Tropical themed wedding decorations

My wedding theme is tropical. Some of the decorations my mom and brother are showing me for the wedding are “cheesy” in my opinion. I want it to be elegant, but fun, so elegant tropical flowers, maybe some seashells w/o overdoing it, tropical colors. They are showing me cheap decorations that you buy in bulk and are plastic–just very middle school dance party–if ya know what I mean? My idea for centerpieces are taking different size clear vases (not super big..between medium large to medium to some small) and filling them with blue and turquoise glossy stones (the ones you can buy in the pet store..they look like glass) and then putting different types of colorful fish in them and decorating the neck of the vase with ribbons from my colors for the wedding. But what other types of things can I do to the tables and reception site to make it look elegantly tropical? I am on a budget so I don’t want to overwhelm myself with flowers but I don’t want to have bare minimum either!

Donna, Wedding Queen, President; Top Wedding Sites

Your centerpiece idea sounds great…you are certainly on the right track. Perhaps these two links will spark more of your creative juices to flow.

Tropical Theme Wedding Decorations

Beach Theme Wedding Decorations

Consider making candles from hollowed out coconut shells or sea shells. Place on tables and in bathrooms.

Seashells can be an elegant addition by simply filling glass bowls with the sheels and adding candles or water and floating candles.

Using fish netting creatively can add a boost to your decor too. Depending on the room you’ll be using try adhering seashells to the netting and draping over door openings or walls. Place tiki lamps around the room (ask the venue manager about actually lighting these since they could set off the smoke alarm).

I would steer clear of the “plastic stuff” too. There are too many other options that can be simple and affordable, yet elegant.

Dawna Smith Custom Photo Book & DVD Services

Check with your local garden nursery/greenhouse and see if you can rent different types of tropical plants, such as hanging fuchsias, banana trees in pots for the corners, etc. If they don’t normally do this, suggest that they allow you to place a deposit for the actual cost of the plants. Once returned safely, have them deduct your agreed upon rental fee.

I love the idea of the netting to hang sea shells and decorations. Lots of great ideas there.

Sue of Hobart’s Fine Florals

I know exactly the catalogue that your family got a hold of. Be careful. It’s so inexpensive it is sort of hard to resist buying. If they do maybe you can find a really messy closet to loose it in?!?[:)]
I have an unfortunate story to tell you about fish.(I work on Cape Cod and have seen this a few times…So there is a little authority here.) Fish are living things and subject to conditions. They get stressed and stop swimming. If they get too stressed they can go belly up, which is not such great zen for your wedding table. If you want the water clear and clean you will have to change it just before the wedding (which will stress the fish! So refer back to what can happen in that case.)
Then there is the human fidget factor. After a few drinks they will probably be fed a little wedding cake. After a lot of drinks frat boy types might start harrassing and maybe even swallowing them. Then there is the where do they go when the wedding is over factor. Yes, they might go home with people, probably to be set on a windowsill and ignored.

That said, can I make an alternate suggestion?
Use your vases and the colored stones. Instead of fish float a single orchid bloom, lily or other theme blooms and small floating candles. Another great addition might be a spiral of beargrass with them. One Dendrobium orchid stem should cost about $6 and has anywhere from 6 to 9 useable blooms. Enough for 2 or 3 vases. 1 1/2 inch floating candles can be found at less than a dollar and could be used in the mix as well. You can also scatter a few of the orchids on the tables among the candles. Water, glass color and sparkling candles always look sharp and elegant.
Sorry if the honesty sounds brutal. But better to learn this now…right?
To feel better, go buy a few flowers, get out your vase and such and do some mock-up centerpieces. You will see for yourself just how pretty simplicity can be! Good luck, have fun and a beautiful wedding day! [:)]