuffed it full of soaked floral foam wrapped in plastic wrap and attempted to rearrange it as beautifully as Tanya had originally done. It's not perfect, but it'll do. I made sure to shoot Tanya a quick email to let her know floral foam was a must, water was a no go. I'm hoping that's the only teapot of the lot that's pooched, but I'm not willing to risk it! I'm thankful though that it did happen rather than having the teapots leak all over the tables at the wedding!

Now for the budget part. Oh my. So we've added a lot of things to our floral budget. A lot a lot. Clearly that means the price is going to go up. A lot. A lot a lot. Tanya and I talked about what we could do to cut back and we've come up with a few options. 

1) We DIY the moss and orchids around the firepit. Easy peasy. I have a couple of amazingly wonderful friends who have volunteered to wire the orchids to the corkscrew hazel another friend is loaning us, and they're going to lay the moss around the firepit. I found some floral wholesale shops nearby and since I'm an interior designer with my own business, I was allowed to shop there! I got all the moss for $50, and I found orchids for $1.70/stem. That was a very full stem too, like 20 flowers. I can't believe how cheap it is!!! This is going to save us about $300. 

2) We DIY the creamer and sugar bowls. I just wanted to fill them with baby's breath. Considering the man power to fill them, we were quoted $12/bowl, or just about $500 total. Tonight, I decided to do a test run. I bought two big bunches of baby's breath from the florist wholesaler (seriously my new favourite place) for about $15. I filled 7 cream and sugar bowls with plenty of baby's breath to spare in about 45 minutes. Figure in the learning curve with that as well. Not bad!!! I think it should cost us about $45 total to do 40 cream and sugar bowls, a savings of $455. 

(There are two types of baby's breath. Do you like the small ones on
the left, or the mixture of the two on the right?) 

3) We buy the vases for the curly willow accents we have around the room and then re-sell them afterward. The vase rental is $50 each, and we have eight of them, so $400 total. Plus we need to return them within four days of the wedding. Even if we bought them at the same price, at least we wouldn't have to rush to figure out what the heck we're going to do with all the curly willow (they can be rooted and planted in the garden), they can stay in the vases until we come back from our honeymoon, and then we could sell the vases online for a bit less than we bought them. If we sold them at 50% off, we could save $200. So far though, I've been having trouble finding a tall enough vase, but I'm going to keep hunting for them on Monday. 

Just by doing those three things, we could knock over $1000 off our floral budget once you add in taxes. I'm also hoping that if we're transporting all the creamers Tanya will be able to fit everything in one truck rather than two and we can get our delivery cost back down. I love having a vendor that I can be honest with and say "Woah, this is slightly crazy, let's scale back!" and she's so open to suggesting how and where we can do that. Hooray for great vendors! 

Are you DIY-ing your flowers? How are you keeping your floral budget under control? 

** All photos are personal photos.


  1. I love your teapots. They look so fantastic! I would probably do a mix of the big and small baby's breath - I love the look of the big one. It's so fluffy!

  2. Oooh - I like the mixture on the right more - it's poofy & brings out the flowers in the teapot more.

    Also - I'm really jealous of the Dusty Miller it's ones of my faves & I wanted it in bouquets but my florist said the do better in water so he doesn't like using them in bouquets. Boo.