Find a wedding florist who can deliver your dream flowers

Congratulations! You’re engaged! And now for the wedding planning…. I know the mountain of detail and decision making at this point can be quite overwhelming, so I’ve written this guide to help you choose the right wedding florist for your big day. Lead in times for weddings can be long, so it’s important that you find someone you’ll enjoy working with and who understands what you’re looking for in your wedding flowers.

Wedding florist Carole of Tuckshop Flowers sits smiling in a blue armchair with a wild flowers in a jug in the foreground. She holds a pen and notebook as she conducts a bespoke wedding flowers consultation.

My 10 top tips

Photos: Charlotte and Andy’s spring ceremony at Hampton Manor, Warwickshire. Photo: Roo Stain Photography. Broken arch for an outdoor wedding at Thorpe Garden, Staffordshire. Top table floral decor at Curradine Barns, Worcestershire.

Start early

Once your feet have touched the ground after announcing your engagement, it’s good to make an early start on looking for key suppliers like wedding florists, photographers and venues as weekend availability is limited – there are only 52 weekends across the whole year! In the UK, wedding season tends to be busiest from Easter until late summer, so if you’re planning a spring or summer weekend wedding, it’s important to book early to be sure of getting the suppliers you want. Once you’ve booked your venue and have a date engraved in your diary, it’s time to start looking for all the other wedding service providers who’ll be able to help you with your plans. If you’re having a weekday wedding, it’s still good to plan ahead because although florists are more likely to be free on your date, they may actually be already tied up with preparations for a large Saturday wedding (if your wedding falls on a Wednesday, Thursday or Friday).

Most couples book in their wedding florists six months to two years in advance of their wedding date. For a florist like me who also grows flowers, this is great as it means I can factor in your colour scheme when planning what to grow for the floral year ahead. If you’re planning a larger, bespoke order, it’s better to book early so that there’s plenty of time to source any containers and structures you might need. If you’re going for a spontaneous small elopement wedding which could be as simple as a bride’s bouquet and a buttonhole, then many florists would be able to help you with this at short notice. I cater for small to medium sized orders by providing wedding packages which you can collect from me the day before your ceremony. I can provide these with limited advance warning, though I’d recommend a minimum of 9 -12 weeks before your wedding date to avoid disappointment.

Rachel and Elliot chose my bespoke wedding flowers service and spring flowers for their relaxed barn wedding in Warwickshire. Photos: Amy Rose Photography. Venue: Shustoke Barn

Explore wedding florist websites and images

The internet and social media are your friends. Do a search for wedding florists within a 50 mile radius of your venue and have a good trawl through their websites and social media, especially picture-heavy platforms like Instagram and Pinterest. What do their flowers look like? Can they create the feel and look that you’d love to have for your own wedding flowers? If you are looking for wild and natural flowers but find only tropical gloss, neat geometry and structure, or vice versa, then perhaps you need to look elsewhere. Have a look at testimonials for the florists you like – what do their previous wedding clients say about them?

Try a Google image search for your wedding venue – follow links to see who created any flowers that you like.

If you’re concerned about the environment, can you find out if florists use or avoid plastic-based floral foam? Where do their flowers come from? Do they use local flowers or are they mainly imported? The Flowers from the Farm website is a great place to start a search for florists using mainly seasonal, British grown flowers and you can use the postcode of your venue to search for the nearest wedding florists in the area.

Also don’t forget to use the old-fashioned search engine: word of mouth. If you loved someone’s wedding flowers, ask which florist they used and then check them out! Have your friends or family got any suggestions for great florists who they’ve used before?

Check availability on your date

Before spending time discussing your flowers in depth, the first thing to check is a florist’s availability on your wedding date. When you know that they are free, that’s the time to start discussions about the details for your order.

When you email a florist to check availability, please give them the exact date (and year!) for your wedding:

“I’m getting married in October”

covers at least 4 weekends in this year alone, so please be specific!

Seasonal October wedding flowers for a bespoke order. Alys and Sam’s ceremony took place at Birmingham Oratory, followed by a reception at The Plough and Harrow Hotel, Edgbaston with the floor meadow being used in both venues. Photos: Aaron Cole Photography and Tuckshop Flowers.

Ask if the wedding florist will deliver and set up at your venue

Does the florist cover the area where your venue is located? Many wedding florists are prepared to travel further for larger orders and usually their websites will state which counties of the UK they work in. Some UK florists will travel abroad for destination weddings, though many, like me, will prefer to minimise travel miles and limit themselves to weddings within a 50-100 mile radius. Bear in mind that the greater the distance between your florist’s location and your wedding venue, the greater the delivery costs will be (factor in time and petrol for the number of round trips, staff time and/or any overnight stays required, not just for a single one way journey). Making my wedding flower packages available only for collection is one of the ways in which I manage to keep the cost of my smaller wedding orders lower.

When making your enquiry, if you’d like your florist to deliver and set up your flowers on the day, ask if they have a minimum order value for this service and if your venue is within their usual travelling distance. My bespoke wedding orders qualify for this service in Worcestershire, South Staffordshire, Warwickshire and the West Midlands. For bespoke bookings for 2024 and beyond I currently have a minimum order value of £2000.

If your wedding ceremony is taking place at a separate venue from your reception, it is also worth asking if your florist offers a relocation service for your flowers and if this carries any additional cost. Don’t be surprised if it does – once they’ve finished all the initial setup of your wedding flowers, your florist and any additional staff will then have to wait at ceremony venue until your service is over (this can be several hours!) and also make additional journeys. Depending on your order, it may be possible to move your arrangements with just the help of friends and family – discuss this with your florist who will have a good idea of the practicalities involved.

Estimate the size of your order

Emily and her bridesmaids. Alice Cunfliffe Photography; ranunculus buttonholes for a spring wedding; a cream table urn centrepiece at Shustoke Barn, photo: Lincoln Pictures

Any wedding florist you speak to will want to know about the expected scale of the flowers required for your wedding, so before you begin a conversation with them, work out a rough estimate of who and what you’d like flowers for. What you need depends on how flowery you’d like your wedding to be, and also your budget. Flowers for the immediate wedding party may include some (but not necessarily all) of these:

  • Bride’s bouquet or bouquets for a single sex wedding
  • Hair flowers
  • Buttonholes for grooms, groomsmen, fathers, ushers, immediate family members
  • Bridesmaid bouquets
  • Corsages (or buttonholes) for mothers of the couple, grandmothers, other immediate female family members
  • Flower girls
  • Pets in attendance

Flowers for the venue may include:

  • An arrangement for the ceremony table
  • Flowers for guest tables at reception (so have at least an estimated number of guests)
  • Flowers to decorate the aisle or pew ends
  • Large focal arrangements for your venue(s) and/or ceremony
  • Flower arrangements for your welcome table
  • Wedding cake flowers
  • Table plan floral embellishments
  • Large installation pieces like arches, stair decor, or suspended flowers
  • Flowers to decorate venue features

How far you go with flowers depends on your taste and on how much you want to spend. It’s always a good idea to get a general idea of prices for the type wedding flowers you’re interested in – and it’s important that your budget is realistic for the floral effects you wish to create. Remember that the beautiful weddings with flowers on every surface featured in magazines and on Instagram have budgets in the thousands to match.

I publish my guide price list for bespoke wedding flowers and for costs for budget packages on my website because I know that most of you are planning a wedding for the first time and need an indication of what costs might be involved. If your florist doesn’t have prices publicly available, they may have a guide price list that they can send to you by email on request.

It takes hours to draw up an personalised quotation document for a bespoke wedding, so many florists are unlikely to give you more than estimated pricing at the initial enquiry stage. For bespoke orders, I draw up an itemised and illustrated quotation only after having detailed personal consultation with you. For my clients there’s no obligation at this stage, but my view is that this process is a good investment of time before a commitment is made, and helps us all to see if we’re a good fit and on the same page for your wedding flowers.

Plan your flower budget

Photographs: Charlotte Mail Photography. Venue: Edgbaston Park Hotel. Stationery: Written by Emily. Flowers: Tuckshop Flowers

Look at any wedding pricing you can find online to get an idea of what flowers might cost – even though prices will vary quite widely it helps to build your awareness of quality, service and price range. A lot of the cost of wedding flowers is to cover the time invested in them – not just in time spent arranging them, but all the hours that also go into planning, consultation, researching, sourcing….. When you appoint a florist, part of what you are paying them for is to absorb the stress involved in this most time sensitive, naturally perishable and important of tasks. They’ll do the worrying so you don’t have to!

Consider how important flowers are to you in making your day special. Are you having them because you absolutely love flowers and it’s your once in a lifetime chance to make a day beautifully memorable, or are you having them mainly because it’s expected? Let your feeling about flowers inform your budget where it is possible to do so, but set yourself an upper spending limit to keep your wedding flowers in line with financial reality. Sometimes it is helpful to start with a maximum budget and work backwards – what florals might you be able to have for a £10K, £5K, £2K or £300 wedding flower budget? Which figure makes you feel uncomfortable? That might be a good place to work back from to start your thought process. Stick with what is affordable and feels comfortable for you. The idea of your flowers should bring you joy, not stress.

Discussing your maximum budget with your florist is also a great idea because they can advise you how to get the maximum floral impact for it on the day. Talking money can feel uncomfortable but it’s important that both you and your florist have a clear picture on costs and are realistic about what can be achieved. We can all dream up the most beautiful wedding florals in the world, but if the flowers will blow your budget ten times over, it will have to remain just that… a dream… (a lovely one though!).

Ask when you need to finalise all the details

Photos: A late summer tipi reception follows a church wedding in Mancetter, Warwickshire. Reception venue: Alcott Weddings, Worcestershire. Photos: Jon Thorne Wedding Photography.

Do you have all your flower ideas pinned down already? If not, find out from your prospective wedding florists how much flexibility there is in their order process. Do you have to agree to take everything included in your initial quotation or can you vary final quantities, types of arrangement and add on/leave out some of the items on your original wishlist?

Find out about containers and props

What kind of arrangements are important for your wedding? If you are looking for large focal arrangements for your ceremony, venue or reception, check if florists have containers (large urns, vases, flower stands, milk churns…) and structures (arches, hanging hoops, installation pieces) available for you to hire. If not, think about the cost of hiring or buying these items and check if your florist is happy to decorate them. Factor their purchase/hire cost into your flower budget. Think also about their afterlife once the wedding is over. Are they pieces that you can reuse as decorative items around your home, or gift to friends and family, or will you list and resell them all on an online auction site like eBay?

For my own weddings, I have a hire service available for bespoke orders, but due to the costs, admin and logistics involved, I don’t offer this service for my budget packages.

Table centrepieces are where the cost of containers starts to add up because of the multiples needed.

If containers are the property of your florist and are hired in for the occasion, this makes perfect environmental sense in terms of the items being re-used across different weddings throughout the seasons, rather than every client buying brand new for single event use. However, it does mean that your table containers can’t be gifted along with their contents at the end of the evening.

When ordering table centrepieces, don’t forget to discuss the issue of whether and when containers need to be returned to the florist after the event, or if their purchase cost is included in the price of the flowers. Often, both options are possible, but you need to be clear on what basis you’d like containers to be supplied. Some florists will let you supply your own containers and fill them for you – but make sure you are both clear on how this will work in terms of when the florist needs to receive your vases/jugs/vessels, and very importantly how the size of your containers compares with those in any quote you’ve received. Size makes a big difference to the quantity of flowers required to fill them!

If you are on a budget and plan to DIY your table flowers, to keep down costs, I can supply buckets of cut flowers and foliage to complement those used in your wedding bouquets and buttonholes and it can be a lovely way to involve family and friends in your wedding preparations. While the search for the perfect containers can take up many hours, it can be fun to co-opt everyone you know into keeping an eye out for vintage rose bowls or saving all their charismatic bottles, decorative tins or jars for you to use.

Have a chat with your prospective wedding florist

It’s important that you talk to any florists you’re considering: either by phone, virtual meeting, email or in person. There needs to be a bond of trust between you and you’ll probably get a gut feeling who’ll work with you best.

It’s good to ask florists also if they’ve previously flowered up weddings at your venue – if they have, they’ll be happy to share their insights into what looks great there, or into what venue features offer floral potential. If they haven’t, do they offer venue visits as part of their consultation service?

How does each florist work? Are they asking you to entrust them with your ideas and style (that’s me), or will they replicate exactly something you’ve seen (that’s not me!)? If you’re someone who needs to know exactly what their wedding flowers will look like in advance, make sure you are working with a florist who shares this approach and can give you what you need. Anyone, like me, who works with truly seasonal flowers is likely to take a more intuitive and flexible approach to weddings as we don’t know ourselves what will be looking loveliest until we come to cut the flowers! To choose a seasonal florist like me, you need to be able to ‘go with the flow’ and relish the element of surprise – and that may mean I won’t suit you if this approach would stress you out completely!

When checking out florists, think about how you both communicate: do they prefer the phone and/or answer emails or messages in a timescale you’re happy with? Are they friendly and approachable? Are they open to your ideas? Exploring these issues will help you get a feel for who you’ll get along with during the long lead in to your wedding. It’s important that you get the right person because you may be dealing with each other for up to two years or maybe even more!

Choose who you feel will suit you best.

Find out the process to secure your date and confirm your booking

Classic English spring wedding flowers for Tilly and Alex’s Warwick Court House reception. Photos: Alex Drake Photography and Tuckshop Flowers.

Ask what you need to do to confirm your booking. Some florists will only do consultations for confirmed bookings and may charge a fee for the service to cover the time involved. Others, like me, may offer complimentary consultations for bespoke orders. Deposits to reserve your wedding date will vary in size, sometimes in proportion to your overall order value.

Ask also about how payment will work for any order. Some florists ask for several instalments over a set period, others may just charge a deposit and ask for the remaining balance later. Knowing when your wedding flowers payments need to be made, along with all your other wedding costs and deadlines, will help you to plan your finances.

Find out also if there is a cut off point after which no changes are possible to your order. Ask to see copies of terms and conditions and check each florist’s cancellation policy: what happens if you have a change of heart about your florist or if you need to postpone your wedding and change the date? Are there any additional admin charges for revising your order at a later date?

For my own budget wedding packages, I take payment in full when you confirm your order. I always advise that it’s better to under order any items you’re not sure about because you can always add them later. My budget packages are designed to keep the admin processes as streamlined and simple as possible. Paying in full means you know the cost of the flowers is dealt with nice and early and it’s one less thing to worry about. As long as you cancel within the terms of my T&Cs, then full refunds are possible with sufficient notice.

For my bespoke wedding flowers service, after receiving your itemised quotation and deciding to book, I take a £250 deposit to secure your date (it covers the time spent on consultation and preparing your quotation) and your order can remain flexible, as long as it meets my minimum order value, until your second and final consultation. This will usually be 3-4 months before your wedding date. By this time your flower budget should be clear and you’ll have a better handle on the finer details involved like delivery addresses, timings etc. When, after this, your order is finalised, I take the balance of your payment and we’re good to go!

Go ahead and book. Tick it off the list!

More information

10 tips for choosing a wedding florist