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Why exactly are wedding flowers so expensive?

Updated: Feb 22

When I was planning my own wedding, before I was a florist myself, I remember wondering why a bridal bouquet was going to cost me so much more than a normal gift bouquet I could buy from any high street florist. It seemed like a reasonable question to me at the time. We've all heard friends and family say things like "as soon as you mention the word wedding they double/triple/quadruple the price" in relation to venues, cakes and more. Now having worked on the other side of the wedding industry over the past year, here's an honest explanation of exactly why wedding flowers are costly and more importantly why they are worth it.

  1. Quality. This is going to vary across the industry but any decent florist providing bespoke floral design for your wedding will be using high quality flower varieties. The sort of small headed roses you can buy in the supermarket won't cut it for a luxury bridal bouquet. If I look at one of my suppliers right now, to order Quicksand (a popular, premium wedding rose) is £2.01 + VAT for each single stem. Some varieties go up to over £4 + VAT per stem. If you want orchids, which are super popular with brides at the moment, these cost the florist at least £8 + VAT per single stem.

  2. Structure. A bridal bouquet is not the same as a normal gift bouquet. A gift bouquet can be created by a florist quite quickly and ultimately it'll be untied and put into a vase at home. A bridal bouquet however takes much longer to create as your florist needs to ensure the structure will stand up to the demands of your day. It needs to look good from all angles for your photos and it needs to be solid to ensure it stays in one piece for as long as possible. Bridal bouquets will get carried around, put down and picked up again for hours so the quality of construction is really important.

  3. Back up! I love working with fresh flowers and I would never work with artificial blooms. I love the ephemeral nature of fresh flowers - they force us to appreciate them in the moment because they do have a short lifecycle. However that does also mean they can be tricky to work with so it's important to order a slight surplus for a wedding. I always order approximately 10% on top of my required stem count to account for any breakages or quality issues so I can be confident the couple are going to get what they ordered.

  4. Labour. It's not just the cost price of flowers that needs to be accounted for when quoting. The amount of labour that goes into creating for a wedding might surprise you. From start to finish, designing and creating for a wedding can take several days work. Labour hours need to factor in time spent quoting and corresponding with the couple, design and mood board, any venue research required, ordering in from the wholesaler, conditioning flowers on delivery, creating the actual designs, delivery on the day, installation and deinstallation. For larger scale weddings there will likely also need to be additional labour costs for freelance support.

  5. Materials. The flowers are the main event but there are so many other sundry materials required for floral design. The sort of things I need to keep in stock all the time for weddings and events include ribbons and wires, vases, cellophane, paper, bouquet bags, chicken wire, tapes and quality floral scissors. Luxury items like silk ribbon (which I always like to use for a luxe finish on a bridal bouquet) can be particularly costly.

  6. Expertise. Floristry is a skill that the majority of floral designers have invested time and money into. You're not just paying for the flowers, you're paying for the ability, knowledge and prowess that your florist has acquired to create and execute quality floral designs for your wedding. I spent many months, and honestly a lot of money, investing in the best training I could find to teach me the necessary skills in both floristry and business.

  7. Creativity. For me, floristry is an art form and I aim to provide all clients with unique, luxurious and original floral design. You are paying for your florist's ideas, imagination and ability to execute these ideas into reality. I spend a lot of time researching and exploring new ideas for design, taking inspiration from fashion, music, film, art and more.

  8. Care. Being trusted to create something for a couple's wedding day is always an honour and I take it seriously. I know how important it is that everything goes to plan and I want you to be in love with your flowers. That's why I spend so much time on all the fine details; checking and rechecking your arrangements before they're delivered; carefully transporting them; and ensuring I have time to explain on your wedding morning everything from drying off the stems at the right time to protect your dress, to how to carry your bouquet.

I hope the above has helped to illustrate the true cost of wedding flowers, although you could apply those reasons to most creative suppliers in the wedding/events industry. You certainly get what you pay for, and if you want bespoke, luxury and unique floral design for your wedding be prepared to pay for the work and expertise behind it. In the end for my own wedding, I invested heavily into the flowers (my bouquet cost more than my wedding dress!) and it was so worth it. The flowers were such a beautiful statement, they grabbed everyone's attention and I will always remember how special it felt to carry them on the day. That's exactly how I want couples who choose Flossea to feel and why I pour passion, energy & care into every wedding I create for.


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