Your hands clench the stems of your gorgeous bouquet. Your back faces a growing group of guests. You smile and close your eyes. You wonder who will catch your bridal bouquet, then you count down… 3… 2… 1! You toss your fresh flowers up in the air and listen as all the excited squeals culminate into one victorious scream of delight.
As tradition goes, the one who catches the bride’s bouquet at the wedding reception is the next to get married. This legend can be traced back as far as the 1300s, and is still commonly practiced in many American and European weddings.
Whether or not you plan on tossing your wedding bouquet or just holding onto it for the evening, the other big question surrounding flowers is likely on your mind: “How much do bouquets cost for weddings?”
Photo Credit // Fiona Conrad Photography
Total Budget on Floral Design and Decor
According to Value Penguin, the floral arrangement and décor is the fifth highest wedding expenditure. This follows the venue, the engagement ring, the band, and the photography crew.
On average, couples spend $1,757 on flowers and decor, which include:
- Bridal bouquet and bridesmaid bouquet(s)
- Corsage and boutonniere
- Flower girl petals
- Table flower arrangements and general decorative flowers
- Altar flowers and greenery
- Photo backdrops
- Table centerpieces
Among these, the bridal bouquet is often one of the more expensive pieces of decoration for the wedding day.
Bridal Bouquet Average Cost
The bridal bouquet is estimated by various wedding florists to cost between $100 and $350, though as you’re probably well aware, the upper end for weddings know no limit. This range, however, will suit most weddings.
Factors Determining Bridal Bouquet Cost
How much you pay for a bridal bouquet depends the answers to a few questions:
- Are the flowers you want in season?
- Are the individual stems expensive?
- Do you plan on pairing different flowers together or keeping it uniform?
- Have you considered alternatives to flowers?
- Is there enough time to create your own wedding bouquet?
Flowers in Season vs Not in Season
Much like fruits and vegetables, flowers that aren’t in season are limited in supply, thus more expensive. If you already have a wedding date, you can plan your flower arrangements accordingly.
Spring wedding flowers:
Summer wedding flowers:
Fall wedding flowers:
- Calla Lily
- Purple Alstroemeria
- Orange Gerbera
Winter wedding flowers:
- Narcissus Paper White
Locally-Sourced, Sustainably Grown
Recently, one of the most popular wedding flower trends has been to choose locally-sourced, sustainably grown flowers. If you’re planning to have an eco-conscious wedding, here’s some tips to be aware of:
Price tag: Having locally-sourced fresh flowers for your wedding can really drive up the price, potentially affecting your overall floral budget.
Weather concerns: Because many locally-sourced flower farms require orders months in advance, you’ll need to keep a close eye on the weather patterns for the months and weeks leading up to your wedding day. Should a sour storm ruin the harvest, you might need to have a backup plan.
Extra Bouquet Tip: Sustainably grown flowers will almost always be in-season flowers.
Expensive vs Inexpensive Stems
One way to save money on your floral arrangement is to choose less expensive flowers as your central wedding flower.
For some cheaper flowers that are still gorgeous:
- Baby’s breath
Medium-priced flowers that will glow as brightly as you do:
- Gerbera daisies
If you want to go all out for your bridal bouquet, here are some glamorous stems:
- Casa blanca lily
Mixing Flowers for the Bouquet
It makes sense that the flashier, rarer flowers are more expensive. Thus, having a bouquet made out of extravagant flowers can quickly double, triple, even quadruple your bouquet pricing. Try picking two different types of flowers, one expensive and radiant, another colorful and supportive, and allow each to highlight the other. For example, surround the casa blanca lily (considered one of the most expensive wedding flowers) with baby’s breath flowers.
Not only will this greatly lower the price of your bridal bouquet, but it will also highlight the beauty of your favorite flowers even more.
Alternatives Bridal Bouquets You may have seen a trend on Pinterest with alternative bridal bouquets made out of various materials. This is a great way to not only mix up a traditional norm, but also keep your bouquet preserved for years to come.
A few alternative styles of bridal bouquets include:
- Pearl bouquets
- Wooden bouquets
- Paper bouquets
- Clay bouquets
While some of these might end up being more expensive than a flower bouquet, they can be preserved forever as a decoration of your love and marriage.
DIY Flower Bouquets vs Floral Designer
If you, your spouse, and your friends are the crafty types, you may consider ordering flowers wholesale and then creating the bouquets yourselves. If so, you’ll save a significant amount of money in exchange for a fun day of tying together flowers.
The materials you’ll need to create your own bouquets are about half of what you’d pay for a wedding florist’s services. Here’s a more comprehensive breakdown of how you can expect to save:
- Mid-tier flowers with help of florist: $150 – $200
- Mid-tier flowers DIY: $70 – $80
- Mid-tier flowers with help of florist: $55 – $75
- Mid-tier flowers DIY: $25 – $35
Table Centerpiece Arrangement:
- Mid-tier flowers with help of florist: $70 – $85
- Mid-tier flowers DIY: $28 – $35
Costs for Floral Decor
Apart from the bridal bouquet, you might be wondering how some couples manage to spend $50,000 or more just on flowers alone. The answer lies in the floral decor.
Table arrangements: Using flowers for table centerpieces can cost as much as $75 per arrangement. If you think about a big 300-person wedding with six guests per table, that’s suddenly $3,750 just for table arrangements.
Vases, pottery, and bows: Often the unspoken cost of floral decorations is not even the stems themselves, but what’s holding the stems. If you want each floral piece to be displayed in pure crystal vases, strike a deal with your florist and rent these.
Flower walls: A wall of flowers to backdrop the ceremony is a modern spin on the traditional wedding arch with flowers. These flower walls reportedly cost anywhere between $10,000 and $50,000.
How to Save on Flowers for Your Wedding
If looking at all these costs is starting to make you sweat, don’t worry: There are plenty of ways to save money on flowers, while still embellishing your wedding in the floral splendor you deserve.
Choose a green venue: If you’re thinking about an outdoor or an indoor-outdoor wedding, why not choose a green venue? Garden weddings offer incredible scenery and the floral decorations are already budgeted into the price of the venue.
Buy in bulk: Ask your local florists about any discounts they can offer if you purchase all of your wedding flowers through them.
Work with your florist: Besides buying in bulk, there are other ways to bargain with your florist. Remember that you have purchasing power as a consumer. A wedding with multiple floral arrangements, bouquets, boutonnieres, and more is guaranteed business for the florist. Try to work down the total price a little and be sure to comparison shop.
Succulent decorations: Succulents offer unique, beautiful arrangements that are cheaper than most flowers. Consider these as an alternative to flowers for surrounding decorations.
Bridal bouquet as an exception: If you really want to make a statement walking down the aisle, have the bridal bouquet be the one floral splurge. By reducing the costs of the table arrangements, altar flowers, and bridesmaid flowers, you can feel good spending a little extra on a bridal bouquet.
Photo Credit // Tim Ryan Smith Photography
A Flower Arrangement as Beautiful as Your Love
Finding the perfect flowers to match the theme, venue, and wedding colors is a journey in and of itself. With the added pressure to choose an arrangement that matches your budget and your Pinterest vision, flowers may start to feel a little extra thorny. If you’re overwhelmed, know that you have a support system at the ready.
The team at Zola is here for you. We’re ready to step in, offer advice, and help you with all the little details of your wedding, such as building a wedding website or the perfect registry.
You want the flower arrangement you choose to be as beautiful as you and your soon-to-be’s love. But the real arrangement has already been made. And that’s what your wedding is all about.