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DIY Bulk Flowers?

I'm also in the same boat as many of the brides who posted recently in that I have very little knowledge about flowers.  I just know that I have a small budget and would like to stretch my dollar as far as possible.

So I've been reading that a few brides are going online to buy bulk flowers.  For example, let's say I like this centerpiece: http://www.fiftyflowers.com/product/Lavender-Classic-Fresh-Centerpieces_23648.htm.  And I need 8 of them.  All I have to do is buy 8 of them for $150, they arrive at my house on say a Thursday, and my family puts them together in our vases on Friday, and then set them up on Saturday?  It's that easy?

It seems too good to be true since florists have been estimating $50+ per centerpiece for me.  So I want to make sure I'm not missing something in this picture.
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Re: DIY Bulk Flowers?

  • katecharkatechar member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    check out your local costco floral dept! they have beautiful flowers for inexpensive prices and you can see what you are getting not hoping for the best with internet and hoping they are shipped correctly!
  • edited December 2011
    Yes I looked at that too. When you pay a florist you are paying for labor...not stems. For example, one of my quotes was $31 for a three stem calla lily bouquet with ribbon...the stems are only $3.50 from the florist's distributor. They didn't know that I knew this. That is $20 in labor on one bouquet!  From experience I find putting together a bouquet of centerpiece with a variety of stems to be easier than putting together same stem bouquets. Also, note that you will need to buy the containers for the centerpieces also. They aren't included in that price. You may want to get on the phone with customer service and ask about what size containers hold the "small" and "large" centerpieces. You can buy vases through fiftyflowers.com or the dollar store, craft stores, www.wholesalefloral.com.
  • edited December 2011
    I really hope it is that easy... because that is what I am planning on doing.  I'll find out in 3 weeks and can post how it went afterwards if that would help other brides. 
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  • flower_divaflower_diva member
    Tenth Anniversary 100 Comments Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    I would suggest you try to do an arrangement first.  Sometimes it is not as easy as you think it will be.
  • edited December 2011
    It really is that easy.  My friend bought her daughter's flowers at Costco and wanted "upgraded" greenery, so she ordered that from ferntrust.com.  The flowers were lovely - and she spent just over $300 for the whole wedding, including all the wedding party and 24 centerpieces.
  • edited December 2011
    I do agree with flower-diva. Everyone has a different set of talents. It may be easy for me and harder for you and vice versa. Go to the grocery store, walmart, or target and pick up some fresh flowers. Take them home and try to make an arrangement. It will give you a better idea of how easy or hard it can be.
  • edited December 2011

    I am glad that you asked about this.  I was a very DIY Bride 6 years ago.  I ordered flowers online.  The flowers were beautiful!  Only they were completely closed for the wedding.  They bloomed perfectly a week later when we got home from our honeymoon. 
    The moral of the story?  If you don't have a solid knowledge of flowers you can really end up regreting this decision. 
    I learned a lot and actually became a florist after that.  (I won't make that mistake again!) 
    Flowers are a huge amount of work.  You must be home when they arrive, remove excess foliage, cut the stems, put them in buckets with preservative immediately (they can not be cut and out of water for more than 10 seconds without needing a fresh cut...)  The buckets are heavy, the glass vases fragile, the blooms tempermental about temperature, humidity, handling and are often not even compatible in the same water... (one flower often secretes a sap that will kill other flowers)  This is not to mention the time you will spend arranging.  It takes me all day to arrange for a small wedding.  (And I have been doing it for 6 years.  Imagine not having experience and trying to get them done.)  By the end my fingers are stained bright green from the stems and usually bleeding from sharp wires. 
    I strongly recommend using these sites to compare prices of blooms and to help you learn what flowers are good during which seasons.  Armed with that knowledge, visit several florists, get written estimates and try to find a qualified florist.  Your mother and Brides maids will thank you.  (PS if you decide to go the DIY route anyways: choose the simplest centerpiece style that you can.  One type of flower in a vase, or floating flowers underwater with a floating candle on top, are great for beginners.  Choose flowers that are not picky: Roses, Chrysanthemums, Carnations - easy to work with, inexpensive, long life. )
    hope this helps.  SM

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