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Romantic Nodak Winter Wedding

Seeing as my fiance was deploying oversees in January, we wanted to squeeze our wedding in before he left, so we had just under four months to plan. I knew an abundance of flowers and garland would be the perfect solution to spice up our small-town wedding venue during the bleak North Dakota winter. After considering some local florist quotes compared to online retailers, I realized we could spend our same budget arranging the flowers ourselves and have 4x the amount of flowers. I imagined a winter wedding (but NOT Christmas-themed), so I focused on including seasonal flowers to max out our budget. I also compared online retailers, and found Fiftyflowers.com had the most variety of flowers with the best prices and customer service (not to mention so many inspirational photos from other DIY brides--major confidence booster!). Having no floral training whatsoever, I researched how to prep and arrange the flowers courtesy of Flower Design Institute, Team Flower, and Mayesh designer videos on Youtube. I also decided to take on creating a flower arch for the ceremony door entrance (the flower arch structure was purchased from Shopwildthings.com). I made all arrangements, including the 2-door flower arch, fireplace arrangement, 1 bridal bouquet, cake topper, cake "moat" or surround, 5 container arrangements, and 100+ flower picks to set in our garland on the tables, all 2 days before the wedding. Note to DIY brides/bridal party: I recommend getting your manicure after your flowers are completed, and wear long sleeved shirts to prevent foliage cutting your arms. We only had a handful of flowers that didn't make the winter delivery, which I was surprised and pleased with considering we had ordered +2,000 flowers (I had also ordered extras just in case). We transported all flowers to the venue the day before the wedding, making sure to freshly water all arrangements in floral foam. The arch was the only project that I noticed some wilting, but it looked more vintage so I didn't mind. We did buy the fresh garland pre-made from an online retailer, although Fiftyflowers.com offers garland as well! Our guests particularly enjoyed that the whole venue smelled like a garden which was an added bonus. We had no major glitches in our DIY flower execution. As long as you have the time, Youtube knowledge, manpower, and the right tools and facilities dedicated to prepping the flowers, I believe any bride can DIY their wedding flowers and save major dollars.

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