Wedding Planning Tip: Let’s Talk About Flowers!

December 3, 2018

WOW, November has come and gone, and in the blink of an eye, it’s over! I can’t believe Christmas is right around the corner!!!

But before you get into Christmas mode and put your wedding planning notebook aside for the holidays, I want to share one more tip to help your planning. This week I have the pleasure to bring to you an interview with my dear friend Marla, from The Sunflower Lady. Marla is a florist specializing in weddings. She is such a happy person, always with a smile on her face!!!

Floral details for a wedding day

Here are some tips Marla shared with us for choosing your wedding floral arrangements.

1. How far in advance should couples contact a floral designer?

It’s best to meet with florists at least 6 months before the wedding.  Fall is the busiest time of the year for weddings, so book early to guarantee your place. Many florists book at least 1 year in advance. I personally deliver all of my weddings, set up and even pin boutonnieres and corsages. This kind of attention to detail is worth booking as soon as possible.

2. Do you create all floral arrangements yourself?

I create everything that leaves my shop, from consult to completion! It is important to me that my own hands are the ones that take a vision and bring it to life. I have been in the floral industry for 25 years and have developed my own style and way of designing.

Wedding tips for engaged couples

3. What is your creative flow and how involved are couples with the floral design?

Many times couples come to me with lengthy Pinterest boards. While these are helpful and I really do enjoy taking inspiration from pictures, I love putting my  own spin on designs. This allows me to create custom florals that only that particular couple will have. With a farming background, I see inspiration all around me, in nature!

I love texture, shapes and things that have a delightful fragrance. I also love to take items which represent the lives of the couple and work them into designs. Books, paintbrushes, fishing lures and more show a couple’s personality. Lace from grandma’s dress or rosary beads add a special touch.

4. Should a bridal bouquet size and style be designed based on the style of the wedding dress? Does it matter for the overall look?

Two of the questions I always ask first are, “Where is the wedding?” and “What does your dress look like?”  Both of these answers help me to determine the style and size of the bridal bouquet.  The dress style, fabric and any embellishments are important to know as well as the height of the bride. I see so many pictures of stunningly detailed dresses which get completely covered by a huge bouquet. Flowers are to enhance the beauty of the bride.  A well crafted bouquet serves to frame the face of the bride and add a touch of color. Being sure to have a well balanced proportioned piece, which doesn’t swallow her but enhances the dress, is my main focus during the design process.  

The venue also lends its influence to the overall vision of the florals. A good florist will keep all these things in mind when creating a dream wedding!

Bride on a swing at Chestnut Hill Villa in Lancaster PA

5. Flowers play a big role on a wedding day. How can you as a floral designer help couples bring to life the theme they chose for their special day?

When choosing a florist, find someone who wants to know you and your fiancé as people. When I meet with clients, I take time in the very beginning to ask about their lives, where they work, what they do for fun, etc. By doing this, it enables me to bring elements of their lives into the wedding and really begin to understand their style. Everyone has a story and it’s important for a florist to understand their client.  This will be an extended client relationship, so be sure to choose someone who connects with you and communicates in a timely manner.

I enjoy hearing about the couples hobbies, pets and where they are from. This helps me to create personal designs which uniquely represent them. Many times I’ve maintained an ongoing friendship long after the wedding because I’ve grown to know and enjoy my clients as friends.

Tips for choosing your wedding flowers

6. What tips could you give to newly engaged couples who are starting the wedding planning process?

After so many years and so many couples, I do have a few words of wisdom. First, don’t stress about the small stuff. You’ve hired well qualified vendors who are experts in their field. Give them your vision and trust them to execute.  I find I am at my most creative when a couple fully trusts me and gives me the freedom I need to design.

Second, while the wedding is important, it’s only one day.  Prepare for the marriage as much as for the wedding. After 25 years of marriage this past July (hello to my handsome Mike!), I can tell you we are even better now than that day long ago.  The most important thing is to commit to always love one another no matter what the cake tasted like or what shade the roses were.  Marriage is to be forever and I so enjoy being part of the process.


About The Sunflower Lady:

Marla Bixler is an experienced floral designer with 25 years in the industry. The Sunflower Lady promises a full service experience on the day of the event. Having worked on both the wholesale and retail ends of the floral industry, Marla has a vast knowledge of flower availability and price, and strives to provide personal service with professional style.

Get in Touch:

Website: | Email: | Phone: (717) 572-3763 | Instagram: @thesunflowerlady1

*Marla is offering 10% off delivery and setup for all couples that mention Juliana Tomlinson Photography’s blog!!!*

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