Many brides ask me about rose petals. How many will they need to go down the sides of the aisles? How much will it cost, etc. So I purchased a bunch of roses at WalMart and did my own scientific study.
First, don’t feel like you have to purchase rose petals from the florist. They are very easy to make, and you’ll save yourself a ton. Here’s how you do it:
1. Hold the rose with both hands, one hand holding the stem up close under the rose and the other hand around the rose itself.
2. Rock the rose back and forth gently till you feel the petals disconnect from the stem.
3. Hold the rose (now disconnected from the stem) over a box, place your thumbs in the hole where the stem was, and gently work the petals apart letting them fall into the box.
4. Fluff the petals in the box to make sure they are all separated.
5. Remove any tiny center petals that don’t look nice.
6. Once you have done all your roses, place them, by handfuls, being careful not to bruise them, into large zip lock bags, and store them in your frig for up to a week.
Now, how many petals do you get from your roses? I think you would be surprised how many petals are in a single rose! Usually 30-45 petals! It depends upon the variety of rose of course. So what can you expect coverage wise?
This is a 1 square foot area marked off on my desk:
Here is one rose, made into petals. These roses had about 35 petals each:
Two roses made into petals:
As you can see from these photos, the more roses you use, obviously, the heavier the coverage will be. Now, how does this translate to putting petals down your aisle for your wedding? Well, if you want roughly the amount of coverage that one rose gives you, and you have a 30 foot aisle, (don’t forget you have to go down both sides, so that’s actually 60 feet of petals!) Then if you have a 6 inch wide band of petals up each side of a 30 foot aisle, you are going to need to use 30 roses. If you want it to be really heavy coverage, like the 5 rose photo, then you will need 150 roses to make a 6” row up both sides. It just depends upon the look you want.
How about on your tables? If you want petals around your centerpieces, you can use the same photos as a guide. If you just want a few petals around the centerpiece, say, half the amount you see in the 1 rose photo, then if you have 30 tables, you’re going to need 15 roses. Personally, I like to see a heavy coverage of rose petals around a centerpiece, with somewhat random edges. This “grounds” the centerpiece, ties it to the table, as it were. You need something under your centerpiece that accomplishes this, whether it’s a mirror, a charger, a round of wood, a doilie, petals, moss, rocks, whatever goes with the theme of your wedding. It gives your table a cohesive, “all together” look.
Since your centerpiece will be sitting in the middle of the petals, you can figure that in your calculations, depending upon how large the “footprint” of your centerpiece is.
In any case, you can see now, how far a 20 rose bunch from Costco will go! It’ll save you a ton, and you can do it earlier during the week of your wedding so you won’t have to be making petals the morning of the wedding! Incidentally, this method will work for other things, such as fall leaves, mixed flowers, etc. that you might want to use. Just mark off a 1 foot area, then do the math!
It’s an easy little DIY thing that’s hard to mess up, and adds a lot to the look of your day!