Wedding Flowers: 7 Tips from Top NYC Florists

Pink, red, and orange wedding flowers arranged in a center piece.
Bloom Bar NYC
Bright and exciting wedding flowers by Bloom Bar NYC.
Bloom Bar NYC

As a wedding photographer, I’ve gained a ton of wedding knowledge over the years. Not only do I get to experience all aspects of the wedding day, but I also get to meet amazing vendors and work with them time and time again. This gives me a vast base of experts to reach out to when I have questions regarding weddings! 

This week, I’ve rounded up some of my absolute favorite New York City florists to talk wedding flowers. We dig into the most popular flowers on the market, what kind of blooms are best for longevity, and so much more.

Light pink wedding flowers, held by a beautiful bride
Designs by Ahn

IN YOUR OPINION, WHAT ARE THE MOST POPULAR WEDDING FLOWERS?

All of the fantastic florists agreed, peonies are the most popular wedding flower. A close second was garden roses, followed closely by ranunculus and dahlias!

“I think the most exciting wedding flowers are almost always unique and a little different. My eye is naturally drawn to anything that is interesting, which can often mean using unusual flowers. Popular flowers are fun but everything can start to look the same if you’re not being intentional. I try to help my clients think outside the box. Some extremely popular flowers, like peonies, can be used in really beautiful and innovative ways.

My recommendation is to go with what you’re attracted to. That being said, also be open to unique flowers that can be a compliment to tradition or what is currently popular. Having peonies and cascading orchids sounds like a dream bridal bouquet to me!”

Molly of Flowers by Ford
Pampas grass with roses and orchids.
Flowers by Ford
Intricate wedding flowers on a rooftop patio.
Flowers by Ford

WHAT WEDDING FLOWERS ARE RECOMMENDED FOR LONGEVITY & HEARTINESS?

Rosehip Social suggests that the longest-lasting are flowers that dry best, including wildflowers, statice, grasses, and even tropical palms. Tropicals include everything from foliage like monstera and palm to anthuriums. Orchids, Protea, Ginger, and Anthurium blooms are also excellent choices because of their sturdy stems.

If you’re not interested in a tropical look, go for roses! Most varieties such as garden, spray, and even standard are quite hardy. Carnations have also made a massive comeback with a new range of smart colors.

“Roses are extremely underrated but used very often because of their petal count and overall heartiness; this makes them an excellent candidate to withstand the duration of an event in most temperate climates.”

Dear Bayard
Ivy covered patio with a long dining table set with blush roses.
Rosehip Social
Roses and greenery as a wedding center piece
Rosehip Social

WHAT KIND OF WEDDING FLOWERS OR FOLIAGE SHOULD BE ADDED LAST MINUTE VS. THE DAY BEFORE?

“In regards to ‘the final touch,’ whether it’s florals or foliage, it’s essential to add in anything textured or accents of color last,” says Designs by Ahn. Delicate elements with either fragile petals or thinner stems should be added on the day of the wedding. Blooms such as sweet peas, dahlias, anemones, and sometimes ranunculus are best to be all added onsite.

“The most delicate and fast openers. We add last cherry blossoms, anemones, ranunculus, clematis, phalaenopsis orchids, and peonies. For foliage and accents, we’re extra mindful of delicate accent greens like jasmine vine or maidenhair fern,” Rosehip Social recommends. 

WHAT FLOWERS ARE GOING TO BE BEST FOR MY TIME OF WEDDING AND PRICE POINT?

The number one concern is always in which season you’re getting married. It’s essential to look into what flowers will be available to you before having a style in mind—talking with a floral designer whose work you like will allow them to advise you on the best choices for seasonal and pricing considerations.

Designs by Ahn highly suggest blooming branches for a wedding in the spring and varieties of foliage/seasonal branches for autumn weddings, while Bloom Bar says, “Sometimes all you need is a hint of peony to hit the mark!”

Large and tall rose center piece of wedding flowers
Designs by Ahn

WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO DRY/PRESERVE YOUR WEDDING BOUQUET?

There are many options for preserving your wedding bouquet. While many professionals now offer services to freeze-dry your bouquet, you can always opt for air-drying your bouquet yourself or pressing the blooms for preservation.

Both Bloom Bar and Rosehip Social recommended working with Lacie at Framed Florals for the most beautiful and creative floral preservation options!

WHAT DO YOU WISH ALL OF YOUR CLIENTS KNEW ABOUT WEDDING FLOWERS?

BLOOM BAR

I would say that flowers are expensive when purchased in large quantities, processed correctly, and designed with expertise, which means there is a cost associated with them. The individual “ingredients” might be inexpensive but taken as a whole with our skill, staff, and labor applied, you are paying for a high-quality product. One that merits the expense!

I use the analogy that flour, sugar, and eggs individually are inexpensive items. Still, I paid my wedding cake baker for their mastery of making those elements come together in a beautiful, delicious way that I knew would deliver with professionalism. The same goes for flowers!

ROSEHIP SOCIAL

Do your research, find images and styles of blooms you like, and reach out. It’s incredible to work with clients who have a general idea of what they would like. Then we can then make recommendations based on our knowledge, experience, and keeping the budget in mind.

Chic bride with delicate white wedding bouquet
Designs by Ahn
Spriggy and unique center piece created by Designs by Ahn
Designs by Ahn

DESIGNS BY AHN

I do wish my clients knew more about color palettes and blooms available in their wedding season. A lot of clients ask for specific flowers that simply aren’t available during the season of their wedding. 

Seasonal availability and color selection of specific blooms are sadly out of our control as floral designers. While we can always try our best to make suitable suggestions and substitutions, it’s not always possible to provide something as equally close as what the internet now provides!

FLOWERS BY FORD

Wonderful gatherings begin long before the guests walk through the door. Every special event starts with the moment of discovery; maybe it’s the first time someone holds your invitation or scrolls through your engagement photos. It’s a joy to join couples in the planning stages and use flowers as a tool to add beauty and life to an event.

I love hearing the “why” behind someone’s ideas, not just the “what.” Maybe they want their special day to feel like a garden party in Italy, a sunrise hike in Colorado, or a winter soirée in Iceland. I love working to make someone’s inspiration come to life! Be creative and have a few goals in mind, we will bring your ideas to life through flowers.

I always make mood boards for my clients. This helps us both find clarity in the overall vision. The thoughtful structure is one of my key ingredients in creating transformative gatherings.

DEAR BAYARD

Flowers incorporate a lot of variables beyond planning around seasonal availability. Always keep in mind when working with a wedding florist that there are separate labor fees. These often go unaccounted for when setting an anticipated budget. When setting a budget, allowing your perspective florist to have creative autonomy will help maximize your investment and bring your vision to fruition.

White orchids reflecting a New York City sunset.
Flowers by Ford
Red, pink, and orange floral center pieces on a rooftop patio
Bloom Bar NYC
A rooftop patio with wooden tables and chairs surrounded by vines and pink flowers
Bloom Bar NYC

WHERE CAN READERS FIND YOU?

Bloom Bar: @bloombar.nyc, www.bloombar.co
Rosehip Social: @rosehipfloral, www.rosehipsocial.com
Designs by Ahn: @designsbyahnnyc, www.designsbyahn.com
Flowers by Ford: @flowersbyford
Dear Bayard: @dearbayard, www.dearbayard.com

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