Sunday, April 18, 2010

Finding the Florist

When choosing our florist, I tried not to be super specific about every type of flower we use. I know it can help to be a little flexible, especially when you are on a budget. I did my research and I learned that Hydrangeas are in season in October, which is perfect because they are one of my favorite flowers. I also like the classic feel of roses, which happen to be in season, too. Other than the two main flowers, I didn't want to be too picky with the types of flowers. Instead, I took the advice of Nancy Liu Chin of Nancy Liu Chin Designs. She recommends describing characteristics of what you want the flowers to look like. I told the final two florists we were deciding between that I like white, soft, romantic, and classic flowers.
I then created a checklist of the flowers we need. We aren't doing floral centerpieces, so this trimmed the list a bit.

Personal Flowers
- Bridal Bouquet
- 7 Bridesmaid Bouquets
- Groom's Bouttenierre
- 7 Groomsmen and Father's of the Bride and Groom Bouttenierres
- Flower Girl Item
- Corsages or Pins for the Readers
- Items for the Mother's of the Bride and Groom

Ceremony Flowers
- 2 Altar Pieces

Reception Flowers
- Transferring the Ceremony Flowers to the Reception Site
We originally told the florists we weren't doing anything for the ceremony, since we are on a budget, we think the church is beatiful on it's own and they have strict decoration requirements. But Newport Mom loves flowers and felt we needed something. We decided to do statement pieces that will work for the alter and the reception's cocktail area.

Other than giving the florists the two flower types, description words, a list of needs and showing them a few photos, their wasn't much else I conveyed. I didn't show them exact bouquets to make, but I did show inspiration pictures. I feel like it's a creative industry and since you don't tell an artist to copy someone else's painting, I didn't want to tell the florist to copy another's.

The two final florists were given the same information, but one definitely was above the other. I actually really enjoyed the meeting with our first florist. She was extremey nice and was willing to work with all of our ideas. She was little out of our budget, but because we really liked her enthusiasm, I kept her in the running.All photos from The Knot

At our second meeting, we again gave the same information, but the florist explained things I wouldn't have know about my inspiration pictures. He explained why some things may not work, and gave suggesstions of alternatives. I may not have agreed with everything he said (Sister Newport and Newport Mom was things they already told me), but I did respect his honesty and proffessionalism. He did say he would do whatever I like, as I am the client, but wanted to give me a better understanding of things. He also wanted to include florals with our centerpieces. We are doing hurricane vases with candles, sand and starfish, with votives all around. He said he would throw in rose petals to surround our centerpieces to add to the look. So this was an extra perk and we a still are coming in at our budget.

We obviously chose the florist who was more creative , honest and willing to work in our budget!

Did you go to your floral appointments with a specific look in mind? Were you open to suggestions?


Sara said...

Sounds like you picked a great person to work with. Thanks for this post- we are meeting with 3 florists next week & will decide then. We've been emailing- sending photos & getting quotes. Right now the competition is tight between 2 of the 3. Don't have any idea how to "choose" hopefully when we have our meetings we'll get that feelings and go in the right direction.

Dognbird said...

This is a really helpful post - good tips, I haven't done my flowers yet! Love your choice of hydrangeas too.