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Reception Ideas

Flowers-real or fake?!

Hello ladies! I'm planning a wedding on a budget we are trying to stay strict with... I've seen some ladies post about silk flower bouquets as a money saving idea... Curious everyone's opinions on real vs fake. Pros? Cons? What is the average cost for bride/bridesmaids bouquets, and groom/groomsmen boutonnière (real flowers)? Did you feel is was worth the cost?! Happy planning all! :)
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Re: Flowers-real or fake?!

  • The cost varies so widely, I don't know.  We ordered ours from fiftyflowers.com and made our bouquets and centerpieces (it was actually pretty easy), but we ordered our boutonnieres and corsages for the mothers from a florist since those are slightly trickier to make.  Those cost $15-25 for us.  It depends on where you're getting them, what flowers you want, etc.

    PROs of fake flowers:  *Can* be cheaper cost, can make days in advance, stay looking pretty for as long as you want, especially if you want to keep them for years.

    But at the end of the day, I just don't like fake flowers, so it was important to me to have real ones.  And real flowers can be relatively cheap if you shop around and DIY.  I know costco does cheap flower packages too.

    But I know a lot of brides do fake and are perfectly happy with them.  At the end of the day, they're just flowers!  
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    Alh728themuffinman16
  • This is true! They are just TOO many things to consider in every part of planning! LOL
  • I just went to a florist today and my bouquet is $150, the bridesmaids $55 each. boutonniere's were $9 each (with a rose).  mom's corsage's were $20 each.     I'm sure it will vary depending on florist and location, but just to give you an idea.    I personally prefer real flowers.   I know someone that used silk (I think she had michaels do them) and they were much less then the quote she got on real.  She loved them, because she still has her bouquet as it was the day of the wedding.  that's a personal choice though..real vs fake.    
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  • It depends on your location, season, and expectations, really. I shopped around until I found a florist quote I could live with. I thought she was very reasonable. Don't rule out upscale grocery stores either!

    Nice silks are often as expensive a real flowers - but of course you have the option to keep them or resell then. I know a lot of people go coupon crazy and buy the real touch ones from Michaels and Hobby Lobby.

    It really comes down to what you'd like and what you can afford. Talk to a couple florists and tell them your budget and what you're hoping for, and then make a decision. 
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  • Agree with PPs.  Where you are, how much you are looking to have done and what flowers you are considering are going to influence your flower costs more than anything else for real flowers.  If you don't want any one particular flower, one way to cut costs on real flowers might be to work with what is in season for your wedding date.  It may mean forgoing more traditional wedding flowers but can sometimes be a cost savings.
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  • We are doing a high quality silk flower that look real ( some of the ones we are getting feel real also).When I was calling around the silks were the same price as the real ones. So for the same price I figured go with the silk so I have them forever. I plan on using mine in my house after the wedding. If you want to look into silk here is the link to my florist. foreverinbloomflowers.com 
    I emailed Amy with concerns about the silks. She got back to me right away with some pictures. I told her what designer we got for the dresses and the color swatches that same night she sent me a picture of a beautiful boutique and my color swatches next to the picture so I can see what it looked like. I fell in love and started to talk to her about prices. I told her I have a budget and flowers are the thing that doesn't have a high budget. She came in under budget and was even giving me ideas for the church to help keep the cost down. The other thing I like about her is she sends pictures for everything, tonight she sent me a every color ribbon she uses and wanted to make sure the one she picked was good or if I preferred another color. 
    I hope this helps!
    -Andrea
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  • Honestly, I hate fake flowers.  I would just go to some local florists with your budget and your vision and see what you can get.
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  • I think fakes can be great. I've seen beautiful ones, those orchids in the water in the vases?
    But I really don't like fake flowers so we went with real ones instead.
    Plus I am not good at arranging flowers at all. Like I seriously suck so bad at it that trying to make bouquets just seems extremely stressful to me. So I would rather just pay a florist.
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  • I think fakes are tacky - just my opinion 
    Real is just so much better- my bouquet was probably about 250 and my bridesmaids maybe around 100 each 
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  • I agree with doeydo.  I hate silk flowers and any florist you go to will be happy to work within your budget to create something beautiful.
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  • I agree with doeydo.  I hate silk flowers and any florist you go to will be happy to work within your budget to create something beautiful.
    With fake flowers, I'll be able to make myself a big, beautiful bouquet for under $40 and my bridesmaid's bouquets for under $25 each. I've yet to find a florist that is happy to work within that budget to create something beautiful. 
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  • Even Costco wouldn't have been able to provide flowers within the budget we had. I honestly never remember the flowers at a wedding, not even the centerpieces. And I'm not one to take one home as a souvenir, so I couldn't care less if they were real or silk. I think it's just a matter of what the B&G are comfortable with.
    Seriously, why the FUCK are you stalking me?! You need to get a life and stop being obsessed with me.
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  • Ima fan of real for the girls and guys and fake for center pieces if you want flowers, noo me really cares about center pieces you eat at the tables then you should be drinking and dancing all night!
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  • I don't like silk.  I always notice if the flowers at a wedding were fake- maybe snobby, but I'm being honest.  I'd rather have the only flowers at my wedding be my bouquet and be real, then have a bunch of fake flowers.
    CrazyCatLady3
  • Real flowers are definitely the way to go- I cringe when I see fake.  Keep in mind that you don't have to go to a "wedding florist"- there are local florists, garden shops, upscale grocery stores, etc. where any competent floral professional should be able to accommodate your budget.

    By any chance are you getting married off season?  My floral bill was reduced by 20% since I got married in February.

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  • vt&dtvt&dt
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    Another vote for real flowers.

    You don't need flower arrangements for the ceremony or reception space to decorate, or for centerpieces.  We're doing simple centerpieces with lots of tea light candles and only using flowers for bouquets, corsages, and boutonnieres.

    Stick with what's in-season, and I think you'll have good luck.  Much better to have a small real bouquet than any fake one IMO.
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  • CaliMel11 said:
    I think fakes can be great. I've seen beautiful ones, those orchids in the water in the vases?
    But I really don't like fake flowers so we went with real ones instead.
    Plus I am not good at arranging flowers at all. Like I seriously suck so bad at it that trying to make bouquets just seems extremely stressful to me. So I would rather just pay a florist.
    This post def made me laugh!! LOL I am going to try DIY centerpieces (possibly bouqets as well?!) so well see how that goes!!! Some of the DIY stuff is just WAY easier said then done. OR just end up as expensive as renting/purchasing completed options. WELL SEE!
  • kaleenoc said:
    I agree with doeydo.  I hate silk flowers and any florist you go to will be happy to work within your budget to create something beautiful.
    With fake flowers, I'll be able to make myself a big, beautiful bouquet for under $40 and my bridesmaid's bouquets for under $25 each. I've yet to find a florist that is happy to work within that budget to create something beautiful. 
    Yeah but what kind of silk flowers are they?  Unless the silk flowers are of premium quality (which are usually just as expensive, if not more expensive then real flowers) I would take a small fresh flower bouquet over a huge poor quality silk flower bouquet any day.  

    For me, quality over quantity always wins.
    I see both sides with this! I think what one of the prvious posters mentioned with talking to a florist about whats in season to work best within budget will be the way we go. Silk seems like it will be too much work. I am just hoping to keep the cost minimal. I have a hard time dealing with spending hundreds on something that wont last. I will prob go ahead with silk for centerpieces though...
  • eileenrob said:

    Real flowers are definitely the way to go- I cringe when I see fake.  Keep in mind that you don't have to go to a "wedding florist"- there are local florists, garden shops, upscale grocery stores, etc. where any competent floral professional should be able to accommodate your budget.

    By any chance are you getting married off season?  My floral bill was reduced by 20% since I got married in February.

    Most likely will be a December wedding which is a bit out of season so hopefully that works. Upscale grocery stores to use and put together our own bouquets? Or you can custom order them? Same with costco?
  • vt&dt said:
    Another vote for real flowers.

    You don't need flower arrangements for the ceremony or reception space to decorate, or for centerpieces.  We're doing simple centerpieces with lots of tea light candles and only using flowers for bouquets, corsages, and boutonnieres.

    Stick with what's in-season, and I think you'll have good luck.  Much better to have a small real bouquet than any fake one IMO.
    Yeah seems the route we are going! I plan to incorporate a little bit of flowers in my centerpieces so for that i might just go silk and real on the actual bouqets... we'll see!
  • We bought these lanterns on clearance and collected a bunch of bottles from garage sales/various people.  

    All I ordered was a bunch of purple stock (VERY cheap), white hydrangeas, and pink peony roses from Fiftyflowers.com.  It cost about $300 for all of them, and I had PLENTY.

    With that, I just put flowers in the bottles and arranged a few on each table. 

    Then I just put the peony roses and hydrangea together to make my bouquet and 3 others.  I'm NOT a crafty person, but they came out pretty well.  Everyone thought the bouquets were professionally made.  And our bouquets pulled double duty as the centerpieces for our table (just put into glass jars as vases)

    Then I got like 7 bouts and 2 corsages from a local florist for I think like $115. 


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  • I think it depends on what type of flowers you want to use (roses, daisy, etc). Some flowers you can find amazingly real silk versions of, others, just always seem too look bad. Best bet is to shop around, check out reviews & if you are considering silk, see if the have a sample bouquet that you can order, even if you have to pay a small amount for it.

    Alh728
  • We're also on a super-tight budget! I decided to go with fake flowers. I'm not a super flowery person, so we're going very minimal on flowers. I got some beautiful latex "real feel" flowers from afloral.com. I spent a total of $94 on my bouquet, bridesmaid's bouquets, mother corsages, and ceremony decor. We're doing non-floral centerpieces.

    I would say it ultimately depends on how important the flowers are to you. If they aren't terribly important, they you can definitely find lovely fake flowers. If flowers are very important to you, then you definitely can't beat the vibrancy of real flowers.
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  • Alh728 said:
    eileenrob said:

    Real flowers are definitely the way to go- I cringe when I see fake.  Keep in mind that you don't have to go to a "wedding florist"- there are local florists, garden shops, upscale grocery stores, etc. where any competent floral professional should be able to accommodate your budget.

    By any chance are you getting married off season?  My floral bill was reduced by 20% since I got married in February.

    Most likely will be a December wedding which is a bit out of season so hopefully that works. Upscale grocery stores to use and put together our own bouquets? Or you can custom order them? Same with costco?

    I know that at Whole Foods, for example, you can work with their florist to create a bouquet or centerpiece that you love- your input and then the florist puts it together, not you.  If by any chance you're in Queens NY, I know of some non-chain upscale grocery stores that also offer this service.
  • I dislike using fake flowers as well. So we used flowers that were in season and something we'd get our moneys worth out of (hydrangeas). Since the weddings in winter we're also using birch branches (for nothing since my fiance will be cutting them down and delivering them to the florist). As for bouquets they will be expensive but since they are really the only flowers necessary for a ceremony they are worth it as well. As for the guys boutinnaires, we are using small flowers and duck feathers for a more rustic feel making each one only about 8 dollars. If you use different materials and just add a few real flowers it can lower the cost and make your wedding more unique than others!
  • Another option is paper flowers. They definitely don't have the same look, but they can be really beautiful and unique!
  • My uncle used fake flowers at his wedding and they looked AWFUL.  We cut down on the amount of flowers so we wouldn't have to sacrfice quality.  My boquet is roses and blue orchids ad is only costing $100 and i'm having each of my bridesmaids carry a single white rose with a ribbon tied around it.  Its very pretty. 
  • Another vote against silk flowers.  If cost is that much of an issue, I'd rather see candle arrangements as centerpieces than fake flowers.
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  • I'm doing fake flowers, and I do recommend it. The ones that look and feel real are pretty amazing. I think they're called "true touch". You wanna go that route. I had the flowers for my bouquet out in vases before I assembled the bouquet, and when I people over for a game night, they asked me how my flowers were surviving so well without water. I made my bouquet using  hydrangeas and roses, matching a pictureI had seen before I flipped out at the florist's prices. They had quoted me at $150 for the bridal bouquet, and I made mine for $35. You just have to look out for the times when the hobby/craft stores have their 50% sales on all flowers.

    On top of saving money, other pros, in my opnion: 1. I get to keep my bridal bouquet, in the condition it was in on my wedding day. My friend keeps hers on the table in her entryway, and I always thought it was a sweet. 2. The bouquet assembly was a good way to get all my bridesmaids together early on. I made them lunch and they helped me with their bouquets and hashed out showeer/bachelorette dates. 3. You can get the flowers out of the way early, so there are no last-minutes surprises.

    Some cons: 1. A lot of work. You've got to track down sales, know in your head what you want, and be willing to assemble it all yourself or find willing help. 2. You have to have a place to store all those flowers. 3. Vases - I also found those on clearance, plus my FMIL had some leftover from FSIL's wedding. These are still a cost for centerpieces with real flowers, but it's still something else you have to think about. 4. I know at least one aunt that will make a comment about the flowers being fake. But you can't please everybody, right?

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