Our guest post this week comes from Laurie Ouellette, owner of Sweet Pea Designs in Lewiston. Planning weddings and designing floral arrangements for over ten years, and having worked events at most Maine wedding venues, Laurie is especially loved by her clients and creates truly gorgeous floral designs. She has provided amazing floral designs for several weddings at the Agora Grand. We wanted to ask her a few questions about the trends, ideas, and tips when a bride is thinking about her wedding flowers.
What are the current trends in wedding flowers and decorations?
For wedding flowers, a lot of brides are asking for English Garden roses, but wedding trends tend to be more focused on colors than on particular flowers. Right now, the hottest trends are softer colors, like pastel colored flowers, with the bride wearing something bolder and deeper, allowing her to stand out among the decorations. Take a look at www.Pantone.com for some of the current wedding color trends.
As far as decorations, brides are having lots of fun with their centerpieces, especially filling interesting and unique vessels instead of standard vases. For example, I recently hollowed out white pumpkins to serve as vessels for the flower arrangements! Antique and mismatched bottles are also popular right now. One of my favorite options is to braid flowers into the form of a runner and placing lots of flowers in the center of the table.
Another trend is for the bride to have a different, special flower in contrast to those of the wedding party and centerpieces, allowing her to really stand out!
What are the best flowers for a summer wedding?
There really is no “best” type of flower for a summer wedding. Some brides choose tropical flowers, some choose orchids, some choose white lilacs with red roses. But listen to your heart and allow yourself to dream and be different … don’t just do what everyone else is doing for the summer!
What kinds of services do you offer to brides?
Sweet Pea Designs is a full florist and wedding planning service. Most of our business is in floral arrangements, but we also do day-of coordination as well as full wedding planning from start to finish. Ray and I are well connected in the community so you can rely on us to help you find the right vendors!
What tips would you offer a bride when she’s looking for a florist for her wedding?
First and foremost, know your colors! You don’t have to know them before meeting with me, as I can show you lots of options. You don’t even have to know which flowers you like. But I can’t create your dream floral design without knowing your wedding colors!
Second, know your budget. Some flowers are more expensive than others, and I can import beautiful and exotic flowers from all over the world, or I can find gorgeous locally sourced flowers. Knowing your budget will help me to create your ideal vision within your means.
Finally, interview and meet with several florists and choose one who shares your taste, style, and wedding vision.
Can you tell us about one of your favorite weddings, and what made it your favorite?
Every wedding is unique and I’ve loved working with all my clients, so I can’t actually point to my favorite. But one that stands out, in terms of uniqueness, was a wedding at a local ski resort that was completely decorated with a classy beer theme. The groom was a brewer of beer, so his mother asked me, “Can you make boutonnieres with beer hops?” “Of course!” I told her. The boutonnieres came out very sexy!
What should a bride expect to pay for various florist services?
Flowers are an integral part of any wedding. You’ve got your venue, your photographer, your caterer, your DJ or band – and your florist. I always recommend brides allot 10-20% of their wedding budget to flowers and decorations.
What tips would you offer a bride so that she enjoys the wedding of her dreams?
Of course, the most important tip is to enjoy the wedding planning process. It only happens once! But the other thing I say to all brides: “If you don’t trust a vendor 110%, go with someone else! And that includes me!” You have to trust your vendors – they’re the ones who are going to put together your wedding, show up on your wedding day, and deliver your wedding dream. Make sure you trust them and are comfortable with them!
For more information about flowers and decorations, feel free to reach out to Laurie at Sweet Pea. If you’re looking for wedding venues in Maine, the Agora Grand Event Center offers all-inclusive wedding packages and destination wedding packages, including traditional church weddings as well as our Grand Reception Hall for large wedding receptions. We also have blog posts on how to choose other vendors, including photographers, caterers, and officiants, as well as whether to choose a buffet or plated meal for your reception.