All you need to know about Marquee Floral Installations.
I get asked by so many of my clients to plan a hanging floral installation into their marquee design so I thought I would write a blog to explain a bit more about them and how you achieve them.
Marquees are beautiful blank canvases for you to get creative and personalise. One of the key tricks with planning a successful marquee is to raise the eye-level. Focusing your budget on fewer but larger eye-catching displays is a budget savvy way of having the biggest impact for less money. Hanging floral installations are a great way of achieving this. Marquee floral installations are a massive trend right now – are you going to have one?
Here is what you need to know about hanging floral displays inside your marquee in a step-by-step guide.
1.Collate your inspiration
To start with get your inspiration together. Find pictures on Pinterest or on wedding blogs of different hanging installations. Gather examples of the size, shape and style of hanging floral installation you like. Don’t worry too much at this stage about getting the exact image of the correct flowers/colours/foliage. Collect a variety of images because then you can combine different ideas to get the perfect installation for your wedding marquee.
2. Styles of hanging floral installations
The style and shape of the hanging floral installation in your marquee will very much depend on the type of marquee you have picked. Clear span marquees are easy to hang a variety of different types of installations in. The aluminium framework running through the length and width of the marquee offers many hanging points. Traditional and sailcloth marquees have the central poles from which you can suspend between or hang round. Tipis have the wooden framework which again makes it fairly easy to hang from. There are several different types of installation here are some to give you some inspiration:
A Floral Chandelier:
These can hang from the centre of the marquee or round a pole. They are usually built around a base, such as a hula hoop or a wooden frame. The lighter the frame the better because the florist will need to wire on the foliage and the flowers.The main weight will be the water the flowers need to be kept in. There are a couple of options for this, mini test-tubes filled with water and then stems inserted into them. Or oasis or floristry foam soaked in water. The oasis option is far heavier. These can be made to look free-flowing and organic with trailing foliage/twigs or ribbons or more structured with a dense collection of flowers.
One great tip, if you are hoping for lots of flowers in the chandelier is to opt for fake rather than real flowers. This way they can be wired onto the frame, with no need for water/oasis – much lighter. I know that real-flowers smell amazing, but believe me, from the height the chandelier will hang from, you would have to be pretty clued-up to spot the difference.
Images Megan Duffield Photography
A Floral Ball:
Exactly the same as a chandelier but a ball shaped base, rather than a ring. As with the chandelier, these can be densely packed with flowers or be a more organic shape with trailing foliage to give a more tear-drop shaped silhouette.
Image Hannah Duffy
A garland is a string of sections of foliage wired together to make one long strand. These can have flowers interspersed and wired in. You need to be mindful of the length of the garland vs the length of each foliage section, you don’t want the weight to cause sections to come undone once they are hung. These can look stunning intertwined with fairy lights and hung to follow the draping of the marquee roofline. it is also easy to echo the garland look on the table tops to create a cohesive look. Garlands also look great strung between poles or around the circumference of the marquee walls.
Image Katrina Otter Weddings
Clouds are similar to a ball but less spherical. They are a more natural shape. Usually they have a softer style of floral base, such as gypsophila or pampas grass. They can be created in an ombre shade for something really unusual and romantic.
These could be anything from a hanging ladder through to a larger shape. You make the frame and then cover with your flowers and foliage. Other popular shapes are hanging circles that hang vertically rather than horizontally.
Hanging individual stems is a really elegant way of adding something above eye-level to the ceiling of your marquee. Although this looks really simple, it can be a bit of a challenge as the flowers don’t sit in water. Installation fairly last minute, has a whole heap of logistical challenges so planning is imperative. You also need to pick robust stems which can be wired and won’t wilt easily. It is also not a cheap option as you need considerably more flowers as you won’t be able to pad out with foliage.
3. Planning your Floral Installation:
My biggest piece of advice for you here is to coordinate with all the suppliers involved. You will need the input of the marquee company to check the fixings and the weight loading. The florist will need to be in the communication loop to confirm these details with the marquee company. I would also recommend you think about your caterers too and your deliveries.You don’t want the installation to be happening when you are having the tables laid. Also planning the installation when there is minimal activity in the marquee can help. Giving your florist some space and time to do their thing will cause less stress to all involved.
The floral installation will need to be one of the first things put into the marquee after it is erected. Then the tables and chairs can be set out, followed by all the decor and pretty bits. The same also applies to the removal – do it all in reverse – don’t try and take the hanging floral arrangements down before you have removed the tables. These logistics will need fine tuning to make sure everything runs smoothly and all the suppliers dovetail their service into each other.
From an engineering perspective, think about not only how the floral arrangement will hang but also how you will get access to that height. For example, ask if the marquee company will install a pulley system for your florist. They can work at chest height and raise it up into position once they are finished. Otherwise you may need to consider a cherry picker, or a ladder system for your florist.
Speak in detail about the flower choices with your florist. Robust flowers that don’t easily wilt and that need limited water are ideal. The same applies to the foliage but be guided by their expertise and experience. Using a florist and a marquee company who have experience of such installations will definitely make this process a lot smoother for you. If you are feeling a little overwhelmed then drop me an email and find out how we can work together.