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As owner and lead florist of Lang Floral Designs, a wedding floral studio in Chattanooga, Tennessee, I see a very wide variety of budgets. So here’s the super easy answer to the question:
“How much, on average, should my wedding flowers cost?”
10%-15% of Your Wedding Budget
I get asked all the time “What is the average cost of wedding flowers?” And, while I would love to just give you an actual average number rather than a percentage, it’s not quite that easy, because….not all weddings are created equal!
There are so many factors that will determine your overall wedding budget, and therefor your floral package. Do you have a huge bridal party? Is your venue naturally beautiful? Is your guest list large which would result in a high number of centerpieces? Are you wanting some type of floral installation, like on an arbor, ceiling, beams, chandelier? Will that installation or any other factors require multiple people at set-up, or special equipment?
When planning a wedding, you must let go of the idea that you will be able to do everything. Your wedding most likely won’t match up to every single wedding you’ve ever attended. Different couples have different budgets, period. And it’s okay. The sooner you let go of that comparison game, the better. This will carry over throughout your entire marriage, and it’s best to get ahold of that concept now. Some of the most personal and heart felt weddings I’ve ever attended where on a tight budget. There are so many ideas out there that you can find to help you bring in inexpensive personal touches to your day. Your wedding will still be beautiful and unforgettable, and even less stressful, if you stay within budget!
Why is 10%-15% the Average Cost for Wedding Flowers?
Of course, as a wedding florist, I would naturally want to say you should spend a HUGE part of your wedding budget with me. However, I’ve put aside my personal gains and I actually did a quick review of my weddings over the past few years. They spend anywhere from 8%-20% on their floral package (most fall within that 10%-15% mark, with some unusual exceptions). Brides.com confirms the percentages I’m suggesting saying,
You can expect to put about 10-15 percent of your wedding budget toward the florals. If you’re using flowers as your main source of decor, you may allocate a little more funds towards florals.
You should also keep in mind that some florists keep an inventory of in-style decor rentals. For example, in our inventory, we have gold chargers, modern lanterns, candles and candlesticks, table runners, and of course a TON of various sets of vessels for floral centerpieces. So, you may choose to spend more than 15% with your florist taking into consideration that some of the package is for flowers, and some is for additional decor you won’t have to purchase yourself.
Huge perk: You won’t have to cart a bunch of boxes of candles and stuff into the wedding venue the morning of, only to ask your bridal party to set it all up.
I Want to know the Average Cost of Wedding Flowers, but I Don’t Have a Firm Wedding Budget
Some brides aren’t able to use a percentage to determine their floral budget because they don’t have a set overall wedding budget. My answer to them: GET ONE! Here’s a great article I wrote a while back on wedding budgeting. It includes a downloadable wedding budget spreadsheet that you can plug all your numbers into. It also goes into more depth about why I feel that having a wedding budget and sticking to it is so essential.
Why Do I Need A Firm Wedding Budget?
I talk about this a little more in the budget blog article mentioned above, however, think about those HGVT shows you watch. When a couple is doing a major remodel, they have a budget, right? If they didn’t, the cost would spiral out of control for sure! They sometime have to make decisions according to that budget. If you watch those shows a lot, you probably also have noticed that they almost always go a little bit over due to something unexpected, or some upgrade they just can’t live without. That’s why, the really good designers/contractor will instruct their clients to have a contingent budget…5-10% of the remodel budget, just for those unplanned expenses.
How many times have you watched one of those Home Remodeling shows, and rolled your eyes when the couple is super surprised or stress about an unexpected cost. We allllll know it’s going to happen, right? Remodels never go exactly as planned. Weddings are the SAME WAY! I would highly recommend setting a budget that you, your fiancé, and your family (if financially involved) all agree on. And then taking it down by about 5-10%, and using THAT as the budget you actually shoot for. Don’t forget, you can download our spreadsheet and plug in that overall budget number, to automatically calculate suggested amount for your wedding items (ie. Flowers, Catering, Venue, Photography). And then if you choose to spend a little more than normal on, let’s say, the venue, you can easily adjust the percentages of some other categories to make the numbers work.
Random Side Note…
Am I the only one who geeks out about spreadsheets and numbers, haha? It’s totally uncharacteristic of a designer like me (You can read a little more about me HERE if you want). But there’s something within me that loves spreadsheets, analytics, charts and graphs…boring huh?!!! If you’re NOT good with numbers, don’t worry, I’ve got you! The spreadsheet will do all the work for you and make you feel like a pro!
How to Stay Within Budget with Your Florist
I don’t schedule the first meeting with a bride until I have these two numbers: Overall Wedding Budget & Floral Budget. Here’s why:
I can’t tell you how often we get answers like “I really have no idea what I should be spending on flower (or what wedding flowers cost), so right now I’m just looking for some pricing.” And as much as I understand that point of view, without giving a number or even a range, I know I can not properly offer that bride a proposed floral package. If I give her a quote of a floral package that’s $5,000+ that includes everything she wants, but she was really hoping to see something under $2,000, than she’s going to be in such sticker-shock that she most likely won’t even respond to the quote. She’ll probably move on to the next florist, being afraid that if she told me her actual budget, I would balk at it.
So, whether your florist asks for a budget right out the gate or not, you should give them one anyway. This gives them no excuse to give you a quote that is outrageously higher than what you can spend. They may give a number slightly over budget with some options of how to scale down. But this will prevent receiving a quote that is thousands of dollars over what you could spend. I wrote a blog article about how to choose budget-friendly wedding flowers HERE, and I would definitely suggest checking out TIPS 7-10 before your first meeting with your florist. Regardless of the “average cost” of wedding flowers, your florist should know what you can pay for your wedding.
Should I DIY My Wedding Flowers?
My advice, proceed with caution! Flowers and food are the two items for your wedding that are perishable. Therefor, they have to be prepared within the week of the wedding, and in most cases, just the day/night before. I wrote a more in depth blog about DIY Flowers HERE, so if you feel that doing the flowers and/or the food yourself is your only option, take a look at this article to see what factors you should consider, and read my suggestions on how you could actually hire a professional florist within budget.
A few other budget friendly ideas for your wedding:
Consider using one vendor for two or more services. As previously mentioned, most florists offer decor rentals as well. We have lots of great add-on services like invitation design, day-of-coordinating, custom signage, and even full event design! Couples sometimes think hiring one vendor to “do it all” will cost an arm and a leg. However, I always explain to them that if I’m doing 2-3 services for one client, that cuts down SO MUCH on the logistics (meetings, contracts, payments), that it would actually cost them less overall to hire one vendor to do what two or three might do. Additionally, it saves them on some of those logistical tasks as well.
HERE’S an event we recently “did it all” for. Due to our wholesale discounts on decor products, and the money saved using us for floral design, coordinating, invitation design, and full event design, the bottom line ended up being less than if each item were priced out and hired separately!
I recently stumbled across these engagement rings by accident on Etsy, and OMG HOW BEAUTIFUL!!! They’re MOISSANITE (an Ethical & Eco Friendly Diamond-Alternative), American made, and have great reviews. If you’ve not heard of Moissanite, look it up. My sister has one and LOVES it! These engagement rings are GORGEOUS, and a fraction of the price of diamonds. (HUGE PERK: You can support an American small business)!
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Lang Floral Designs is a premier wedding florist in Chattanooga, Tennessee. We do wedding and event flowers in the surrounding areas of East Tennessee and North Georgia, and we also love providing brides everywhere with useful ideas and information for their wedding day. For a better idea of all we can do at your wedding, click here. Contact us today if you’re interested in hiring us for your wedding or event.