Engagement party flowers and arrangements can be beautiful and stylish on any budget—it’s all about keeping an open mind and having a plan, according to one of our favorite experts who works for a top floral designer in Los Angeles.
Here is what he had to say when we asked him about flowers and arrangements for engagement parties and/or weddings.
Top 5 Considerations for Party Flowers
The most important things to remember and consider when deciding on engagement party flowers, or any party flowers
Cost is the number one factor in creating a floral plan. If you’re working with a florist, they have a markup, so if you have a flair for flower arranging, you can do it yourself. Just don’t over-commit yourself and leave it for the last minute!
If you think you can manage the flowers and want to do it yourself, then we have a great resource for wholesale flowers. Simply order online and they’ll be delivered fresh when you need them, and at a great price!
Next is availability… Even in this day of overnight flowers from Holland, South America & Hawaii, every flower isn’t available at all times and even if the flower you want is available, it may cost much more at certain times of year.
So make sure when thinking of what you want, that your desires are realistic.
For table-top flower arrangements make sure your arrangements aren’t too tall for your guests to see each other across the table—roses are nice to look at, but are lousy conversationalists. A tall, thin vase with flowers high above everyone’s faces are fine though, even dramatic!
Flower Photo Appeal:
Whether you’re choosing flowers for a big family dinner, an engagement party or a wedding, keep in mind that there will be lots of pictures. Pick flower colors that show off your table, your home or venue, and your guests!
While the happy couple may be the center of attention, the center of the table is important too. There’s a lot to consider when planning an engagement party.
The 411 on Party Flowers
For a centerpiece, the arrangement must be low enough for people to see over, so they can talk. Think of the color of the walls, the table linens, the dishes and the candles when considering your centerpieces.
For an elegant dinner at an engagement party, flowers can really add an extra special touch. Use thin, tall vases that don’t block the guests view of each other, and on the top of the vase place an elegant mound of ruby red roses or any other flower within your budget. This type of set-up has a stunning effect when standing because the flowers are at eye level. It also doesn’t interfere with the view of other guests while sitting.
If your event is around a holiday, like Christmas, July 4th, or Valentines Day, try your best to resist the temptation to go for the obvious and decorate with that theme.
Shake it up. Imagine how refreshing it will be for your engagement party guests to come to your dinner on December 18th and not see Poinsettias or Holly, but instead vases filed with bright green Bells of Ireland and Calla Lilies.
The easiest and best way to achieve visual impact with all party flowers and arrangements is to go with one type of flower in one color.
It’s a common trend in upscale floral design and has so many benefits. It’s more economical because you’re buying the same flower in bulk quantities.
And, by having the same flower and color everywhere (as opposed to multiple colors) it creates a strong color scheme and makes any container look great. Look at the mason jars with daffodils in the example above.
Engagement Party Flowers: Get Inspired!
Read magazines, actually, just look at the pictures—for once it’s the right thing to do!
Go online, there are literally millions of arrangements out there which would be easy to mimic.
Check out the floral arrangements in the lobbies of the best hotels in your town or on their websites. When watching a movie or television, pay attention to the centerpiece on the table. Both hotels and Hollywood use some of the world’s top florists. Get the idea? Inspiration is everywhere…
Look at the window displays of the most expensive or creative florists in your town, you don’t have to buy from them but I’m sure some of their ideas will inspire you.
We love this Woman’s Day magazine with a pink and lime green floral arrangement on the cover. The first time we saw it, we thought it was an awesome idea to mix fruit into an arrangement.
When we asked our resident floral expert what he thought, he loved the idea and told us he did it often. He gave us an extra tip if the arrangements will be lit by candle light. He said to coat the fruit in corn syrup and roll it in sugar crystals, it’ll give them an extra sparkle at night time events.
Recently a friend on a tight budget was getting married in Vermont and knew her flowers at the wedding were going to be peonies. They actually set the date based on when the Peonies from their mother’s garden would be in full bloom.
We showed them the Woman’s day cover and they ended up doing the limes and peonies at the wedding and used the same concept for their engagement party, but used lemons and daisies instead. Brilliant!
The point is that ideas can come from anywhere so don’t limit yourself to bridal magazines and focus only on wedding or engagement party flowers—look everywhere for inspiration.
Engagement Party Flowers & The Venue
Once the venue is determined, pick a color palette and decide what’s needed for the engagement party. Flowers should be spread throughout the event. Besides the dining table (or tables), is there a buffet? You have to decorate that, too.
What about the entry way? Make sure your guests are greeted by an arrangement that is complimentary not only to the room, but also compliments your other flowers. This is especially important for at-home parties.
If you are having anything served on platters or passed on trays, you’ll need a few extra blooms to add to these.
Tip: If you’re having the party in a private home, don’t forget the powder room, it’s a nice touch to put a small arrangement in there along with a candle.
If you are doing the flowers yourself, or a friend has offered to help, this can be a great chance to show off your style. Just make sure you have enough time with all of your other hosting duties—your food should be fabulous and so should your flowers.
There’s no point in having flowers if they look like an afterthought—just bunches of flowers picked up at the supermarket and jammed in containers. Reverse this disaster: When planned and thought about just a little, supermarket flowers carefully placed in metal florist buckets can be quite chic.
Engagement Party Flowers: Stylish On Any Budget
Cost: The ugly yet necessary aspect of the beauty of flowers. If you have a small budget simply use less expensive flowers. Get even more creative and go for impact.
On a clean, white tablecloth, simple bunches of daisies in mason jars are not only cute, but elegant and very inexpensive. Keep in mind for things to look right, you need to match the flower to the arrangement.
In other words, daisies are a simple flower so the arrangement should also be kept simple.
With a little creative thinking and imagination you can do it on a dime as stylishly as a dollar. In the end you’ll accomplish a great look and stay in budget.
Greenery Works Too!
Another simple, stylish, budget-conscious idea: Wheatgrass grows quickly, and can be placed in a variety of containers, from low terra cotta trays, to small galvanized metal buckets—it’s clean, eco-friendly and impactful.
Use them on their own, add some daisies or colorful accents, and your guests will marvel at your cleverness. (OK, chic and simple and cheap!)
It can be tricky sometimes. You should have flowers that reflect your taste and personality, but you also might need to step outside of your comfort zone. Maybe, even pick something you wouldn’t normally choose—and hopefully, ultimately surprise yourself as well as your guests.
Florists & Engagement Party Flowers
Before you commit to a florist, make sure you’ve seen pictures of their work for similar types of events. You have to feel comfortable with the floral designer,these flowers are going to be remembered and photographed.
Once you’ve chosen your florist, they’re responsible for making your dream come true. But, you still have to be aware of every aspect—don’t let them use more expensive flowers than you can afford (you don’t want to cut into your champagne budget do you?).
Finally make sure to give the florist all your deadlines, and confirm the delivery time and address.
Engagement Party Flowers: Time To Say Cheese!
Photo appeal is important. Everyone has a camera and wants to capture memories. Avoid dark leaves against dark tablecloths—you need contrast.
If you’re hiring a florist, make sure they know the colors in the room. Go with simple arrangements. One or two types of flowers with very little greenery—these will have great photo appeal.
If glass containers are visible, line them with light green leaves, or fill them with lemons or other citrus to add another organic touch to the table and create even more impact.
Finally the most important tip for us in regard to engagement party flowers and floral arrangements for any party is to have fun BUT remember your budget. You can do great things at any budget, you just need to think outside the (flower) box!