Congratulations if you are newly engaged and embarking on the journey of wedding planning! It is such an exciting time with so many plans to figure out and ideas to address, where do you begin? As a wedding florist with nearly 6 years of running my own business, and many more years floristry experience working for other florists, I have come up with this little guide of things you should consider, which should help you find the perfect florist for you!
Do you have a clear vision in mind of the kind of wedding flower style you are going for? Do you prefer the more romantic, natural, flower filled country garden designs or do you prefer the more minimalist, modern, clean look? Individual florists tend to have their own style and it is important that you try and match this with your style. For me it is all about the natural, romantic, elegant flower designs that are filled with seasonal flowers and foliage. This is a style I love, and I feel comes across very clearly through my website and social media channels. If your vision resonates with your florist and you both love the same ideas then this is a great starting point to discussing the finer details of your wedding flowers! Look through your potential florists portfolio, do they have lots of real brides and weddings on their website which can give you a clear idea of their vision, style and experience?
What is the set budget that you have set aside for flowers? Various magazines and blogs can be misleading on budgets when it comes to the price of wedding flowers as this can be so varied depending on what you go for. Just like anything you get what you pay for and beautiful wedding flowers are no different. If you have set a budget in mind then do tell your florist as this is so helpful to know at the initial planning stages. If you do not know then budget wise I tend to give my couples a range say £1000 / £1500 /£2000/£3000+ and ask them to see where they fit in. Lots of florists have a minimum spend during the summer months as there are only so many days that they can work and a limited amount of weddings they can take on. For this reason I offer a collection service from my studio if you are looking for bouquets and buttonholes, as I only work on full wedding set ups where I am the only person suppling flowers. I itemise all of my quotes, which is really helpful when it comes to knowing where the budget is spent.
Find a florist that you like, I know it sounds obvious but you will be dealing with them potentially for the next year or so and will even see them on the morning of your wedding day! Do you prefer a florist who is going to lead the planning throughout and be upfront about ideas and inspiration… or are you happy to lead the way with your inspiration as you have a very clear vision? I love my couples coming to me with lots of their ideas that we can discuss via Pinterest boards and magazines, it is always so much fun going into detail about all the décor and aspects that contribute to the whole look of a big day! I think it is part of my job to offer suggestions and advise based on my years of experience that will contribute into you having the best wedding flowers possible for you. Sometimes this means maybe steering you away from initial ideas that may not work so well, it is important to trust your florist. Being passionate about flowers and weddings, excited about your big day and offering tonnes of experience and inspiration… and ultimately delivering your dream flowers is how I work!
This kind of stems from the first point of liking your florists style, but it is so important to check out their social media and see if you are a good match. Do they inspire you? Are they posting regular good content? Do you love their current weddings? I love social media and find it such an important tool to communicating with my couples, so many brides have booked me through Instagram after seeing my flowers at their venue or searching through hashtags. It is also a great way to get to know your florist too and how they work, I share so many behind the scenes videos and posts, which really show the working life of a florist! It is a great way to follow the seasons in flowers too, I regularly post the flowers I collect from the market each visit, so you can see what will be available at the time of year you would be getting married.
I wouldn’t say this is crucial, as all good florists will be able to work at any venue although a site visit maybe necessary, But it is definitely a bonus if they have! I would be wary of recommended supplier listings from venues, I am only a recommended supplier on venues that I have worked with because they know I can do a great job, not because I pay them a commission. Coombe Lodge, Pennard House, Paintworks and Almonry Barn all recommend me because they trust me and like my floristry style, however I have been approached by so many venues asking me to pay to be on their list… I just say no! By having a florist who is used to working at your venue, they can recommend the best use of flowers and where they can go, what works well at that particular venue, how the venue like things being done, set up times/logistics etc. is all useful experience that will make your wedding flower planning easier and run more smoothly.
What kind of level of service does your florist provide? I work by meeting with couples, sending out a detailed proposal and mood board on securing the date, a site visit if necessary, full delivery, set up and installation of the wedding flowers and then a clear down and collection the following day. Not all florists will offer this, so do ask about the logistics of how things will work on your wedding day.
I get that DIY flowers may be an appealing option when it comes to wedding planning, but the idea of ‘saving some money’ by not using a florist quite often comes back to bite you in the bum. I get so many calls of brides who have gone with suppliers who have let them down last minute, or that they were getting their own wedding flowers, but can’t find what they want or they have died due to them not knowing how to care for the flowers. Even for a professional, who has worked on nearly 350 weddings as my own business The Rose Shed, and countless other weddings from the many shops I have worked in, it can be a stressful business! Everything to do with flowers is last minute so we are up at 4am and often working til the late hours to complete weddings to the high standard they require. It takes a lot of experience to know what flowers are in season, how long they take to open, the various stages of opening and how to care for them. Then add in the years of skills and learning on the job, it takes to become a good florist, you are also paying for the experience, trust and confidence that you know your florist will do a good job on one of the most important days of your life.
I hope this has been a useful little read into helping you find your wedding florist, wedding planning should be fun an exciting so this shouldn’t be taken as gospel. This is just a few tips that I have learnt over the years and I would love to share them with you… happy wedding planning!