If you’re the type of bride or groom who needs to see all of the wedding-related details in person before being able to commit to a decision, asking your florist about mock-up centerpieces and bouquets might seem like a good idea. After all, flowers are expensive, and the arrangements you choose will impact the entire look and feel of the day. But is it really necessary to see them in person? And will your florist be willing to create these arrangements for you ahead of the wedding? We chatted with Sarah Johns of Something Styled Floral and Events to ask her opinion on floral mock-ups ahead of the wedding.
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Ask about them during an initial meeting.
If you know you’re going to want to see floral mock-ups ahead of the wedding, be sure to ask any prospective florists if this is something they’re willing to do, Johns says. Depending on the pro, this is an easy yes, and it’s a detail that you can have worked into your contract. Others may feel this is unnecessary, especially because flowers are typically ordered in larger quantities, and if you’re getting married in the spring but have booked your florist in the fall, you may not be able to realistically see the blooms they’ll use for your wedding until closer to the big day.
It’s also important to remember that the cost of floral mock-ups will almost always fall to the bride and groom. Make sure you’re comfortable paying the contracted price for an additional bouquet and centerpiece, Johns says, as well as your florist’s labor. “As floral designers, we love to create bouquet and centerpiece mock-ups, but it is an additional cost. This is because we order and design exclusively for you. We want to use the exact floral recipe that you have envisioned,” she adds.
Time the meeting for reviewing mock-ups just right.
Ultimately, you’ll want to see mock-ups during the same season as your wedding, so if you’re having a summer wedding, it’s not advisable to try to see arrangements in the winter unless you’re willing to pay more for out-of-season blooms. “We recommend doing this within 30 to 60 days of your event so we can ensure that your flowers are in season,” Johns says of her process. If you booked early, try to see mock-ups the year before. Just remember that what you see is indicative of the overall style and color you should expect to see on the wedding day, but that the arrangement may vary slightly based on the designer and the availability of specific flowers.
Take the arrangement home and look at it throughout the day.
If you can, take the flowers home at the end of the meeting. Since most arrangements are put together a few hours ahead of the wedding, it’s nice to see how they look over the course of the day. Just make sure this is in your contract, too. “In some cases, brides are able to take the florals from a mock-up home, but if the design is in a rental vase additional fees may apply,” Johns explains.