Garden flowers from farmer's market
Photo: Tammy Sue Allen Photography

You can keep your flowers both budget and eco-friendly by using only local, seasonal flowers. Discuss your color preferences with your florist as part of your florist contract negotiation and show them pictures and Pinterest boards so that you are both on the same page for the feel of the design. Picking out specific flower types might mean your flowers have to be special ordered, which normally means they will have to be shipped. Stay open about your flower choices. Let your florist have the freedom to talk to the local growers, go to the wholesale houses and pick the flowers in your color scheme. Trust your florist, you picked him or her for a reason!

Once your flowers are set, multi-purposing arrangements is a great way to make your flowers work for you. Let's say that you want aisle arrangements. Why not use them as the centerpieces at the rehearsal dinner, in the aisle during the ceremony, and then again as centerpieces at the reception? Once the wedding is over, send them home as gifts to those people who helped with your wedding. With this plan, those arrangements are filling four different jobs!

Altar arrangements are great to use on a buffet table during the reception. This way they are being used throughout the entire ceremony and reception. In a sense, you're recycling flowers by having them work for you in different capacities.

Bridal and bridesmaids bouquets placed in simple vases can be used as centerpieces or decor for the head table. It allows the guests to take a closer look at your beautiful flowers, as well as lessen the amount of centerpieces that you need to order. Potted plants also make great take-home favors for guests or the bridal party. 

I encourage my couples to buy their own vases and have us fill them. There are all sorts of different resources to buy used or discounted glassware (online, Ikea, Goodwill, etc.), and it's a great way to recycle and pay less. After the wedding, either send the flowers home with the guests as gifts, turn them into stationery, or donate them and keep the recycling process going.