How to Take the Best Care of Your Wedding Flowers

Once in a while, I’ll read complaints on a Facebook group or something of the like of wedding flowers not lasting throughout a wedding day. So, here are some tips on how to take the BEST care of your wedding flowers!

Before I get too far into this, it really comes down to using common sense: remember that flowers are live things, and treat them as such. If you throw your bouquet around, the delicate petals will be damaged. If you leave it out of water on a hot day, it will wilt. If you leave it in an unheated car when it’s below zero, it will freeze. Think of flowers like skin, except those petals are even more delicate and they don’t have the ability to regenerate themselves!

How to Take Care of your Wedding Flowers - Wedding Florists in Winnipeg

Keep The Flowers Hydrated

After delivery or pick up of flowers, it is the client’s responsibility to keep flowers hydrated throughout the day to maintain freshness. Place bouquets into their water sources throughout the day to allow for hydration (I always deliver my bouquets in vases to give them the best chance). In hot weather, flowers should be kept out of direct sunlight as much as possible, which will cause them to wilt. Some flower varieties are more prone to wilting than others, and if you’re getting married in the heat of summer, there’s just honestly very little that we can do to protect those fragile blooms. Generally, keeping them in water and out of heat will be your best bet!

Think About The Temperature

In cold temperatures, flowers should not be exposed to air below or around freezing. Flowers will be delivered with a plastic covering; keep this closed over the flowers any time they are outside. Do not leave flowers in an unheated vehicle. Flowers will freeze and brown when exposed to freezing air - and note that this includes air conditioners! Last year I had a photographer friend text me a photo of a bouquet (not one of mine) to ask what happened to it, so she could try to help the bride. The white flowers had completely browned and gone mushy. I asked where it was placed - the photographer told me that the couple had picked up the flowers from their florist the night previous to the wedding, and they had left them right in front of the air conditioner. As much as we do want to keep the flowers cool, the air coming out of an air conditioner is often too cold when it’s directly on the flowers, and that poor bouquet froze. Once a flower is frozen, there is no going back!

One bummer about temperature is that we can rarely control it. This includes your venue! The first week that the heat goes on in the fall often ends up with the venue being SUPER hot. I hate to say it, but there’s just nothing I can do to combat the inevitable wilt of some of your flowers under that blowing heat. A few years ago, I had a winter wedding where the ballroom must have been at least 26 degrees Celcius - in other words, it was smoking hot. I think their plan was to warm up the room quickly so that they could turn down the heat once guests arrived, but of course that plays a major impact on the flowers. I was running around the room making sure that every stem was in water and replacing some stems that had already started wilting, but there was nothing beyond that that I could do. Tent weddings often have a similar situation - I would recommend that if you’re having a tent wedding, ask your venue coordinator or wedding coordinator to open up the side panels to allow for as much air flow as possible. There’s nothing like a dank heat settling in a tent to create that oppressive greenhouse effect that cut flowers do not often thrive in.

Gorgeous Outdoor Wedding Flowers at Fort Gibraltar, Winnipeg - Stone House Creative

Travel Safely

One of the weirdest wedding mornings I’ve ever had was when the bride’s father came to pick up her bridal party flowers…with a full car. And it wasn’t just that there were dress bags or something in the backseat - it was full of PEOPLE. Like, there was literally no room in the car for the flowers. I asked him what his plan was, and he promptly popped the trunk. PEOPLE. Trunks are not air-conditioned, nor are they safe for something fragile to be bouncing around in. Please, please, please do not put your flowers in your trunk if you care about them at all! I told him there was no way he could do this and I suggested the people in the backseat hold the flowers on their laps (luckily, it was a very small order of just bridal party bouquets).

Now I know that on a wedding day, you’re rarely staying in one place all day long. You’re probably hopping into a limo to go off-site for photos at some point, and that’s perfectly fine! I deliver my bouquets in long cardboard boxes that are quite sturdy, and then packed really well with tons of paper in between the vases. The easiest thing you can do it just pop the bouquets back into their vases, have one person pick up each end of the box, and slide it into the vehicle. No trunks :) Do not leave flowers in a closed, un-air-conditioned vehicle.

Minimize The Flower Timeline

That’s a weird way of wording it, but if you’re facing a really hot day or you’re just worried about the longevity of the flowers, don’t have me deliver your bouquets at 8 am. If all of your pictures are taking place between the ceremony and reception, I can deliver your bouquets to you shortly before you leave for the ceremony location, which means that they’ll be able to stay in my cooler for longer! Most photographers don’t care to have the flowers in every photo, anyways, so you won’t need them all day long.

Similarly, opt to have the flowers picked up or delivered on the day of the wedding as much as possible, and not the day before. Rarely does this happen in my business, and usually only when the wedding is out of town so I understand that sometimes we need to make an exception and have the flowers picked up the day before. But generally, I do my very best to avoid this! Again, the longer they can stay in my cooler, the better for the flowers.

Organic Style Cascading Bouquet - Tips to Take Care of your Wedding Flowers

Keep Flowers Out Of Harm’s Way

What is in “harm’s way,” you might ask? Pets, curious little kids, overbearing mothers or wedding coordinators... Some pets will have a tendency to sniff a little too closely or even try to take a bite out of a bouquet. Little kids might tear through the getting ready space and knock a bouquet down, or get their hands right into the flowers and rip apart those fragile petals (though I will say, the ring bearer at one of my weddings this year tried to eat a flower out of his mom’s bouquet while she carried him down the aisle, and it was adorable). The occasional mom or wedding coordinator will think they know best and attempt to “perfect” the piece that’s already been perfected by your designer. At the shop I used to work at, we once had a wedding coordinator (truth be told, she was NOT a professional wedding coordinator, but someone the family knew who was a little overly bossy and wanted to be involved) who called us to re-make a bouquet 3 times on the morning of the wedding. Why? Because she thought that the petals weren’t perfect enough, and picked off all of the “damaged” petals - aka she made the bouquet bald, twice, before learning her lesson. Luckily, a retail shop often has enough leftovers to re-make a bouquet and we made it work for that bride but we had to tell the coordinator HANDS OFF!

The most important thing to me is that your flowers look beautiful on the day of the wedding. My job is to make sure each bloom is at it’s very peak on the day of, and in most flower varieties, they look their absolute best shortly before they die. Of course I would LOVE for your flowers to last a week after your wedding, and very often they do - but the after isn’t what matters the most.


Looking for a Wedding Floral and Event Designer in Winnipeg?

My 2020 waitlist has already been started, and couples interested in full event and floral design will be contacted first about their dates. I offer a limited number of dates for event design each year, in order to allow me to work closely with each couple. Combining event and floral design is the perfect option for couples who live out of town, or couples who feel they need a little extra help in creating the visual plan for their wedding day. Click this link to learn more!

All photos in this post by Charmaine Mallari Photography.

Muted Cotton Candy Pastel Wedding at Pineridge Hollow

My favourite thing about Janelle and Kenny’s summer wedding at Pineridge Hollow was hands-down the colour palette: we chose a watery, muted oyster palette with dusty pinks, light blues, and lavenders. When I picked up my flower order and saw how the flowers were starting to come together, I got REALLY excited. Like, really excited. It was like a cotton candy dream come true! And just look at how beautiful the colours with the bridesmaids’ dresses were!

Sugar & Soul Photography ~ Pineridge Hollow

Cotton Candy Pastel Wedding Flowers - Wedding florists in Winnipeg
Wedding Photos at Birdshill Park - Pineridge Hollow Weddings
Modern Cascading Bouquet - Romantic Wedding Flowers Winnipeg
Garden Inspired Cascade Bridal Bouquet - STone House Creative

I think it’s pretty obvious why I loved these flowers :) It was such a lovely combination! Janelle wanted her bouquet to be a pretty good size but not too huge, and designed in a modern cascading style. The bridesmaids carried simpler handtied bouquets, all to coordinate with Janelle’s - isn’t that cotton candy pastel palette to die for?

Bridal Bouquet ingredients: several varieties of roses, dahlias, locally grown lisianthus and zinnias, delphinium, blue bells, and globe thistle with this gorgeous trailing jasmine and nagi foliages to help create that cascading shape. It’s pretty hard to choose a favourite ingredient in these bouquets, but I think it’s a tie between the “zinderella” zinnias and the globe thistle for me!

Oyster Palette Bridesmaid Dresses - Weddings in Winnipeg
Birds Hill Park Wedding Photos- Weddings at Pineridge Hollow
Pineridge Hollow Wedding Ceremony - Stone House Creative

The wedding ceremony took place in front of the gardens at Pineridge Hollow, which were beautifully in bloom! I really went for it with this large, asymmetrical floral piece added to the arch. I loved adding in the very long, full branches of white poplar - they add a ton of texture thanks to the leaf’s shape and colour variegation, and of course, the shape that the full, arching stems creates can’t be beat. Mauve roses and pink lisianthus filled out the florals! We also added simple greenery bouquets down the aisle. I don’t normally recommend doing too much down the aisle as I personally prefer to keep the focus at the front, but these guys were super cute and definitely added to the woodsy feel.

Mauve and Pink Wedding Ceremony Flowers - Wedding Florists in Winnipeg
Weddings at Pineridge Hollow - Wedding Florist in Winnipeg
Floral TAble Garlands Centrepieces - Wedding Flowers in Winnipeg

Inside the tent, Janelle created a really great floor plan with a mix of both rectangular and round tables. White linens, mahogany chivari chairs and gold accents set the perfect neutral backdrop. The round tables had a low floral arrangement, with a touch more vibrancy than the bouquets but overall a very similar palette, and the rectangular tables featured loose greenery tucked along the length of the table (PSA the tables at Pineridge Hollow are quite narrow, so just keep that in mind if you’re planning a wedding there!) with individual roses in blush and mauve and gold candleholders added in. It was a very full table, but looked beautiful!

Pastel Wedding Flower Centrepieces - Pineridge Hollow Wedding by Stone House Creative
Wedding Photos at Birds Hill Park -Winnipeg Wedding Photographer
Pineridge Hollow Wedding - Wedding Florist in Winnipeg

Looking for a Wedding Floral and Event Designer in Winnipeg?

My 2020 waitlist has already been started, and couples interested in full event and floral design will be contacted first about their dates. I offer a limited number of dates for event design each year, in order to allow me to work closely with each couple. Combining event and floral design is the perfect option for couples who live out of town, or couples who feel they need a little extra help in creating the visual plan for their wedding day. Click this link to learn more!

How to Make Your Head Table A Design Focal Point

Whatever your flower and decor budget is, I think one of the best uses of that money is through incorporating major focal points throughout your event design - and an easy one is your head table! Since everyone’s eyes will naturally flick to your head table or sweetheart table throughout the evening anyways, you might as well make it the centrepiece of the entire reception.

An added benefit of creating a design focal point is that when one area stands out, you can scale back in other areas. So, if you’re working with a limited budget, adding more drama to your head table may allow you to cut back on the centrepieces.

I’ve got some real cool head table designs in the works for 2019 weddings - can’t wait to show them off! Dream catchers, neon flowers, greenery accents…all sorts of great stuff.

Here are a few ideas!

Hanging Floral Installations

You know I love a hanging floral installation, though of course whether or not you can incorporate this design style depends completely on your venue. Most venues in Winnipeg don’t actually have a way for us to hang anything behind the head table BUT there are a few that do have this capacity, and I love to do it up! I particularly love this style because I think it looks amazing in photos - I love seeing those shots of the couples kissing underneath it :)

Low Floral Arrangements

It’s never a bad idea to keep the design low to the table, as long as there is enough texture and movement throughout the entire piece. Whether it’s one centralized arrangement or several low but full floral arrangements spaced along the table, you make a major statement. I personally prefer more floral-heavy designs (obviously) but a greenery garland is a great way to go, too!

Floral Backdrop

There are multiple ways you could go about a floral backdrop - tall pieces behind you, individual hanging pieces or strands of flowers, or a full-on floral wall.

Hanging Flower Strands - Winnipeg Wedding Florists

Looking for a Wedding Floral and Event Designer in Winnipeg?

My 2020 waitlist has already been started, and couples interested in full event and floral design will be contacted first about their dates. I offer a limited number of dates for event design each year, in order to allow me to work closely with each couple. Combining event and floral design is the perfect option for couples who live out of town, or couples who feel they need a little extra help in creating the visual plan for their wedding day. Click this link to learn more!

Feminine Garden-Inspired Wedding at Pineridge Hollow

Meredith and Dylan’s wedding at Pineridge Hollow was such a sweet, feminine day with a garden-inspired style. What I remember from when I sat down with her was that she really wanted the flowers to soften the inside of the tent, and make it feel like an outdoor garden party. We planned a few different ways to bring the outdoors in and kept everything really soft, pretty and girly!

Camryn Elizabeth Weddings ~ Pineridge Hollow ~ Buttercream by Alareen

Garden Inspired Wedding at Pineridge Hollow - Stone House Creative
Blush and Cream Bridal Bouquet - Wedding Florist in Winnipeg
Pastel Pink and Lavender Wedding Flowers - Winnipeg Wedding Florists

Meredith’s bouquet was feminine, fragrant, and ruffled with a bit of a whimsy. I loved the pastel lavender accents mixed in with the soft pink and cream palette.

Bridal Bouquet Ingredients: White o’hara garden roses, lisianthus, larkspur, stock, yarrow, scabiosa, veronica, and nagi foliage.

We also did a hair piece for each of the women - I decided to do them all on combs so that however each of the girls chose to wear their hair, the floral could be easily tucked in. Aren’t they so cute?

Floral Hair Pieces for Bridesmaids - Winnipeg Wedding Flowers
Feminine Blush and Cream Wedding Flowers - Weddings at Pineridge Hollow
Outdoor Weddings at Pineridge Hollow - Stone House Creative
Wedding Arch with Blush and Lavender Flowers - Winnipeg's Top Wedding Florist

I love this outdoor space at Pineridge Hollow! I think they call it their woodland area, and it’s such a lovely ceremony spot (though it’s always been SUPER HOT every time I’ve been there…just a head’s up - I think this spot gets a lot of sun!). The couple provided the arch and the drapery, and we designed the airy and light floral piece on-site (it’s always a treat to be able to do this!) and added the greenery bouquets to the aisle.

Weddings at Pineridge Hollow - Winnipeg Wedding Photographers
Pineridge Hollow Weddings - Stone House Creative

One of the statements we wanted to make at the reception was at the head table. I love creating hanging installations and I think there’s no better way to bring the outdoors in. This piece was whimsical, airy, and really natural. It was built on a branch that I scoured all spring for (I have a bit of a branch hoarding tendency), using moss, airy plumosa fern, and larkspur - all chosen for their lightness!

Hanging Floral Installation over Head Table - Wedding Flowers winnipeg

I also built a greenery installation at the tent opening so that when guests walked in, they were greeted with a feeling of the outdoors. You can sort of see it in the picture below :) We did a few different centrepiece styles, all with candles added, and I also added fresh flowers to their cute little cutting cake.

Natural Style Tent Wedding - Pineridge Hollow Wedding by Stone House Creative
Tent Wedding Decor Ideas - Gorgeous PIneridge Hollow WEdding
Weddings at Pineridge Hollow - Stone House Creative

Looking for a Wedding Floral and Event Designer in Winnipeg?

My 2020 waitlist has already been started, and couples interested in full event and floral design will be contacted first about their dates. I offer a limited number of dates for event design each year, in order to allow me to work closely with each couple. Combining event and floral design is the perfect option for couples who live out of town, or couples who feel they need a little extra help in creating the visual plan for their wedding day. Click this link to learn more!

Jenn and Bill's Garden-Inspired Wedding at Cielo's Garden

Ah, Jenn and Bill’s wedding day. It was SUCH a good day. Late August (the day before my birthday, in fact!) is a gooood time for a wedding because it’s not QUITE as hot as the rest of summer and the weather is basically always perfect. Except that it actually rained throughout the evening of their wedding - which I’m telling you, has NEVER HAPPENED ON MY BIRTHDAY BEFORE. So I may or may not have told them that they’d have perfect weather and I may or may not have come out looking like a liar.

BUT, this garden-inspired wedding at Cielo’s Garden was one of my favourites of the year. A unique take on a purple palette with some of the most subtle combinations (you’ve heard me say before that I think ultra-violet is one of the most offensive colours of all time but this? This take on purple was gooooood), flowers literally everywhere, and a light and airy feel that just made this wedding feel special. I would happily re-live this day over and over again!

Moore Photography (plus some of my iphone photos)~ Amanda Douglas Events ~ Cielo’s Garden ~ Cocoa Beans Bakeshop ~ C&T Rentals

Garden-Inspired Wedding at Cielo's Garden - Stone House Creative
Mauve and Lavender Bridal Bouquet - Wedding Florists in Winnipeg

This bridal bouquet was one of my favourites! I felt like it was such a unique take on the colour palette and I really, really loved the combination that I got to use. The colour and texture depths were really lovely.

Bridal Bouquet Ingredients: early grey roses, menta roses, amnesia roses, pink stock, white larkspur, locally grown white sweet pea, black pearl lisianthus (drool!) and scabiosa, with mixed eucalyptus and foaged foliages. I finished it with this gorgeous mauve Stella Wolfe ribbon that I’d been hoarding all year.

Mauve Wedding Flower Ideas - Cielo's Garden Weddings

Working with Jenn was one of the best experiences I’ve had as a wedding floral designer. Why? Because she trusted me SO much. She loved my style, and she knew that with her busy life AND the fact that she doesn’t live in Winnipeg anymore, she decided to just hand over the reigns and chose not to worry about anything. That made this wedding a dream for both her and me! Outside of just flowers, she asked me for vendor recommendations (helllloooooo gluten free desserts!!) and when I suggested that she consider hiring a month-of wedding coordinator, she trusted me on that, too. I actually always recommend that couples getting married at a venue like Cielo’s Garden, where there isn’t a banquet coordinator on-site (like you’d find at a hotel or a golf course), always hire at least a month-of coordinator. There’s no need for you to have to run your entire reception when you could be enjoying it!

Is there such a thing as TOO much trust? Ha! Jenn trusted me so much that she actually didn’t bother to review her flower order because she knew that I had it all under control…except she forgot that she had added a bridesmaid since the last time we talked! 😂There were a few stressful moments when that was figured out - I was working on the ceremony instal in the chapel and the wedding coordinator asked where the 5th bridesmaid bouquet was. “What 5th bridesmaid?” was my response. It actually worked out really well - I stopped working on the chapel instal, the couple did their first look photos in the chapel, and I took flowers out of the buckets that were ear-marked for the ceremony arch and sat on the ground outside and whipped together another bouquet! Ironically, that was the one day I chose to take extra ribbon OUT of my tool bag since I wouldn’t need it, but the wedding coordinator had some bits and pieces that I could use. By the time the first look photos were finished, so was that bouquet! I was also very sweaty - ha!

Lavender and Blush Wedding Flowers - Winnipeg Wedding Flowers
Deconstructed Wedding Ceremony Arch - Garden Inspired Wedding at Cielo's Garden

I’m sure you could guess without too much effort why this ceremony design was one of my favourites of the entire year! I always love coming up with different ideas to implement for ceremony spaces, and especially when it’s such a beautifully blank canvas as Cielo’s Garden is. Creating a freestanding, deconstructed arch had been on my design wishlist for a while after seeing some similar styles on Instagram, so when I suggested it to Jenn, I was pretty pumped that she loved the idea. She really let me just do whatever I wanted! I decided to use the same ingredients as the bouquets (which was very lucky when I had to create that extra bridesmaid bouquet!).

Romantic Weddings at Cielo's Garden - Wedding Flowers Winnipeg
Copper and Rose Gold Wedding Decor - Wedding Florists in Winnipeg

The reception was also full of beautiful things! Literally flowers everywhere! I was so impressed with the level of detail that Jenn brought considering that she lived out of town throughout the entire planning. The gorgeous rose gold and copper place setting details were from C&T Rentals and though you can’t see it too well, the vases that the centrepieces were in are also copper, which I felt really complemented the floral palette nicely! We also tucked in flowers throughout the guest book table are, the bar, and of course, on the cake. I am a bit of a fan of flowers, flowers, everywhere :) And then they also brought the ceremony arrangements and placed them behind the head table, which looked so pretty!

Garden-Inspired Wedding Centrepieces - Stone House Creative
Cielo's Garden Weddings - Stone House Creative

Looking for a Wedding Floral and Event Designer in Winnipeg?

My 2020 waitlist has already been started, and couples interested in full event and floral design will be contacted first about their dates. I offer a limited number of dates for event design each year, in order to allow me to work closely with each couple. Combining event and floral design is the perfect option for couples who live out of town, or couples who feel they need a little extra help in creating the visual plan for their wedding day. Click this link to learn more!