In our new series of blogs, we’ll be sharing the very best ideas, advice and inspiration from different wedding industry experts. This week we’ve been speaking to some of the UK’s top wedding florists. Read on for our florists' thoughts on the results of our latest wedding survey, as well as how to have the perfect wedding flowers…

Katrina Skybak Doyle at Cloud Hill Flowers

“We’re event florists and we focus on the detail to create your dream wedding and really deliver the wow factor,” says Katrina. “We also make creative designs a personal and affordable reality, whether it’s in a marquee or a traditional barn. In my experience, the most common bouquet shapes are round, loose hand-tied or wild shower bouquets, which seem to be very popular. The shape we were asked for most is definitely a round hand-tied bouquet with rustic tones. We’re also seeing gypsophila in many designs.”

All the colours of the rainbow

“Colour-wise, blush is very popular but more colourful choices with lots of foliage are coming through too. The seasons do alter colour palettes, and darker accents are more common in the winter months, for example. Roses are still such a loved flower, as there are so many varieties and colours. We also get asked for moon gates (large floral circles), floral hoops, garlands and floral chandeliers. The most extravagant wedding we’ve worked at recently had large moon gates and big floral chandeliers. They looked fantastic but are large pieces and a bit tricky to transport!”

 

Meet the suppliers: The wedding florists - Cloud Hill Flowers

 

Jan Lima at Jan Lima Flowers

“We’re bespoke wedding florists and stylists,” says Jan. “We create everything from beautiful bouquets to stunning venue installations while paying close attention to detail, direction and budget. Couples usually book us between six to 12 months before their big day. And, as your Wedding Survey Report found, we’re also seeing more couples having longer engagements, of between one to two years. Apart from bouquets, the most common displays we’re asked to create are buttonholes, corsages, thank you flowers, displays for the top table and guest tables, pedestals, flower arches, table plan flowers and also to add flowers to the cake.”

Foliage, tea lights and paper birds

“One of the most budget-savvy yet memorable weddings I’ve worked on recently was for a Japanese bride who was having a barn wedding. We used lots of foliage for the balcony and tables, along with tea lights and fairy lights. The bridesmaids had small sheath bouquets and the bride wore her national costume with no bouquet and just flowers in her hair. There were also handmade paper birds suspended from the ceiling and another group of friends from their local choir sang.”

 

Meet the suppliers: The wedding florists - Jan Lima Flowers

 

Kimberley Hollinshead at The Flower Boutique

“The Flower Boutique is a family run florists in Woburn Sands, Buckinghamshire,” says Kimberley. “We pride ourselves on our rustic chic blooms for weddings and special occasions and we have over 25 years' experience in floristry and event styling.”

“The couples who come to see us mostly range from 25 to 30 but we're seeing a rise in mature couples looking to marry or renew their wedding vows, too. We also tend to find that the younger the couple, the more they’re willing to spend on their flowers. I think social media plays a very big role in influencing a couple’s perception of what they ‘need’ to have, which in turn increases their budget. We find that older couples tend not to choose larger installations, such as arches and flower walls, but stick to more traditional arrangements, such as bouquets, buttonholes and pedestals.”

Brilliantly budget-savvy

“The most budget-friendly wedding I’ve worked on was for a style-conscious bride on a tight budget. Her creativity was out of this world. The setting was a gorgeous Cotswold stone barn and we went very heavy on the greenery. Every table had a greenery garland with tapered candles nestled amongst the foliage. The couple were big foodies, so we used cut herbs, such as rosemary, mint and sage, in all of the garlands. The bride wanted a natural and rustic style, so we used open peonies and wildflowers to create a loose bouquet for her and her maids. The confetti was made from fresh lavender, which resulted in the most beautiful photographs. The bride had a very firm idea of what she wanted. We were blown away when it all came together.”

Heaven scent

“One of the most extravagant days was at the Sculpture Gallery in Woburn, where the bride spent over £4,000 on her wedding flowers. She wanted her flowers to have an impact, both visual and scented, so we opted for hundreds of stunning David Austin roses, peonies and hydrangeas, all in white and blush. The top table had a runner the length of the front of the table loaded with peonies and hydrangeas. There were also two large urns and a floral welcome sign for the entrance. Outside we decorated a pergola with silk drapes and real flower tie backs. The bride and her eight bridesmaids had bouquets made solely of blush and white peonies with silk trailing ribbon. It really was a beautiful sight.”

 

Meet the suppliers: The wedding florists - The Flower Boutique

 

Natasha Bartlett-Twivey at Ferris Heart Sloane

“Ferris Heart Sloane is a family-run florist based in London,” says Natasha. “We sell a range of luxury faux flowers, greenery, garlands and centrepieces. We use high-quality artificial flowers, which are designed to last a lifetime. All our captivating flower displays are also handmade to create a truly breathtaking statement.”

Fabulous faux flowers

“Our clients are all so different but the beauty of artificial flowers is that even if couples book the month of their wedding we can still provide the same level of service and attention. Our clients, in general, are budget-savvy. They want the best they can afford without compromising on the perfect look and feel. As artificial flowers are available all year round (although they do sell out seasonally), they can be incorporated into fresh arrangements or replace fresh altogether. They also last longer, especially in warm weather. The most common bouquet shapes, in my experience, are cascade, posy and hand-tied, the more unstructured the better! We also get asked for roses and eucalyptus a lot, not always together. Flower walls are very popular to accompany pedestal arrangements for the ceremony room too.”

A total transformation

“Our most extravagant wedding to-date was for the marriage of an American and a Brit. They transformed each room of a private house to reflect the seasons of places they’d visited together. So, we combined fresh and artificial blooms to ensure we could create the looks they wanted in each room. It was a complete colour sensation throughout the house. The bride also chose the most exquisite white roses for her bouquet. Afterwards, we were able to repurpose some of the flowers for arrangements in their home.”

 

Meet the suppliers: The wedding florists - Ferris Heart Sloane

 

Clare Davies, Petal and Bird

“At Petal & Bird we create handcrafted paper wedding flowers,” says Clare. “Each flower and piece of foliage is handmade using high-quality crepe paper in my studio in Chichester, West Sussex. Every flower is bespoke and a lasting memory to treasure. My paper flowers can be created into many different arrangements, such as bouquets, buttonholes, flower girl accessories, hairpieces and flower crowns. They’re also ideal for destination weddings, as you don’t need to worry about your flowers wilting in the heat.”

A lasting memento

I also recreate real bridal bouquets, which are a great memory of a couple’s special day. These are some of my favourite pieces to make and are a perfect gift for a first ‘paper’ wedding anniversary. I work from a couple's photographs to replicate the flowers and foliage, bringing their flowers back to life.”

“When couples contact me we arrange a flower consultation to see my paper flowers in real life and start planning theirs. Paper flowers allow couples to have exactly what they want in any colour, during any season. They can also be made up in advance. This takes away the stress of not knowing what they'll look like on the day or whether a certain flower is available. Ideas can change during a long engagement too, as new trends come in, and paper flowers allow for that flexibility.”

 

Meet the suppliers: The wedding florists - Petal and Bird

 

Rebecca Ephgrave at Paper Bouquets UK

“Paper Bouquets UK are alternative wedding florists,” says Rebecca. “We make bouquets that not only last years after the wedding but can be as individual as the couple. We can also tailor everything, using any colour and any type of paper, even books, comics or sheet music. Our flowers can take in any theme too, from classic and elegant to offbeat and quirky. I’ve been making paper flowers since I could hold scissors and making bouquets professionally for over six years. I’m so proud to have achieved wedding industry awards and worked with 100s of amazing couples around the world.”

Beautiful colour combinations

“Different seasons do bring different flower combinations and colours. In the autumn/winter months couples ask us for rich tones, deep reds, oranges and golds, as well as silvers and whites. Spring sees a lot of lemon, pastels, pale pinks and blues. Summer months tend to be the brighter colours, such as stronger yellows, pinks etc. The most consistent colours throughout the year are purples, pinks and pastels. A popular request over the last year has been for flower crowns too. I also make paper flower place settings, which double up as favours for guests to take home.”

Extravagant vs budget savvy

“One of my largest orders to date was for bride and groom who married at the Corinthia Hotel London. We started with a cascade bouquet, which was floor length! Then the bride decided to add four extra-large bridesmaids bouquets, as well as buttonholes for all guests, two 3ft-wide pillar spheres and eight 2ft, half-dome cascading table decorations, all in pearls, diamantés, silvers and golds. It was specular and so was the budget! At the other end of the scale, one of the more stripped back weddings I’ve catered for required just a single stem, extra-large flower. Literally, just one giant paper rose about 20 cm in diameter. I think that’s about as small an order as it gets, but it still packed a punch.”

 

Meet the suppliers: The wedding florists - Paper Bouquets

 

Click here for a full list of wedding florists near you or visit our Wedding Suppliers page to find the very best wedding suppliers in your area. Finally, for more big day inspiration and to find your dream dress, head over to Instagram, Facebook or Twitter