Florals 101

Wedding Florals 101: the things your florist wants you to know

Because I’m a photographer and not a florist, we reached out to our good friend and awesome florist/planner Christina Rittenhouse of Rittenhouse Designs. We sat down and asked her all the questions. Here’s what she said about Wedding Florals 101: the things your florist wants you to know.

How far out should I start considering/planning for floral decor or non-floral decor for my wedding?

CR: 8-12 months is the recommended/average time frame

Why 8-12 months out?

CR: Gives enough time to plan details, and ensures sufficient availability of staff and actual materials, including purchased items and rented decor pieces

Florals 101 - Floral arch alter piece, classic green and white floral look

What steps would you recommend to plan my florals and decor look for my wedding? If I were in a blank slate mode?

CR: We recommend the following steps to get your flowers/decor rolling:

  1. Book your venue
  2. Brainstorm your general vision with Pinterest – save pictures that catch your eye
  3. Plan your total wedding (or specific floral) budget
  4. Establish your quantities: bouquets and boutineers/corsages (bridal party/family), table or guest count
  5. Do your floral/decor consultation with your wedding floral professional

CR: Floral and decor budgets can vary dramatically. We prefer to review the vision and budget and give a realistic opinion of what is possible to achieve your vision within the budget desired.

In Atlanta, Christina’s average client is spending between $7,000-12,000 depending on the specific look and size of the floral/decor installation. 

What if we want to feature elements that are out of season? Should I avoid certain looks at certain times of year?

CR: Seasonality of certain floral elements doesn’t play into floral designs as much as it used to. Generally, a good floral designer should advise you of seasonal issues as it relates to availability of specific products. Another seasonality consideration is how your flowers will react to specific temperatures (outside) in the heat or cold. Hydrangeas, for example, do not love the heat and can look a bit wilted and sad if not managed well during an outdoor summer wedding.


Things to prepare for your initial floral consultation:

  • Pinterest board or other inspiration pictures (search) – most important
    Why so important: Inspiration pictures refine the conversation for an efficient communication tool

    • Mood board for wedding overall (if possible)
    • Floral examples (pinterest/search)

Today’s trend in florals:

Colors and wildflowers with texture, more organic, natural garden style look is very in currently.

Popular wildflower looks – Delphinium, Larkspur, Campanula, Fever few, Ranunculus, Lisianthus, Queen Anne’s Lace, Astilbe, Monte Casino, Tulips

Classic/Timeless looks:

Neutral/subdued color scheme with heavy greenery accents

Popular Classic Flowers – Roses, Lisianthus, Ranunculus, Stock, Hydrangea, Astilbe, Lilies, Lily of the Valley ($$$$) and Peonies ($$$)


Non-floral decor looks you shouldn’t forget about:

  • Candles, candles, candles! Tealights, floating candles in glass cylinders, or pillar candles (free-standing or in glass cylinders)
  • Interesting bud vases with florals
  • Greenery sprigs
  • Texture and color in your linens, table cloths, runners, napkins and decorative chargers
  • Uplighting and custom signs

Floral and Decor Splurge-worthy looks:

Overhead installations: floral chandelier, greenery decor, draping or Edison bulbs strung in rafters

Non-floral decor that’s breathtaking and impactful:

Overhead lighting installation; experimenting with linen colors, textures, patterns; specialty rentals such as lounge pieces, boxwood walls; specialty glassware, china and charger combinations

Are you planning your wedding? Check out more helpful articles on here.

Photo credits:

Ashton Gardens, Rittenhouse Designs, Danielle Brown Photography – Danielle Brown
Hightower Falls,  Roots & Willow, Danielle Brown Photography – Suzanne Goldman
St. Ive’s Golf and Country Club, Rittenhouse Designs, Danielle Brown Photography – Danielle Brown
Happy Valley Dim Sum & Asian Cuisine, A Peachy Keen Wedding, Danielle Brown Photography – Danielle Brown



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