How we threw a wedding for under $5,000: flowers

Flowers can be one of the biggest costs of a wedding. But if you flip that on its head, it’s one area where you can save some big money.

CoffeeCatDogKid | How we threw a wedding for under $5,000: flowers

For example, I did not find a single estimate under $100 (on the low end) for the bridal bouquet. Yet I spent less than $10 on one of my own creation.

I will warn you, though, that DIYing wedding flowers is not for the faint of heart. This task required a lot of time and a lot of patience.

First things first: I used silk flowers. These worked well not only because we could arrange them months in advance, but we could keep them for years afterward. Real flowers have an incredibly short shelf life.

Hobby Lobby, Michaels, and Jo-Ann each carry a large selection of silk flowers for low prices. You might also check online stores, but beware—you never know if you can trust the photos to reflect true appearance and quality.

The floral details from our wedding can be divided into a few different categories. Each type of arrangement required slightly different methods and materials.

Bridal bouquet

As I explained above, I spent less than $10 here. I had an idea in my head and while searching for appropriate materials at Jo-Ann I found a clearance-rack, ready-made bouquet that was almost perfect. Using floral clippers (found in the Hobby Lobby check-out line) I removed a few petals that weren’t quite the right color; then I inserted a few sprigs of berries by weaving their wire into the rest of the bouquet. Next I wrapped red twine around and around the stems until it was the desired thickness, tucking it in and gluing it in place with a clear super glue. Ta-da! Took maybe an hour of labor, probably less.


Boutonnieres and corsages

Surprise surprise, I got my inspiration from Pinterest. I guess that’s the rule more than the exception. Anyway, most of the guys and girls from our families wore identical pins.

I combined a couple sprigs of pine needles with a couple sprigs of berries, clipping each piece to be just a few inches long, but not at a uniform length. Then I repeated the twine-wrapping process from the bouquet, gluing it in place as well as a corsage pin on the back. For my mom and my MIL, I substituted a single white rose for the sprig of pine needles, kind of fanning out a couple of the green petals behind the flower and adding a spray of berries. Again, wrapped in twine and glued a pin on the back.

A Wedding With The Downs: Faux Flowers


I did not love everything about what we did with our tables—what we first envisioned turned out awfully crowded and chaotic—but the actual floral centerpieces were pretty. We borrowed the huge collection of mason jars my brother and sister-in-law used for their wedding. The jars were decorated with gold glitter and lace in varying patterns. We then filled them with white roses, berries, and pine needles, and set them out over burlap squares. (Additionally, we placed jars of candy canes beside them and scattered English Christmas candies over the table. That’s where it got crowded.)

A Wedding With The Downs: Faux Flowers


Of course, beyond everything else mentioned above, we used a lot of flowers through the rest of the decorations. On the gift table, for example, we laid out a beautiful display designed largely by Alec—a long spray of pine combined with red and white flowers, berries, and pine cones spread over a natural-looking wood plank. We also picked out mismatched pieces like jars and vases of various sizes, and flowers that fit the color/style scheme.

A Wedding With The Downs: Intro

A Wedding With The Downs: Faux Flowers


Moral of the story? If I, Kelsey Down, can DIY the flowers for my own wedding, almost anyone can. It’s cheap, easy, and still aesthetically pleasing if you do it right!

Other posts in this series:

How we threw a wedding for under $5,000

How we threw a wedding for under $5,000: catering & cake

How we threw a wedding for under $5,000: cutting costs on clothes


3 thoughts on “How we threw a wedding for under $5,000: flowers

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