5 wedding flower design ideas from famous designer Preston Bailey


Just in time for wedding season, event planner and celebrity floral designer Preston Bailey delivers Design with flowers, a new eye candy book filled with the arrangements of your wildest wedding dreams (Rizzoli, $ 45 to amazon.com). The over 200 pages inside are filled with photographs of his most dazzling belongings. “The flowers evoke a sense of celebration,” Bailey told InStyle.com of the tome (her sixth!). The key, he advises, is to keep it interesting. “There is a fine line between simple flowers and boring flowers. Make sure your flowers aren’t boring! How to do it, exactly? When you go to interview your potential wedding florist, be prepared. Here’s what you need to know before you go:

BE READY TO ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS “If I ask the right questions, every bride will tell me exactly what she wants,” says Bailey. “Instead of being bombarded with images from Pinterest, I like to embark on a gentle exploration of what a bride loves.” Therefore, you should be able to answer these questions. Otherwise, find the answers before you go! * What is your favorite flower? * What are your favorite colors? * Have you been to a wedding that she loved? And why? * What flowers and colors do you hate?

ASK FOR FLOWERS IN SEASON “The easiest way to save money is to use seasonal flowers,” says Bailey. Find this information online or just ask your florist. It’s not ugly.

CONSIDER ADDING SPARK A new trend in wedding flowers is having crystals hanging from your centerpieces or hidden as charms in the bridal bouquet. “While it depends on the bride if it’s for you, I happen to like a bit of sparkle,” he says. “If used correctly, it adds another dimension to flowers.”

BE CAREFUL OF THE ARRIVING TRAIN Sometimes a bride chooses to accessorize her aisle with petals, but unfortunately when she goes down she drags them all with her because of the drag of her dress. “Beware of this,” Bailey said.

GO FOR WHITE, GIRLS When it comes to the bridal bouquet, monotony is a key game. “As much as I love the color, I recommend an all-white bridal bouquet,” says Bailey. “If it is color, your eyes automatically turn to the colors of the bouquet as the bride walks down the aisle, distracting the bride and her dress.”

DON’T LEAVE WITHOUT ASKING THESE QUESTIONS Your florist is going to ask you tons of questions, but you need to grill them too. Here’s what you need to ask, suggests Bailey. 1) Are the flowers going to be fully opened for my wedding? 2) The containers you use for my centerpieces, are they mine or rented? (“This is very important in case one of the guesses takes away the centerpiece at the end of the party,” he says.) 3) What do you do with any remaining flowers? (“A good idea is to donate them to a retirement home.”

Click to see more stunning arrangements from Preston Bailey.

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