When planning your wedding, right alongside of style, feel, and aesthetic appeal is a couple’s budget. Sometimes it can be hard to understand why a particular element of your wedding costs what it does or why price ranges can vary.
It’s a great idea to have an idea of what is available in your budget. Keep in mind that having a smaller budget doesn't mean you will have to lower your expectations; it just means you’ll need to be more flexible.
A good florist will listen to your ideas when working within your budget and they will create something that you will adore. It may not be an exact copy of what you first had in mind, but you should trust your florist to make something equally as beautiful. Substitutions may occur and that is completely fine as long as you still achieve a look that you are pleased with. I've broken down a few factors that play into the price of wedding flowers below…
The most obvious expense of creating a wedding arrangement, bouquet, or accessory is the cost of the flowers themselves. There is a cost for labor, the resources required to grow the flowers, the resources required for transportation (which includes the cost of gas), and the availability of the desired flowers – each plays into the cost of the flowers.
Flowers can be expensive. Depending upon the type, size and seasonality of a certain flower – the cost of an arrangement can increase or decrease in price. If your bouquet includes more delicate flowers that require immediate refrigeration, you’ll most likely end up paying more for your flowers. The greater the size of a flower, the more expensive it will typically be.
For example, if you’d like Ranunculus at the end of the cold season, they won’t be as lush as their peak-season counterparts. You’ll need to get more stems to achieve the same effect. If you’d like Peonies in late October, they’ll have to be shipped from around the world. This will result in an extra transportation cost.
Florists know the business well and they know that they’ll have to order surplus flowers to create your bouquet. Sometimes it’s necessary to order twice the needed amount of flowers just to guarantee that the flowers open at the right time, aren’t damaged during transportation, or bruised during shipment. A creative florist will put not-so-perfect flowers to use in a different design element (like using damaged rose heads for aisle petals).
The florist you hire plays a major role in what you pay for a floral design. The more experienced, skilled, and in-demand a florist is, the more they can charge for their work.
In addition to their time and talent, florists will charge a retail mark-up on all materials to cover their over head expenses (rent, utilities, transportation costs, supply costs, etc.). It’s often easy to forget about small elements like business cards, website hosting fees, the cost of tape, foam, coolers, and tools that are fronted by the florist and need to be recouped.
Typically, a florist will include a ‘Service Charge’ on your flower order statement. This service charge is typically 30 – 40% of the flower subtotal and is used to cover all time, talent, and utility expenses required to make your flowers.
What about the materials used to wrap and secure your bouquet? The beautiful ribbon, beaded ties, or glittery embellishments are added into the cost of a bouquet. It’s something that isn’t usually considered in the price of a bouquet, at first. An elaborate embellishment (like a silk ribbon wrap, crystal-headed pins, feathers, or hanging lace streamers) will increase the cost of a bouquet.
Will your bouquet need to be stored in a glass vase during the hours leading up to your wedding? Will corsages and boutonnieres need to be places inside of a protective plastic case during delivery and distribution on the day of your wedding? These items are considered material expenses that will be reflected in the price of your flower arrangements.
The delivery & set up
If your florist will be delivering your bouquet and flowers to you on the day of your wedding, a delivery and set up will be an added cost. Filling the trunk of a vehicle with flower arrangements is done carefully and shifts during transportation are expected. A florist will almost always want to be the one delivering the flowers so that they can correct any shifts that take place during transportation. A flower designer will want to make sure that their flowers do not look disheveled at your event because their business name will be represented.
All florists should charge a percentage of tax on all goods. This tax is typical and is the same as all other taxes. Tax percentages depend upon the state the sale is taking place in. Tax will be added to the subtotal of the flower costs.
As you can see, there are many factors that influence the cost of wedding flowers. I hope this little break down helps you understand how floral prices are derived. Remember that a good florist will listen to your ideas and help you find the best quality and best match for your budget! Congratulations on your engagement and happy wedding planning!