honor award winner-2008 retail florist of the year
 
 wedded
            
        bits

Use the latest wedding trends—from budget considerations to eco-friendly options—to assist you in your marketing and sales.

by Morgan Chilson


    Approximately 2.2 million weddings are on the calendar for this year in the United States, and, according to THE WEDDING REPORT, overall wedding budgets are being reduced in 2008. With flowers remaining one of the areas where many couples make budget cuts (see chart below), it’s important for you to become educated about all aspects of today’s nuptial ceremonies and receptions. Use the following information as you plan your wedding marketing strategies, and show your bridal clients that you are committed to satisfying their preferences.

green weddings
    While it’s chic to be environmentally conscious, many brides pick and choose the parts of their wedding on which to “go green.” Using recycled paper, serving organic foods and wines, and skipping the handouts are some of the popular ways to go green, according to the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF CATERING EXECUTIVES (NACE). The organization’s poll found that 37 percent of their caterers reported 20 percent of their customers were going green.
    But JEAN PICARD, master bridal consultant and California State Coordinator for the ASSOCIATION OF BRIDAL CONSULTANTS (ABC), says she’s surprised at the green trend as it relates to flowers. “I would have thought that by now that would have been much, much bigger, but it’s not,” she says. “It’s catching on a bit, but for the most part, they’re going for the look, and whether the flowers have pesticides or not is not relevant.”
    An area where green does work for brides is invitations because recycled paper is looking good, Ms. Picard says. Still, on almost every “hot wedding trends” list, going green makes the top 10.

  weddings by the numbers

 
 
All numbers are estimates by The Wedding Report, a company that researches wedding trends and statistics.
 

Avg. Wedding Spending
Bridal Gown
Bridal Bouquet
Bridesmaid Bouquets
Flower Girl Flowers
Corsages/Boutonnieres
Ceremony Flowers
Reception Flowers

Reception Location
Reception Food
Cake
 

2007
$28,732
$1,334
$152
$243
$49
$178
$435
$982

$2,459
$7,562
$537
 

2008
$28,704
$1,266
$146
$232
$48
$169
$428
$1,010

$2,559
$7,968
$544
 

  +/- %
-.1%
-5.1%
-3.9%
-4.5%
-2.0%
-5.1%
-1.6%
+2.9%

+4.1%
+5.4%
+1.3%
 


 

dressing up
    Romantic dresses in floor-length and ankle-length styles are gracing bridal aisles this year, according to the top trends list compiled by YOUR WEDDING COMPANY, an online wedding products company. Strapless dresses are giving way to off-the-shoulder styles or unique necklines.
    The vintage look is making an elegant mark on weddings. That often means delicate fabrics like chiffon; layers of tulle; and embellishments like beaded straps, keyhole backs and lace sleeves, according to THE KNOT.
    While brides are going softly romantic, it’s becoming popular for grooms to eschew the formal tux and, instead, dress down in a suit, according to JOYCE SCARDINA BECKER on ABOUTWEDDINGS.COM and author of Countdown to your Perfect Wedding.
    Colors are all across the board, with brides choosing what they like rather than what is popular. They’re also trying to choose dresses for their attendants that can be worn again as party dresses.

  number of guests

 
   

# of Guests
Less than 50
50 to 100
101 to 200
More than 200

% of Weddings
8%
24%
47%
21%

Average Number of Guests: 166


 



 

  2008 estimated weddings by month (United States)

 
   

Month
January
February
March
April
May
June
July
August
September
October
November
December
 

Est. Weddings
3%
3%
5%
7%
13%
15%
11%
11%
11%
11%
5%
4%
 



 

  2008 ceremony and reception venues (United States)

 
   


Church/Place of worship
Banquet hall
Garden/Park
Residence
Beach
Hotel
Country club
Historical building
Resort
Lakefront
Courthouse/Justice of
  the peace
Other

Indoor versus Outdoor
Indoor
Outdoor
 

Ceremony
49%

10%
8%
7%
6%
4%
4%
2%
2%
1%
7%


65%
35%
 

Est. Weddings
7%
33%
5%
10%
2%
14%
12%
5%
3%
2%

7%


78%
22%
 


 



 

here comes the budget
    Economic concerns are taking a toll on wedding spending this year, with brides and grooms looking for a big bang for fewer bucks. “The theme for the next 18 months is going to be creative cost control,” says DAVID WOOD, president of the ASSOCIATION OF BRIDAL CONSULTANTS (ABC). “People are still getting married, people are still wildly enthusiastic, but for the next year and a half, the budget is going to be the top priority.”
    CHAR HEIN, the Colorado state coordinator for ABC, echoes those sentiments, explaining that even brides with high-end weddings are finding places to cut costs. She books many weddings at the five-star Broadmoor Hotel & Resort in Colorado Springs, where the base food and alcohol estimate for 150 guests is about $42,000.
    Couples are using creative cost-cutting options, such as holding the wedding on a day other than Saturday to get discounts, according to a survey by the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF CATERING EXECUTIVES (NACE). Fifty-two percent of respondents say they’re seeing weddings booked on Fridays and Sundays. In that same survey, 48 percent of catering executives say they’ve seen declines in spending on catering. In addition to cost consciousness on the part of bridal couples, Ms. Hein says some guests aren’t attending the weddings because of travel expenses.

Morgan Chilson is a business writer based in Topeka, Kan. Contact her at morgan@exactlywrite.net.


Florists' Review Enterprises, Inc.nc.
PO Box 4368
Topeka, KS   66604

Phone: 800-367-4708
Local: 785-266-0888
Fax: 785-266-0333


©Copyright 2008 Florists' Review Enterprises