Real vs. Fake Wedding Bouquets

Happy Friday! I am SO excited for the weekend. Josh’s parents are in town, it’s Arts Fest in State College, and we have some fun wedding events on the agenda! Recaps of all that good stuff will happen next week. Today, I’m excited to share my Thursday with you. :)

I was so excited to get to sleep in this morning. And then I woke up at 7am. I don’t know what happened to me but this summer is making me a morning person! I was excited to try a new-to-me Chobani flavor for breakfast. I’ve never had a 2% Chobani flavor before and I really liked how creamy it was and how tasty the pineapple was. I still prefer 0% Chobani just because they’re fat free (I’m trying to fit into a wedding dress this time next year!) and taste just as yummy but these are a nice, indulgent treat. :)

I also ran to Wegmans to pick up more Love Crunch granola for work. This stuff is by far the best granola I’ve ever had. I’m so glad Wegmans now carries it so I can constantly have it in the house. It’s what keeps me full between breakfast and my lunch break at work.

I also picked up a half pound of Wegman’s asparagus, jicama, red pepper, and corn, and a half pound of their escarole and beans to snack on during the day.

They were so delicious. I mixed them up in a big bowl and went to town. Healthy and tasty is a winning combination in my book.

I had a dentist appointment where I was happy to hear my teeth are looking good and I have no cavities. While I waited to be seen I scooped up the latest People and caught up on the latest Tom and Katie drama. Is anyone else fascinated by their story?

After being told that my teeth are in good condition and looking healthy I made the smart decision to book it over to Starbucks and order a light grande cookie crumble. It was SO good and totally worth the sugar on my teeth! ;p

Josh and I also made big progress with wedding planning today. We’re planning on a late July wedding with roughly 80 guests. At that time we’ll both have just graduated so our budget is pretty limited. Josh was amazing and got everything mapped out on a spreadsheet so now our goal is to secure everything for the big day at or under those numbers. We’re really close to booking our ceremony and reception venue (we’re visiting on Saturday!), have had a serious talk with a photographer, are courting DJ’s, have an appointment for a cake tasting, and have gotten quotes from florists. It has been a BUSY day!

Before getting engaged I didn’t realize how stressful wedding planning is. There are so many details and so many things to take into consideration. And when working with a limited budget you’re not just normal excited stressed but also stressed about if you’ll be able to achieve your dream wedding vision. Every girl dreams about their perfect wedding. I’m trying really hard to make mine come true within our budget but also realize at the end of the day that the most important thing is that we got to celebrate our love in front of our closest family and friends.

After getting quotes from florists I realized that my dream peony bouquet is out of our budget. Determined to find a way to include peonies and not spend a fortune I started to think outside the box.

Enter silk flowers! I browsed around Micheals and A.C.Moore today scoping out their selection and getting prices on different flowers. I really love the color of these peonies and how the bright pink would stand out against a white dress.

For the bridesmaids I was thinking pink dresses with white flowers since I’ll be in a white dress with pink flowers. This bouquet has two different types of peonies in it and they’re only $2 a piece, meaning this gorgeous bouquet costs a whopping $8. It’s a really good thing it’s cheap since we’ll likely need six of them!

An alternative to the hot pink peonies pictured above for my bouquet would be a lighter pink, more traditional peony. I love how this looks with the green pom in the middle and the fact that the peonies come with little buds attached to the stem which could be cut off and placed throughout the bouquet to help tie it together. The great thing about Micheals and A.C.Moore is that if you buy their flowers and pins and ribbon they will arrange them for you. I was quoted a peony bouquet costing me $80-$100. This silk one would be $35.

I would still like to meet with a florist to see final numbers for real flowers since they are obviously preferable to silk but if we can’t make the numbers work it would be rather awesome to spend less money on flowers and have them last longer than a day.

Question of the Day: What are some tips and tricks you’ve heard/found to help reduce the cost of a wedding?


  1. says

    as a bride to be planning as well, I have to say late july is basically the best time. haha. we’re getting married july 20 of next summer. 😉

    Flowers are rough, gosh I haven’t even thought too much about them yet.. yikes. but, we are pinching corners in our budget by providing our own alcohol, cheaply 😉 and with food. we’re doing a bbq style reception which is reducing food costs SIGNIFICANTLY

    good luck! try not to stress out, this time of looking & booking will be fun and exciting 😀

    • says

      Ohh that’s one of the dates we’re looking at too! That’s awesome the venue is letting you provide alcohol! We’d like to do that but if we want it we have to use theirs. We’re thinking about doing a sangria at the cocktail hour and then having the rest of the reception be dry to keep costs down. And a bbq style wedding is so fun!

  2. says

    I love the flower idea! I’ll be watching your blog intently for every detail. I love weddings!!

    P.S. I’ll be at ArtsFest this weekend as well. The FitFluential vibes will multiply by two. :)

    • says

      Aw thanks so much! I’m so excited to be able to share some of the details soon, I just need to wait until it’s confirmed in writing.

      And did you love Arts Fest? I had the best time, there was so much cool stuff to see!

  3. says

    I went with fake flowers for my wedding and absolutely LOVED my bouquet. Not to mention, I still have it 10 yrs later. As for reducing costs, I don’t have much advice since my wedding was small. My advice is to take a deep breath and enjoy every part of this adventure =)

    • says

      Thank you so much! The breathing thing has definitely helped! ;p And I’ll be posting pictures of my silk bouquet soon, I’m in love with it.

  4. says

    To reduce the cost : Have a smaller wedding, do a desert bar ONLY (and drinks) which works best for a late night wedding or afternoon wedding. Also, you can serve a signature cocktail rather than beer/wine only which will cut down alcohol costs. Hm… Do your own decorations! I am going to be thrifting plates for our appetizer/desert bar. They won’t match but it will be more fun. We are making decorations for the black folding chairs (we are not using chair covers). Look for a venue that includes some of this stuff. My venue has benches near the ceremony site that we can rearrange for seating, and there are tables and chairs for the reception site. Hope this helps! (I have been blogging wedding tips too, check out my blog

  5. Bri says

    I think fake flowers are a great idea. Not only is it more affordable, but you can keep your bouquets forever! one of my girlfriends has a business where she makes silk floral bouquets and arrangements for weddings and does very well.

  6. Katie says

    I love that you practically have your wedding planned already! :)not that I have ANY experience planning a wedding (still single haha), but I think silk flower bouquets can be done really well. no matter what you decide, Erin, I know your wedding will be fabulous! all the BEST!

    • says

      Aww thank you so much Katie! I have to send you a picture of the flowers, they’re done! And I can’t believe how fast planning is coming together. I’m crossing my fingers the dress I’m looking to get comes through! And we’re saving out send the dates in a few months but I just wanted to give you a heads up the wedding is July 6, 2013 in State College! 😀

  7. says

    I love peonies too! For my wedding my florist recommended cabbage roses. They looked just like peonies, and affordable!! I recommend checking them out.

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