Bride-to-be Blogger Kathleen: Officiant and Florist Wanted

Just because.

We are just about at the 10-month mark for our wedding, and a slight feeling of panic has started to flutter in. Not panic like I am going to lose my mind and have a Bridezilla-style nervous breakdown, but panic like I’m not sure if I’m on track with everything. According to all of those wedding planning websites, I’m golden. However, my indecisiveness and painful attention to all things irrelevant are leading me to believe things aren’t going to keep going smoothly.

So far, we have our venue/caterer, our DJ (will save for a future post), our photographer, and our room block at the hotel. Not bad, I guess. However, we still need two major vendors: Officiant and florist.

This is where the majority of my anxiety resides. Internet searches for non-denominational officiants have proven to be completely worthless. I’ve asked Amanda (my buddy from J. Scott) if she has any recommendations, and she is waiting for information from one of her recent brides, but other than that, I’m at a loss. Anyone know of a great officiant that will keep the ceremony short and sweet without any corny 7th Heaven references?

The florist issue. The reason why I haven’t started looking for a florist as of yet is because I can’t make up my mind on how much floral we will actually have. It would be awesome if I could put all of the flower arrangements and bouquets together myself—however, I don’t want to be doing that the night before or the morning of the wedding. The main thing is that I just don’t want to throw a bunch of money into something that will wither and die within 12 hours. Yeah, flowers are pretty—but who remembers the flowers, anyway? (Hmm … the flowers are in the pictures.) Ok, so I guess it’s back to the drawing board to research what flowers are in season in June and which of those flowers will run the cheapest. I’m sure there are tons of ways to cut back on flower costs without having to dig up our garden the day before we get hitched. We’ll soon find out!

Anyone have tips out there for our officiant issues? How about getting beautiful décor without a lot of flowers? I’ll take any advice!


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  • Melissa

    Now, you are getting me to panic. I am 9 months and still dont have a DJ or our hotel blocked! :-X

    • Kathleen

      No worries Melissa! We found our DJ through our photographer…so that is why it was a quick and easy booking. Also, there was only one full service hotel within 15 minutes of our venue (and hundreds of places for weddings) I wanted to make sure we got first dibs. My contact at the hotel said people start making room blocks around 10-8 months :)

  • Try Celia Milton. She’s amazing. I believe she’s in Jersey but covers Philadelphia.

  • Melissa

    Sounds great!!! :)

  • Darcy

    I love the site They have some really fun alt ideas for flowers and they also have a vendor section where you could maybe find an officiant… or maybe write to the website?

    Good luck!

  • Bob

    Hey Melissa,
    Full Disclosure I am a florist but not in your area. The Flowers don’t have to cost as much as you imagine and depending on what you want you can use the flowers for the wedding itself at the reception as well. In any case a good florist will be willing to work with you. I recommend:

    1. give them an honest idea of the budget you have.
    2. when you go in for the consultation carry any pictures of design styles that you like as well as swatches of cloth for your brides maid’s dress etc if you have them. If not a lot of florist will have swatches from a local formal/bridal shop for matching ribbons and flowers.
    3. Yes you can do it yourself but often you will be surprised at how little difference there is between a florist doing it and what it would really cost if you do it yourself.
    4. You don’t need the added stress of worrying about it the week before your wedding.

    In Philly I do know that Plaza Flowers does an excellent job and they are very very customer friendly.

    If you have any questions I would be happy to try and answer if I can.

  • I feel your pain! I am having the same problem finding an officiant. We are also having a non denominational ceremony and can’t seem to find the best option. The internet is not helpful either! I’ve been searching and searching and there’s not much advice or guidance. Would love to hear other people’s suggestions on this!

    As for flowers, you don’t need to have a definitive answer as to how many flowers you want just yet, but you it might be a good idea to just meet with some florists to get an idea of what they offer and how they are priced. They can provide you with a proposal and give you options of what flowers are in your budget. June is a great time for flowers because there are so many in season at that time! You won’t need to know exactly what you want until your second or third meeting with the florist. Hope that helps! Best of luck!

  • Funny, I was just thinking about last week. I’m glad you posted it. It’s very good info. Thanks again!

  • We had one of my husband’s college professors who used to be a navy Chaplin. Worked out great.