When it comes to wedding flowers, bigger isn't always better—especially if you're working with a tight budget. Florals are a notoriously pricey component of any wedding budget, and while you might want your venue to be covered in lush fresh flowers, it can feel daunting to achieve the look you want within your price range. Here's the good news: It's completely possible to style gorgeous wedding flowers on a budget. While there are some expensive flowers on the market, there are also plenty of affordable blooms available in all seasons too. And, with a little help from your wedding florist, you can make any arrangement look expensive.
To help you source wedding flowers on a tight budget, we've consulted industry experts to share their top tips for finding wedding day blooms without breaking the bank. Below, you'll find five attainable ways to decorate your space with wedding bouquets, centerpieces and arrangements within your flower budget. Plus, we also share 12 types of flowers that are generally affordable and available in most seasons. Read up on our affordable wedding flower tips below, then work with your team of floral professionals to bring your vision to life.
How to Style Wedding Flowers on a Budget
The way your present your wedding flowers impacts the overall visual experience on your big day. And, with some careful planning, you can make any stem varieties look lush and expensive. Here, we break down the best ways to decorate with wedding flowers on a budget.
Work With a Florist
First and foremost, it's important to work with a professional wedding florist. While you might be tempted to try your hand at DIY wedding decor, this can actually cost you more money in the long run—especially when it comes to flowers. Not only will your florist help you narrow down your vision, along with specific stems that are in season and available in your location, they'll help you avoid wasting time and money trying to buy and arrange blooms that won't work for your decorating needs. "A good florist can help you figure out what you like, as well as the best flower choices for your wedding," says Virginia-based florist Gerry Rogers, founder and lead designer of Petal's Edge Floral Design. "In the long run, that saves you time and money."
Begin your search for a florist by using a tool like The Knot Marketplace. Not only does this connect you with local vendors in your area, you'll be able to read reviews from real couples to help you find the best pros for your needs. Then, once you've hired a designer they'll level-set your expectations to keep your wedding ideas realistic and attainable. "If you're trying to reduce costs, your best bet is to be upfront with your florist about what that budget is," Rogers adds. "Let their creativity lead the way, and you'll get a much better result."
Invest in Quality Over Quantity
To give your wedding ceremony and reception that "wow factor" look, you might be tempted to cover your space in flowers. Not only will this be expensive, it may create a visual experience that's overwhelming for guests. Instead, you can make just as big of an impact by dedicating your flower budget to quality blooms in thoughtful, intentional arrangements. "We like to say that it's more important to invest in quality than quantity," Rogers says. "The best way to make things look expensive is to make them appropriate in size. A smaller-than-average bridesmaid bouquet or a too-small-for-the-table centerpiece is often noticeable. Instead, a few intentional floral arrangements will go much further in terms of impact than trying to cover everything."
You might think that shopping in-season will help you find cheap wedding flowers. While this is partially true, shopping for seasonal flowers will actually help you find stems with plenty of availability. "The idea that you can get cheaper flowers in their blooming season is one of the biggest myths in the flower industry," Rogers explains. "While this might be true in regions like California, which has a large agriculture base, it's not applicable in every state. Local and in-season flowers might offer better quality, but some flowers, like peonies, are higher than average in cost when they are in-season. In our experience, seasonality corresponds more to availability than it does to cost."
So, what does this mean for finding wedding flowers on a budget? While you might not be able to save money by shopping solely for in-season flowers, you will be able to find good-quality flowers. And, if you spend a lot on blooms that are out of season, you run the risk of having them die or wilt on your big day due to improper conditions. And, as with Rogers' point above, investing in quality over quantity will help you make the most out of the money you spend.
Rent Faux Blooms
Another way to style wedding flowers on a budget is to incorporate some faux blooms in clusters and installations that won't be seen up close, like bridesmaid bouquets or hanging decorations. And, instead of buying fake flowers, you can rent exactly what you need for as long as you need it. "Renting faux is a great option for couples that want the look of fresh flowers without the hassle or cost," says Megan Westman, co-founder of Silk Stem Collective. And, while you might think faux florals will look fake next to fresh blooms, new production techniques allow companies to seamlessly recreate the look of real blooms. "Silk, fabrics and specialty plastics can all be designed to mimic the look of a real flower petal," Westman explains. "Expert manufacturers specifically select materials that replicate the texture and color of fresh flowers depending on the variety of bloom they're replicating."
Even if you choose to rent some faux flowers, couples are still encouraged to work with their florist to use fresh blooms as needed. Then, you can use the remainder of your flower budget on larger, statement-worthy floral installations. "We frequently have couples mix silk flowers with fresh flowers," Westman explains. "We've had couples rent faux bouquets and use the money they saved to get a fresh flower arch, while others use fresh flower bouquets but faux centerpieces for an outdoor summer reception."
Renting faux florals is also a great way to plan sustainably. For couples with an eco-conscious focus, silk flowers can serve as an environmentally-friendly choice. "Many people don't realize that fresh flowers have a large carbon footprint," says Westman. "Renting faux flowers is not a perfect solution, but it does offer a lower waste option. It takes fewer resources to produce faux flowers, and because they are reused over and over again, the carbon footprint is much lower."
Consider Dried Florals
If you're looking for inexpensive wedding flowers, consider buying blooms that can be reused to decorate multiple wedding events, like showers, the rehearsal dinner, your wedding day, or even your farewell brunch. Since most fresh flowers don't last for long periods of time, especially after they're cut, dried flowers can be a cost-efficient alternative. While these are traditionally a staple of the bohemian wedding style, you can incorporate dried stems into your big day (and related events) no matter the style or theme you're following. "A dried flower arrangement comes with its own ethereal and unique beauty that makes it different from fresh flowers, but no less beautiful," says a representative for UrbanStems, who notes that dried flowers have an exceptionally long shelf life. "While freshly cut flowers can last up to two weeks when properly cared for, dried flowers can last up to several months to even years. And, with dried flowers, you won't have to worry about maintaining their freshness on your wedding day."
When paired together, select fresh flowers and dried petals would make for a unique styling combination that offers the best of both worlds. And, while it's recommended to work with a florist for fresh blooms, you could find affordable dried options that can be reused for multiple wedding events online. "You have much more flexibility with dried florals," the rep adds. "Couples can buy them six months to a year in advance, save them, and incorporate them with fresh flowers on the wedding day."
Affordable Wedding Flowers
While your florist will help you style wedding flower arrangements, first narrow down exactly what blooms you want on your big day. Having a professional's guidance will help you select affordable, in-season flowers that fit your wedding style and the overall vision for your big day. But, to help you get started, we've rounded up 12 inexpensive wedding flowers that won't bust your budget.
Also known as Peruvian lily, this patterned flower comes in more than 150 different color and marking combinations, ranging from white and golden yellow to red, pink and purple.
Blooming season: Late spring or early summer
This oversized bloom is a must for nautical or preppy summer weddings. And, because of their size, hydrangeas are great for covering a lot of surface area without stretching your floral budget. "Hydrangeas can be a cost-effective choice, especially for centerpieces, because they take up a lot of space," explains Rogers.
Blooming season: Late spring
You can't go wrong with roses at your wedding. "In terms of bouquets, roses are often maligned but a great choice," Rogers says. "They're a reliable flower and come at a decent price for their size."
Blooming season: Spring (though some varieties, like garden roses, bloom year-round)
Planning a laid-back or boho wedding? Consider weaving this wispy wedding floral into your arrangements. "Baby's breath has made a major comeback," says Denise Porcaro of Flower Girl NYC. "Lots of couples like baby's breath in or on its own in big arrangements. It looks gorgeous with long, trailing pastel-colored ribbons for a more ethereal wedding, and it's nice to make flower crowns that are delicate and airy."
Blooming season: Summer and fall
Carnations typically make an appearance at weddings because of their lengthy, sturdy set, ideal for tall arrangements. They also have a reputation as being one of the longest-lasting blooms after being cut. Plus, their unique serrated petals will add lovely texture to a bouquet or your wedding decor.
Blooming season: Late spring
Otherwise known as mums, these pom-pom-like blooms boast lush, exotic blossoms in multiple colors—without the extravagant price tag. Just specify which type of stem you prefer: Florist mums are the big, spidery blossoms, while garden mums are smaller, more compact flowers.
Blooming season: Late summer and fall
For a cheery springtime bouquet, white daisies are a classic go-to whether they're helping out as a filler flower or making up the entire floral arrangement. They naturally grow white blossoms, but thanks to food coloring they can be tinted purple, blue, neon green—almost any color of the rainbow.
Blooming season: Late spring through late fall
For a long-lasting floral, consider this fragrant stem, which can last up to three weeks in a vase. This longevity makes freesia one of the all-time great affordable wedding flowers. As many as eight blooms grow on one stalk, and they come in multiple colors like white, yellow, red, purple and pink.
Blooming season: Spring
If centerpieces with height speak to you, this towering, ornate blossom fits the bill. It can grow between two and six feet tall, comes in a variety of hues and looks striking enough to stand on its own so you don't need as many.
Blooming season: Summer
Queen Anne's Lace
"Queen Anne's lace adds beautiful texture when mixed with other blooms in a bouquet and can be the 'green' for couples who don't want a lot of greenery in their arrangements," Porcaro says. It's easily mistaken for baby's breath because of its small white blossoms, but its flat-topped clusters set them apart.
Blooming season: Late spring
There's no denying that sunflowers spark joy, especially because their big, bright petals add a burst of vibrant color to any arrangement. You can also take advantage of their strong stalks and place them in unexpected locations around your venue to create a visually appealing floral design. Getting wedding flowers on a budget has never been so simple with sunflowers.
Blooming season: Summer
With so many blooms on each stem, this little Lily of the Valley look-alike makes a fabulous filler for bridal bouquets, corsages, boutonnieres or centerpieces. Waxflowers also come in a range of two-tone colors, allowing you to get creative with your floral arrangements.
Blooming season: Late winter through early spring