Stress-Proof Your Wedding Flowers: Strategies and Expert Advice on Preparing for the Unexpected

Stress-Proof Your Wedding Flowers: Strategies and Expert Advice on Preparing for the Unexpected

Expecting the Unexpected

When it comes to planning your dream wedding, it's easy to get caught up in the romantic and joyful aspects of the process. You envision the perfect ceremony under a clear blue skied Melbourne afternoon, adorned with lush blooms, and everything running smoothly. However, as anyone who has ever planned a wedding will tell you, sometimes, the unexpected happens.

In this guide, we'll explore how to stress-proof your wedding florals, by exploring the top three unexpected challenges that couples often face in relation to wedding flowers. We'll provide valuable insights from our experience as a wedding florist in Melbourne and offer a checklist to help you prepare for any surprises along the way. After all, we want you to remain in the moment on your wedding day and remember it for the love and joy you experienced, not for any last-minute panic.

The Value of Planning with a Florist

As you set off on your wedding planning journey, one of the most significant decisions you'll make is choosing a florist. While it might seem like an easy task, your ideal florist can not only help execute and elevate your wedding vision but also be your secret weapon against unexpected situations. Of course, surprises can come in various forms, but we’ll dive into the top 3 curveballs you might encounter with your wedding flowers which include: shifting an outdoor ceremony indoors due to inclement weather, not being able to source your dream flowers if are no longer in season, and last-minute changes your order. Below, we’ve elaborated on why these situations crop up, how to pre-emptively prepare for them, and what to do when they occur on your big day.

Outdoor ceremonies, rain, hail, or shine

Mother Nature is full of surprises. Weather conditions can change in an instant. If you are a couple planning an outdoor wedding, having a backup plan is essential. This is where a florist can guide you. At Bituin, we've seen it all, from sudden rain showers to scorching heatwaves, and we know how to adapt.

During the planning stage, your florist will be key in guiding you. For instance, if you’re having your wedding on a summer’s day in Melbourne - a seasoned florist will have suggested suggest heartier, heat-resistant flower options during the planning stage as they will have accounted for typical weather during the time of your wedding.

On the day itself, your florist should also have contingency plans in case of unexpected weather for example, on an extremely windy day, we’ve had to redirect flowers that would have been used at a petal toss (that would have just flown back at guest’s faces) to other parts of the ceremony instead. The flowers didn’t go to waste as we were able to focus on making the ceremony installation fuller instead!

Dealing with Out-of-Season Flowers

While you might have your heart set on specific flowers for your wedding, not all flowers are available all year-round. Florists are well-versed in flower availability and can recommend alternatives that capture your vision. In some cases, out-of-season blooms might come at a higher cost or not be in the best condition, potentially leading to disappointment. Some out of season blooms might even be imported form overseas, increasing the carbon footprint of your wedding. As a sustainable florist, at Bituin we also focus on using seasonal blooms to support our local growers. With your florist's expertise, you can focus on the overall floral vision and colour palette and leave the specific flower types to your florist.

In situations where your chosen flowers are unavailable, an experienced florist can help you find complementary blossoms that work beautifully within your theme. For instance, if you're aiming for a romantic, vintage look, the florist might recommend garden roses instead of peonies if it's not peony season. The key to dealing with this on the day is remaining flexible and open to the possibilities of design! You’ll not only get beautiful blooms, but you will also likely get to support local farmers who grow the best and freshest flowers in season.

Last minute changes to your flower order

As your wedding date draws near, unexpected requirements can suddenly appear out of nowhere! You might find yourself in a situation where you need an extra buttonhole (or even ten), or perhaps a few guests have had to cancel, leaving you with one less table. Last-minute changes might seem like a crisis in an otherwise perfectly planned wedding. Rest assured, this happens more often than you'd think. Keep the lines of communication open with your florist, and they should be able to offer you guidance.

It's important noting that florists usually place orders for flowers a month in advance and collect your flowers during the week of the wedding for processing and designing. This can give you some context on how busy your florist is in the weeks leading up to your wedding.

In cases where you require additional items, communicate this with your florist as early as possible to check if they can accommodate the extra workload. Adding a few extra buttonholes is typically manageable, but requesting three additional bridesmaids’ bouquets a couple of days before the wedding might not be feasible. If acquiring extra flowers is necessary, be open to the possibility that your florist might need to source alternatives if the specific varieties they initially planned to use are unavailable.

Flowers being ordered a month in advance is why many florists often have policies against reducing wedding flower orders close to the wedding date – for example going from ten to nine guest tables. Instead, florists generally opt to reallocate the flowers to other aspects of your wedding. For example, with the florals that were going to be used for the tenth guest table, they might make the ceremony installation more impactful or add extra flowers to the other table centrepieces. 

A Checklist for Stress-Proofing Your Wedding Flowers

This handy checklist offers ways to prepare for the unexpected. While it may not cover every possible scenario, it guides you in considering how to addres issues before they happen. These eight action items will help you plan for unexpected situations, ensuring your floral arrangements remain stunning, no matter what surprises Melbourne's climate might have in store.

  • Action Item 1: Discuss Alternative Ceremony Locations for Bad Weather

Start by having an open conversation with your chosen venue about alternative ceremony locations. Melbourne's weather can be unpredictable, with sudden rain showers or extreme summer days. Knowing your indoor options can provide peace of mind and ensure your ceremony proceeds smoothly.

  • Action Item 2: Have Backup Flower Choices for Different Weather Scenarios

Collaborate with your florist to create a backup plan, especially for outdoor ceremonies. Consider heartier flowers that can withstand rain and heat. This contingency plan ensures your floral arrangements remain beautiful, rain or shine.

  • Action Item 3: Check Flower Availability for Your Wedding Date

Be proactive about checking or asking your florist about flower availability for your wedding date. Some flowers may not be in season, which can lead to delays, increased costs, or potential substitutions. Discuss flower availability with your florist to explore suitable alternatives.

  • Action Item 4: Consider Any Allergies

If you or your guests have allergies to flowers that cause you any concern, bring this up in advance. Your florist can suggest suitable, low-allergen flowers that align with your vision.

  • Action Item 5: Create a Timeline and Share It

Even a basic timeline can be a lifesaver and provide peace of mind about the progress of your plans. Ensure it includes buffers for travel time and unexpected delays. Share this timeline with your vendors, as it helps with planning deliveries and minimises last-minute panic.

  • Action Item 6: Maintain Open Communication with Your Florist

Maintain open communication with your florist throughout the planning process. Share your concerns about unexpected changes, weather uncertainties, and your preferences for flower adaptations. Your florist will appreciate your honesty and work to accommodate your requests.

  • Action Item 7: Ensure Your Key Vendors Are in Contact with Each Other

As your florist, we will require information about key vendors who directly impact their work. For example, the cake maker’s details if they're providing cake flowers, your venue coordinator's details for logistics, or your photographer's details for pre-wedding photos. If your florist doesn't ask for this, provide it directly to them.

  •  Action Item 8: Include Florist Contact Information in a Wedding Emergency Contact Sheet

Finally, create an emergency contact sheet with you key vendors details, including your florist. You can give this to your wedding planner, a trusted friend, or family member on the day. This way, you have the contact details of all your vendors on hand and can reach out for guidance or assistance in real-time if unexpected challenges arise.

A Resilient and Beautiful Floral Experience

In the world of wedding planning, it's essential to be prepared for the unexpected. While you can't control the weather or foresee every change, you can plan and adapt. By working closely with your trusted florist and following the checklist we've provided, you'll stress-proof your wedding flowers and give you some peace of mind, come what may.

So, as you embark on your wedding journey, keep these tips in mind, and remember that Melbourne's unpredictable climate can't steal the spotlight from your love and joy. With the right preparation, you can confidently say "I do" amidst the most unexpected surprises.

Bituin is a Melbourne wedding and event florist, focusing on creating beautiful, natural and sustainable designs. Our aim is to work with our couples collaboratively and openly to bring about a stress-free and enjoyable wedding planning experience. For more inspiration and advice on planning your wedding flowers in Melbourne, visit our wedding flowers FAQ or follow us on Instagram.

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