Very often the physical setting for your wedding ceremony will limit your choice of floral decoration but, when it comes to wedding receptions flowers, this is often a very different matter. Bear in mind that flowers will often form a large part of your overall plan of decoration and start by choosing a venue for your reception which allows you plenty of scope.

The next thing that you will need to think about is theme that you wish to use for your decoration. You might choose a theme that is consistent throughout your wedding and will run from the bouquet, through the flowers at the religious or civil ceremony and on to the wedding reception flowers. Alternatively you may choose, as many couples do, to separate the wedding ceremony and reception by selecting a different theme for each.

Once you have decided on a theme then it will be a question of selecting flowers that will match that theme. In many cases couples turn this on its head by taking as their starting point the flowers that are readily available and in season and then build a theme around these. This can work but, more often than not, you will end up by having to make compromises and, once that starts happening, you run the danger of coming away from your special day feeling less than satisfied.

If money is no object then sourcing the flowers that you need for your chosen theme is a fairly simple matter and you can have just about anything you choose flown in from every corner of the world. For most couples however money is a very real issue and it is this that pushes them in the direction of going with whatever is available. But there are alternatives.

One possibility is to make use of potted flowers. These can often be hired for the day and you'll be surprised at the range of exotic flowers that you can get through your florist or local nursery quite cheaply. I remember that one day I was driving along a small country road in Lincolnshire in England when I came across a huge glasshouse full of every shape and size of cactus. My attention was drawn in particular to one area where the owner had a large selection of beautiful potted arrangements and I asked him if these were for sale. He said that he was sorry but that these were only for hire for special events such as weddings.

Another idea is to use silk wedding flowers, or a mixture of both cut and silk flowers. This is becoming increasingly popular these days and you will be surprised at just how realistic modern silk flowers can be. Indeed, you will find it very hard to spot the difference between the natural cut flowers and the silk flowers. Nowadays silk flowers can even be perfumed so that they smell like the real thing.

Having sourced your flowers it's then simply a matter of letting your imagination run riot and creating a range of decorations that fit the room chosen for your reception and, more particularly, fit your personality. Whether it's a floral arch to stand under when you cut the cake, potted plants to line the dance floor, centerpieces for the tables or napkin treatments let your creative juices flow and speak to your guests through your wedding reception flowers.