bridesmaids portrait before wedding

Wedding Dilemma: Real or Fake Flowers?

7/06/2019- Tips and Articles – by Robert Freeman

One of the most expensive components of a wedding are the flowers. There are flowers for the bride and the bridesmaids, boutonnieres for the groomsmen, flowers decorating the church or venue, and table center pieces at the reception. When all is said and done, a small garden of flowers is needed for every wedding that takes place.

Nowadays, there are two different options for wedding flowers: real or silk. Choosing between the two can drive even the calmest of brides insane. Real and silk flowers have their own distinct advantages, but the weight associated with each advantage is as personal to each bride as the arrangements themselves.

Factors such as species of flower, time of year, and the number of flowers needed often drive the decision between silk and real flowers. Availability throughout the year is a distinct advantage of silk flowers thanks to on-line retailers and local craft stores. Adjusting the date of the wedding can increase the chances of live flowers being in season, but doesn’t ensure availability. Rarity of species and the number of flowers needed often reduce this while simultaneously increasing cost.

Cost truly depends on what types of flowers the bride wants in the arrangements. If the flowers are common, such as carnations or daisies, then silk flowers are generally more expensive. On the other hand, hard to find and rare flowers are normally cheaper in the silk variety. Other factors increasing cost include the number of different species and color variety within the same species that a bride chooses. The more varied the flowers, the greater the cost; however, this cost is often lower when using silk flowers.

Another advantage of silk flowers is providing a project for the bride or a family member to add a personal touch to the wedding. Making the arrangements increases sentimental value, gives someone something to do to be involved, and generally costs far less than going to a florist. Instead of paying an arrangement fee to a florist, the bride and groom can promise prime seating at the reception and use the money elsewhere.

Reduced cost and sentimentality are not always a benefit. These types of arrangements often cannot look as good as real flowers put together by a florist. Perhaps the single greatest advantage of real flowers are how they look. Although silk flowers look closer to their counterparts every year, they still do not look as bright or natural. This look may cost more money in the long run, but there is no absolute way to duplicate the look of real flowers.

An additional advantage of real flowers is their smell. Silk flowers are sometimes sprayed with scents in an effort to mimic their competitors; however, the scent smells nothing like real ones and fades quickly. Natural floral aroma can add to the atmosphere of any wedding and often is a determining factor in the species chosen. Choosing real flowers is the only way to go if smell is a major factor.

No matter if a bride chooses real or silk flowers, each type has its advantages. Budget, smell, sentimentality, and flower availability are the biggest factors to consider. There is no clear-cut way of making the decision here, as it is a very personal choice each bride must make on their own.

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