How far in advance should I purchase flowers for a wedding?
3-4 days before the wedding if you have a cooler or a fridge; 2 days before if you don't.
What should I use to bind a wedding bouquet?
You can use:
— rubber bands
— stem wrap
— waterproof floral tape
— zip ties
Hand-tied bouquets are traditionally tied with twine, but most florists use stem wrap to bind a wedding bouquet.
When deciding what to use, consider the shape of your bouquet. Waterproof floral tape is the best option if you're making a rounded, classic shape. Zip ties are ideal if you're building a loose, garden-style bouquet.
Any tips for finishing a bouquet?
o Invest in sharp, high-quality ribbon shears!
o You don't need to use that much ribbon. Your ribboned "handle" can be the length of 1-2 fists.
o Secure the ribbon with boutonnière or corsage pins. Push the pin through the fabric and into the stems at an angle. (Up towards the blooms is easiest, but down into the stems can work too.) Make sure the pins won't poke your bride's hands!
o Remove leaves or petals that are stuck between the stems.
o Give stems a fresh cut, this time straight across through the stems. (Not on an angle.) Place in a vase with clean water, and spray with Crowning Glory.
o Some florists prefer to finish bouquets at wedding venues, to keep the ribbon from getting wet. (Especially when working with hand dyed fabric that could bleed.)
Any tips for binding boutonnières?
o You don't need to wrap the entire length of a boutonnière with tape. Use just enough stem wrap that your bout will stay together. (But do make sure you cover all the tape with ribbon!)
o Trim the ends with a clean, angled cut. Stick two boutonnière or corsage pins into the boutonnière, so it’s ready for use.
o If you don’t have a cooler or floral fridge to keep them fresh, store boutonnières upright in small jars or votive holders. Pour a little water into the bottom of the jar, give stems a clean cut, and leave the bouts to hydrate.
Can I put XYZ (type of flower) in a bouquet or boutonnière?
o When in doubt, experiment! Cut a short piece of the flower you’re considering, spray it with Crowning Glory, and leave it out of water for several hours. How does it look? If it's still fresh, use it. If it's dying, stick to using it in centerpieces.
o Flowering branches, in general, don't hold up well in bouquets. (But test them; see what happens with the type you're considering.)
o Be careful with berries or anything else that could get crushed and leave a stain on a white dress.
What’s the best way to put together an arch, chuppah, arbor, or mandap?
For a birch structure, go with one from Northern Boughs. Skip the assorted screws and bolts. Instead, secure the poles together with zip ties. Make sure the vertical poles are firmly attached to the metal feet, and that the structure is stable.
Attach fabric (if using) and/or hide the zip ties by covering them with twine, foliage, and flowers.
For a metal structure, check out these options.